When researching the article “My Label is the Internet” for our April09 issue, Alex had the chance to talk with several people directly involved with netlabels.
An interview with Alexander from the netlabel Ektoplazm
Hi Alexander, Lets get right into it. What brought Ektoplazm into existence?
I re-launched Ektoplazm in 2006 in order to explore a number of revolutionary ideas about music distribution, social media, and technology. Of course, many others have done the same thing in recent years – but I was interested in taking these concepts and fitting them to the specific needs of a niche market, namely the global psychedelic trance counterculture. Motivated by concern for the creative vitality of the movement, I set out to develop a viable alternative to the commercial distribution system. The problem, in a nutshell: psytrance is a very small industry. With decreased physical media sales most of the labels have become very risk-averse; they simply can’t afford to take a chance releasing music that doesn’t fit a particular template. New and unusual producers have an inordinately difficult time breaking into this market – and we, as listeners, lose out. To address some of these concerns I set out to open up a new frontier: free music done in a professional way, maximizing exposure for the artists while providing the highest quality digital media to an ever-growing international audience.
From your perspective, is technology like BitTorrent file sharing a threat?
No, not at all. Technologies like BitTorrent are an opportunity, not a threat. It is the task of business leaders to innovate and adapt to changing market conditions, not dictate terms to their customers. Creative and cultural industries have been turned upside down by the ease and convenience of file sharing but those industries were in dire need of renewal. In the new economy of abundance, where media objects are infinitely copyable, any business models based on guilt trips, digital rights management, or other pointless stopgap measures are ultimately doomed. Why fight against the inevitable? It is a better use of time and energy to invest in the future. (more…)