He’s got billions of bucks, sports teams and his own blog but that doesn’t mean that Mark Cuban’s always right. In his CNet column, he says that the album is kaput, citing singles sales trouncing CD sales. No arguing about that but to say that the album itself is R.I.P. is as premature as digging a grave for rock (or vinyl). It may not have the pull it once did in the age of download but don’t tell that to the hundreds of thousands of buyers who still purchase records regardless, not to mention the thousands of artists who put out albums each year. For a reality check, see this recent excellent interview where David Byrne and Thom Yorke discuss the continuing aesthetic value of the album. And even if you’re among the millions who prefer singles to albums now, are you really gonna give up on your old favorites in your record collection? Plus, in the likely circumstance that a few dozen artists each put together a collection of say 10-15 great songs this year and next year and after that, are you gonna turn your nose up at these albums ‘cause Cuban told you to? Even if it becomes a niche market, which I doubt, the album’s gonna be around much longer than Cuban himself.
But his silly prognostication is small potatoes compared to the MPAA fudging its figures about college students to turn them into scourges. Even after getting caught saying that twice as many downloaders are out there as there really are, the not-so-veritable entertainment industry still insists that those damn students are still a threat. Kind of sounds like the Bush administration warming us about Iran. Maybe the MPAA will lobby Congress to bomb the Ivy League too to prevent any damage otherwise.