Case Studies/Nine Inch Nails The Slip

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NIN, fan, remix, business model


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The Slip, a ten-track album by American band Nine Inch Nails (NIN), is the second artistic release made available to fans ‘for free’ under a Creative Commons licence.

thank you for your continued and loyal support over the years - this one’s on me — Trent Reznor,


‘It’s loud, abrasive, difficult, angry, explosive, and, oh yeah, absolutely free.’ Beacon News

Two months after the release of Ghosts I-IV, prominent and polemic American noir rock band Nine Inch Nails has licensed a second album under Creative Commons, The Slip. Pitched as ‘one hundred percent free’ by front man Trent Reznor, The Slip (aka Halo 27) has been proclaimed as a further challenge to the music industry, defining an alternative path for musicians interested in the self-promotion of works. Available for digital download in an array of formats – mp3, lossless FLAC, m4a, and the impressive higher-than-CD quality 24-bit, 96kHz .wav files via torrents – the ten tracks are readily remixable via their multi-track audio source files at The release also includes a pdf with artwork and credits.

Pre-empting the album release, the single Discipline was distributed freely via the official NIN site in April 2008, and a second, Echoplex, was released for free from iLike. The Slip’s track listing is as follows:

  1. 999,999 – 1:25
  2. 1,000,000 – 3:56
  3. Letting You – 3:49
  4. Discipline – 4:19
  5. Echoplex – 4:45
  6. Head Down – 4:55
  7. Lights in the Sky – 3:29
  8. Corona Radiata – 7:33
  9. The Four of Us Are Dying – 4:37
  10. Demon Seed – 4:59

To cater for the substantial fan base interested in acquiring sought-after merchandise, NIN also intends to release the album on vinyl and CD under a variable pricing model over the American summer period.

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