Technological Convenience Or Industry Evolution?

Anyone who knows me knows that though I am a huge music and radio lover, I do not subscribe to satellite radio.  No offense to the many talented and dedicated radio professionals that work at Sirius/XM, I just prefer live, local, terrestrial.  That said, my dedication is often put to the test by the vanilla and formulaic. (Recently, for example, I heard the same Joe Cocker song on the same station at the same time, two days in a row).

Similarly and for some time, I eschewed the downloading of music in favor of fantastic record stores like Harmony House.  Unfortunately, as such stores have fallen by the way side, what were we left with — big boxers with continually shrinking CD bins offering nothing but ‘Greatest Hits’ packages and some new product. The Best Buys of the world really had no choice in this “Catch 22” scenario, as more and more consumers ventured online for their music, such retailers were forced to chop inventory and deep catalogue product and, in turn, push their core fans to their electronic competition.

An avid reader, this holiday season I was treated to another electronic marvel: the Kindle. With bookstores in trouble ala the music stores mentioned previously, selection at many bricks and mortar locations has been trimmed dramatically. Economics is also an issue, driving scores to their local libraries. The Kindle eliminates most of these issues, allowing access to virtually any book or newspaper, in mere seconds, at a fraction of the cost. After a few page turning ‘clicks,’ I’m a believer.

Call me old school but, along with the digital Detroit News and Free Press editions, I have, along with many, come around to new technology not for the sake of the ‘bells and whistles’ and ‘wow factor’ but because that is what constantly evolving mediums and industries demand.  As such, it’s not about keeping up with the Jones…it’s about keeping up.