This Is Wrong: 'Without The Content Industries, The Internet Would Be Empty'

from the let's-try-that-again dept

One of the annoying things about many in the entertainment industry who want to change the laws and the technology on the internet is that they've shown up late to the party. The internet was originally created as a communications medium, rather than a content one. And, for many years, it worked just fine -- and whatever "content" that was on the web was a part of the communications effort. It's only in the last decade or so (even less for some parts) that the old entertainment industry jumped online with its broadcast media mindset. But, rather than learning to understand and respect the fact that it's a communication medium, where things like sharing content aren't just possible, but the norm and an absolute "good thing," they simply insisted that something must be broken, and that it needed to be fixed.

They looked on the internet not for what it was (and is), but what they wanted it to be. To them, it was just a slightly more interactive version of what they had always done -- and they assumed that everyone would bow down to their wishes, because, obviously, everyone just wants that mass market content.

No statement encapsulates that more than the following, spoken by one Anthony Healy, director of the Australasian Performing Right Association, discussing the various proposals for new copyright laws in New Zealand, where he somehow states with a straight face:
"Without the content industries, the internet would be empty."
Oh really? Why not try it, and let's see. The quote, by the way, was brought to us by Andrew Dubber, who properly calls Healey the "Wrongest Man on the Internet, July 2009." However, this really is how some of these guys think. They don't think that the internet really existed before they discovered it, and they think that everyone logs onto YouTube just to catch the latest TV clips. They don't realize that people use it to communicate and share and collaborate -- and that's a lot more useful than using it to get fed some mass market entertainment junk.

Filed Under: anthony healy, content, copyright, internet, new zealand


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Jul 2009 @ 1:22pm

    More accurately stated:

    "Without content, the internet would be empty."

    Of course the same can also be said of many other "content transfer facilitators:

    "Without content, movie theaters would be empty."

    "Without content, television broadcast signals would be empty."

    "Without content, radio broadcast signals would be empty."

    "Without content, (fill in the blank) would be empty."

    All of these are tools meant to facilitate the communication of content, and without content they are little more than sometimes quite expensive paper weights. For these tools to come to life and demonstrate their utility someone has to create the content, and, contrary to what many seem inclined to believe, in many instances (if not most at this point in time within the entertainment industries) content does not come cheap.

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