But Mom! I Want It Free!

Today, Pandora announced it's going to charge .99 if you happen to listen to their free service for more than 40 hours in a single month. You can then listen for as much as you want after that - until the next month where you may have to pay .99 again.

(new band to me, Joakim is playing)

Now, essentially they are saying - you can have unlimited access to their service for $11.88. Unlimited access to one of the best built radios in the history of radio.

For those who don't know, Pandora is an internet radio where you plug in a band, a song or a genre - and it plays music in the similar style. Unlike LastFM which works of social networking and "if you like this, you'll like this..." it works off the music itself.

Today I woke up and wanted to listen to music in the vein of Chromatics. Yesterday, I was hooked on some MGMT. It's beautiful. So many good pieces of music, it's as if God himself came down and made me a mixtape.

So, paying $11.88 if I happen to start - over using this free service, means nothing to me. And hell - I may not have to pay that much. In fact, their may be a month where I don't listen to it for more than 40 hours. That's a lot.

If you're using something that much - why is it still free?

I like to follow Twitter and I'm fascinated by "trending topics." It's sort of this wave of social response... I imagine one person says something, 5 of his friends respond to it - and before you know it Betty White is a trending topic. And why? No one may ever know.

(Crystal Castles now playing).

I saw this morning that Pandora was the trending topic, which is how I found out about this new "charge." Before I read it up myself, I thought they were going to start actually charging for their service. I thought to myself, how much would I pay for a radio station that plays amazing mixes - custom made for me? That very rarely makes a bad choice?

$5? $10 a month? I was ok with either of these prices.

But - 99 cents! WHAT? And if you want your own player, no ads - you can pay $36 bucks for the year.

(lali puna, also new and quite awesome)

People on Twitter are calling Pandora "the devil." "Now I'm going to have to find a NEW radio station." "Aaaaaaaand Pandora ceases to be cool in 3.... 2.... (link to announcement)" "Pandora no longer free... good thing I switched to Slacker...."

Are these people ridiculous?! Since when did we become so goddamn entitled to everything? What the fuck!? It makes me ashamed of my fellow friends here - seriously? $.99 is just too much for you?

IT'S MUSIC. FOR FREE. ON YOUR COMPUTER. AND PHONE. IT'S UNLIMITED MUSIC BUILT JUST FOR YOU - FOR LESS THAN A DOLLAR A MONTH.

My God.

And the worst part, is Pandora wrote a letter which seemed to cower and how sad they were to have to charge them this "measly" $.99.

Today, I bought the $36 for the year. I'd like a nice player on my desktop.

The biggest argument I hear when people start demanding "Free" is that - "but I can't afford it." Like those who don't pay for cable but download it illegally from the internet. Or those who download music illegally.

But you can't afford it? Well, then - you can't have it. Period. Shit isn't free. You can't HAVE something - if you don't give something back. And yeah, there are free services like Hulu and catching that missing episode of Lost on ABC.com - those are fine. Those are supplemented by ad sales. And you can sit through the same 30 second ad every act or so because that's what you are paying to watch this television show.

But - complaining about paying less than a dollar?

I just don't get it. Maybe I'm getting old. But I know that when I spend money on something, I tend to like it better. I tend to get a better product. It doesn't crap out on me. If I wait and get a nice computer rather than some shitty PC than I'll end up happier in the end.

Sure, save yourself a dollar. But you can't listen to more than 40+ hours of music. Sorry.

Rant over in 3.... 2.... 1...... (for reading)