In a press conference earlier this month, Sharon Osbourne gave some indication that she understands that the Internet demands new business models from the music industry:
Hey, kids can go online and download music, why not go to a show for free too? What the heck? Ozzy's got a new record coming out this year, he'll be touring the whole year. There is plenty of time to make money.It remains to be seen whether the tour will result in a net gain for everyone invovled. Artists or their handlers may balk at not being able to make a buck on ticket sales, and it will undoubtedly put more strain on performers to play a "side tour" of smaller gigs alongside Freefest. Tickets will still be limited in supply, so if the organizers are not careful, aggressive scalpers may be able to create a secondary market at little cost and with little risk.
Still, it's reassuring to see some creative thinking from players in the mainsream music industry.