Monday, June 12, 2006

Barlow and the Dead

As much as I don't like the Greatful Dead, John Perry Barlow really has it straight regarding technology and the ongoing copyright wars. Here's an excerpt of what he has to say:

"JPB: These are aging industries run by aging men, and they're up against 17-year-olds who have turned themselves into electronic Hezbollah because they resent the content industry for its proprietary practices. And I don't have a question about who's going to win that one eventually.
There are a lot of kids out there copying and distributing movies not because they care about seeing the movies or sharing them with their friends but because they want to stick it to the movie business. It's widely assumed that you can't compete with free and that seems like a reasonable thing to think. But this has not been my experience. I mean I've made a fair amount of money over the years writing songs for 'The Grateful Dead' who allowed their fans to tape their concerts.
We were at one point the biggest grossing performing act in the United States, and most of our records went platinum sooner or later.
It's an economic model that has worked in my experience and I think it does work. It's just that it seems like it wouldn't. It seems counter-intuitive. "

"JPB: I've got good news and bad news and good news. And the good news is that you guys have managed to buy every major legislative body on the planet, and the courts are even with you. So you've done a great job there and you should congratulate yourself.
But you know the problem is - the bad news is that you're up against a dedicated foe that is younger and smarter that you are and will be alive when you're dead. You're 55 years old and these kids are 17 and they're just smarter than you. So you're gonna lose that one.
But the good news is that you guys are mean sons of bitches and you've been figuring out ways of ripping off audiences and artists for centuries..... "

No comments: