PTTP London Film Forum Speech


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Another version of a presentation I have given before. Some new examples added for the Power to the Pixel London Film Forum '09.

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  • How do filmmakers make a living in a world that seems to be increasingly trending towards free
  • free content, as in no money
  • Chris Anderson wrote in wired that everything was trending towards free. Email, phone calls, music, air travel, video, magazines, everything And that more and more business models would be built around this. Give away the razors, charge for the blades.
  • We know what it’s meant for music
  • And lately this change, coupled with the decline in advertising, has decimated the print industry. According to Paper Cuts , a Web site tracking the newspaper industry, more than 120 newspapers in the U.S. have closed since January 2008 and at least 21,000 jobs at 67 newspapers have vanished.
  • And we’ve talked about how this is hitting film Sometimes with ad support, sometimes not If they can find all of this free content, why should they pay for yours? Can’t find it on pirate bay, it doesn’t exist Wasn’t the old world better?
  • Now before we bemoan this situation, let’s have a reality check.
  • Old world scenario
  • But it never worked this way for most people, and it’s working even less so now
  • Looks like the old/current system is free as well so, in dealing with free, we’re also talking about dealing with a business model that’s been stacked against artists, and a window now where maybe we can have success.
  • The famous maxim that information wants to be free was only half the statement, Stewart Brand actually said, it also wants to be very expensive. I think there’s a medium
  • The medium is free plus fee. I don’t think free is bad. I think we should be focused on building a better business model that allows for both, cause this ship has sunk folks.
  • So why would anyone pay
  • IWe need to recognize that value has changed.
  • In the old media world, value was built upon scarcity. In the new media world we are confronting overabundance. Copies are free, they are ubiquitous
  • When copies are super abundant, they become worthless. When copies are super abundant, stuff which can't be copied becomes scarce and valuable. When copies are free, you need to sell things which can not be copied.
  • Immediacy - Time matters more than ever. I want things when, where and on what platform I want, immediately while I can download any film online for free, it’s easier for me to get it quickly from Netflix. As their library expands, I use it more and more. Also limits transaction cost by making it very simple - no entering credit card, etc Fred Wilson, a popular VC with a blog noted that his kids are now doing the same, a good sign for an industry wanting to make money.
  • Immediacy – Here’s just one example of an indie filmmaker using it. In November of 2005, filmmaker Tiffany Shlain got word that her short film “The Tribe” was selected for the 2006 Sundance Film Festival. The short documentary film, a jazz-like riff on the history of Barbie, the history of Jews, and Jewish Identity, would be playing one of the more prestigious film festivals in the world, but there was a catch. In order to play Sundance, she had to agree to have her film screen for free on iTunes concurrent with the film festival. For free. She was fine with this as it was a short. She was still selling DVDs from her own website and then had an interesting unplanned experiment She later got into Tribeca, and they asked her to pull the film from free online for just one month. She agreed and her sales went to zero. People wanted the immediacy of being able to sample it and buy it. Shortly thereafter, she became the #1 film on iTunes.
  • Personalization – I want it to conform to and fulfill my needs. I want to be able to participate with it. It’s an ongoing conversation. Movie tailored to the rating I want, music tailored to the specs of my home or music hall. Hard to do in film - very easy to do with marketing - tailor a message to a fan. And with cross-media - the experience changes according to your way of interacting with it in straight-ahead film best example I know of: rick prelinger story - Free versions on Internet Archive, but if you want it personalized (finding clip, getting rights info for distribs, etc) you pay from getty and sales have increased even while same content available for free – sales up by 60%
  • Interpretation – Tiffany created a book that helps tell the story. Your study guide could be another example. director’s tracks, etc
  • Authenticity – people paid for Dead albums even though tons of concert tapes exist
  • people want to feel an authentic connection Josh freese – session musician and drummer
  • Limited, authentic and is a real experience. hovers close to patronage, but much more engaged
  • They’ll pay for limited editions, from the artist, with cool add-ons
  • Embodiment – film free, lecture costs
  • Embodiment – age of stupid has taken it to another, easier, level
  • Patronage – radiohead model, give it away but can donate to get more. Jill Sobule got her fans to donate to make her album - 95K
  • Here’s a blow-up of what you got for your donation
  • Patronage – “Steal this Film” donation model
  • Now has morphed into Vodo, to launch soon
  • Accessibility – easier to let someone else store it for you
  • Last example - Sita Sings the Blues - you’ll hear from her soon, but even though I’d been to multiple fests where her film showed, and with my badge it was for free. It was online for free in multiple versions. But what was convenient for me meant adding it to my Netflix cue. I had to wait for the DVD, but it would put it in my schedule, on my terms and was more convenient. So I paid.
  • Findability – trusted source curation. Speak a bit about Reframe project
  • Immediacy – get it now, early Personalized – to your rating Interpretation – free code, manual 10K – or gene understanding Authenticity – from the Dead Accessibility – someone else stores it for use anywhere – gmail Embodiment – Book is free, lecture with author costs Patronage – support the artist, radiohead Findability – finding it in the sea
  • Another way to think of this is Mike masnick’s formula, and I think all of understand how we can connect with fans through facebook, twitter and other social networking tools
  • There’s an old marketing theory that says people don’t go to store to buy a ¼” drill, but because they want a ¼” hole. don’t go to the store to buy a hammer. They go there because they want to hang a picture, to get something done, and the hammer just helps them do it.
  • I love seeing a movie in a theater, but let’s face it – that was a tool for Hollywood to pack as many people into one space and make money off their desire to escape. It was a tool to have a fun night out, but it was only one tool. People can collect around your film, watch it and interact with it in new ways now.
  • We now have new tools, and we can’t fight it, but need to embrace them to our benefit. The audience wants to build something – they can get your hammer for free, or you can give them a reason to buy it
  • PTTP London Film Forum Speech

