$100 Million Pledged To Indie Film On Kickstarter... And 8,000 Films Made

from the but-the-industry-is-dying dept

Less than a year after being declared the darling of Sundance -- especially for not having "the arrogance of a studio" -- Kickstarter has announced that over $100 million has been pledged to indie film via its platform (which, of course, is hardly the only crowdfunding platform that filmmakers use, though it is the most popular). There are some caveats, of course. This is over Kickstarter's lifetime (since April 2009), but the numbers have been growing rapidly. $60 million of those pledges came in 2012. Also, that's pledges, not actual money given, since only projects that hit their target get the money. The actual total collected is $85.7 million -- which means that'll get over $100 million pretty quickly.

And, yes, the "but what about my $100 million movie" crowd will scoff and argue that this number is so "small." But, two points there: first, this number is growing very, very, very fast. And if you can't understand how trends explode, then you're going to be in trouble soon. Second -- and this is the more important point -- those funds helped create 8,000 films. For those who have been arguing about culture and how we're going to lose the ability to make movies... this suggests something amazing and important is happening which goes against all those gloom and doom predictions. By way of comparison, the UN, which keeps track of stats on film production, claimed that in 2009, 7,233 films were made. Worldwide.

Also, some will inevitably suggest that these aren't "real" films and don't "count" or aren't important. But, of course, the data shows that it's creating a nice long tail of film production, and that includes some very "real" films no matter how you measure. According to the Kickstarter post:
  • At least 86 Kickstarter-funded films have been released theatrically, screening in more than 1,500 North American theaters according to Rentrak. Another 14 films have theatrical premieres slated for 2013.
  • According to Rotten Tomatoes, three of the 20 best-reviewed films of 2012 are Kickstarter-funded (The Waiting Room, Brooklyn Castle, and Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry). Another Kickstarter-funded film, Pariah, was among the best-reviewed of 2011.
  • Two films have been nominated for Oscars in the past two years: Sun Come Up and Incident in New Baghdad. A third, Barber of Birmingham, launched a project after being Oscar-nominated. Three documentary features and two documentary shorts are currently shortlisted for Oscar nominations in 2013: The Waiting Room, Detropia, Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry, Inocente, and Kings Point.
  • Kickstarter-funded films comprised 10% of Sundance’s slate in 2012 and 2013. In total, 49 Kickstarter-funded films have been official selections at the prestigious festival.
  • Kickstarter-funded films comprised 10% of the 2012 slates at the SXSW Film Festival and Tribeca Film Festival. In total, 57 Kickstarter-funded films have premiered at SXSW and 21 at Tribeca.
  • At least 16 Kickstarter-funded films have been picked up for national broadcast through HBO, PBS, Showtime, and other networks.
  • Kickstarter-funded films have won at least 21 awards at the Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, Cannes, and Berlinale festivals.
  • Eight Kickstarter-funded films are nominated for Independent Spirit Awards this year.
That seems like a pretty good track record that any movie studio would be proud of... And, to think: this trend is just beginning.


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
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    Jeff (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 7:13am

    Perhaps this will break the stranglehold that the majors have on filmmaking. Filmmakers will still have to pitch their ideas - but instead of pitching them to crusty, non-thinking, I-want-a-hundred-million-dollar-blockbuster studio exec, they can pitch their idea to like minded individuals. If enough folks participate in this business model, it will force the major studios to reform their 'accounting' practices in a way that gov't regulations never could (or will).

     

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    Ninja (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 8:50am

    It doesn't matter how mind boggling are the numbers, the amount of successful stories and so on. The MAFIAA will NOT recognize that there are other ways, other BUSINESS MODELS that it can pursue to build quality content. And above all they'll not accept that piracy is not a problem. I download. A lot. And yet I contribute a lot with all sorts of projects via donations, crowdsourcing. But regardless they'll treat me and millions like me as criminals and they will bend laws in their favor just because their pockets STILL can.

     

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    Atkray (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 8:52am

    /me Waits for new bill making crowd-sourcing a felony.

