8/31/2006

Big Day for Free Information

Google News-- Google Books to Offer Free PDF Downloads of Classics

Google News-- Free Universal Music Download Site to Challenge iTunes

The music and publishing industries both experienced radical alterations to their typical business model as Google and Universal Music have both launched services aimed at providing users free content by attaching advertisements to their online interfaces. There has been great resistance to Google's Book service from publishers at first, but Google wisely went slow and offered publishing houses an opportunity to make up any lost revenue by coordinating their titles with links to ordering information. Universal Music has yet to win over any of its critics, but it isn't set to be released until the fall. Consumers have been spending more on music since the launch of iTunes music store, which sells tracks at 99 cents each, so what makes anyone believe that free is all that matters? Google is definitely forcing change within the publishing industry and hopefully Universal's bold attempt to take on Apple bears some fruit by way of radically altering the way music is distributed and consumed.
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