Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Save the creative industries (as they are now) cry the creative industries

People with a vested interest have called on the government to try and stop 'illegal' downloading:

A coalition of creative industries organisations, including the UK's biggest trade union, Amicus/Unite, have increased the pressure on the government to act against illegal downloading in next week's final Digital Britain report, saying that there will otherwise be large job losses in TV, film and music across the UK.

Yes, the TUC have got involved. The TUC, you'll recall, tend to be depicted as a carthorse in classic political cartoons. Which is just silly, because carthorses are part of a bygone age, bypassed by the march of technology and... oh, hang on...
The letter argues that illegal filesharing is not a "victimless crime" but one that will result in revenue losses that will mean "fewer films, songs and TV programmes [will be] able to be commissioned".

"Job losses will be felt right across the chain, from production to distribution, from technicians to manufacturers and from logistics companies to staff in high street shops," states the co-signed letter.

Hang about a moment... won't jobs in shops and warehouses vanish if art gets distributed digitally anyway? Regardless of if you're downloading a licensed or unlicensed version of Terminator 6, there's not much call for a bloke with a van or forklift trucks wooshing crates of plastic all over the place, is there? More than ever, the sense hangs that the cries of "we must stop pirates" are actually "please make the future go away".

Let's distribute plastic records. We can get a carthorse to drag them to the shops.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I don't quite understand what they believe one would be able to download illegally (from their media point of view) if "films, songs and tv programmes" weren't commissioned? (Wouldn't that actually solve their problem?) I'm not even going to go into the fact that practically every new TV programme made in this country is now available to watch online quite legally through on demand sites run by the TV companies who still appear to be quite happily commissioning programmes. I also won't go into the fact that modern technology actually makes it easier for more people to find ways of making money in those industries without the interference of outdated distribution models. Oh wait... that's right... sorry, I forgot... it's those people with the money at the top who are actually not very good at business but for some reason run the companies that will be effected. Oh in that case I should take back everything! It's quite frustrating watching their seemingly endless death rattle.

Now that I think about it, what's actually quite funny about them listing TV in their argument is that the big example of a TV company in trouble at the moment is Setanta. I mean they're a bloody live sports channel!!! There's little to no way they can be affected by piracy and yet they're in trouble whilst all their rivals seem to be happy to keep commissioning new material. (OT but can anyone explain how on earth one can get into a situation where you have 1.2 million subscribers but need 1.9 million. I mean at what point don't they realise that they're buying more than they can afford in a niche where they had pretty much reached their maximum potential audience. Are there actually any TV execs out there with any sense? Yes, it's slightly more complicated than that but you still have to wonder about their business sense).

Bloody hell... sorry for the rant!

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