     

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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 8:55am

    Re:

    But as the trend continues there is a chance that the MPAA will reach into their pocket to slip another envelope of cash across the table and come up empty.

    It is taking far to long, but their chokehold is starting to loosen. They demanded more bad law and were told in a very loud voice by the public NO. They will keep trying, but these are just the death throws of a dinosaur.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 8:55am

    Newsflash for Masnick:

    Filmmakers who use crowd-funding don't want their work ripped off any more than your boogeyman Hollywood studios want theirs ripped off.

    And if you've got evidence that the majority of the filmmakers using crowdfunding would prefer people rip it off rather than pay for the privilege of viewing, post it.

     

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  6.  
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    Zakida Paul (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 8:55am

    Yet more proof that crowd funding can and does work, but will the legacy industry recognise this? Like fudge they will. They simply refuse to recognise that their is a vibrant film scene outside of their narrow little world and that, ultimately, will be their downfall.

    On a side note, I contributed to my first crowd funding project over on pledge music, in helping band Saint Jude fund their next project. It gave me a warm and fuzzy feeling that has made me want to fund other projects when my meager income permits it.

     

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  7.  
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    Ninja (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 8:57am

    Re:

    They wish. But I think that'll be abusing a bit too much of the system.. I think?

     

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  8.  
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    Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:00am

    Re:

    Did you hear that? No? What you didn't hear was the point flying over your head. Why you didn't hear it is becouse that's just how far above your head the point flew.

     

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  9.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:02am

    Re:

    I'm really not sure who you are arguing with, but we've never said that anyone should want to be ripped off. Not sure what you're trying to say here, really, other than that you seem to believe I've said something I haven't.

     

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  10.  
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    Ron, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:02am

    Re:

    You are a fucking idiot. There was no mention in the article about downloading. STFU and stop posting here.

     

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  11.  
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    Michael, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:03am

    Re:

    Probably not, but there is a good chance that a regulating agency like the SCC or something similar will help slow things down...I mean help make things safer for consumers sometime in the near future.

     

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  12.  
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    anonymouse, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:05am

    Re:

    Now what would be very very interesting is if there was a dedicated movie site that allowed crowd-funding only for movies and provided not only a place to collect funding but also marketed and analyzed/reviewed the movies released, maybe having a top 20 of the best movies of the year voted for by the viewers, maybe even a few trophy's going to the top movies/actors..LOL.. actually this could very easily and quickly result in a total dominance of the online marketplace by crowd-funded movies. Better move quickly Hollywood otherwise you will be a has been very very soon, and we are not talking in terms of more than a few years.

    Hopefully Hollywood do not recognize this as something that is threatening them, they need to stay away and leave this up to the innovators, let the online business of movies be controlled by the indie movies.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:06am

    Re: Re:

    Q. Why does Mike Masnick complain so much about Hollywood, the MPAA and the movie studios?

    A. Because they go after piracy.

     

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  14.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:08am

    Re: Re:

     

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  15.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:10am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Must be Jon Taplin asshurt that his statement regarding "Marty Scorsese" is holding little to no water.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:11am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Real A. Because they go after everyone.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:13am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Has your sorry pirate ass been throttled? boo hoo.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:16am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I would think that the quality of these Kicks are showing through, with Oscar nominations and a growing stand in the bigger arts festivals (SXSW, Sundance etc.)

    Not a thing to do with pirates. Unless you include Hollywood in that.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:18am

    Re: Re:

    This is a piracy apologist blog. Numerous times every week Mike Masnick whines about Hollywood and how they are unwilling to bend over and take it from pirate losers like yourself.

    No need to explain what is fait accompli.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:20am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Lovely deception you have there. Maybe try turning it outwards?

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:22am

    Re: Re: Re:

    And you have nothing useful to say, on either side of any discussion!

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:28am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Calling someone a pirate is toothless because it gets flung around so often by the MPAA and RIAA that it's taken on an alternate meaning of "the public."

     

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  23.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:30am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Never let the facts get in your way.

    Now, assume the position.

     

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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:32am

    Documentaries

    I wonder what the percentage of documentaries is? They've traditionally had the hardest time getting funded, but they seem to make up the majority of Kickstarter projects.

