I just wanted to say thanks for letting me know about this offer. I hadn't heard of this before this post, so I went over and put my money down.
I have heard of world of goo before, and it has been on my list of games to buy ever since I tried the demo, so this clinched it. If anyone is interested, I paid 15 bucks, split 10 to developers and 5 to the EFF (I have already donated to child's play earlier this past year).
I think this is a great way of mixing all aspects involved:
- Platform agnostic (almost went of the linux version, but I have windows in more places)
- Selectable charity output (the custom sliders are great)
- Statistics of what has been done so far (give the purchaser more information to make an informed choice)
Overall I am looking forward to getting home and trying my new games tonight. Hopefully more offers like this come up again and I will be sure to keeping an eye on these developers for any new games they might have.
I think the major problem with this is not only does it limit you to Apple development tools, those tools are only available on Macs. At least with the Flash development tools that would compile into Objective-C, they were available on Windows computers.
Anyone in the know about Sweden knows the one reason revenues are up for Sweden. Surprise, surprise it is legal service that people like, Spotify. Downloading has not decreased in Sweden, regardless of the laws in place.
That, in the opinion of the House, the government should amend section 29 of the Copyright Act in such a way as to expand the Fair Dealing provisions of the act; specifically by deleting section 29. and inserting the words,
29. Fair dealing of a copyrighted work for purposes such as research, private study, criticism, news reporting or review, is not an infringement of copyright.
29.1 In determining whether the dealing made of a work in any particular case is fair dealing, the factors to be considered shall include,
(a) the purpose of the dealing;
(b) the character of the dealing;
(c) the amount of the dealing;
(d) alternatives to the dealing;
(e) the nature of the work; and
(f) the effect of the dealing on the work."
This is what will be changed. The important part is:
"Fair dealing of a copyrighted work for purposes such as ...."
This give huge amount of interpretation allowed in courts and open up many fair dealing rights that don't currently exist.
I can understand that there may be pitfalls to this. I am concerned about the details, and realize they are very important if this is to be postive. I am not saying this is the solution to all the problems, both business model and consumer protection sides, but I do think it warrants more discussion and shouldn't be dismissed offhand. Today the media lobbyists are constantly trying to remove protections from consumers all over the world (ACTA for instance) and have been successful more often than not (DCMA/French Three Strikes) and it is nice to see something introduced that would actually INCREASE protections, even if it is potentially flawed. This is quite a change from what has been going on lately.
"While you're at it, why not start paying television insurance, or how about news insurance. Because we all know that some people are getting "unauthorized content"
There is a huge divide between music sharing and TV/news. The vast majority of people don't download TV and the vast majority of TVs aren't playing unauthorized content. However the vast majority of MP3 players are. Same with news. Situation may warrant a different approach. And if that approach give greater protection for legal uses and expands legal use, is the offsets greater than the loss of a small cost on MP3 players? I think it may be.
"Expanding fair dealing is definitely a necessary and important move, but it seems unfortunate that it appears to be coupled with this idea of taxing people just because they might make use of unauthorized content."
This is the problem though. We know from many studies (and frankly common sense) that have been posted here and elsewhere, that these days the vast majority of the millions of iPods are already filled "unauthorized content".
In Canada, because of current law we have thankfully been exempt from the kind of legislation (though they have and are trying) and litigation that the US has had. I am not big on propping up business models with taxes, but I can see this as being much further protection for consumers at relatively little cost. If that cost is a more expensive iPod/MP3 player (which is a non-necessary item) and the few people who only have legally ripped/purchased content paying the tax for others, then it really doesn't seem to bad a trade off for proper fair dealing, considering the situation.
Hell, I pay for health care taxes and have never been in the hospital, but I won't be complaining as it gives me the protection to know that I won't be caught broke with a hospital bill I can't pay like in the US (or sued like you can be for infringement in the US).
That isn't to say that I don't see the dangers as well though. The definition of what constitutes a music player, how much the levy will be, and what are the fair dealing options are, will be very important if this is to work.
"Ben, the problem with your line here is that you missed what underlies the whole thing: If the movie isn't good, even if the experience (nice chairs, 3D, THX sound, 9 foot tall screen, best popcorn ever, whatever) is amazing, it won't save Ishtar or Waterworld, and it won't make the Spice Girls movie into anything other than a promo vehicle.”
