So that’s what they mean separately. What do they mean when you say them together?
You’ll remember that when I say ‘music’, I am not only talking about recordings of music. I’m talking about the whole medium of popular music and all of the stages of its production, distribution, promotion and consumption. Likewise, you’ll recall that when I say Online, I’m not just talking about web pages. I’m talking about the whole ecology of the online environment. The electricity into which we can plug so many internet appliances.
So having come up with something of a working definition of what I mean when I say ‘online’ and what I mean when I say ‘music’ it will hopefully be instructive to look at the two of them as a single idea: Music Online – or, to put a slightly different flavour to it, Online Music. Because the order in which you say those words gives a subtle shift to what it can mean, what you can do with that meaning conceptually, and therefore what you do as a result.
‘Music Online’ is music that has been put into an online environment. It’s music, first and foremost, and now it happens to be online. ‘Online Music’ is music that is characterised by its online-ness. What sort of music is it? It’s Online Music.
I’m interested in both.