Posted below my favorite passage from the article:
In an article written for Torrentfreak.com in January, Matt Mason, author of The Pirate’s Dilemma, wrote that “when pirates enter our market spaces, we have two choices. We can throw lawsuits at them and hope they go away. Sometimes this is the best thing to do. But what if those pirates are adding value to society in some way?… In these cases, what pirates are actually doing is highlighting a better way for us to do things; they find gaps outside the market, and better ways for society to operate. In these situations the only way to fight piracy is legitimise and legalise new innovations by competing with pirates in the marketplace.”
Mason’s book demonstrates that the history of piracy is also a history of innovation, one that includes the names Thomas Edison (inventor of the record player) and William Fox (founder of Hollywood). Ernesto agrees: “The ever-increasing piracy rates show there is a demand that the entertainment industry has not satisfied. Thanks to the internet, access to media on demand has become reality, and people seem to love it. It’s now up to the movie and music industry to come up with a model that can compete with these filesharing networks.”
iTunes has proved that the music industry can compete with a parallel black market online. In the US, Hulu.com, a website set up by the major television networks to stream their programming online, has done the same. Project Kangaroo, the UK equivalent, is currently in the works. “If it’s very easy to find and has a lot of content, people will use it,” says Price. “Hulu is bringing in huge amounts of advertising revenue for the TV companies, and it’s bringing people back from the piracy networks.”
I remember I was sitting in a dingy Belfast Cafe downloading ‘something’ off their dodgy wi-fi when I had that WTF moment = when it occured to me that something I was getting for free had more value than a ‘paid for’ version of the same ‘object’ = it had no DRM, could be transferred to any of my movie players, etc.
Slowly, slowly, slowly the studios are beginning to get it.
(Photo at top courtesy of telegraham)