Print 30 comment(s) - last by Xietsu.. on Sep 22 at 1:52 AM

Doomed to an early death

Everyone, meet the “ringle.” It’s a CD single! It’s a ringtone! It’s $6 or $7! It’s the latest idea to come out of the RIAA’s wondrously brilliant "think" tank – the same entity responsible for such gems of business logic like suing your own customers and running your own promoters out of business.
The ringle is a slip-sleeved CD single packaged with a “free” downloadable ringtone. I suppose the idea isn’t all that bad: if consumers are out there buying CD singles, why not throw in a ringtone or two to go with it?
The devil, however, is in the details. First, how many people actually buy CD singles anymore? As far as I can tell, the only person who does in my zip code is me. CD singles are dying a slow death, done in by the grubby hands of MP3 and the polished-white blade of iTunes. The last time I saw a real-life dedicated music store — which is also dying, sadly – with a decent-sized selection of CD singles had to have been before even the original, true Napster. Just how exactly does the RIAA think they can drum up a market from a group of people that would much rather not get their music through physical transactions, especially when they’d pay six times the price to do so?
Am I saying the ringle is hopelessly doomed? No. Despite the stupid name -- more on that in a minute -- I suppose if the RIAA really wanted to it could somehow force the ringle into a decent market space. But in order to do that they’d need to promote it with a public face that’s not associated with bilking dead grannies in courts over charges of downloading gangster rap. In order to stop doing that … well, let’s just stop right here and dismiss the idea as impossible.
Second, let me be the seemingly first person to say that all these stupid product and website names need to stop! Which pre-school did the folks at the RIAA pull “ringle” from? Will the toddler get royalties for his – and I use this term loosely – ingenuity? I command the name to immediately die, and suffer an eternity in stupid-word hell right next to other gems like Joost, Flickr, KRZR, and their progenitor, blog.
I suppose there is a silver-lining for the soon-to-be “ringle” train wreck. Hopefully, the ringtone-portion of the ringle will help undercut the undeserving ringtone market: by selling something that is essentially a fair-use right for legal music buyers, the ringtone market is effectively dumbing consumers of their own rights.  It’s pleasing to see that at least the RIAA – of all things – recognizes this, even though I doubt its decision was probably made out of altruism.

Besides, how hard is it to make your own? There are plenty of free tools and services that offer to do it for you, and the actual steps aren’t that involved.

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By xsilver on 9/14/2007 4:41:53 AM , Rating: 2
Does anybody here actually KNOW of anybody that has bought a ringtone for $5 or whatever ridiculous fee that is charged?
Apparently its a billion dollar market, but isnt the business model just to trick stupid teens?

RE: ringtones
By TomZ on 9/14/2007 8:34:10 AM , Rating: 3
stupid teens

I would expect that is a potentially large market.

RE: ringtones
By jskirwin on 9/14/2007 9:28:42 AM , Rating: 2
When you include the parents who give them the money it is.

RE: ringtones
By Master Kenobi on 9/14/2007 10:24:07 AM , Rating: 2
but isnt the business model just to trick stupid teens

No, there is no trickery needed, stupid teens are stupid teens. You can sell them anything especially if the parents are bank rolling them like so many do.

RE: ringtones
By Vanilla Thunder on 9/14/2007 12:12:49 PM , Rating: 3
And the previous generation was saying the same thing about us when we were teenagers. The cycle continues. As we all know, youth is wasted on the young.


RE: ringtones
By Master Kenobi on 9/14/2007 1:39:12 PM , Rating: 2
Yea, I'm in that "Stupid Teen" generation right now. The difference is my parents never really got me anything, the most common sentence was "If you want it, get a job and buy it yourself". Well, I'm 20 and I make a square 78k/yr for a large corporation :)

Not ALL of us are stupid teens.... but I will vouch that the vast majority are and it saddens me greatly.

RE: ringtones
By TomZ on 9/14/2007 3:23:15 PM , Rating: 2
I would say that since you're 20 that you're not a teenager any more. :o)

RE: ringtones
By Vanilla Thunder on 9/14/2007 5:14:18 PM , Rating: 2
Well, I'm 20 and I make a square 78k/yr for a large corporation :)

Did your epenis grow right after you posted this?



RE: ringtones
By Anh Huynh on 9/15/2007 3:35:53 AM , Rating: 2
I bought one using the iTunes music store. It was retarded and I just wanted to give it a shot, lo behold, $3 later, I had a working ringtone.

Annoyingly, the default list views don't show the ringtone icon, and I didn't know that, so the first track I purchased (Kanye West - Stronger) wasn't available to create a ringtone.

After feeling dumbfounded, I enabled the ringtone view and spent another ten minutes searching for a song I wanted to make a ringtone. I settled on T.I. - Act II, an intermission that has a nice beat.

The iTunes ringtone converter isn't too shabby, its simple and for the market it caters towards is perfectly fine. However, it only allows for ringtones up to 30 seconds, and I prefer to have a song play a whole verse as a ringtone instead of looping half of it.

So in my opinion its quite useless and I'll stick to Audacity to make my own ringtones and use my hacked iPhone to set my own ringtones.

RE: ringtones
By Devo2007 on 9/15/2007 5:47:57 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, the reason it's limited to about 30 seconds or so is because that's typically how long a phone will ring before transferring the call to voicemail.

RE: ringtones
By Ryanman on 9/16/2007 1:44:30 PM , Rating: 1
Short answer: Yes.
I, as a teen, am not quite dumb enough to buy ringtones (one time I got a counter-strike ringtone from my friend for the cost of a multimedia text message, but that's it)
Let me tell you that the idiots who buy north face jackets and have sex with the football team are more than willing to spend this much money on a ringtone. One girl has spent over 30 dollars on ringtones, and even more dowloading songs from Vcast to play on her speakers and annoy the shit out of people with crappy gangster music.

Yeah, I'm ashamed to be a part of this demographic.

"We shipped it on Saturday. Then on Sunday, we rested." -- Steve Jobs on the iPad launch
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