Tuesday, January 05, 2010
Can film leapfrog music to success?
So I propose that we can’t start comparing anything we do until we’ve leapfrogged their current solutions. Until then, we are repeating all of the same mistakes.
For the MPAA, this seems to mean we haven’t succeeded unless we do more than the RIAA did. The RIAA stopped with relatively minor stuff - they try to sue their fans into submission. The MPAA decides it’s going for the jugular and will bypass American and all other laws and work on secret international treaties to rewrite copyright law in their favor.
This is not learning from the mistakes of the past. It’s just going nuclear.
They may make some major changes, but they will fail at reinventing their model. This is also my main complaint with 3D. It’s not a new response - in fact, the last time the industry felt threatened they turned to 3D to solve their problems. More of the same, updated for today is not a paradigm shift.
In the DIY world, we’re still looking to the music world for answers. We look at what indie musicians have been doing with crowdsourcing, making cool apps to request a band, experimenting with free leading to fee, etc. and try to duplicate them for the film world. These are great experiments, but again, not paradigmatic changes.
Until it’s the other way around - the music world looks to the film world for novel solutions - we’re still behind. Not repeating the mistakes means leapfrogging them, and until we do, we’re just repeating.
I’m not saying we (film) can’t learn from music folks, or that we shouldn’t be looking for many overlaps and lessons from multiple industries. This is good. But I do think we need to think bigger. All of the things I’ve seen so far look more like band-aids than laser surgery approaches to staunching the bleeding. I don’t know what the “leapfrog solution” is, but I’m thinking about this a lot, and would love your thoughts.