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-- These graphs at the Web site FlowingData show segments of consumer spending over the last 25 years. Entertainment spending remained incredibly steady for two decades, but in the last few years its share of total spending has climbed nearly a percentage point to about 5.5%. In contrast, apparel’s share of spending has decreased from 6% in 1984 to about 3.5% in 2008. Food has fallen, personal insurance has remained flat and housing has grown since 1984. The takeaway: don’t expect consumer spending on entertainment – especially recorded music – to change very much. The spending might get shifted around from one product to another, but overall spending is almost a constant. The implications are many. Raise ticket prices and people will go to fewer concerts. Lower ticket prices and they may go out more. And recorded music spending is being replaced by other forms of entertainment. That creates pressure to monetize recorded music in other ways (synchronizations, for example). The data for the graphs come from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. (FlowingData)

-- “Farewell to the Casual Music Fan” is an excellent response to the popular idea that an artist can survive with only 1,000 true fans. Jeremy Schlosberg, of Philadelphia’s Fingertips Music store, doesn’t think the true fan model will work. What’s good to the casual fan, he wrote, is not good to the superfan, and since popular music depends on casual fans, music for super fans will “leave behind the very sorts of casual fans that made rock'n'roll such a robust musical arena for such a long time.” And after thirtysomething years of being a music consumer, Schlosberg is much happier when he feels he is giving money to an artist, not having his money pulled from him in a superfan relationship. The post is a reaction to the popular (and inspiration to many) “1,000 True Fans” blog post, which describes how an artist can make a good living by catering only to 1,000 true fans. (Fingerstips Music blog, via Digital Audio Insider

-- Pandora founder Tim Westergren on his approach to offering both a free and paid version (aka the “freemium” model): “I think it’s important to have freemium with a subscription offering as a matter of service to our users but we don’t view it as an important cornerstone of the business. Nothing should lead anyone to believe that subscription in the music space on its own is a viable model.” (Music Ally)

-- Influential blog TechCrunch has long been a cheerleader for the new streaming service at MOG, the online music site. The service is now live. It costs $5 per month but is currently available for a free one-hour trial. After testing it for the last few weeks, TechCrunch is “impressed” and claims MOG’s new service is “much better” than MySpace Music. “Searching, discovering, saving and listening to music is intuitive and fun. The social aspects of the service let you share and discover new music with friends. And the user experience will be an inspiration to the next generation of web designers.” One potential downside that's immediately noticeable: music is played via a pop-up window. Great if you like a separate window, bad if you prefer everything to be on one screen. (TechCrunch)

-- Microsoft is giving away a free month of the Zune Pass music subscription service with the purchase of a Zune HD portable media player. (Ars Technica)

Follow Billboard senior analyst Glenn Peoples on Twitter at twitter.com/billboardglenn.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboardbiz

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