The recorded music industry is being eaten, not by one simple digital revolution, but rather by revolutions inside of revolutions, mouths inside of mouths, Alien-style. Digitization and illegal downloads kicked it all off. MP3 players and iTunes liquified the album. That was enough to send recorded music’s profits cascading. But today the disruption is being disrupted: Digital track sales are falling at nearly the same rate as CD sales, as music fans are turning to streaming—on iTunes, SoundCloud, Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, and music blogs.
The insatiable appetite for HD video led pirate groups to find new pipelines for sharing films before they even reach voters’ mailboxes, and in much better quality. These new sources for HD leaks, lurking anywhere from mastering studios to the mailroom, may be much harder for the MPAA to find than leaks from their own members.