Amanda Palmer Sells $15,000 Worth Of Music & Merch In Three Minutes

from the damn dept

We've talked a lot about Amanda Palmer's various business model experiments on this site, as well as her efforts to connect with fans in new and unique ways. She's also written a guest post, participated in our own CwF+RtB program and done an interview with us where she announced her Radiohead Ukulele project. And, of course, she was recently (ecstatically) dropped from her record label, which is why she can do fun and bizarre things like playing Radiohead songs on a ukulele.

While we saw some people in our comments mock the Radiohead Ukulele project, and insist that it would be a clear failure, it seems that's not true at all. In fact, the early results suggest it's been an astounding success. In the first 3 minutes, the project brought in $15,000. Yes, 3 minutes. $15,000. And, of course, it continued from there. The offering included a "pay what you want" for the music, but also a variety of other tiers. Most of the packages sold out within hours.

In the link above, Amanda's tech guy (and regular Techdirt reader and commenter) Sean points out that they did the whole thing themselves, basically involving a team of four people and using some simple internet services like BandCamp (which, if you haven't been paying attention, keeps making strides in being a fantastic platform for musicians). I'm sure we'll start to hear folks explaining why this is an exception or a one-off or something like that. But, given how many times we've seen successful business model experiments like this, at what point are people going to realize that there are so many "exceptions" that it's now the rule?

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  1. identicon
    Michael, 23 Jul 2010 @ 5:33am

    Re: Not $15k in 3 minutes, but $15k in many years of hard work.

    I don't think anyone said she made $15,000 in 3 minutes. However, since the record industry bases everything on first day and first weekend sales (movies?), it is reasonable to use a similar comparative measure.

    If you want to lay it out across the time to produce the work, $15,000 is, well, $15,000 more than all of the un-recouped artists that made $0 for all of their hard work. So, here is a business model that cut out the record company and put the money directly into the hands of 4 people (including the artist) that did the work. That sounds a lot better than the artist getting nothing and losing the rights to their work at the same time.

    Oh, and if you include "time and skill to learn how to play an instrument", I have to ask you what you do for a living that required no learning earlier in life. I hope you do not use any writing or math skills for which the learning of you are not compensated. If you do that, the guy that makes $9 per hour flipping burgers (perhaps you?) makes a heck of a lot more than I do because I had to learn things like math and English to do my job and he was trained to flip the burgers in about 15 minutes.

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