Monty Python Puts All Its Content On YouTube To Increase Sales Of Scarce Goods

from the good-for-them dept

As quite a few folks have sent in, it appears that the always funny team of folks who made up Monty Python actually seem to get the concept of giving away infinite goods to increase the value of scarce goods. They've set up a Monty Python channel on YouTube, where they'll be putting up pretty much all of their videos in high quality. The video announcing this is quite amusing, and a good contrast to all those content providers who decided to sue YouTube, rather than learn to embrace it:
First, it points out that plenty of folks have already been posting content to YouTube, and while they could sue, instead, they decided to fight free videos with free videos by putting up their own versions -- in higher quality. There's a funny segment where the Monty Python crew reacts to being told that all of this content will be available for free, and then the video notes that while this content will be free, they're hoping people viewing the videos will go to the Pythonline site and buy DVDs (scarce goods) of their movies as well. What an idea. Instead of suing, give fans what they want, and give them a reason to buy. Ideally, they would provide extra reasons to buy the DVDs, rather than just praying that people will, but this is definitely a much better reaction than so many others.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    GeneralEmergency (profile), Nov 19th, 2008 @ 11:30am

    Obligatory...

    Howls of derisive laughter, Bruce!

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 11:35am

    Huh. I never knew Monty Python had a website, let alone one I could buy stuff from. Better than giving my money to Amazon...

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Poster, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 11:43am

    I'm a lumberjack.

    And I'm okay with this move.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 11:44am

    Re:

    Same! Even searching Monty Python in the past never came up with their site (years ago). Time to blow my next paycheck on some much needed collector's classics.

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 11:46am

    This is amazing news! Looks like I'll be the proud owner of some awesome Monty Python memorabilia!

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 11:52am

    well it seems google gamble of buying youtube (way back is paying off)

    that's 2 or was it 3 studios and now Monty Python.






    Well, he's...he's, ah...probably pining for the fjords.

     

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  7.  
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    Bill, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 11:55am

    The BBC

    While it's great to see MP leading the way, didn't the BBC say a year ago that they would be opening their archives for download? Last I knew they were still limiting the content to Britians.

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 12:03pm

    I put on women's clothing...

    and will cause me to spend less time hanging around in bars.

     

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  9.  
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    Lesmond, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 12:04pm

    See, that's the British spirit.

     

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  10.  
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    known coward, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 12:16pm

    YOU mEan

    I can show my kids "sit on my face and tell me that you love me" in a free high quality format ?!?!

    Now finally someone is doing something for the children.

     

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  11.  
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    Yakko Warner, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 12:27pm

    Reasons to buy the DVD

    Ideally, they would provide extra reasons to buy the DVDs, rather than just praying that people will...

    Well sure. DVDs offer lots of stuff that I haven't yet seen in simple video files: alternate audio, commentary, making-of featurettes, alternate video angles, subtitles (although some YouTube videos have those now), chapter menus... Plus, it's on a standard format that's still more "universal" (i.e. it'll play on the 9-year-old DVD player in our bedroom or the one built-in to the minivan; I don't have to go buy a new player that'll play .avi files off a disc or USB stick, or bring a laptop to the car). And those are just reasons that are the very nature of the format. (It's also a big part of why I personally don't think DVDs will completely go away in lieu of digital downloads.)

    The "Holy Grail" collector's edition I got a couple years ago includes things like an art book and pictures of the filming locations, too, which was a nice bonus "scarce good" I don't mind having in my collection.

    Whether that matters or not will be a choice people will make deciding whether or not to buy something, but that's always the case in commerce, no?

     

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  12.  
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    Yakko Warner, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 12:30pm

    Re: Obligatory...

    Australia, Australia, Australia, Australia, we love you! Amen!

     

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  13.  
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    TW Burger, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 12:32pm

    Exceptionally Savvy Marketers

    The Python (Monty) group have always been extremely good at marketing using bonuses and added value. It's probably due to them always retaining the rights to there own works.

    I got a kick out of the novelty of the two tracked Matching Tie and Handkerchief album with two parallel grooves on side two.

    This will sell a load of 35 year old merchandise.

    Eat it and smile RIAA.

     

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  14.  
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    PRMan, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 12:34pm

    If the blog comments are any indication...

    They're going to sell a lot of stuff by doing this...

     

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  15.  
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    Parker, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 12:44pm

    I fully support this move, but at what point will the combination of mobile internet (in cars, on phones, anywhere) combined with more options on online videos (audio commentary, etc) mean that no one will want to buy DVDs?
    Maybe I'm thinking just a bit too far down the road.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 1:07pm

    You are picking a bad example for your Business Model

    I'm so glad now I don't have to spend any money on their stuff. Oh wait their shows are already free on PBS. LOL, and what "reason to buy" do I have if I can get the content for free?

