Beyond hobbyist level... why?

Beyond hobbyist level... why?

Hi everyone. I'm new to this forum, though I've been around the OSS gaming scene for quite a few years now. My name is Mattias Westlund, I'm a Swedish musician and composer who's made a bunch of tracks for games like Battle for Wesnoth and Summoning Wars (and a few commercial releases as well).

I've been releasing practically all my work under a CC-BY license for years now (dual-licensed under the GPL for the games that require it). People may download and use my music for pretty much whatever they want, which they do. I have however decided to stop doing this. Why? Because there's nothing in it for me.

I am simply getting NOTHING back from offering my work without cost and with liberal terms of use. And I'm not just talking about money here. I never expected to get anything more than coffee money from voluntary donations, so that's okay. More than $10 every other year would be nice though, but whatever. My website is full of tumbleweeds and crickets. My facebook artist page has 210 likes, half of those being people I personally know. So I'm not exactly getting any big amounts of exposure and fans either.

Now I'm not Jeremy Soule, but I like to think that my music holds a reasonably professional standard. Creating it involves a lot of work and takes more time than you might think. So... why should I be giving it away for free when I'm obviously getting nothing back?

I'm posting this here because I'm curious as to how this "open" resource thing could actually be a sustainable and working deal for people who have moved beyond the feedback/improvment stage that OSS development offers (which is invaluable, but only useful up until a certain point). No hostility intended at all, just feeling kind of bummed out with it all right now.