That's not the experience I was talking about (though referred to in my Avatar example). The act of watching a movie IS the experience. I don't product a movie when I see a movie, good or bad. I experience a movie when I see a movie. Whether the movie is good or bad is the experience first, not the product first. The product is selling tickets/dvd's etc. and that can effect the experience, but the core is that watching a movie is experiencing a movie.
“You can have a good experience watching a movie, but the movie watching experience cannot make up for a crappy root product. "
If your movie is crappy, that means the experience will be crappy. Therefore you cannot sell your product (tickets etc.) If you experience of watching a movie is enhanced by 3D you can make the overall experience better and sell more product/higher priced product.
"This is where you are wrong - you are confusing the experience with the product. Experience is all that goes into showing you the product, the theater, the popcorn, the seats, the sound, the screen, the "presentation" as it were."
No you are. The act of listening to music or watching a movie is not a product. It is an experience. It is the core of the activity. No one goes to "product" music. You experience music. You buy the CD's/live tickets (product). The product is the selling of the movie tickets, the popcorn, access to better sound/screens. The experience of seeing a good movie is what makes them worth paying access for.
" It's on the same plane as an empty night club with no music. It's a beautiful place, amazing lights, great drinks, but without people and music, it's just another pretty room. A movie theater is just an empty dark room without the content, the product, what it is people line up for."
You’re actually proving my point. No one buys the product (goes to nightclub/purchases theatre tickets) without a good experience (good music/good movie). Without the experience people won't show up to buy your product. Shitty nightclub music experience will keep people from buying your product (drinks/cover fees).
"The Ferrari is a prefect example, because the pure marginal costs of producing 1 more car are lower the the selling costs, but that is only part of what it costs to make the car."
But it is much more than zero. With movies, music the cost of creating one more copy is essentially zero.
"Design, development, the factory, the equipment, the testing, the safety crashes (always painful to see), and all sort of other "non-marginal" costs stack up eat up much of the window sticker price."
Of course it will increase sticker price, but Ferrari has HUGE margins and I never said they didn’t include those costs, in fact I highlighted it as a reason why it wasn’t a suitable example. The cost of delivery of a Ferrari is not zero. The cost of creating one more copy is much more than zero. The experience of owning a Ferrari requires a physical product. The cost of delivery for music/movies is near zero. The cost of creating another copy is near zero. The experience of watching a movie no longer requires access to a physical product. It can be done digitally.
"Yes, people are buying the Ferrari experience (beauty, grace, style, people look, whatever) but in the end, if the car didn't run, most people wouldn't buy them."
Well duh. If the cards didn't run it would take away from the experience of owning a Ferrari.
"Ferrari almost went out of business because their cars didn't run. All the experience in the world didn't make up for a car that needed excessive repairs all the time. The experience was nothing without the product."
So what you are saying is that a bad experience of owning a car can take away from the experience of owning that car. And now that they improved the experience of their cars they sell more product.
“With a good product, you can build a good experience around it.”
No, it is if you can create a good experience you can sell a product. If watching your movie is a good experience you can sell tickets/dvds. If listening to your music is a good experience you can use it to sell live tickets. If you have a cool limited edition box set dvd, but the experience of watching the movie is bad because the movie is bad, you cannot sell your product no matter how cool.
“ If Avatar truly sucked as a movie, all the 3D in the world would be meaningless, because nobody would sit through the movie.”
I didn’t say it sucked. I said it was mediocre as a movie. However, the act of watching the movie in 3-D propelled it past its’ shortcomings. The experience of watching it in 3D surpassed the experience of watching it in 2D. Therefore they were able to use the experience to command higher ticket prices (product). This also proves that you can, by improving consumer experiences, sell another product (higher tickets prices).
“ If it was just the 3D and all that which made it special, then it would be easier just to run a 3D demo reel and charge people to see that.”
Never said it was only the 3D. See above. It was the experience of watching a mediocre movie with amazing 3D. Therefore you can sell higher priced tickets. The tickets are your product. That is where the money is.
“ It doesn't work, because people want to see the underlying product, the movie.”
It doesn’t work, because the experience of watching a demo reel in 3D is not sufficient to get people to buy tickets (product). The good experience is simply not there to get people to buy a product. If your product can reproduced for free and delivered for free your in an even bigger problem.
“The experience alone wouldn't sell. What is truly scarce is good movies, good music, etc. Only focusing on the marginal reproduction costs is more than a marginal mistake.”
The product alone wouldn’t sell. What are truly scarce are good experiences for consumers and consumer’s money/time. Only focusing on selling non-scarce delivery and non-scarce copying is what is causing problems and is a huge mistake.
"How is the experience a scarcity? That may be scarce for the "buyer" or "consumer" -- that is, I have only so much time or emotional space for the experience. But I don't see how that's scarce for the producer. I think it's still about abundance, no?"
Your only one step away. Your right in that the consumer's scarcity is time (and their money to spend). But you actually go to the very edge of the answer yourself.
Delivering the experience from the producer's point of view is NOT a scarcity anymore. These companies business revolved around selling the delivery model (e.g. DVD/CD product) through the experience (listening to good music, watching a good movie). Data is data, and delivery is near zero with the Internet and getting cheaper every day. That is the whole issue all recording based industries face. Trying to sell non-scarce copy delivery as scarce ones.
"good song is a good song, no "experience" is required to make that song good. All the experience in the world cannot make a bad song good."
The core act of listening to music is the experience. It is the heart of the issue. Listening to music (good or bad) is not a product, but an experience. When you can give out the experience for next to nothing, your product must change.
"A good movie is a good movie, no experience required."
False. Watching a good movie is an experience. Watching a movie (good or bad) is not a product.
"A great movie seen in the comfort of your home for the first time is still a great movie. Heck, a great movie seen in the discomfort of economy class in an airplane is still a good movie."
The experience of watching is the heart of it. And look at the difference in product. They can sell tickets & DVDs, but no one pays for the movie on the flight. They sell scarcities (like headphones) using the experience of watching a movie. It highlights the divide even further. Now take the fact you can deliver the experience of watching a movie for next to nothing. Like watching a movie on a flight, you must change your product.
"A bad movie is always bad, all the experience in the world can't make an Ishtar or a Waterworld be anything other than horrible movies."
The core reason the movies are bad is because the experience of watching them is bad. Flip-side, see Avatar for an excellent example of a mediocre movie being hugely successful because the act of watching (3D experience) is great. This better experience of watching commands higher ticket prices (product).
"My point is that discounting the product as a disposable, intangible, infinite good with no market price is to miss the entire point."
No it isn't. Never forget you're using an experience to sell product. That is the point. If your experience is crappy (the music sounds bad, the movie is boring) you cannot sell your product (MP3/CD, DVD/Tickets) even if it is cool. If the experience can be delivered for next to nothing, you old product of using the experience of the movie to sell the delivery must change.
"A Ferrari is not a fast car because of the badges or the zoomie sounding exhaust note, it is a fast car because of the product itself. You can slap the badges and a noisy exhaust on a yugo, but it won't be a Ferrari.""
But a Ferrari is not a good that can infinitely be copied with approaching zero cost at home by anyone. Therefore it is not an applicable example. Even so, even if you took the parts separately from a Ferrari, the cost of production is much lower that the price to buy. Why? Ferrari is selling an experience through a product, and therefore command the margins they do. They are selling the experience of luxury, speed, exclusivity etc.
"Failure to remember "it's the product, stupid" dooms you to never getting out the gate."
Failure to remember "it's the experience, stupid" dooms you to never selling your product.
They are suffering a lot of blow back regarding the degarded quality of their coverage and response from the authors of the articles. Unfortunately they went the childish way: took their ball and went home.
Over-hyping the iPad leading up to the announcement, in combination with dozens of pointless articles about the iPad after announcement and including references to Apple products in a lot of the other articles, as well as defending themselves poorly led to a large revolt within the comments.
The issues a lot of people had were their bias in general of Apple and their skew towards overloading their site with one product (something ridiculous like 60 iPad articles in a couple of days). A lot of people were calling them out.
Instead of tackling the issue head on, they mocked/taunted the commentators, and threw up a article asking if people hated Apple news and added a way to filter Apple news. But that was not want many wanted. Most people liked Apple coverage in general, and were not calling out that but mostly the pointless articles about the iPad and perceived bias. After continuing this back and forth, it just exploded in their face.