    Why don't they give away the DVDs as promtional material for some NEW content they create and sell ONLINE. Now that would be promotional, innovative, and smart. As it is now, it's boring, why would I want to order a DVD when I can watch it online, no waiting no money, and more convenient.

     

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  17.  
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    Sean, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 1:26pm

    How completely and utterly awesome - but then, it's Monty Pyton

    And I don't expect morons like anonymous coward above "You are picking a bad example" to actually get Monty Python so it's wasted on him/her anyway.

    Might as well as what did the Romans do for us!

     

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  18.  
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    Vince, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 1:27pm

    Already helped them in the past!

    I own all the movies and the Complete MP! Argh! I'd LOVE to see these guys succeed where others have failed! Go buy thier stuff!

     

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  19.  
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    kevjohn, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 1:29pm

    And now for something completely different....

    Great move on their part. The crappy YouTube quality should whet the masses' appetites for some high quality DVD action.

    On my Christmas gift wish list: Monty Python action figures.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 1:36pm

    Re: You are picking a bad example for your Business Model

    So you want them to pay for DVDs, spend the money of making the nice DVDs and cases you buy in stores, and give them all away, hoping people will go and pay for lower quality online content, or spend forever trying to download it for slower connections?

    And, of course, the DVD can be watched in many more locations, unlike online videos, which they would have to burn to DVD or have equipment to stream or read videos from memory cards.

    Horrible ideas are horrible :)

     

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  21.  
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    Just Another Moron in a Hurry (profile), Nov 19th, 2008 @ 1:38pm

    Not a fan

    You know, I've never been a fan of Monty Python. I watched the Holy Grail, and although it had its moments, the ending really killed the whole thing for me. I have never had any desire to see any more of their material, despite hearing it quoted religiously by several close friends.

    However, this is enough of an innovative idea that I'm going to forgive them, and at least give it a second chance. If I see something that thrills me, I may even make a purchase for an upcoming x-mas gift.

     

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  22.  
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    Stormy (profile), Nov 19th, 2008 @ 2:47pm

    Re: You are picking a bad example for your Business Model

    "Reasons to buy" could mean just supporting them because you enjoy their content, I'm not really familiar with Monty Python, now I could watch one of their videos or movies form the comfort of my home when I want to (no needing to worry about when it's on TV, or renting it). If I enjoy the video and their work I will be more inclined to support their works.

    You really are not watching it for free on PBS, you're paying taxes to PBS to keep them running, and if you donate to PBS. Also the small "sponsored by" clips before and after shows. Most DVDs also contain extra things such as making of... and alternate/deleted scenes, which I don't think would show up in the youtube videos.

    Think of it now more of a donation to Monty Python then buying the DVD to watch their video with out pirating.

     

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  23.  
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    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Nov 19th, 2008 @ 6:11pm

    "We're Sorry, This Video Is No Longer Available."

    Didn't last long, did it?

     

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  24.  
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    The Killer Rabbit, Nov 20th, 2008 @ 11:15am

    WHAT?

    The ending to the Holy Grail was GREAT you nitwit!

     

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  25.  
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    Johnson Fruitbat, Nov 25th, 2008 @ 2:13am

    Pythonline.com

    Yes, you'll find all things Python, including "The Daily Python," a bit of a taboid news thingie to which our lads themselves (mostly Mr. Idle and Mr. Cleese, though we do hear from Mr. Palin ---- especially now that the coast is clear, surname-wise ---- and ongoing reporting on all) as well as a cadre of very, VERY silly Pythonic freaks. Join up, sign up for the MashCaster (a thing that enables one to create horrible animation just like Mr. Gilliam's, for example) and waste one's time completely....from those same folks, oddly enough, who brought us "Monty Python's Complete Waste Of Time" back in the 90s. You know, the last SANE decade!~JFruitbat

     

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  26.  
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    Trey, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 8:05am

    I had no idea

    I had no idea that Monthy Python had their own web site. And that increase in sales is amazing. It seems that somehow, some way this model could be made to work for the music industry as well.

     

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  27.  
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    notflamebait, Jan 26th, 2009 @ 12:16pm

    Not really

    Trey - the difference here is that MP are offering stuff that people actually want. Most people seem to want to purchase one or possibly two mp3s from an album (CD) - and consider the rest cruft. It's gotta be a tough sell when people are only interested in 8% - 12% of your product. And I believe the industry knows it - but I don't think they have the mentality to make the change.

     

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