Ruckus Media, an ad-supported media player that allowed you to download full albums for free recently closed it's doors. I'm not sure how I got introduced to Ruckus, but I've used it for about 3 years now. I liked that you could download full high quality albums and see what other people on your network were listening to, but the fact of the matter is that Ruckus was doomed from the start. Unless you had a very specific set of MP3 players you could not take the music with you anywhere, and couldn't burn it to CD's either. Also, if you were disconnected from the internet you couldn't listen to any of the music. While the idea was a decent one (give students free, legal music) it was often much easier to just use Limewire or Torrents to get music. I pushed it to the kid's in the dorms at a time when the RIAA was cracking down on students downloading music illegally, but it honestly hasn't gotten much use since then.
Now, I'm far from an expert when it comes to the music business, but even I can see the writing on the wall. The current business model for music is broken. Eventually what's going to happen is that (from what the smart people tell me) is that music will be given away for free by labels and artists, and they'll make revenue from concerts, merch, and special editions of albums. Basically the downloading and sharing of music was like a snowball rolling down a hill, and the music industry waited until it was about to flatten them before they stood in front of it and commanded it to stop. Either you can roll with the changes, and find a way to profit from them, and they'll flatten you, and someone doing it better than you will be the ones to benefit.
Here we go
2 weeks ago