Let this be a lesson to CwF + RtB = $ implementers. The CwF comes with some caveats (and I know Mike never said otherwise). If you do it incorrectly, you can have the people who build your community turn on you if you're not interacting with them in a way they like. The reader input is extremely important in building a fanbase with the web today, and it is best not to piss them off too much.
Thanks Mike for adding the update! One of the reasons I like this site: author participation in the comments. (If only newspapers could do some more of this!) These things and your coverage keep me coming back daily.
"Ben, how is that even close to a fail? Unless you read the paragraphs differently, I don't see CBS saying "here, please preserve them." I see them saying "Sorry, try to find copies elsewhere but we aren't going to give you copies."
Well you didn't read it thoroughly then and missed the greater point: the details has been twisted from what is actually happening. The "to preserve them" reason is just a red herring to get access to them by the fan club. They are safely stored in conditions which are likely to be some of the better ones you can find by a company that spends millions to keep their physical copies in good condition. Of course, they have no reason to "give" access to any physical property they own, regardless if the digitization is free or not. And in fact, they will and have had in the past, negotiations to actually license these out properly.
But to humour you, lets start with the headline:
"CBS Would Rather Kill Off Classic Jack Benny Video Footage Than Let Fans Rescue And Digitize It"
Seems a like a fail from the starting title. CBS does not want to kill the video footage. In fact they have it stored safely and in good condition and spend millions to ensure their physical property remains good. They want to protect their physical property. It is a sensational title meant to cause emotional over-reaction. Stir that pot!
"In the past, we've seen time and time again how copyright has been used to lock up culture and make it inaccessible."
This I agree with. But this case has little to do with copyright. I think Mike is confusing the copies with the physical property ;) . We are in fact talking about the physical property of CBS, not copyright. Copyright isn't stopping this. Access to physical property is.
"At times this is literally destroying culture, as content is left on degrading media, and those who can preserve it are blocked from doing so."
Also can't argue that this isn't happening elsewhere. I really don't know if copyright is the reason things are left on degrading media. They only two times I have heard of losing culture is the NASA thing (lost, though not copyrights fault), and Doctor Who (again, the reusing of tapes not copyrights fault). Is there an example you can give me of copyright literally destroying culture?
It doesn't appear to be so in this case. They apparently are in good condition and stored correctly and safely. The people aren't being blocked by copyrights and in fact others are and have negotiate access to CBS's physical copies. CBS does want to protect their original physical copies after all.
"The latest example of this, as sent in by an anonymous reader, involves the famous comedian Jack Benny. Apparently, a bunch of Jack Benny fans have been seeking the right to digitize old audio/video footage of Benny from CBS in order to preserve it. But, in a short-sighted decision, CBS has instead decided to lock up the content and let it disintegrate away (literally)."
This is not entirely correct, and the details are what matters (as I posted above). They are not "locked" up. They are not letting it "disintegrate" away. The fans, in fact are looking to resell the PD material (not a bad thing, just saying).
I am not going into the quote in the article too much, but it is also pretty sensational:
"thus sealing these shows' fate so they will never be seen again." Yep, officially gone forever.... forever.... forever...
"bullet through the head of this body of Benny work"
Yeah! BLAM! They fucking KILLED the head of this body of Benny work. They should put CBS on trial! Lol. What a joke. Stir that pot some more.
"Yes, some of this content is public domain. Of course, that doesn't mean anyone has a right to access it, but it is rather ridiculous that CBS won't even bother to release the public domain material."
They will for a fee and the proper setting, and have done so in the past. What is wrong with controlling physical copies so they still have control, and can monetize their physical copies. CBS maintains massive amounts of proper storage to keep these physical items in good condition. Why should they just allow anyone to come and copy them what could be fragile items.
I am all for getting some of the more stupid copyright items addressed (and God knows there are tons), but this doesn't seem like a copyright issue to me at all, and more of access to physical property one. And the sensationalism and twisted details make this a fail.
First, they need to get out to more countries with better licensing. Amazon for instance isn't even in Canada, we are stuck with iTunes and eMusic :(. Lower prices will definitely help but more markets are even more important.
