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Fortune: Radiohead was dumb to ditch iTunes, make more money


As long as we're in 2007 review mode, let's review the saga of Radiohead's In Rainbows album (which is definitely one of my favorite albums of the year, by the way). First, they said no to iTunes to keep their album in one-piece, then they decided to "sell" it for free on their website (asking their fans to donate what they thought it was worth), and then they cleaned up.

Then Fortune calls their decision the 58th dumbest of the year. Yes, the geniuses at Fortune believe that Radiohead screwed up, because they say that 68% of people who picked up the album paid nothing, and the rest of the listeners paid an average of six bucks. But of course, Fortune has got it backwards-- Radiohead, as we noted earlier in the year, would only have earned $1 per album going through the record companies, and so they were still able to rake in twice as much at their average of $2.26 per album download.

Dumb? For the record companies, maybe-- they made exactly nothing off of Radiohead's new album. But when you consider what the band made, this distribution method makes even iTunes look dated.

[Via Gruber]

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