Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Como a Música Ficou Grátis: O Fim de Uma Indústria, a Virada do Século e o Paciente Zero da Pirataria” as Want to Read:
Como a Música Ficou Grátis: O Fim de Uma Indústria, a Virada do Século e o Paciente Zero da Pirataria
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Como a Música Ficou Grátis: O Fim de Uma Indústria, a Virada do Século e o Paciente Zero da Pirataria

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  3,829 Ratings  ·  470 Reviews
O que acontece quando uma geração inteira comete o mesmo crime?

Uma trama impressionante envolvendo música, crime, dinheiro e obsessão, cujos protagonistas são magnatas, pesquisadores respeitados, criminosos e adolescentes nerds fissurados em tecnologia.

Em Como a música ficou grátis , o jornalista Stephen Witt investiga a fundo a história secreta da pirataria de músicas na
Paperback, , 272 pages
Published July 13th 2015 by Intrínseca (first published June 4th 2015)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Como a Música Ficou Grátis, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Stephen Witt Eleanor Roosevelt is not mentioned in this book. Nevertheless, her ghost haunts the white space in certain pages.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Sep 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fic
Remember the bad old days of buying CDs? When an album cost a fortune and buying one was a big deal? How Music got free will take you back to that era, explain why it ended, and make you glad that it's gone. This is an informative, fascinating window into the dark arts of the recording industry and the collapse in record company sales that online piracy precipitated. I raced through it, eating up Witt's story of research, money, theft and technological disruption.

How Music got free centers on th
I first learned about this book from an article I read back in April, titled The Man Who Broke the Music Business. The article is a selection of material which would eventually appear in the published book, and gives a good image of its style and content - if you read and enjoyed it, there is a good chance that you'll enjoy the full book as well.

Basically, How Music Got Free takes a complex and fascinating subject - the development of digital audio compression, and its subsequent impact on music
Apr 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Subtitled, “What happens when an entire generation commits the same crime?” this is an examination of how digital music piracy became widespread from the mid-1990’s. The author looks at three different viewpoints in depth: firstly, there is Karlheinz Brandenburg and his team, who were the driving force behind the technology of the mp3, secondly, there is Doug Morris, who, at the time when this book is set, was a middle aged businessman, head of first Warner Music Group and then MCA Music Enterta ...more
Hank Stuever
This is another of those reviews that I would give 2.5 stars if possible, but instead of rounding up to three, I'm lowering it to two.

The story here is indeed captivating -- and tragic, although it's not presented as a tragedy. I think it's smart to come at the erosion of the record industry's business model in the Internet age from three directions (the people who invented mp3 technology; the people who helped themselves to file-sharing without a nanosecond's thought about the fact that they we
Feb 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, business
Lately, I've been having the novel experience of reading about history I remember. I remember the events of this book -- I remember my own perspective, as a very minor I-hate-the-music-industry downloader, of basically everything that happens in this book after the invention of the mp3. This is a fascinating parallax view of history, and I absolutely recommend this for anyone who remembers the heyday of music piracy.

I recommend it for people who don't remember that, too, if they're interested i
Aug 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a middle school teacher I often find myself obsessing about the era when I was a middle schooler. To live this horror and nostalgia over and over again, I often seek out nonfiction that covers the years 1999-2002/3 ish. I demolished this book in two days, and I would have finished it sooner had I not stopped to coo at my new nephew for a few hours.

The digital music revolution is the story of my middle school years ... my friends and I quickly went from mix tapes to Napster, we were pretty sur
Sep 28, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fascinating read for anyone who’s been a music enthusiast for any time at all, or spent more than a few bucks at Tower or Virgin over the years. Stephen Witt’s book attempts to mesh the inside-the-biz story with the developments afforded by an evolving technological curve-- and how the human factor contributes or throws it all off.
First up is how music got ABBREVIATED.

Researchers around the world, emboldened with the understanding that now that a full, luxurious musical waveform could be quanti
Mar 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Συναρπαστικό. Ίσως κάπως εξειδικευμένο. Θέλω να πω, μπορεί και να μη σε ενδιαφέρει η ιστορία του mp3, της μουσικής πειρατείας και της μουσικής βιομηχανίας των τελευταίων 20+ ετών. Εμένα όμως πάντα με ενδιέφερε, και το βιβλίο αυτό μου έλυσε πολλές απορίες, η κυριότερη των οποίων ήταν η εξής: ποιοι διάολο είναι αυτοί οι άνθρωποι που πρωτοδιαρρέουν έναν δίσκο στο διαδίκτυο για κατέβασμα και πώς το διάολο το καταφέρνουν πριν καν ο δίσκος φτάσει στα δισκάδικα;

(εναλλακτικά, αντί του βιβλίου, μπορείς
Karl Geiger
Aug 25, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Do you realize what you’ve done? You’ve killed the music industry.”

Witt's investigative journalism reports how technology and society shifted beneath the music industry's feet, a trend continuing today as Big Music's hunt for revenue moves to streaming and live performances.

The 30-year tale interleaves music moguls and companies (Doug Morris, Jimmy Iovine, Universal, others), the most popular and profitable acts of the last 20 years (Dr. Dre, Ice Tea, Lil Wayne, Kanye West, and many, many othe
May 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
A fascinating exploration into how the way we consume music was revolutionised by the age of the internet. While skillfully avoiding patronising his readers, Witt guides us through the origins of the mp3, the early internet piracy warez scene, the introduction of peer-to-peer technology, and the ups and downs of both the Record Industry and the lives of those responsible for stealing, ripping, uploading, and sharing its products for free. As a member of "Generation Pirate", it was almost like an ...more
Volodymyr Dehtyarov
Отличная, отличная книга. Рекомендую всем, кто имеет дело с созданием контента, его распространением, управлением творческим коллективом.
Автор рассказывает историю создания цифровых аудио и видео-форматов и "войну форматов", зарождение и развитие пиратского движения, развитие музыкальной индустрии, борьбу с пиратством и попытки угнаться за технологиями. И рассказывает все это через жизненные линии нескольких персонажей, которые переплетаются и влияют друг на друга: ученый-изобретатель формата m
Joe M
A fascinating story and highly recommended for anyone who loves music, technology, or has loaded their iPod up with their favorite songs and albums through iTunes, Napster, or other, more questionable sources the last 15 years. For a first-time author, Stephen Witt is an exceptional storyteller and he thrillingly alternates between multiple narratives, moving chronologically from the early MPEG format wars, the emergence of underground Scene Topsites, to the widespread use of BitTorrent as a mea ...more
Unless the book demands a lot of concentration, I prefer reading a book while listening to music. That has always been the scenario because when I was a kid, grandmother kept the radio on, all day along, sometimes even at night(she still does that, thanks to the earplugs). I got used to being attentive to the radio so much I would not study unless the radio crackled in the background. Since this book deals with music, I read it while listening to music.

Make no mistake: Don't judge the book beca
Kate Tolokolnikova
Це крутезно написаний нон-фікшн, який читається як художка. Ще коли український переклад книжки Стівена Вітта тільки анонсувався, мені подумалось, що тематика така вузька...Як журналістці, мені здалося, що це тема радше для статті-лонгріду: як помер формат CD-диска, виник mp3 і розквітло музичне піратство, яке враз змінило закони музичної індустрії. Книжка саме про це, але автор розповідає про цей процес в таких деталях, і настільки захопливо, що аж важко повірити, що так можна. Виявляється, мож ...more
Michael Bohli
May 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, non-fiction, music
Die Musikbranche hat sich mit der digitalen Evolution für immer verändert – zum Guten, wie auch zum Schlechten. Doch wie konnte es passieren, dass all diese Alben plötzlich als raubkopierte Mp3-Dateien im Netz vorzufinden waren? Dieser Frage geht Stephen Richard Witt in "How Music Got Free" auf unterhaltsame Weise nach. Nicht nur werden die technischen Hintergründe und Entwicklungen beleuchtet, auch die Machenschaften der Labels und der verantwortlichen "Einzelkriminellen" erhalten ihre Bühne.

Paras Kapadia
Jan 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I grew up, I was a part of this. I remember the 1st time I installed Winamp and played a .mp3 song on my computer. When Limewire and Kazaa were all we spoke about and then we started seeing bootlegged CDs and DVDs peddled on the streets of CST. The way we consumed music changed throughout our childhood.