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:32am

    Re: Re: Re:

    He DOES NOT whine about Hollywood going after pirates. What he CRITICIZES is their methods of doing so.

    End run arounds on due process. Outright censorship/seizure of domains/websites based solely on ALLEGED acts of copyright infringement (many of which have been wrong). Shoddy methods of evidence gathering regarding IP addresses.

    You know, things like that. That isn't being a piracy apologist or whining about Hollywood. That's looking at things and focusing on the bigger picture and rightly noting that just because one group does something that is illegal (pirates and copyright infringement) DOES NOT mean another group has the right to cut corners in their haste to stop the other group (Hollywood and the various entertainment industries). Nor does it mean they have the right to drastically change and/or create laws that affect the rest of us just for the sake of their profits. "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few."

    They DO NOT have the right to monitor what I do or do not do online. Not until such time as I have actually committed a crime.

    They DO NOT have the right to seize entire websites where legitimate free speech is taking place just because one subsection may or may not have a link to a link to a link to a site where their is an infringing file.

    So and so forth. The only loser here is you. You'd rather bitch and moan about piracy and do nothing to actually stop it that doesn't focus on actually solving the problem of why it is happening in the first place. And "people just want free shit" is NOT the "why it is happening in the first place". It is due to a lack of legitimate and legal methods for access to copyrighted material. Yes, there are some options. But there are all kinds of geographical, timely, DRM restrictions in place. Which is essentially the same as there being no option in the first place. Reducing piracy is beyond simple, unless you really want to force "gotchas" on people as is currently being done. Give the people what they want, in a timely manner and with no geographical restrictions and sans DRM in one convenient place and you'll be astounded at how quickly the dollars will roll in.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:33am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    1 billion examples of you being a lying, greedy loser.

    http://venturebeat.com/2012/10/02/digital-music-sales/

     

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  27.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:39am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You can't expect him to think, especially when there's so many delusions to uphold.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:41am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Seriously, just stop with the bullshit about not having a legal way to buy. It's 2013. Everyone is just rolling their eyes at you. You're greedy and believe you can take without paying and get away with it. End of discussion.

    Of course none of your FUD and hyperbole are true in regard to Hollywood, but if you replace some of it with Google, your rant might actually make some sense.

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:41am

    It hurts when your assumptions are kicked this hard, doesn't it?

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:41am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

     

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  31.  
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    Ninja (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:44am

    Re: Re:

    He forgot his medicine. You know, the one that stops the voices in his head ;)

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:45am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Right you are sir Anon, because Hollywood is surely the most straight forward and honest industry in the US(and World). I mean, yeah, the questionable business practices, inflated salaries, and whatever other financial crimes that occur on the scene is realy just fantasy!

    I mean yeah... It is not as if Pirate Mike has ever criticized hollywood for something else either ( http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100708/02510310122.shtml )

    Realy one would say going after pirates is the only thing they ever did wrong, or maybe even go one step forward and not even say that what they are doing is wrong at all?

    /sarcasm

    I would say though that going after what the wealthy elite do wrong in terms of business would be a full time journalist job, that Mike only focus on one part of it is only a problem for the uninformed crowd like you, who don't know how or where to find out about all the other crap they do wrong.

     

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  33.  
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    Ninja (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:46am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Awww, u jealous people can live without Hollywood and decided to throw a tantrum?

     

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  34.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:46am

    Re: Don't think this is the end of Hollywood

    If the MPAA studios actually feel threatened by this, they will quickly find a way to assimilate it and control it the way they have all other forms of independent cinema in this country.

    For starters, they could simply buy Kickstarter. Or they could create their own crowdfunding site that gives a better deal than Kickstarter, such as offering distribution of any funded films (which they would control).

     

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  35.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:51am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Everyone being you, the MAFIAA and co? Because I am sure as long as it is more than one entity it technically counts as a plural?

