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Friday, 1 October 2010

Off the dial, in the Notspots, the only source of culture could be the fridge

For the tech savvy the new cultural revolution is here, but if you've got a crap connection you'll be left behind.

This blog post can be read at

I sit here on a Friday night listening to an album which is rather delightfully entitled `Swallow This Turd'. It is a sampler album of American `Popular Beat Combos' signed to the Tic Tac Totally label, which has been heavily featured by the excellent Tom Ravenscroft (the son of the late John Peel) on his BBC 6 Music show.

This is where I am so thankful not to be in a Notspot. Being an anorak I consume my media in a very different way to how the broadcasters, and indeed the music industry intended. For instance the original radio programme which featured the album was recorded onto my computer from the BBC i-Player, strictly speaking a bit naughty, but essentially it's no different from taping it. Infact I used to have a DAB radio (since deceased) which would record DAB direct onto an SD card as MP2 files and those could be converted to MP3 in i-tunes and put on my i-pod, which is then plugged into the USB socket on my car stereo.

In essence I can record programmes, some very good programmes which are broadcast late at night, and then listen to them at a time of my choosing. Radio 3's outstanding Late junction programme has on occasions been my breakfast time listening.

To be able to do this, from the i-player I need to have at least 2mbps, otherwise it buffers, and pauses every couple of minutes. To get at this free download, which is actually rather good, I had to download a 135Mb zip file... On my connection it took about 20 Mins, which is quite bearable. My laptop is female and it can multi-task, although waking up in the morning is more of challenge.

I can also download podcasts, videos, and other AV stuff where I access more of my culture these days than TV.

The simple message is that the delivery of culture is becoming more and more dependent on digital connections. Without a good connection people are missing out, and potentially the arts are suffering.

In part the BBC has to be aware of the fact that there are a lot of people who can't `listen again' or use the i-player, and pressure has to be put on the corporation to, in turn to put pressure on the DCMS to ensure that everybody who pays the licence fee has the ability to access the content, and at the same time on-line campaigners should take the opportunity to get the arts onside. Many bands make it via Myspace and other on-line music sites. And a lot of music is also sold on-line

I'm only listening to this lively little sampler LP because I can get 2Mbps, in the past it wouldn't have stood a chance.

If the title `Swallow This Turd' provokes your curiosity it's here type in a valid e-mail address and it will send you a link to the download.

1 comment:

Hi fromHove said...

No kidding downloads are on the up. The BPI, which looks after the music rightsholders (hiss, boo) says people downloaded 170 million singles last year. The record for sales of physical singles was 90 million. What's more, in August the 500 millionth legal download in the UK was recorded. For more drag down to the bottom of this story

Makes you wonder why BPI complains about file sharing.