Mark Cuban believes that the music industry is insane.
Forget about piracy. Forget about whether P2P is a good distribution model.
He has a very simple point to make: why don't the record labels target the people who have the money and inclination to buy music instead of persisting with trying to prevent penniless youth from swapping music? In other words, he says, they're looking at the wrong demographic. They should stop expending effort on time-rich-money-poor consumers who search out the nooks and crannies of the Internet for free music and instead look at the time-poor-money-rich for growth.
Business doesn't get more fundamental than that.
Hire someone from Starbucks who understands selling music to demographics who are happy to buy the music they want in a setting they enjoy.
[As an aside, you can see that this post has zero input from me. I'm simply pointing to Cuban's blog. In that respect, I found it interesting that I seem to be doing exactly what he talks about in another post on his blog, about bloggers forming "incestuous networks" to increase their search engine rankings -- but let me say this, I have nothing to gain from pointing to his blog. In fact, since his blog doesn't seem to support the TrackBack feature, his blog won't even contain a link to my blog!]