The online music economy for independent music entrepreneurs

This research focuses on independent music entrepreneurs, capturing their experiences and perspectives of the rapidly changing music industry and examining the effects digital technologies are having on their practices – focusing predominantly on distribution, marketing and e-commerce. It was carried out from 2008/9 as the final thesis of a Masters study in Media Enterprise.  It is a social and cultural study, focusing on business skills, self-analysis and practice in the online space rather than economics directly, which is a focus and area that has rarely been studied in academia.

You can view the full research (with bibliography and citations) below, or additionally I’ve divided the research into a web friendly version in 9 pages (note: the theory and research findings are grouped together in these pages) that takes out some of the more academic references and adds in links to online sources.  The interviews are annotated transcripts, with thanks to the interview subjects.

For more information on this research please contact me.

Download the academic research report (PDF)

Web articles

Introduction: Background, methodology and survey findings
Part 1: The changing roles and values of the music industry
Part 2: The effects of peer-to-peer digital distribution (case study: 16-year-old music fan)
Part 3: The changing values of copyright
Part 4: Opportunities in digital marketing and social media (case study: Kunt and the Gang)
Part 5: New business and value models
Part 6: Business skills and entrepreneurship
Part 7: Key findings and conclusions


Alison Wenham, Chief Executive of Association of Independent Music
Andrew Dubber
, online music expert
Jake Shillingford
, owner of Exilophone Records and solo artist
Roger Simian
, owner of Sharkbatter Records and recording artist
Yinka Oyewole
, lead singer of rock band Sabatta
Robin Junga
, sound engineer, tutor and recording artist


3 Responses to “The online music economy for independent music entrepreneurs”

  1. [...] a Strategic Business Coaching Diploma and a Masters in Media Enterprise (specialising my paper on online music for independents) in [...]

  2. Downloaded your research to read up on later, good work and thanks for providing this info!

  3. [...] the potential to cut off our consumers internet is bad – no question.  My 2009 research into the effects of peer-to-peer distribution for independent music entrepreneurs showed a mixed picture with surveys on the efffects of downloading hugely variable depending on the [...]

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