    And before I forget, allow me to

    *roll eyes*

    at you. :)

     

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  36.  
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    That One Guy (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:51am

    Re: Re: Don't think this is the end of Hollywood

    If the first happens, I'd give it a month, tops before a replacement showed up. And the second would hardly qualify as a 'better deal', given all the strings that would be attached if they were running such a site, with the filmmakers giving up control over distribution being one of the more minor problems such a thing would involve.

     

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  37.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:51am

    Re: Documentaries

    Most of the best movies of the last decade were documentaries. It has been a golden age for docs. I say keep em coming.

     

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  38.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:52am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I call Bullshit:

    http://www.amazon.com/Drop-Dead-Fred-Phoebe-Cates/dp/B00009NHAG


    I want to watch that online. I already purchased the VHS back in the day. This seems to be the only DVD left in the world.

     

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  39.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:56am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "It's 2013."

    Indeed, it is.

    And yet, we have to deal with bullshit like release windows and regional restrictions.

    May I roll my eyes at that?

     

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  40.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 9:57am

    Re: Re: Re: Don't think this is the end of Hollywood

    Generally if you have a distribution deal BEFORE you make your movie, you've also got funding for the movie.

    Most of these Kickstarter filmmakers do not have distribution deals, and most of those films never get distributed except through youtube (usually shorts). The reason they're using Kickstarter is because there is no way to make money with the finished product. Shorts don't make money.

    Yes, they'd gladly do a deal where there's any promise of distribution, esp. one backed by a major studio.

     

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  41.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:02am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    *Scratches head*

    If Piracy is such a problem for Copyright Apologists such as yourself...

    Then how come music and movies have made more in the past year than the years before the internet came into being?

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:02am

    I think the message here is clear: crowdfunding is more successful per dollar spent than the big Hollywood productions.

    But the real question now is: Does it generate more revenue?

    Does anyone know what was the aggregate revenue generated by these 8000 films? Was it enough to be profitable? Or, put another way: did they generate more than $100 million? If so, how much?

     

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  43.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:03am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Awesome, so piracy really isn't the problem you're making it out to be.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    1. State that Hollywood has a business model problem and that's why they're not making enough money, not piracy.

    2. Later say piracy must not be a problem because Hollywood is already making enough money.

    3. Go back to Step 1 and begin talking in circles again.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:06am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Veruca Salt walks among us. "I want it Daddy, I WANT IT NOW!"

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:10am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Recorded music revenue is half what it was, but is still being consumed at the same or greater pace, Einstein.

    Every time I come here to let you guys hang yourselves with your own dopey comments, you never fail to do so.

     

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  47.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:12am

    Re: Re:

    He hasn't heard it yet because the sound still has to catch up. You have to expect that when a point rushes over your head at Mach 20.

     

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  48.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:12am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Seriously, just stop with the bullshit about not having a legal way to buy."

    Tell me where I can buy Battle Moon Wars in English then.

    Go on, find me a website that sells Battle Moon Wars in English and I'll believe you.

    Or Magical Battle Arena.

    Or how about finding me a way to legally buy Familiar of Zero Seasons 1-4 without paying 140 bucks each season. Also, they must have English dub.

    What's that? The license on Familiar of Zero has expired, so I can't legally buy it anymore?

    Well, would you LOOK AT THAT?!

     

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  49.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:18am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Or how about Super Robot Wars W on the DS?

    Where can I buy an English version of that?

    What's that? It doesn't exist?

    You were saying about not having a legal way to buy?

     

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  50.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:18am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Ain't that how the MPAA acts when it comes to money, copyright and laws?

     

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  51.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:21am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    We get two steps? You're lucky, you get only one in your circle of denial:

    1. Pretend piracy is the only factor in the decline of Hollywood revenues.

     

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  52.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:23am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    True that, and Hollywood even threatens the business models of other companies to get what they want.

     

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  53.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:24am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I'm pretty sure that over 1 billion iTunes sales in one year (and going up) kind of proves that it's not piracy, Einstein.

    Oh, and just so you know, only ALBUM sales are down.

    The rest of the music industry is up.

    The only reason that album sales are down is...

    Because people are buying singles instead of entire albums.

    Keep shooting your mouth off, it's fun to debunk you.

