24 November 2009

And Another Reason that Rupe is Wrong...

...about his plans to gag Google, and embrace the beauteous Bing:

For the plan to work, it will also require that the vast, endlessly proliferating ecology of Internet filters, such as the millions of bloggers or tweeters or Facebook posters who recommend or summarize news stories, are eradicated from the Net. When searching for news, I'd rather find the original Associated Press article breaking a story, but in a pinch I will settle for a summary. The pathways in which information flows on the Internet are near infinite, and until now, have always been expanding in size and scope. I have paid subscriptions to the Financial Times and the Wall Street Journal, but I rarely have time to sit down and devour the daily publications from "front" to "back." I depend on a network of my own Internet filters to tell me what is important or newsworthy -- without them, there is simply too much out there for me to comprehend or absorb.

Poor Mr Murdoch, bless his cotton socks, is still thinking in terms of command and control - with him doing both; the Internet doesn't quite work like that - despite the best efforts of repressive governments around the world (I'm looking at *you*, Gordon).

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Cyberdoyle said...

These poor suits. They simply don't get IT. I wonder how long it will be before they stop and listen to real people, real experts instead of believing their so called 'advisors' who simply know nothing. Nobody can control the internet, and the sooner they realise it the sooner they will stop wasting time and energy and do something useful.

Glyn Moody said...

@Cyberdoyle: I don't think *they* ever will, but the next generation - the "young people" will because they'll have grown up with this stuff...

guy said...

It's not just that the internet lowers the cost of distribution... it distributes the cost of production.

We've seen before how artificial scarcity prompts the consumers to start creating their own equivalent. They start crude and the established players scoff... and then one day suddenly find that their lunch is being eaten.

Unix/Microsoft (et al) .... FOSS
Britannica/OED .... wikipedia/wiktionary
newscorp .... ???

The last (usually desperate) counter argument from the 'old supplier' is "can you trust software/research/news from just anybody out there on the net?" and the answer always ends up being "well, since you ask me to think about it, how much can I trust what you supply?".

Glyn Moody said...

@guy: I particularly like your last point.

Crosbie Fitch said...

@guy: It also can distribute commission for production.

This, after all, is one of the reasons copyright was so appealing. Sacrificing the public's liberty to produce copies enabled the sale of copies to act as an audience commission. Unfortunately, when the manufacturing cost of a copy is less than the notional audience share of the production cost, dollar signs light up in publishers' eyes at the prospect of monopoly profits.

For example, whilst books cost $5 to print, and earn $10, and the production cost = sales * $5, then it's break even. When CDs cost $0.05 to print, and earn $10, and the production cost = sales/1,000 * $5, then profits are effectively sales * $9.95. In other words copyright is now PURE PROFIT for popular works. Hence lowest common denominator targetted 'content', and ACTA.

Instead of copyright, thanks to the Internet, one can now very cheaply distribute the commission process, i.e. an independent, copyleft artist can invite a commission from their audience directly (no publisher selling copyright protected copies). So the audience now pays $5 a head to the artist, and the art is published copyleft. The printing and distribution costs are now borne by the public instead of the publisher. Moreover, the public acts as promoter given the public now has its liberty to distribute published works restored.

Unfortunately, artists and audiences are all headless chickens, and publishers are in the process of creating a Spanish inquisition to reverse the descent into lawless heresy.

So, at the moment, there's just a few loners ploughing solitary furrows in the exciting new field of audience/artist disintermediation.

Unknown said...

And the publishers are scared witless. I know several 'artists' who are independent. Some of them are making a living selling their stuff, in numbers that the RIAA/MPAA would find unprofitable. Check out:







And by the way - it's not that the suits can't get it. It's that the suits are being lied to, by those who stand to make money trying to block new production means. Like Lyons, the law firm in the UK that was monetizing copyright infringement.