It’s just so Hollywood: For decades, record labels peddled their wares through music stores and everyone pocketed a decent profit. The advent of e-commerce and direct online marketing, however, has record companies and retailers singing in disharmony as each scrambles to snag direct sales to consumers. “Love ya, babe” has become “Sue ya later.”
The tiff is over — what else? — fistfuls of money. With Internet sales of CDs and other music products burgeoning, so-called “brick and mortar” retailers like Tower Records and Virgin Megastores are seeing a stream of revenue flow by them due to “point-and-click” purchases from record companies’ web sites. Not that music stores have turned into ghost towns. Indeed, the physical retailers are often also offering CDs on line.
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