     

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  54.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:24am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    As you said, we live in 2013.

    Mobile Internet access is ubiquitous. The "cloud" is no longer just a vague marketing concept. Internet speeds are going through the roof (we can get up to 250Mbps here).

    In short, simple and instant access to all of my data is now possible and is becoming the norm.

    And yet, if I ask that such a simple thing as immediate (even if paid) access to a piece of entertainment that has just become available, I am entitled?

    We gave Hollywood the tools. We gave Hollywood the means to make this happen. They didn't use them, choosing instead to stay stuck in the past. They brought their own troubles upon themselves.

     

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  55.  
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    That One Guy (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:25am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Don't think this is the end of Hollywood

    I suppose the hovering cloud of DOOM I see over the idea of a major studio handling the distribution is due primarily to my heavy skepticism that they'd be willing to handle only the distribution, and not try and gain more control over things.

     

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  56.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:25am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Half of what it was when the record companies were trying to fix the prices on CDs?

     

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  57.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:26am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Not to mention the RIAA has employees go to restaurants and threaten the owners with lawsuits if they play any sort of copyrighted music (save for the radio, I believe) in their establishment.

    "All it takes is 2 notes and we'll know."

    And, yes, you can find proof of that online easily enough if you look.

     

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  58.  
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    Gwiz (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:26am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I think you got that a bit backwards, Champ.

    It's Hollywood that is claiming all the loses due to piracy (Save the Key Grip by hiring a $400,000/year Intellectual Property Enforcement VP!) and then turning around and showing record box office returns while at the same time claiming the same movies all where in the red, so they don't have to pay residuals.

    The circular logic begins and ends in Hollywood. The rest of us are just trying to make some sense of it.

     

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  59.  
    identicon
    Chris Maresca, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:28am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Don't think this is the end of Hollywood

    I think that the idea that shorts don't make money is just old-school thinking.

    There are a non-trivial number of people making a good living on YouTube producing content, enough so that there is at least one company built around providing services to those very people and that YouTube has just opened a large production studio in el Segundo. One music group that I kinda know lives off YouTube and employs seven people for production et. al work.

    Granted, a lot of YouTube content is not 'shorts', but it does prove that a distributor-less model + semi-popular content is profitable. If you add subsidized production costs (aka Kickstarter), how much do you need to make on YouTube to be 'profitable'? If you are a small group, $100k would be pretty good - an amount which would be a waste of time for most distributors.

    Never mind that with production costs going down all the time, tools & hardware getting easier/cheaper and a global stage ('profitable' bar is lower in a lot of low-cost places), 'success' is getting closer for a lot of people.

     

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  60.  
    identicon
    Chris Maresca, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:30am

    They wish....

    It would make democracy illegal, which is probably a wet dream for most politicians...

     

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  61.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:35am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    For clarification, when I say we, I mean software developers and network engineers (and a ton of other smart people).

    Hollywood was handed a fuckton of technology and infrastructure without having to pay a cent for it. In fact, they actively try to sabotage all that development at every turn, such is their greed. Idiots...

     

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  62.  
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    That One Guy (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:37am

    Re:

    I dunno, seems to me the rebuttal to that idea would be simply asking the question: How many of the people making/funding the films did so primarily for money?

    I don't have any data, and I'm not sure if such data even exists, but my feeling is that in the vast majority of cases, the films were made due to a person/group of people wanting to tell a particular story, and funded due to enough people who thought the story was interesting enough for them to want to pay to see it happen.

    With those two as the prime motivations, even breaking even funding/cost-wise for the filmmakers would be considered a resounding success, as the goal was to make the movie, with any profits just being a happy side-effect.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  63.  
    icon
    Gwiz (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:37am

    Re:

    But the real question now is: Does it generate more revenue?

    Explain why revenue would be so important on a Kickstarter movie? It's not like you need to pay back the investors.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  64.  
    identicon
    Chris Maresca, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:38am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Piracy wins because it's easier to consume vs paid for content.

    Just look at the fight between XBMC & Hulu to understand what I mean - or try playing a DVD on out-of-the-box Linux sometime.

