An e-mail message to Ben Woods

I just read your article about the RIAA’s crying over CD prices. I’m not one to defend the RIAA on anything – especially their absurd argument about CD prices. CD prices were, however, MUCH higher when they were introduced. This isn’t surprising – it was entirely new technology, and the initial production costs were very high. The initial CDs typically cost about $24.95! Seriously. I bought a few when they first came out, and it was a significant investment. That said, this happens with all media. Even blank, recordable discs were astronomical when they were first available; now they cost just a few cents apiece. It would probably be interesting to consider the cost trends of vinyl and cassette “albums” over their respective lives. Or an even more telling trend—the consumer-driven drop in initial release price of DVDs. Once listed at $34.95, DVD titles are now introduced at street prices of around $15. And now we’re seeing high introductory prices again with high definition disc formats. This is basic economics! When is someone with the necessary clout going to finally debunk the RIAA’s desperate arguments and claims about the recording industry? I am so sick of their whining….

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