This article seems to be a fail, and Mike may have jumped to a bunch of conclusions. Take this story with a big grain of salt:
Here (with his permission) is a comment from Stan Taffel, who is a media preservationist and posted this to the Association of Moving Image Archivists listserv (AMIA-L). According to Stan, this controversy has been orchestrated by a fan club person who sells copies of the shows. Stan also tells me he's just been speaking with a company who is trying to secure a license to release the shows. Again, I'm just reporting what others have said, and have no personal stake or opinion other than that these shows should be made available to those who fervently want to see them.
"I have spoken to my source at CBS and am happy to report that the "hype" is just what it is; all hype.
CBS is ready and willing to sub license any property (as they did with Studio One etc.) for a fee.
Laura Leff, the "President" of the Jack Benny Fan Club she began a few years ago, is very good at
generating P R and has done a very good job at starting a Facebook petition against CBS and getting
articles and giving interviews pleading for the release of 25 Benny shows. She says that CBS has "locked"
these films away and will not be preserved. This is not the case.
The 25 Benny shows as well as the full run of the series is stored in state of the art facilities. The film elements
are safe and in good shape. CBS is also aware of the fact that Ms. Leff has a library of many existing shows
and charges for making copies; dupes of both copywritten and PD shows are offered from her website.
While I applaud her tenacity and love for Jack Benny (she organized a fine website and a convention a few
years ago), it seems that the truth has been diluted and the actual state of the predicament has been reported
in error. She is great at "self promoting". What it boils down to is this: She is a huge fan who just wants to
have copies of the shows and has gone this route to try and obtain them. CBS doesn't know how she was
"supervising" a transfer of one of the color shows as that is not her job. True, it was an NBC special and
maybe she was invited to see a conversion but "supervising"? She is friends with Joan Benny (Jack's
daughter) so perhaps that's how she was invited to see the inner workings. She has gained attention to her
fan club and her plight, however misrepresented it is.
CBS is not the enemy here; they will sub contract The Jack Benny out. As these are supposedly P D shows
(and that's not definite) there are other sources to locate them and once they're out, anyone can dupe them
and sell them for no fee. CBS isn't the only source for 16mm kinescopes. They even told her to try to find
them through other avenues, fully aware she wants to add them to her "collection".
Should these films be available - of course. However, business is business and CBS pays for the storage
of these and hundreds and hundreds of thousands of elements and that's not cheap. To give copies to her
for her archive is not so simple even if she pays for her copies. Maybe some company will come forward
and these shows will be seen. Time will tell."
"Really? I'm curious, Ronald, do you not think the iPhone is an innovative product? After all, before it, no one had put all that together in a single device."
Mike, not entirely true. Nokia has has much of what the iPhone had in their smart phones (Webkit browser, Music Player, Apps etc.) There is a reason why they are the majority of smartphones sold.
I would like to ask you, what is really innovative about the iPhone? Where the iPhone innovated (if at all) was in the App Store and that could frankly have been put on any phone, and wasn't much more of an innovation over the existing iTunes setup (evolution rather than revolution). This has little to do with the phone itself. It was not the first store.
Don't take this as agreement for the Ronald's point though. I think most of Apple's success has been simplifying the whole process around the already existing iTunes environment for iPods (basically making an iPod phone dumbed down for consumers), their cult-like followers (not all Apple consumers, just the die-hards who buy anything Apple), their systematic slow upgrades to force new purchases, the lackluster American cellular industry, and their usual marketing prowess. They took all the existing cellphone tech and glossed/dumbed it down as with most Apple products.
Frankly, coming from a computer/phyisic background, nothing get more on my nerves than these things. Text/Voice/Email/Browsing etc. are all at their core, data (though different transmission protocols). And when I see something stupid, like texting rates, voice minutes /min rates, cable tiers, it is very frustrating. When my cable box is slow bringing up information on the shows, I wonder why a dedicated set top box has problems bringing up a query of 1000 channels, 10 of which may be on the screen at a time. This is over the same thing as the high definition TV is sent. I think everyone would be way better off if more companies just focused on the dumb pipe aspect as was discussed by Mike. Too bad there is so much profit on fleecing consumers by hihg priced texts, crazy overage minute rates etc.