    In both of those scenarios, the content industries have made it so difficult to play content that I actually download ripped versions of DVDs I own as they are significantly easier to play across devices.

    As far as the music business goes, Apple saved your ass. Unfortunately for you, Apple also now owns your ass. That's what you get for killing off every other online music service.

    Maybe if you'd actually made it easy, convenient & cheap for people to buy digital music when they were screaming for it, you wouldn't be in the world of hurt you are today. Same goes for all other content.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65.  
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    That One Guy (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:41am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Now see, that would be a perfect use of the 'We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone' disclaimer some places have.

    'Sir, I'm going to have to ask you to leave, and not come back.'
    'Why?'
    'Because we don't serve extortionists in this establishment.'

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  66.  
    icon
    The Groove Tiger (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:44am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I think it's more like:

    1. Say some nonsense in blog
    2. OUT OF MEMORY ERROR.
    3. Format BRAIN:

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  67.  
    icon
    jupiterkansas (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:44am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Don't think this is the end of Hollywood

    Well, that was exactly my point. They'll get a foot in the door and eventually wedge it open. All it takes is time and money - and they have gobs of both.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  68.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:49am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Don't think this is the end of Hollywood

    It's true if you're going to produce a series or music videos or anything that drives steady, reliable traffic, you can generate some income.

    For the single indie feature film and especially the single short film or documentary project, there aren't a lot of options that will make money. Kickstarter is great for that.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  69.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:50am

    Re: Re:

    Ok, sure, some people just want to make the movie for fun and not for profit.

    But assume that someone actually wanted to take it one step further and use the profits of this first crowdfunded movie to create a second one (a sequel, perhaps?).

    Would the profits from the first movie be enough to create a new movie at around the same cost?

    That's what I'd like to know. I am just curious if that would be a sustainable business model.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  70.  
    icon
    jupiterkansas (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 10:53am

    Re: Re:

    All it will take is one huge Kickstarter scandal to get the politicians screaming for more regulation. Hollywood could even organize such a scandal.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  71.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 11:00am

    Re: Re: Re: Don't think this is the end of Hollywood

    "If the first happens, I'd give it a month, tops before a replacement showed up."

    They're already out there (e.g. http://www.indiegogo.com/), and I have no doubt that other sites will appear that are more focussed in a particular niche or specifically target those left disillusioned by any pro-studio moves made.

    Kickstarter isn't unique, it just happens to be the biggest "name" in the emerging market.

     

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  72.  
    icon
    Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 11:08am

    Re:

    I think your problem is that you incorrectly believe this blog is "pro piracy" as opposed to "pro what works" and "anti what doesn't work." We're not "pro piracy." In fact, we believe that a well thought out business model KILLS piracy better than anything else, and we'd be thrilled if we saw more of that happening.

    That's why we're happy to see the news above. Smart business models get people to pay. And that's a good thing.

    The problem, all too often, is that some folks in your industry get so obsessed with "piracy" they assume that every discussion is JUST about piracy, when piracy is a side issue. It's a symptom, not the disease. We're trying to treat the disease.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  73.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 11:17am

    Re: Documentaries

    That's probably because people can fund docs on niche subjects they're interest in, rather than whatever a group of investors thinks will sell. They're probably easier to convince people to pay for rather than something that on the surface just appears to be "generic gangster/zombie movie number 576". One of my biggest disappointments was that the sequel to Behind The Mask: The Rise Of Leslie Vernon didn't reach its funding target, and that was something with a proven track record and fanbase. Perhaps they're just easier to launch than a narrative film.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  74.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 11:34am

    Re:

    "But the real question now is: Does it generate more revenue?"

    Than... what? The studio system that regularly claims a loss on even the biggest blockbusters? Probably.

    "Does anyone know what was the aggregate revenue generated by these 8000 films? Was it enough to be profitable?"

    You're asking 2 completely different questions, with no real way of answering them. Of those films, some would have been profitable, some wouldn't. This is natural since each production is its own entity outside of the method used to raise money. You can't compare them in the same way you can look at, say, every movie produced by Sony and get an overall view of their producers' success.

    As for aggregate revenue, that means nothing without knowing what the outlay was. A movie grossing $20 million would be a flop for most studio productions. A crowdfunded movie costing $3 million would be a success for the same gross. John Carter didn't come close to recouping its production budget, but you could have had 20 successful crowdfunded projects for the same gross.

    You're also being rather disingenuous. Half the point is that these movies would never have been made by a studio, and a flop here and there doesn't invalidate the entire business model. Unless you're personally invested in the legacy system, what matters is that filmmakers get to make their movies, not whether or not a studio handed them the cash to do so. A trend away from the entrenched studio system will only happen if they're profitable via this method, so you'll see in time anyway.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  75. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 11:37am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Post the proof you have no content on your drive that you ripped off when you could have paid.

    Not holding my breath.

    oh and btw, when you fail to do so, you are admitting to being a greedy, hypocritical douchebag.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  76.  
    icon
    Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 11:38am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Post the proof you have no content on your drive that you ripped off when you could have paid.

    Not holding my breath.

    oh and btw, when you fail to do so, you are admitting to being a greedy, hypocritical douchebag.


    You first.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  77. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 11:39am

    Re: Re:

    We're not "pro piracy."

    LOL

    Go get the mental health treatment you so desperately require.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  78.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 11:48am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    He just specifically told you that he would like to purchase something. He also specifically told you that he is unable to legally do so.

    At that point, your argument fell apart. He wants to pay for a product and it is completely unavailable through any legal/legitimate methods.

    He doesn't need to post proof of anything. It's 2013 and a shockingly large amount of content is not legally available through any of the available legal/legitimate options.

    So, again, the point I raised earlier stands. Piracy is a direct result of a failure for the entertainment industries to provide a service/products people want. To address the issue of piracy all they need to do is give the people what they want. It's 2013 after all. Technology has advanced to the point that it is easily available for the pirates to provide people what they want. Why can't the entertainment industries?

    Example:

    Customer: Hey, I have some money I would like to give you for Product X. Is it available for me to purchase?

    Entertainment Industry: Well, Product X is NOT being sold currently, nor will it ever be actually. But we have Product Y which is similar to Product X, except it is only available if you live in Country A and wait til Release Date B for use on Device C.

    Customer: Uh, okay. So it's not available, nor will it ever be, from you?

    Entertainment Industry: That is correct. There is no legal way for you to get Product X. But like I said, we're willing to let you have Product Y (with all those catches).

    Customer: No thanks. I'll just keep looking.

    Shady Guy In Trenchcoat: Hey buddy, I hear you're looking for Product X.

    Customer: Yeah, I am. But it's not legally available for me to purchase.

    Shady Guy In Trenchcoat: Well, I happen to have Product X. Available right now for the low price of free. Want it?

    Customer: Sure. Why not. The other guys won't sell it to me, don't have plans to, and genuinely seemed not interested in making a profit off of Product X.

    Shady Guy In Trechcoat: Here you go!

    Customer: THANKS!

    Entertainment Industry: THIEF!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  79.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 11:55am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "That's what I'd like to know. I am just curious if that would be a sustainable business model."

    Why would the funding model matter to your question? If you've raised $X million for your production, why would crowdfunding make the outcome different to studio funding? Distribution and marketing of the finished film, perhaps, but that's the only thing I can think of, and that's down to things other than the funding method.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  80.  
    icon
    silverscarcat (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 12:23pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Wow, I've heard of people sticking their fingers in their ears and going "la la la, can't hear you" before, but damn if your response doesn't take the cake.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  81.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 1:01pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Here in the UK the collection agency wants money if a garage mechanic leaves a customers car radio playing.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  82.  
    identicon
    Colin, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 1:13pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Post the proof you have no content on your drive that you ripped off when you could have paid.

