first of all, i would like to thank you, that you mentioned http://www.phlow-magazine.com – it’s an honour that someone like you have a look on our small magazine :)
i would like to contribute to this discussion:
i am sure, that in the future there will be more and more netlabels – professional. there are a lot of facts. first of all i define a netlabel like…
=> a netlabel is a musiclabel which distributes music through virtual formats (mp3, flac, ogg vorbis,…)
=> a netlabel is not per se a free music label
in the future, more and more old labels will discover, that cd- and vinyl-selling won’t work anymore. thusfar more and more professional netlabels will rise. they will spread their music via beatport, itunes and such mp3 shops.
but more and more musicians will discover, that they have to give their music away for free, because more and more other musicians will do so.
music as data will be only a promotion-tool in the upcoming years.
in my opinion, you only can earn money with limited goods and all culture be it text, video, pictures or music can be transformend into infinite goods like mp3s or other digital formats.
the future of musicians is to do concerts and make promotion via digital free goods to download to drag the people into the club or to visit their concerts.
i believe more and more netlabels will rise and in the next 2-5 years netlabels will hit the mainstream with fantastic productions.
@janko: “I think it’s important to understand netlabels in their musical context – which is mostly electronic music”
=> that was true for a long time, but more and more musicians and netlabels distribute indiemusic (with guitars), hiphop and more and more pop music (have a listen to calendar girl on ccmixter)
i hope you understand my german english ;)
cheers from germany, mo.