Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Saturday, April 26, 2008

More notes on Economies of the Commons

David Bollier has blogged some notes on Economies of the Commons: Strategies for Sustainable Access and Creative Reuse of Images and Sounds Online (Amsterdam, April 10-12, 2008).  Excerpt:

What happens when video, music and information can be distributed for free, or nearly so? Well, we’re about to find out —and many of our largest, most capitalized institutions are going to feel the repercussions. Many barriers that once kept information artificially scarce —things like copyright law, digital rights management, and limited bandwidth and computing power— are under siege, if not collapsing. Some people are predicting that copyrighted works will experience a “Bear Stearns moment” in the future, when prices of copyrighted works plummet. An IP bubble, as it were....

[Jamie King] said we need to learn to “love abundance. Stop trying to keep people away from your work. Didn’t you make it to be seen?” King believes that the new distribution models are immensely appealing because you don’t have the compromise your artistic vision—unlike commercial television or film distribution, which forces producers to squeeze their creativity into specific demographic pigeonholes. He also believes that most existing pay models are ultimately doomed because they won’t be able to compete with free distribution. The point is to develop a business model that exploits free distribution, rather than trying to defend an indefensible bulwark of artificial scarcity....