Esquire's Chuck Klosterman has an interesting new take on the P2P blame game: Klosterman believes the credit card industry is responsible for the rise of music swapping. Why credit cards, you might ask? Because paying off plastic debt is where the money goes that we used to spend on music, says Klosterman. In his own words:

"What happened is this: Young people needed more money to pay for their rising levels of self-imposed debt, so they unconsciously gravitated toward the first technology that provided a cost-saving alternative. Because four-minute digital-song files are relatively small (and thus easily compressed), ripping tracks for free became the easiest way to eliminate an extraneous cost."

Nice idea, if only for the fact that it's something different. Of course it doesn't account for the generational changes in music consumption. Klosterman looks at his own generation and concludes that he and a lot of his friends have less money to spend or borrow than ten years ago.

But how many of today's file swapping teenagers have gotten themselves in financial trouble in the nineties? And how do you even amass thousands of dollars of debt by the age of seven? Primary school gambling? Ice cream shopping sprees? Too may fur bibs? Maybe Klosterman's theory needs some polishing, even if it sounds good:

"People stopped buying albums because they wanted the fucking money. It's complicated, but it's not."

But it is!

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