That’s right, De La Soul has decided to give away pretty much all of their albums today, for no cost to fans. The deal is supposed to last for 25 hours to commemorate the 25 years since their debut.
When I saw this plan my first thought was “Wow…I’m kind of shocked that those major labels would let them do this. I’ve never heard of any major label allowing any of their music to be given away, 25 year anniversary or not.” I didn’t think anything else of it and got on twitter. There I saw even more buzz about De La Soul giving away all their albums. When I mentioned it, several of my followers said they had taken advantage of it and downloaded their entire catalog. Then I saw another person mention that the albums they downloaded weren’t directly from the labels, they were encoded and ripped from filesharing and torrent sites and still had all the incorrect tags on them.
That’s when it hit me: De La Soul had just hijacked the music industry.
You see, if the files they’re making free to the public weren’t from the labels themselves, then De La Soul didn’t get permission from the major labels and rights owners. It basically means De La Soul decided to make their music free themselves. Then they created a publicity campaign around it that tied it into the 25th anniversary of their debut. Next thing you know, De La Soul is a trending topic on facebook and prominently featured on every single music publication there is. Within 24 hours they’ll be forced to take the music down via a cease and desist, but by then they’ll have achieved their plan.