Donnerstag, 12. Juli 2012

Shareable: Why Crowdfunding Creativity Is Just The Beginning

Media activist Ian MacKenzie offers a short history of crowdfunding and how it repesents one of the key pillars of our emerging social and economic paradigm.
Here is what we see today on the web: millions of web videos, music tracks, essays, blog posts, photographs and more, offered simply for no cost (other than a computer and Internet connection). Without even realizing it, the web has become the largest gift economy ever.
To understand the scope of the shift, we must first understand how the dominant cultural economic model has worked for the past 75 years.
Long Live the Consumer
Let’s start with the music industry. Here is a typical example: a record label would sign a promising artist, claiming varying swaths of control over their output and career, sink piles of money into their marketing, and reap the benefits. This model has supported a vast network of “middle-men”, many of whom care deeply about music, but are bound to four mega-corporations who are in it for the money. Music is a commodity just like any barrel of oil or sack of rice.
This model is primarily why most of the tracks on the radio sound identical and are cycled on airwaves until they’ve saturated your psyche. Big corporations know that repetition is the surest way to “create” a hit. The audience participation is sequestered to the final stage of the production line: consuming the album or track or live performance when its released to the masses.
This model has thoroughly permeated other creative industries, such as TV and magazine publishing, with the difference that content must attract eyeballs for advertisers. This is the primary reason you see the same inexplicable reality shows on hundreds of channels and find yourself wondering, “Who watches this?”
(Side note: the proliferation of reality-TV is not because audiences truly demand such high quality viewing. Rather, it’s because networks can pay reality “stars” almost nothing for their 5 minutes of fame, which means the shows are cheap to produce, offering higher margins.)
Shareable: Why Crowdfunding Creativity Is Just The Beginning

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