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
    Dewy, 15 Mar 2007 @ 7:18am

    someone to hate

    I'd say the RIAA/MPAA has fulfilled an important role in this industry... they're doing the dirty work. Artists do not want to be taken for granted, nor their work reduced in value to pennies on the dollar for what it brought yesterday.

    Yet I'd also say they have overstepped their mandate and failed by criminalizing fans and failing to embrace the benefits of new tech.

    Someone above said Karma prevails... and it does, just as economic forces will prevail. The "cost" of distribution has dropped significantly... and they want to convert this into a NEW revenue stream... rather than embrace the advance and pass on a reduced cost.

    I think the term "Piracy" has been abused here. Consumers are not pirates... Most consumers purchase products...have full time jobs, and generally are fans. Pirates redistribute material for profit, and this is not the case with fileshare.

    Fileshare is fans sharing access to their favorites... thus contributing (read PROMOTING) to the access of the artwork by a wider audience. I know something is a better product by the number of "fans" (shares) it has.

    Somehow the "guardians" of the industry that creates this media have mistaken fileshare for "owning" the product... and failed to see its benefits for the industry, and mistaken fans for pirates.

    It WILL backfire on them, they are biting the hand that feeds them and making general asses of themselves, Fans and artists alike see this and are watching quietly.

    With every newscast denouncing piracy and announcing harsher actions against fans, more and more turn to fileshare, and away from the thugs.

    I join in Mike for wishing success to all parts of the industry representing artists, as I am Fan... and grateful to the industry for its quality product.

    I do hope the RIAA/MPAA quickly realize the error of their ways before the artists they protect slit their throats. The fans are already quietly doing that.

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