Clay Shirky on Record Labels (kinda)

If you haven’t learned of Clay Shirky yet, get on board. He’s a top-notch thinker focused on the internet and its implications… not necessarily on the music business space but often times his words are applicable. I stumbled upon a great post he wrote about the collapse of complex industries. Though his thoughts were directed toward the TV industry, you could easily replace TV with Record Label(s).

“When ecosystems change and inflexible institutions collapse, their members disperse, abandoning old beliefs, trying new things, making their living in different ways than they used to. It’s easy to see the ways in which collapse to simplicity wrecks the glories of old. But there is one compensating advantage for the people who escape the old system: when the ecosystem stops rewarding complexity, it is the people who figure out how to work simply in the present, rather than the people who mastered the complexities of the past, who get to say what happens in the future.” – Clay Shirky

Listen, managers of the world… the place in which we now find ourselves might not be as sexy or flashy as it was 10 years ago. The big advances from labels are mostly gone and all of the infrastructure they provided is out too. But there is a new model rising from the ashes and the artists are truly at the center for once.

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