To learn about the people who brought about this revolution of sorts was absolutely fascinating. My favorite is how .mp3 went mainstream. In fact, I'm surprised these stories haven't received
Mar 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Now this is how you write a damn book!! Within the first three chapters, I have thrilled in the unexpected drama of a team of unfunny German engineers writing an algorithm, started to put puzzle pieces together about how piracy began, and been convinced to care about the feelings of a wealthy record company executive who signed Snoop Dogg. I am in awe of the author's writing abilities.
Ann Sokolova
Jun 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Очень познавательная книга о том, кто и как создал mp3, как он потом начал жить своей жизнью и как изменил музыкальную индустрию. Забавно, что некоторые из описанных старых технологий я застала в студенчестве, как и музыкальное пиратство в КПИ-шной сетке :D Написана плоховато, редакторская работа и работа с персонажами не очень. Плотность повествования хорошая. А вообще, конечно, огромный респект автору, невероятный труд про музыку! Читать всем, кто слушает музыку!
Jul 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a very entertaining history of the digital revolution and the birth of internet piracy. I lived through all of this and am still waiting for the end of the story. While I wait I have a few questions for everyone.

I think that the first bit of music I paid for was an 8 track cassette (the preferred format among white trash). Then I stepped backward into vinyl for a few years with the occasional cassette tape. Then came Compact Discs, a format that I always thought was stupid even though I
Jul 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a good book for anyone who went through the evolution of music on LP, cassette and CD to the mp3 format, and through the evolution of the Internet. There is no way I could have predicted for myself that at some point I would never be buying music on a CD again and that I would get all my music from the Internet with a music service.

This was a fascinating book all the way through. For those of us who didn’t know the details of how the mp3 format and many others came about, it was great. The
Nov 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A better book than John Seabrook's the Song Machine, or whatever it's called, which i also recently read, this tells the story of how Internets piracy fucked the music industry in much greater detail than anything else I've ever read. It starts with the invention of the mp3, beginning way back in the mid '80s (surprisingly, they already had the idea for Spotify back then), and continues up through the explosion of piracy on college campuses in the late '90s (as KRS-One would say, I was there), a ...more
Aug 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic book about the history of the MP3 – I was enthralled by this story and enjoyed it very much, a lot of things I had no idea about, particularly the amount of engineering that goes into an audio storage format. Amazing.
Matteo Fumagalli
La cronaca della nascita dell'mp3 raccontata come se fosse un thriller avvincente.
May 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
How Music Got Free by Stephen Witt chronicles the fall of the traditional model of the music industry in the digital age. The book's title is deliberately ambiguous as it suggests that music lost its value over the last few decades, but also broke free of the shackles of the record companies as music fans could now access any music they wanted at the touch of a button & for no monetary outlay. The book's subtitle ("What happens when an entire generation commits the same crime?") is also ambi ...more
Anshul Soni
I am going to keep the review quite simple without much spoilers for the reader but would still talk about the general outline.
I did like the book very much and it was on a subject which has impacted everyone in a big way.
There are parallel stories involving the struggles of inventor of MP3 format, the music industry executive who has a good business acumen but seems overpaid and a common man leaking music out of a compact disc plant. Now I agree that these three factors play their roles in sep
Apr 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Viele von uns erinnern sich noch an die Zeit, als der Kauf eines Albums gut durchdacht und das Geld mühsam zusammengespart werden musste. Doch was genau führte dazu, dass wir heute ohne zu überlegen, mit nur ein paar Mausklicks und ohne Bezahlung an neue Musik kommen?

„How Music Got Free“ fokussiert grösstenteils auf drei Schlüsselpersonen: Ingenieur Karlheinz Brandenburg, den Vater des MP3-Formats; Doug Morris, im Laufe seiner Karriere CEO bei allen grossen Musiklabels; und Dell Glover, Mitarbei
Yaseen Jabbar
May 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Part historical novel, part epic, and part textbook, How Music Got Free is a look back at how the very concept of bootleg mp3s came about. In my teen years, I must have torrented over 200 gigs of music, all the way up until a few years ago when I switched to Spotify Premium. The book is a fascinating read, dispelling the premise that illegal mp3s are the work of many players: in fact, if it wasn't for the work of one man, almost all of modern music wouldn't be 'free'. The book starts in the 1980 ...more
Vados Elmee
Aug 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
За неймовірним збігом, гортаючи списки новинок, що варто прочитати, ця книга стала першою електронною книгою, що я придбав (до цього то були переважно паперові варіанти, а не то, що ви подумали :D ).
І це дійсно чудовий блокбастер, що читається на одному диханні (за одну 10-годинну поїздку в автобусі).
Цікаво нарешті зненацька дізнатися приголомшливі факти за кулісами світу, в якому живеш - в даному випадку інтернет світ. Адже підлітком скачуючи музику з сотень джерел я навіть не задумувався, а
Ця книжка написана майстерним журналістом у стилі жовтої преси.

