You will rarely hear an indie act complain about piracy; if they’re successful enough to care, they achieved that success in an ecosystem built on piracy from the get-go. But Droste will say that paying $9 for a digital download of an act’s new album—the price of “a fucking appetizer, a large popcorn at the movie theater, and you’ll have it forever, and they took two years to make it”
—matters more than people seem to think, and not just in terms of income. “Maybe they’ll get on the radio. Every record sold shows the industry your value.” Meanwhile, streaming the album from a service like Spotify nets the musicians almost irrelevantly small amounts.