    Not holding my breath.

    oh and btw, when you fail to do so, you are admitting to being a greedy, hypocritical douchebag.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  83.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 1:45pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    See also: The difference between Valve and EA for examples of requiring mental health treatment.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  84.  
    icon
    That One Guy (profile), Jan 7th, 2013 @ 5:43pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    You're ignoring the platform that allowed the first to be made though. If they were able to get enough funding for their first movie, and want to make another, all they have to do is throw up another kickstarter/fundraiser to raise money for the next film.

    In a system like that, they don't need to make enough money from the first film to be able to make a second, they just need to once more come up with a story that's interesting enough sounding that enough people are willing to pay to see it happen.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  85.  
    identicon
    Christopher, Jan 7th, 2013 @ 6:16pm

    Good for docs

    Except for 'Pariah,' every single film linked here is a documentary. Do we know how many of the 8000 that were actually made (an astounding number regardless), are documentaries?

    I’ve long suspected funding programs like Kickstarter and Indiegogo were much more friendly to documentaries than narrative films. I suspect the percentage of the 8000 that are docs is quite high.

    It would also be interesting to note the budgets and lengths of these films, especially the narrative/dramatic ones. Again, I suspect funding for short films and documentaries to far outstrip that for full-length narratives.

    $85.7M / 8000 films = avg. ~$10,700/film.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  86.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 1:49am

    Re: Good for docs

    "Do we know how many of the 8000 that were actually made (an astounding number regardless), are documentaries?"

    I personally know of numerous other narrative films not listed that have been/are being funded through Kickstarter (e.g. The Canyons), and there's several narrative films listed in the Indy Spirit Awards link among overs in the article. A quick Google search suggests a number of others, though I can't see a comprehensive list.

    "Again, I suspect funding for short films and documentaries to far outstrip that for full-length narratives."

    I'm not entirely sure why this matters, especially at this early stage. Short films especially tend to be less commercially viable via traditional means, so of course they're going to make up a lot of the films people turn to alternative funding methods to produce.

    However, there's definitely a growing number of full length narrative movies being produced. As for documentaries, well as I mentioned in a comment above, this may just be because docs are an easier "sell" to a niche audience. Without seeing a script, I can't necessarily tell how good/original/different a narrative movie's actually going be, but I can tell if a "documentary on subject that interests me" will actually interest me.

    "$85.7M / 8000 films = avg. ~$10,700/film."

    Which just goes to show how relatively inexpensive movie production has become. It's worth noting that not all films are 100% funded through Kickstarter - many are partially funded or, for example, are produced by other means then have their marketing or distribution funded through Kickstarter. But, the amount raised and the funding method don't necessarily have an impact on the actual film quality, which is the most important thing being discussed here.

    I'd also like a further list or breakdown if anyone has access to one, but it's still early days and it's looking promising from where I sit.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  87.  
    icon
    explicit coward (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 2:23am

    Re:

    Newsflash for AC:

    Filmmakers who use crowd-funding are more successful in not being ripped off than your retrograde hollywood studios.

    And if you've got evidence that the majority of the filmmakers using crowdfunding get ripped off instead of enjoying the privilege of getting paid, post it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  88.  
    identicon
    Phil Gomes, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 1:55pm

    Kickstarter vs. NEA

    If you ever want to get into a really interesting argument, talk to someone about how Kickstarter makes the National Endowment for the Arts irrelevant.

    Think about it:

    - The money is given voluntarily, not coerced out of your taxes.

    - The money goes to something you'd *like* to see, rather than (for example) a crucifix in a jar of urine.

    - Related to the above point: A controversial creative product even partially funded by taxes is likely to get banned. It's not clear that a Kickstarter-funded project would necessarily buckle to censorship pressure. In fact, for reasons of fundraising or attention, the artist might welcome it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  89.  
    icon
    Samuel Abram (profile), Jan 14th, 2013 @ 10:26pm

    Album Sales are not going down in…

    Album sales are going down if you only judge via iTunes, but there's a "dark market", and I DON'T mean piracy. I mean, albums being sold at shows, albums being sold on bandcamp, etc.

    Take me as an Artist. I only made about $3 over iTunes with my latest album The Aftermath. However, I made a killing* on my bandcamp site.

    *"killing" in this context means $168 in sales of The Aftermath album alone…

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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