I Want My Effing James Bond Back

This is another post about Spotify, believe it or not, and why James Bond has made me afraid to use it.

James Bond As we all know, the famous British secret agent is a crafty one. He’s entertaining to watch, worth every penny I’ve paid to Netflix to see him. In fact, the entire James Bond catalogue appearing on Netflix Instant Watch is what prompted me to sign up for the service in the first place. (If it hadn’t, the entire Star Trek TNG series would have.) So now I get to watch Mr. Bond do battle with evil masterminds, Grace Jones, and the governor from those pirate movies, all while skillfully avoiding death, imprisonment, and chlamydia. I’ll be entertained for months.

Except I won’t. Secret agents are trained to disappear, remember? The rights holder for the James Bond franchise pulled the entire library out of Netflix Instant Watch shortly after I signed up. As a token of their remorse for my disappointment, they promptly raised their prices to make up for it. But I’ve still got my Star Trek, right? Right? Well, as of this posting I still do, anyway.

Compound Mr. Bond’s untimely disappearance with the concerns raised by James Allworth of the Harvard Business Review. The main concern I share with Mr. Allworth is one of habits: We don’t tend to watch the same movie over and over again (unless we’re really, really high), but we will listen to the same album repeatedly. What happens if the cost to keep listening suddenly jumps? Or what if that album disappears entirely?

Maybe 007 stole it for his Lotus in-car turntable. He’s probably got one, you know.

Either way, the conclusion I’m rapidly approaching is that Spotify, like Pandora, is best used as a way to discover new music, that’s all. And again, Pandora is a much better system for discovery since you really don’t have to do any work to be exposed to new music you’re likely to enjoy. The robots pick the playlist and there’s no illusion of “owning” or even renting the music; it’s just like radio with no DJ and your own personal program director.

So I’ll be here with no James Bond. At least, not until I can afford the full DVD collection or whomever’s pulling the strings decides to let me enjoy what I paid for. Again.

The Democratically Elected Best of Matthew Ebel Join the Robot Army, get a FREE album!

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