Jens Roland is a smartypants, and I really like what he has to say in this blog about exactly why and how the music industry has gone into a death spiral:

You should read it, because it is short, to the point, and well-written, but it boils down to the very simple ideas of the mind-boggling increase in entertainment options due to the digital technology revolution, and how the old music business model simply cannot survive it. There are so many ways to listen to and/or obtain music, and my use of the word "obtain" includes both traditional purchase and file sharing. Moreover, music as an option of how to spend your entertainment time and resources is now sharing significant time with gaming and the internet. It's like when TV came to being, smashing into the time people spent listening to the radio at home. It's just so obvious -- people only have so many hours a day and so many dollars to spend on entertainment, and when you widen their options, everything takes a cut. Stupid RIAA.

So now I take off in a different direction, and wonder further: there are these tremendous entertainment options, but how do you begin to even KNOW about all of them, much less pick from them? Musicians are more able than ever before to have their songs available to the public (good god, if I have a song on the internet, anyone can), but how do I find the ones I will love? How do I find the internet sites that will make me laugh, give me the best information, show me wonderful new writers? Movies, games, TV, EVERYTHING. There is all this richness that I know I am missing. There is so much, in fact, that the old adage of the cream rising to the top can't even be true. Good things, great things, are whizzing past because I simply cannot find them fast enough.

Everyone's a content provider, everyone's a star.

There are sites that rate some things, but it just isn't enough, and ratings only go so far for me anyway. I wish I were one of those awesome people who have the ability to think ahead to what people are going to need and want in the future, but so far that has not occurred. Will it be that everyone will have some kind of content manager/metafilter, something kind of like Pandora where you plug in your music interests and it spits back a streaming playlist for you, but for all content? HMM? Because I am always late to the party on these ideas, I am sure someone has already developed this or will soon, and it will someday be standard. Entertainment options are just going to keep increasing, with more people invested in more ways to get their content noticed.

It is a very exciting time.