Digital Brand Builder

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Piracy: The Fight not worth Fighting

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Before I get to my point, allow me to do some self congratulating give some background. I uploaded my first (horrible) video to the web in 2000. I used the Iomega Buzz to edit. Trust me, that wasn’t fun. My senior year of college, spring 2006, I pitched Google a webseries. A really cool webseries. It had functionality that YouTube can only now handle . They laughed at me.

I remember a fight with an ex-girlfriend after I had moved to LA,  before I was gainfully employed, where she screamed “The only thing you have going for you is your stupid blog!” She was right, of course, but that didn’t prevent me from throwing a beer bottle onto the street (Sorry, Newport Beach) in a triumph of self righteousness. Of course, she was right. My blog was is stupid.

I was on Twitter in 2007 before it was dorky to be on Twitter because no one knew what the hell it was. Not that I was using it. But still, I had that account. And finally, for over two years, I’ve been working at one of the most well known New Media studios around. We’ve pumped out more high quality, web specific content, than probably any other independent shop. Hell, the major studio’s web divisions have all mostly closed up. For now.

What’s this all mean?

I’m a tech dork entertainment nut. Sometimes I forget to embrace that (Last blog was 6 months ago, for instance). Defeat can do that to you if you let it (Although no project is ever dead). But somewhere in the cosmos the next big thing is brewing. It’s not web series as they exist now. They are just a stepping stone. I love being deeply involved in their creation, but we will look back at them and laugh.

You know what else we’ll look back on and laugh at? Piracy.

Please, old hats, stay behind your mahogany desks, and check your stock portfolios. Don’t try and talk about Bit Torrent. You sound silly, and you are wrong. We all know the proof lies in the pudding (mud) of the music industries defecate decline.

Reading about Paramount COO Frederick Huntsberry is a great example. Freddy ol’ boy, your studio has done some great stuff, but please, leave this New Media business to those of us who have grown up in it. Allow us outliers to develop it. There is a whole swarm of opportunity brewing if you’ll just let us keep our pitcher of iced tea out in the sun long enough to get that… sunny flavor.

As iTunes proved, if given the option to the do the right thing, the majority will do the ‘right thing’. In the not too distant future, truly amazing entertainment options will evolve . You can’t fight evolution , so stop wasting your time. Buy my script if you need something to do.

You guys behind mahogany desks are worried because you made your money the old way (Back when it was new-ish). That’s understandable. I know, from all the books I’ve read on that period,  it was a great time. But, just like how you won the battle with the old men you were fighting, we too will be winning this war. Why fight? We don’t want to fight. We want to create and evolve and bring the masses the new wave of entertainment. Bigger than radio. Bigger than TV. And much bigger than 3D.

We can all get there together. Just trust us. Stop focusing energy on ‘fighting’ piracy and let the next new thing emerge. Let’s monetize instead of criminalize. Stop the stupid court cases and, instead, come to a solution that makes everyone happy.

Written by Nicholas J. Robinson

September 25th, 2009 at 12:50 pm

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