Innovation

"Innovation"

“Innovation”

From the latest Burning Man Newsletter:

It is clear that many people seeking Burning Man tickets for 2012 padded their odds by requesting more tickets than they need, and having friends, family and campmates ALSO register, ALSO requesting more tickets than they need.  There are an unexpectedly high number of registrants, and they are requesting 1.7 tickets/person on average.

As a result, a significant number of people will not be awarded tickets in the Main Sale.

And while it may seem at first blush that there’s a shortage of tickets available, the reality is that there are now a lot of tickets held by our community that will now simply be redistributed to those who need them. Based on analysis we hold a strong belief that things will settle out over the course of time, once that redistribution takes place, such that most everybody who wants a ticket will find their way to one.

Even if there is a large number of tickets in circulation, that adds more stress and general nonsense to acquiring one. For people who get tickets from the lottery, it will all be fine - but, for those who aren’t so lucky, I see this devolving into a Grade-A fiasco.

I really, really hope I’m wrong.

Like I was saying…

MG Siegler over at PandoDaily (which, by the way, has been serving up grade A content since it launched yesterday):

Remember when VHS tapes were upwards of $100 to buy? Then they started making some priced-to-own and guess what? People started buying them. DVDs were priced to own from the start, but as their prices fell, guess what happened? More and more were sold. In fact, it became the bread and butter of the industry. The iTunes model for music has proven that people will pay for content. You just have to make it as accessible as possible. That means both price and distribution points. Instead, Hollywood has lost its collective mind. And its way. They want legislation that will puncture the fabric of the web. It’s insane. Let’s say that both SOPA and PIPA are passed - does piracy stop? Of course not. It will find a way. No matter what happens, it will always find a way. The best way to combat piracy is to remove barriers, not to put up new ones.

This is essentially the same thing I brought up last week. Content providers are operating in some fantasy world where neutering the internet will stop piracy. We all agree piracy is a problem, but it’s ludicrous to propose a cure that’s worse than the disease. If the MPAA, RIAA, et al. recognized the opportunity to do something meaningful that’s been staring them in the face, we’d all be much better off.

Ben Horowitz’s Fready Friday Technique

I attended the Geeks vs. Suits event put on by Hackers and Founders at Microsoft’s Mountain View campus last week. While there, Ben Horowitz spoke in a fireside chat and described his “Freaky Friday Management Technique” as an anecdote to another point - I found it interesting (and elegant in its simplicity) and worth passing on. Worth the read for any manager.

Content Owners Should Compete More Effectively

Jon Brodkin, writing for Ars Technica:

Despite the content industry’s success shutting some sites down, piracy still flourishes through BitTorrent, cyberlockers, peer-to-peer networks, and video streaming, Price argued. While piracy is unlikely to ever stop completely, many Internet users will turn to legitimate alternatives if the price and service are right.

This is why services like iTunes and Netflix have flourished - they made it easier to legitimately acquire content than to steal it. Consumers are less likely to pirate content if there’s an attractive, easy method to get it legally. Piracy is ripe for disruption - the sooner content owners realize this, stop pushing bad legislation, and stop treating their customers like criminals, the better off we’ll all be.