Vodo Sets Up Currency To Encourage More Promotion

from the alternative-economies dept

In the debate over business models that embrace file sharing networks, one of the more interesting projects to watch has been Vodo, which is a platform for filmmakers who wish to release their works via file sharing setups, and to enjoy a promotional boost for doing so. Movies released via Vodo have done quite well, both in getting attention and in getting monetary support. The company has now updated its system and has added an interesting element: an internal currency, called "Do," to encourage people to promote the works.

That is, if you point people to a download -- you can earn some "Do" every time someone visits an artist's website or downloads the work or even agrees to give money to a content creator. This could be interesting to watch, though I do wonder how well it will work. On the positive side, as we were just discussing in our Dark Helmet case study, one of the most important things in getting modern business models to work is to get your biggest fans to help promote you. However, at the same time, we've also warned about the risks of artificial incentives to promote some content, you run the risk of people questioning the motives for the promotion. If Vodo can balance this, it could be quite nice, but that balance is very much an open question. I agree that it's important to make people comfortable promoting you, but I worry that creating such incentives leaves it very much open to gaming, rather than legitimate advocacy.

Filed Under: currency, file sharing, incentives, movies, promotions, rewards
Companies: vodo

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  1. identicon
    Ryan Diederich, 5 Oct 2010 @ 6:17am

    I like this a lot....

    This makes so much more sense than any other business model. Imagine this scenerio...

    John goes to the movies with a few friends. They see Where the Wild Things Are.

    Now John and friends like most movies, but they feel the movie really needs a solid plot and storyline. Where the Wild Things Are lacks this.

    So John goes to school the next day and tells everyone he hated the movie. Dont go see it he says, its a waste of time and money. People listen, and dont go see it.

    Now flip the same scenerio over to VoDo. John downloads Where the Wild Things Are and watches it. He hates it, and does not distribute or donate to the movie. He tells his friends he hated it, but hang on... His friends download it anyway, because it doesnt cost them anything. Some of them actually like it, because they dont have the same movie likes and dislikes as John did. 4 of them donate and tell their friends, who then download and donate and it snowballs.

    Compare the two scenerios, in the first, only John and his few friends pay for the movie. In the second, John doesnt pay, but many more people pay, and their friends pay.

    As much sense as this makes, Hollywood will never wrap their miniscule brains around it, because it would require actually creating DECENT content rather than using clever advertising tricks to make their money.

    I am going to download and promote that movie, Person of Interest, it looks really good.

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