My Rating System, and Ethics of Piracy

I feel like I’ll be doing music reviews pretty regularly, so I’ve had to decide on some rating system that reflects accurately and simply my feelings on a piece. I won’t pretend to give you a well-informed opinion on the music I review; how I feel about an album is very personal, and not subject to standards of objectivity. Nor will I deign to use some contrived point system to judge albums. I’ve thought of a simple, realistic rating system. I doubt it’s original, but here’s the gist:

I’ll decide whether an album earns itself a “Buy”, “Stream”, or “Don’t Bother”.

I’m a college student with very limited funds, so a “Buy” is high praise. It is also necessarily going to be very rare. To ensure my sincerity in rating, I’ll make an effort to actually buy albums I give that rating. If I ever find myself making real money, then some inflation of ratings may occur. Right now, a “Buy” might be a 10 on a scale of 1 to 10, and a “Don’t Bother” would be a 5 ish or lower.

I don’t condone downloading an album in high quality for free without the artist’s express permission. I find that streaming albums (so that I can’t listen to them away from my computer) from sites like Grooveshark or Spotify sits somewhat easier on the soul. Using these services is what I mean when I say “Stream”.

I’ll try to always link to a band’s personal website. A Bandcamp is the holy grail. I love Bandcamp. They are great. Bandcamp.

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