The site which has two price points premium at 9.99 and 19.99 for the Hifi, promises exclusive content with the purchase of a monthly streaming package. Rumors have been out that some artists including Jay Z himself, have called subscribers personally and thanked them for signing up. That's a nice gesture and i'm sure the artists feel really good about themselves but lets be real who cares? In a time where, people can get that exclusive content two minutes later for free, Tidal seems outdated and out of touch. In theory, it seems logical to want to ensure that your art is respected and paid for. But, in a day in age where you can get everything for free this to me was a failure at jump.
It makes me wonder about just how out of touch musicians are these days. I worked in the music industry during the times when you couldn't walk down the street without seeing bootleg copies spread out on the sidewalk. That phenomenon quickly transformed into the ipod craze. To this day, I feel like much of the downfall of the music industry was its lack of interest in where technology was heading. A company like Sony for whom I worked and which is based in technology AND music, should not have sat by idly and allowed a company like Apple to come in and dictate how they would distribute music in the future. That's where egotism reared its head and showcased what naivety truly was. By the time companies like Rhapsody and Spotify came around, the music companies were the balls in the fist. So, seeing Tidal jump on the bandwagon and not offer a new more innovative solution to streaming is laughable and disastrous.
One way of eliminating the chaos and looking towards a more profitable way of making money off of their music would have been to go the free route. If this new musical conglomerate would have offered their music for free with a few caveats I honestly believe they would have found more success. For example, when I stream TV shows, in the midst of it is a set of commercials. If Tidal would have offered their music for free but added commercials couldn't the artist make money off of those? No one could convince me that some of the biggest companies out there wouldn't pay top bucks to advertise during a Beyonce album stream. If customers didn't want the commercials than the site could charge them the monthly rate. But, I can't imagine that you will consistently grab consumers willing to pay money for music knowing that as soon as they download it they can go to a torrent site and download it for free.
Jay Z comes across as highly intelligent. I've been a fan of his for years. Some of the decisions he's made inadvertently caused me to put my hand over my mouth in shock and awe. Those times it were about being impressed. I can't say that on this venture. With Tidal, I see a group of egotistical artists who remind me of the movie "Mean Girls"..... "you can't sit with us"! The group of "chosen" artists albeit some of the most popular, have a history of narcissism. Can anyone say Kanye or Madonna? But, hey that's not the point. At the end of the day, if the artists number one concern is preserving their art and ensuring it gets the monetary respect it deserves this latest venture needs to be rethought. The campaign needs to be retooled. And the statement needs to be reworked. If they believe so much in the site and the cause, then promote it. Why aren't any of them sitting on couches and chairs on daytime and late night TV selling this service they believe so much in? At the end of the day, every wave must come down. To me, Tidal is a crashing wave of tsunami proportions.