Freedom’s Just Another Word for Nothing Left to Lose

Nine Inch Nails: “Hello everyone. I’ve waited a LONG time to be able to make the following announcement: as of right now Nine Inch Nails is a totally free agent, free of any recording contract with any label. I have been under recording contracts for 18 years and have watched the business radically mutate from one thing to something inherently very different and it gives me great pleasure to be able to finally have a direct relationship with the audience as I see fit and appropriate. Look for some announcements in the near future regarding 2008. Exciting times, indeed.”

With Nine Inch Nails and Radiohead now operating without record contracts, perhaps the music industry might want to reconsider precisely how it conducts business. The artists and the listeners are not the enemies. The industry’s continued litigation towards online music listeners, the industry’s sustained avarice towards artists locked into unfair contracts, and the industry’s failure to embrace inevitability collectively suggest that we may very well be witnessing a remarkable revolution that may will leave knock the remaining wind out of record companies. These are indeed exciting times. And one can only ponder whether we will see comparable effects in film and television. Is it too idealistic to suggest that the means of production may very well be returning to the workers?


  1. Ed: While I find your cautious optimism infectious, the day that the means of production rests in the hands of the workers is the day I wake up to find that I am not really 35 years old, that I have traveled in time back to 1990, that my high school sweetheart is still innocent of the sex-crimes she will commit against me.

    Sorry to be so pessimistic, but I’m on page 118 of The Shock Doctrine. We are all very seriously, irreversibly, fucked.

  2. Speak for yourself, Goldstein. While lots of terrible things happen to lots of good people doesn’t mean that we are IRREVERSIBLY fucked. One person drinks himself into the dirt because he was abused and another goes and writes a beautiful book. It’s a choice.

  3. “One person drinks himself into the dirt because he was abused and another goes and writes a beautiful book.”

    And some do both.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *