Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 10th Feb 2012 00:13 UTC
In the News "Like any space opera, the story of information technology is a very simple one. It is played out in a myriad of different ways by a revolving cast of characters, but it always has its loveable heroes, its predictably nefarious villains, innocent civilians to be saved, and bumbling bureaucrats that aren't inherently evil, but begin every story aiding the forces of darkness out of a misplaced belief they are preserving law and order in their corner of the galaxy." He might use Star Wars as an analogy (I strongly dislike Star Wars - Trekkie here), but it sums up very well how I feel about computing today.
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RE[3]: A little over-dramatic
by Valhalla on Fri 10th Feb 2012 04:44 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: A little over-dramatic"
Valhalla
Member since:
2006-01-24

Once the entertainment industry dies and there's nobody to put the smackdown on people pirating,

What smackdown are you referring to?

Hell, people in the US (who don't have ANY excuses) are pirating $1 Android and iOS apps, so what does that tell you?

I'd say the fact that that despite anti-piracy measures being totally ineffective and prices in general inflated due to middlemen wanting their cut there's still a large market of people out there willing to pay for these things which are in reality easy and pretty much risk-free to pirate, then there's every reason to think that with prices slashed due to the elimination of middlemen and the possibility of having the whole world as your market we will see a much better overall situation for those who want to live of their artistry.

See 'pay what you want' successes like the humble bundles, or how we are seeing the rise of crowdfunded projects, there are people out there willing to pay for things they enjoy and that they want others to begin/continue creating.

Likely we won't have the obscenely wealthy superstars like Micheal Jackson, Madonna etc (oh no!) but I think a much larger amount and range of artists will be able to live comfortably off their creations than what was possible under the rule of all-empowered labels who held all the cards by being the gatekeepers you needed to sell yourself to before you had any chance of reaching your intended audience.

We obviously differ in opinion here and it will be interesting to see what the future holds. And obviously the 'content barons' aren't about to give up their (increasingly irrelevant) spot in the ecosystem without a fight and their SOPA attempt was just a small part of their ongoing effort I fear.

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE[4]: A little over-dramatic
by WorknMan on Fri 10th Feb 2012 05:21 in reply to "RE[3]: A little over-dramatic"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

See 'pay what you want' successes like the humble bundles, or how we are seeing the rise of crowdfunded projects, there are people out there willing to pay for things they enjoy and that they want others to begin/continue creating.


Well, the humble bundles get about a million or two a piece. I think I read that for the first bundle, Linux users were the most generous, at about $14 a donation. This kind of money is fine for projects that only have a few developers, but for big-budget titles that costs millions to produce, I don't think this kind of profit is going to cover the cost of making it. And the same goes for movies too. Plus, the 'pay as you want model is rather unique, and the humble bundles get an assload of tech press too, so of course people want to make a good example out of it. But how much do you think is going to be in it for those who don't get this kind of exposure?

We obviously differ in opinion here and it will be interesting to see what the future holds.


Yeah, what you're talking about is a system where people can have all the content they want, and never have to pay a dime if they don't want to. I'm not saying it won't work, but I do think a whole lot of people are going to be looking for new jobs. Hell, if I have a choice, and I don't have to deal with the pirating BS or worry about getting sued, I'll pay $0 every time ;)

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[5]: A little over-dramatic
by Valhalla on Fri 10th Feb 2012 06:12 in reply to "RE[4]: A little over-dramatic"
Valhalla Member since:
2006-01-24


This kind of money is fine for projects that only have a few developers, but for big-budget titles that costs millions to produce, I don't think this kind of profit is going to cover the cost of making it.

I've always wondered what makes these productions so incredibly costly, is it the result of programmers and content creators working for the company having huge salaries? Somehow I doubt it.

Also I think the reported costs of these AAA titles are vastly inflated just as is done in movies through 'Hollywood accounting' which basically revolves around shipping money around shell companies in order to make it appear as if the project was unprofitable. Noteworthy movies which have been represented as making a loss in order avoid paying taxes and royalities to actors are Return of the Jedi, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and the list is long.

Plus, the 'pay as you want model is rather unique,

Yes, certainly suggesting something like that if you worked for big content you'd be ignored at best, fired at worst.

But how much do you think is going to be in it for those who don't get this kind of exposure?

Given how the indie game industry has boomed then obviously it's working even for those not included in the humble bundles. Gaming sites (which is where I'd wager most people today get their information concerning upcoming games) are increasingly reporting on indie games aswell, not to mention gaming sites entirely focused on indie games.

Add to that the viral guerilla type marketing with youtube as the obvious outlet, I'd say independant marketing of your works has never been as easy and far-reaching as it is now. Certainly like in every industry there will be fierce competition, but no more fierce than it would have been where the middlemen had every say as to who will even get the chance to reach the audience.

Yeah, what you're talking about is a system where people can have all the content they want, and never have to pay a dime if they don't want to.

Isn't that what we have now? And yet there's more movies being made, more music being made, more games being made, and unless I'm mistaken the box office had a record year.

if I have a choice, and I don't have to deal with the pirating BS or worry about getting sued, I'll pay $0 every time ;)

Here we are different, while there are certainly things I find drastically overpriced, in general I am willing to pay so that artists I truly appreciate can/will continue to create, and I'm certainly happier when doing that it if most if not all of the money I pay go into their pocket and not to some middleman.

Reply Parent Score: 6

StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Yeah, what you're talking about is a system where people can have all the content they want, and never have to pay a dime if they don't want to. I'm not saying it won't work, but I do think a whole lot of people are going to be looking for new jobs. Hell, if I have a choice, and I don't have to deal with the pirating BS or worry about getting sued, I'll pay $0 every time ;)


There are examples of content creators who have been financially successful - despite eschewing the traditional "big media" distribution models and/or pricing models.

The best example that I can think is RoosterTeeth, the people who make the Red vs Blue series. While all of their episodes are free to watch, they also offer per-season subscriptions (in the $20-$30/year range, last I checked) - with subscribers/sponsors getting getting early access to each episode. That seems to have worked fairly well for them, judging from the massive jump in production qualities since the first few seasons. They seem to have found a model where the "I want it now" impulse overrides the "I want it for free" impulse. And I think the overall lesson that can be gleaned from their success is: there's always going to be a way to make money from your content, if your content is actually compelling.

You could argue that they're an exception/anomaly, but I think that's only because no one in the traditional entertainment industry has been willing to try the same model - not because the model is only feasible for RoosterTeeth. I can think of several current & recent series that I would (have) happily bought a season-subscription for... if only it were/had been available (BSG, LOST, My Name is Earl, Dexter, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, etc). I would much prefer that to financially supporting the increasingly-archaic cable TV model, where you're essentially "paying for a faucet that runs piss in order to get the faucet that runs water".

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: A little over-dramatic
by Beta on Fri 10th Feb 2012 15:25 in reply to "RE[3]: A little over-dramatic"
Beta Member since:
2005-07-06

Likely we won't have the obscenely wealthy superstars like Micheal Jackson, Madonna etc (oh no!)


Only Apple, taking at every stage of the process.

Reply Parent Score: 3