Home Radiohead’s Pot Of Gold at The End of In Rainbows

Radiohead’s Pot Of Gold at The End of In Rainbows

Our poll this week asks what you’d be prepared to pay for the download version of Radiohead’s new album In Rainbows. In the comments to the original post, someone pointed to a Gizmodo report stating that Radiohead will sell In Rainbows via CD early next year, through one of the ‘big four’ record companies. The Gizmodo post wrote that Radiohead had “pulled an about-face that feels like a betrayal and a dirty cop-out”, because many fans would’ve downloaded the album thinking it would only be available via Radiohead’s website. A later update to the Gizmodo post said that Radiohead had “been planning on dropping the album in CD form in ’08 the entire time.” So it wasn’t an about-face, although it also wasn’t reported in many initial news reports – or noted on the Radiohead website itself.

A lot of the initial media coverage implied that there wouldn’t be a physical CD release, other than the box set that costs a whopping 40 pounds and will be available in December. There is no mention of a single CD version on the Radiohead website either. So it’s fair to say that a lot of people (myself included) got the wrong message; and paid for the digital download assuming it was the only way to get the single album.

According to our poll US$5-9 is the most popular price range that people are willing to pay for the digital download version. That pricing will be virtually all profit to Radiohead, so the download version will make some money for the band. However the eventual single CD release will reach a much wider audience, so the physical CD will end up being the pot of gold at the end of In Rainbows. So much for the big revolution in record sales!

But to be fair to Radiohead, they didn’t hide that fact it would be on CD in January – it’s just that the media didn’t report that properly. Probably also some of us Webheads are guilty of over-hyping the Internet download (did I just say that?!) and thinking it would immediately replace the CD. Getting the album a few months ahead of time and for a very low price is still a great deal.

There’s still time to take part in our poll this week. Let us know what a digital download album, from an artist’s website, is worth to you:

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Get the biggest tech headlines of the day delivered to your inbox

    By signing up, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy. Unsubscribe anytime.

    Tech News

    Explore the latest in tech with our Tech News. We cut through the noise for concise, relevant updates, keeping you informed about the rapidly evolving tech landscape with curated content that separates signal from noise.

    In-Depth Tech Stories

    Explore tech impact in In-Depth Stories. Narrative data journalism offers comprehensive analyses, revealing stories behind data. Understand industry trends for a deeper perspective on tech's intricate relationships with society.

    Expert Reviews

    Empower decisions with Expert Reviews, merging industry expertise and insightful analysis. Delve into tech intricacies, get the best deals, and stay ahead with our trustworthy guide to navigating the ever-changing tech market.