If it happens and they are able to negotiate reasonable licenses for all involved, then perhaps there may be a future for recorded music as a source of income. I am doubtful, but very interested in what happens.
Limewire, the P2P program that is installed on 18.71% of all computers
worldwide (according to a Digital Music News Research Group study),
is in talks with various indie labels and label distributors about
creating a digital music store. Like other file sharing programs,
Limewire has faced its share of legal trouble, but hasn’t had to close up shop, to some extent because (from DMN)
"Lime Group chief executive Mark Gorton
has been preparing for a fight for years, and a more secure defense
could emerge. One source close to the organization also noted that
there were ‘no internal emails’ and ‘no paper trail’ indicating that
the group knowingly encouraged copyright infringement, a critical
component of the inducement test for the courts."
A source close to the situation tells me that despite ongoing
litigation with the major labels, other labels — including larger
distributors such as DMGi, IODA, and The Orchard — have expressed interest in signing up with Limewire, which plans to
"leverage [its] large user-base while avoiding the huge mistake of killing it a la iMesh, Napster, etc."
An observer close to one of these deals was sceptical, equating
Limewire’s current P2P offering to "a rocket ship" and the upcoming
digital music store to "a train." But sometimes, before you can move
forwards, you need to take a step back first… maybe Limewire will be
able to start selling music without alienating its audience, using the
lessons of iMesh and Napster as its guide.
From Wired News