This new wave of major label "digital labels" reeks of the same stench of failure and weakness as their attempts in the mid-90's to create "hip" fake indie labels to build cool street-cred. I recently had a conversation with my co-worker from my day gig at Haystack about how they're missing the boat.
We came up with one conclusion- to be cool and legitimate you can't go into it thinking that your format is secondary. Fer chrissakes the copy on the Cordless fron page screams "these bands aren't really good enough to have a REAL CD but we're doing this so we look like we're cutting edge." How about launching with EP's from heavier weight bands, do some real promo around it, and make a real stand and say that this is the future of music. Want to make a difference? Release the next Linkin Park EP through Cordless: that will command attention and show that you've truly entered the digital realm, might actually be cool, instead of making transparent attempts at being so.
Cool is not defined by what you buy, but what you create. It's also defined by either how easy it comes to you (not really thinking about it) or by working very close (or past) your personal breaking point to realize your vision. In my perspective, Richard Hell was exponentially cooler than Malcom McLaren because Hell didn't fabricate the image (later stolen by McLaren to outfit his Sex Pistols.) If you're in costume, it doesn't work as well. This also applies to all the Deathcab For Cutie yindies and Hot Topic punks. Sorry kids. If it comes easy, it ain't cool.
How's that Jordan?