ThinkIndie–the digital music download service run by a coalition of independent record stores–is closing. ThinkIndie offered paid song and album downloads to stores across the country, including Louisville’s Ear X-tacy. The service will close on February 15th, leaving Ear X-tacy with no download service.
But the closure is unlikely to further harm the store. In the past, owner John Timmons has spoken candidly about Ear X-tacy’s financial insecurity, but general manager Rebecca Cornwell says the download service was not a source of profits for the store. Cornwell says for two years ThinkIndie clients poured money into the service without seeing a return, likely due to the ubiquity of larger download services like iTunes and Amazon MP3.
Cornwell says it’s unlikely Ear X-tacy will try to keep offering downloadable music after ThinkIndie closes. Rather, she says store management wants to focus on hosting concerts and offering other experiences customers can’t get elsewhere.
Here is the letter ThinkIndie sent to its customers:
The ThinkIndie team would like to thank you for your support and patronage of the site and independent music stores. Unfortunately, ThinkIndie will discontinue selling digital downloads as of February 15, 2011. Upon closure, we will delete all account and credit card information. Please use all outstanding credits before the closing date. All mp3s previously purchased from ThinkIndie will be unaffected by the closure.