Wired has a fantastic interview with Trent Reznor on his revolutionary model for music distribution. Reznor is now giving away all his music for free online (not just that Ghosts I-IV album that we wrote about), but fans are still buying merchandise, CDs and even tracks off iTunes. How can he afford it all? He's given special Super Fans who moderate the Web site's fan-generated content special privileges in lieu of monetary compensation. Reznor's latest idea, an iPhone app for NIN fans to download music, photos and videos, and even find other fans with a built-in GPS locator, will be available at Apple's App Store in a few days. In the interview, Reznor also talks about how he developed his strategy by focusing on what fans want, takes a pot shot at Radiohead's pay-what-it's-worth plan, and calls record execs exploitative gangsters. I think Reznor's done an amazing job of pioneering a fan-based system of distribution. And according to the guy from Wired, he's looking "trim and beefy." Still, do I really want Trent knowing my location at all times? That feature better be optional.
—Posted by Rebecca Cullers