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Strikes, Lost Royalties, Writers, Musicians and Reality


With the writer’s strike, artists complaining of lost royalties and a growing awareness of Web 2.0, my mind moves toward a simple fantasy.

It goes like this.

Everything goes Napster. In other words musicians’ royalties come from subscriptions. The mechanisms for obtaining music are tightened up enough to disable the worst abuses and create concensus around the fairness of a subscription mode to replace the, er, record industry. Napster widens its net to include every independent artist under the sun.

Everything goes Google. When I say everything goes and attach a name, I am simply fantasizing that a pay-model mode prevails. Just as you actually pay for a subscription, the Google model is paid for by advertising — people pay to advertise and Google pays publishers to run the ads. Somehow within this content providers like yours truly get paid. Why not? And I am not talking Adsense revenue — at least at this point.

OK, we have two modes of payment up for consideration — ad revenue model and subscription model. What has to fall into place for these to become the ultimate way of resolving the writer’s strike and the complaint about free downloading of peoples’ intellectual property?

I am going to fantasize that the answer is the collapse of delivery systems — into an essentially digital and online mode, accessible from all manner of gadgets and anything with a visible screen.

My subtext here is that I think the union model is cooked. A model that negotiates with individuals on a transparent basis seems to me the alternative.

We shall see.

Explaining The Writer’s Strike

writers strike

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