Media Roundup

Tuesday, May 24, 2005 | 11:30 AM

I have jury duty today, so posting is light. But it is Tunes Tuesday, so here's a Linkfest of content/tech/P2P related stuff in the news:

What's ahead for Net, digital entertainment 
Interesting panel discussion on tech and content :

"What we've found is that the viewing patterns of people who watch live television — and are therefore restricted to prime time whenever they're home — are dramatically different than the viewing patterns of people who have the choice of just picking whatever they want.

Given the choice, people will migrate towards a much greater variety, and the deal is you've got to make everything available to everybody so that they're not restricted. And if you do, the market for that more esoteric, more specialized stuff is just as big as the market of the mainstream stuff."

We've had Napster since 1909, and the sky still hasn't fallen
Hey, it turns out we've seen this movie before:

"It's a pattern: the Vaudeville artists sued Marconi over the radio -- which made them rich. The movie studios boycotted TV until Disney sold out to get the funds for Disneyland -- and TV rights made the studios rich. Jack Valenti told Congress that the VCR was the Boston Strangler of the film industry, and then it doubled his income through pre-recorded tape sales and rentals."

Music to her ears
Interesting gender based behavioral differences (too bad it wasn't in Variety -- they would have titled it "Chix Nix Styx Trix"):

Why is it that only 4% of legally downloaded music is being bought by women? This is the new digital divide, with a huge survey by market information company TNS revealing that the vast majority of downloading is done by men - a staggering 96% of market share.

My guess is the male expertise in downloading porn made downloading MP3s a snap.

Smartest Guys Well Outside of Hollywood
What I love about Mark Cuban is his readiness to shake up a moribund industry afraid to cannabilize itself; Since he has no stake in the status quo, he can just kick some serious ass:

"In a business historically frantic about change, their plan has made exhibitors antsy and studios curious. Theatrical releases, which account for about $9 billion in revenue, have become expensive trailers for the real deal, a $24 billion after-market for home video and DVD's. The current food chain has made everybody fat and happy while the mere existence of a digitized entertainment product - ripe for the downloading - makes the industry shudder.

The theory behind 2929 goes like this: Over the past few years, Mr. Cuban and Mr. Wagner have acquired or built HDNet Films, which funds smaller budget movies, Magnolia Pictures for distribution, Landmark Theaters for exhibiting, and HDNet and HDNet Movies for cable broadcast. Consumers with access to those cable networks will be able to see a film at home on the day it comes out. Or they can see it in the theater or, once details are worked out, simply buy the DVD. By closing the window between when a movie is released and when it becomes available on DVD - usually about four months - 2929 will save on marketing by not having to advertise twice."

Television Reloaded   
The future of TV -- already here; just not evenly distributed yet:

"While cable and satellite companies have limited channel capacity, the Net—which, you'll recall, can host billions of Web pages without a sweat—has room for everything. You can stack as many shows on the screen as your eyes can handle. When you watch baseball, you can monitor several games at once, or choose to view the game from several different angles at the same time. A future presentation of the Masters Tournament might let you follow any golfer for every minute of his round.

Since the Internet is open to any digital content, your television will merge with other activities. Someone on the phone? You'll get caller-ID information on the TV screen. If you don't feel like fast-forwarding past the commercials, check your credit card bills."

In Mexico, a fake for nearly every desire
We've said this before, and now we will say it again: Counterfeiting -- not downloading -- is the recording industry's biggest issue:

“According to industry estimates, a trend that has accelerated in recent years with new dubbing technologies. The buying and selling of counterfeit goods is a way of life in Mexico City, where an estimated 300,000 residents make their living selling fake and illegal CDs and movies.

Mexico is often ranked third behind China and Russia on worldwide lists of bootlegging. The reason is simple economics. In a country where many workers earn $5 or $10 per day, it's unthinkable to shell out $15 for new CD or $30 for a legitimate DVD. Buying a fake copy for 10 pesos — less than $1 — is far more affordable, and in many cases easier given the vast number of vendors in the city."

Yet another demonstration of the difference between the Music and Recording industries:

"The music industry may be in crisis, what with illegal file-sharing, stagnant CD sales, and the decline of commercial rock radio, but the touring business is as sturdy as ever. In some ways, it is healthier than some of the mediums (radio, recorded music) that at one point or another were supposed to render it obsolete. Since 1998, annual concert-tour revenue has more than doubled, while CD sales have remained essentially flat. Last year, thirteen different artists grossed more than forty million dollars each at the box office. (Prince made eighty-seven million.) Consumers who seem reluctant to spend nineteen dollars for a CD apparently have few qualms about spending a hundred bucks or more to see a show."

We will --hopefully --- return to our regular programming just as soon as Nassau County deems me unfit for Jury duty as a former attorney, Federal Mediator, and recent defendant in a nuisance suit in this very court room (and I won)


Tuesday, May 24, 2005 | 11:30 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) add to | digg digg this! | technorati add to technorati | email email this post



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