Dear Record Labels — Fix your gifting strategy before we really mangle-up this thing called music

Dear Record Labels

Dear Record Labels — a brief note from a brain scientist, futurist and bassist — please hire a consultant to study those promotional tactics ASAP — or we’re headed for a cognitive disaster of epic proportions.

See, the micro-gifting economy is upon us — and it seems to me that you are quite ill prepared.

My wife just bought a fantastic song and “gifted” it to me from within iTunes.

A track from Lord Huron — Lonesome Dreams.

It was very touching — a wonderful connection that comforted me deeply. I love that woman! And — what a great feature!

Well, naturally, I wanted more than that and didn’t want to bother her with the following note:

Kate — can you please stop your work and your overstuffed sched to make an MP3 copy of the rest of the tracks on that great Lord Huron album? And then place it into that re-in-unstalled-upgraded Dropbox that was impossible to set up?

So, I didn’t. I played the song and got back to work, writing some kooky post about the Singularity and following it up with the ways in which the iPad is going to change human computer video workflows.

Oops! When I came up for air 60 minutes later, I noticed I was still listening to the album — wait … I didn’t send that note, and yet, somehow — did I turn on Pandora? or — OMG — I had been listening to an hour of 90-second samples of Lord Huron’s new album.

Ridiculously embarrassing for me? Maybe. But then again, maybe I’m not alone. The ability to ‘tune-out’ distractions might be a good thing these days, right? Which brings me to my point in writing — I’m worried that if Apple and the Record Labels don’t fix this, folks even younger than me might learn to love such mixes.

So guys — Apple and the Record Labels — together — can you fix this? Big data, let’s get folks that have listened to the same 90 second samples for over 30 minutes into the Healthcare.gov program — maybe we can subsidize free streaming for a day or something. It’s preventive care — so that we don’t re-wire ourselves to enjoy such discombobulated noise.

#I-Miss-Steve

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