Тут є:
+ історія розробки алгоритму mp3
+ проблеми і корпоративні ігри у стандартизації алгоритмів кодування
+ особливості шоу-бізнесу музичної індустрії
+ продюсинг американського репу
+ виникнення цифрового піратства

і, можливо, ще щось, але я не дочитала, бо стало нецікаво.

Автор вибрав дуже малий масштаб: історія індустрії показується на прикладі декількох людей. Описується їхня робота, зовнішність та емоційні звички, і в результаті з
Adam C Lewis
Apr 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A book on the evolution of music tech shouldn’t be this fun. I blitzed through it and loved it.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Song Machine: Inside the Hit Factory
  • Bourgeois Equality: How Ideas, Not Capital or Institutions, Enriched the World
  • Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!: The Story of Pop Music from Bill Haley to Beyoncé
  • Humans Are Underrated: Proving Your Value in the Age of Brilliant Technology
  • Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future
  • Perfecting Sound Forever: An Aural History of Recorded Music
  • Hidden in Plain Sight: How to Create Extraordinary Products for Tomorrow's Customers
  • Once You're Lucky, Twice You're Good: The Rebirth of Silicon Valley and the Rise of Web 2.0
  • Losing the Signal: The Untold Story Behind the Extraordinary Rise and Spectacular Fall of BlackBerry
  • The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic
  • Not Impossible: The Art and Joy of Doing What Couldn't Be Done
  • Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money
  • Writing on the Wall: Social Media - The First 2,000 Years
  • The Telephone Book: Technology, Schizophrenia, Electric Speech
  • The Penguin and the Leviathan: The Triumph of Cooperation Over Self-Interest
  • Rewire: Digital Cosmopolitans in the Age of Connection
  • The Moment of Clarity: Using the Human Sciences to Solve Your Toughest Business Problems
  • Made in the USA: The Rise and Retreat of American Manufacturing

Nonfiction Deals

  • Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World
    $9.99 $2.99
  • How to Write a Sentence: And How to Read One
    $10.49 $1.99
  • Hidden Figures
    $7.99 $1.99
  • Pocket Prayers: 40 Simple Prayers that Bring Peace and Rest
    $2.99 $0.99
  • Manifest Your Destiny: Nine Spiritual Principles for Getting Ev
    $11.74 $1.99
  • A Three Dog Life
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a Man Who Would Cure the World
    $14.99 $1.99
  • Embers of War: The Fall of an Empire and the Making of America's Vietnam
    $14.99 $2.99
  • How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character
    $10.99 $2.99
  • Happiness: A Guide to Developing Life's Most Important Skill
    $7.99 $2.99
  • Everything I Want to Do Is Illegal: War Stories from the Local Food Front
    $5.99 $1.99
  • My Glory Was I Had Such Friends: A Memoir
    $10.99 $1.99
  • Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life
    $6.99 $0.99
  • The War of Art
    $9.99 $1.49
  • Spoiler Alert: The Hero Dies: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Other Four-Letter Words
    $13.99 $1.99
  • Just Listen: Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Abigail and John: Portrait of a Marriage
    $14.99 $1.99
  • The Botany of Desire: A Plant's-Eye View of the World
    $13.99 $1.99
  • Casino: Love and Honor in Las Vegas
    $19.99 $2.99
  • The Success Principles: How to Get from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be
    $10.99 $1.99
  • The Taste of Air
    $9.99 $3.49
  • The Lord God Made Them All (All Creatures Great and Small, #4)
    $17.99 $1.99
  • I'd Rather Be Reading: A Library of Art for Book Lovers
    $9.99 $1.99
  • The Girl With No Name: The Incredible True Story of a Child Raised by Monkeys
    $17.99 $1.99
  • The World of Lore: Monstrous Creatures
    $11.99 $1.99
  • The Newcomers: Finding Refuge, Friendship, and Hope in an American Classroom
    $14.99 $2.99
  • Helmet for My Pillow: From Parris Island to the Pacific
    $10.99 $1.99
  • America's Women: 400 Years of Dolls, Drudges, Helpmates, and Heroines
    $14.99 $1.99
  • The Good Girls Revolt: How the Women of Newsweek Sued their Bosses and Changed the Workplace
    $9.99 $2.99
“Do you realize what you’ve done?” Adar asked Brandenburg after their first meeting. “You’ve killed the music industry!” 3 likes
“In June 1999, an 18-year-old Northeastern University dropout by the name of Shawn Fanning debuted a new piece of software he had developed called Napster.” 3 likes
More quotes…