Why I Hope The RIAA Succeeds

from the no,-seriously dept

This week's post in the lack of scarcity series is going to be brief, since I'm busy at the latest DEMO show (I'll be doing a post on the interesting trends later). However, I have noticed something in the comments from the series of posts I've done. Plenty of people who seem to agree with what I'm writing make sure to add in something about how they hate the RIAA or the MPAA (sometimes in... well... colorful language). There's also a running assumption that I clearly hate these organizations -- and they equally dislike me.

While I have no clue about their feelings towards me, I should clarify my feelings towards them -- which I would hope is clear from these posts. I do not hate the recording industry or the movie industry. Quite the opposite. I'm a big fan of both music and movies. The point of this series is not to slam the organizations making these moves, but to help them. I hope they succeed, because it would be a lot easier for everyone involved. However, I do believe that their current strategies of alienating their best customers, relying on government protection, and pretending this is some sort of epic battle between good and evil aren't just doomed to fail, they're actively making things worse for themselves. What I write shouldn't be viewed as hatred for these organizations, but suggestions on how they could create for themselves a much bigger and more successful market that doesn't require everyone to hate them. I'm quite confident that the market for entertainment is only going to grow to tremendous levels going forward -- and I believe these organizations have every opportunity to capture quite a bit of it (though, they've been throwing that chance away every day). It's just a matter of recognizing the long-term strategic errors of their ways.

This seems like an obvious point to me, but given some of the discussions and comments, it seemed worth reiterating.


If you're looking to catch up on the posts in the series, I've listed them out below:

Economics Of Abundance Getting Some Well Deserved Attention
The Importance Of Zero In Destroying The Scarcity Myth Of Economics
The Economics Of Abundance Is Not A Moral Issue
A Lack Of Scarcity Has (Almost) Nothing To Do With Piracy
A Lack Of Scarcity Feeds The Long Tail By Increasing The Pie
Why The Lack Of Scarcity In Economics Is Getting More Important Now
History Repeats Itself: How The RIAA Is Like 17th Century French Button-Makers
Infinity Is Your Friend In Economics Step One To Embracing A Lack Of Scarcity: Recognize What Market You're Really In

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  1. identicon
    MyNameIsMatt, 1 Feb 2007 @ 3:49pm

    Stupid syntax

    Brooks, I think you're argument, which maybe syntactically correct, is wrong-headed. The governing bodies of music and movies for all intents and purposes control the those products and are represented as the RIAA/MPAA. Yes, they might not themselves produce that music, but they do control 95% of the landscape. Therefore, it isn't much of a stretch to attach the two.

    The RIAA isn't just going to disappear as much as we'd all love that, so musicians won't magically gain some market power that was hindered because of the RIAA's operations. While Mike is discussing market theory, he's also rooting the strategies in reality, being that if we want the landscape of music and movie to change, then organizations like RIAA and MPAA need to change their tactics because they are for all intents and purposes the controllers of the music and movie landscape.

    As time passes, these organization won't be able to resist market pressures, but they can put a lot of hurt on in the time being. Which is why I don't like them, but I'm hopefully like Mike that they'll get a clue and change.

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