April 11 – Groovin’

Gay Lynn HillBell Ringers, Economics(BR)

April 11 is National Eight Track Tape Day.

The 8-track is considered a bridge technology between earlier reel-to-reel tape players, and smaller cassettes. 8-tracks were only widely adopted in the U.S., U.K., and other English-speaking countries, alongside Japan.

What 8-tracks did was allowed you to make your music portable. While records were popular, you couldn’t play them in a car, much less walk around with them in portable devices. 8-tracks allowed this. They were too big, however, and by the eighties had been replaced by smaller cassettes.

Interestingly, however, it wasn’t until the CD was invented that LP records were eclipsed (and today they’re making a comeback).



Questions:
  1. When one technology pushes out another, it costs people jobs. Do you think we had a responsibility to the makers of 8-tracks to subsidize their jobs? What do you think happened to them?
  2. The people who paid for expensive 8-track players helped pave the way for less expensive cassettes that became widely used around the world. Do you think we should have taxed cassettes and provided rebates to the purchasers of 8-tracks?
  3. What do you think is the next technology in music?

Image Citation:

5, April 2018, 8 Track Tape Player [Digital photograph].  Retrieved from <rollingstone.com>.