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As the record industry stuggles to find a business model for the digital age, British art-rockers Radiohead turned heads
in October with a radical new idea: let people pay what they want. The band released their latest studio record In
Rainbows as a digital download and let fans pay whatever they pleased. The physical album still hit #1 in both the U.S.
and the U.K. when it finally made it to stores, while fan-priced downloads averaged $2 a shot. The jury is out on
whether the idea would work for bands with less loyal followings—or whether it even really worked for Radiohead;
two-thirds of downloaders opted to pay nothing—but the band certainly reaped the rewards of being first while providing
marketers with an interesting thought experiment/case study. As guitarist Jonny Greenwood told Rolling Stone,
"It's fun to make people stop for a few seconds and think about what music is worth, and that's just an interesting question
to ask people."