Two new services, Muxtape and Mixwit have (sorta) taken the internet by storm over the past couple of weeks. Both services tap into our collective nostalgia (if you are between the ages of, say, 29-45) for the cassette mixtape.
Being of that age, I remember many hours spent in front of my dual-deck boombox lining up songs and counting down the minutes remaining to be filled. Then there was the whole labeling/decorating element. I, like many others, still have a box of mixtapes collected during my youth. Someday I hope to play them for my children while they laugh uproariously at the combination of ancient technology and questionable tunes.
But I digress… Today, the question is whether or not Muxtape or Mixwit are just biding their time before they join the parade of defendents being sued by RIAA.
“On the surface, at least, there can be little doubt that Muxtape presents the bigger target for the RIAA’s high-priced lawyers. After all, despite the fact that it requires users to assert that they have permission to share the music they upload, we all know that not everyone who so asserts will, in fact, have such rights. Plus, as noted above, Muxtape is storing all of this uploaded music on its servers.”
Beyond legalities, of course, is the question of whether or not suing the living crap out of the very people you want to have buy and champion your product is “good business.” Well, I think we all know the answer to that one but it probably won’t stop RIAA for a second, even though they’re likeely to sue themselves right out of a job as the companies that hired them go out of business from lack of customers.
As for Muxtape and Mixwit, they’re cute but, for me, it is just too easy to put together a playlist and hit send. That’s not a mixtape. A mixtape is hours of love and care and cursing your slipping on the pause button. It’s recording little personal messages between the songs. It’s handwritting the titles and artists in painfully small print. It’s an act of love.