    1. 1. Better Than Free New Notions of Value New Notions of Value
    2. 2. $
    3. 7. Old World $
    4. 8. Old World $ <ul><li>Play Festival </li></ul>
    5. 9. Old World $ <ul><li>Play Festival </li></ul><ul><li>Sell to Distributor/Broadcaster (s) </li></ul><ul><li>advance </li></ul><ul><li>percentage of revenues </li></ul>
    6. 10. Old World $ <ul><li>Play Festival </li></ul><ul><li>Sell to Distributor/Broadcaster (s) </li></ul><ul><li>advance </li></ul><ul><li>percentage of revenues </li></ul><ul><li>They sell to audience </li></ul><ul><li>Who pays for film </li></ul>
    7. 11. Old World $ <ul><li>Play Festival </li></ul><ul><li>Sell to Distributor/Broadcaster (s) </li></ul><ul><li>advance </li></ul><ul><li>percentage of revenues </li></ul><ul><li>They sell to audience </li></ul><ul><li>Who pays for film </li></ul><ul><li>$ to distributor </li></ul><ul><li>$ to filmmakers </li></ul><ul><li>$ to investors </li></ul>
    8. 12. Old World $ <ul><li>Play Festival </li></ul><ul><li>Sell to Distributor/Broadcaster (s) </li></ul><ul><li>advance </li></ul><ul><li>percentage of revenues </li></ul><ul><li>They sell to audience </li></ul><ul><li>Who pays for film </li></ul><ul><li>$ to distributor </li></ul><ul><li>$ to filmmakers </li></ul><ul><li>$ to investors </li></ul><ul><li>Everyone is happy </li></ul>
    9. 13. Old World $ <ul><li>Play Festival </li></ul><ul><li>Sell to Distributor/Broadcaster (s) </li></ul><ul><li>advance </li></ul><ul><li>percentage of revenues </li></ul><ul><li>They sell to audience </li></ul><ul><li>Who pays for film </li></ul><ul><li>$ to distributor </li></ul><ul><li>$ to filmmakers </li></ul><ul><li>$ to investors </li></ul><ul><li>Everyone is happy </li></ul>MYTH
    10. 14. Old World $ <ul><li>Play Festival </li></ul><ul><li>Sell to Distributor/Broadcaster (s) </li></ul><ul><li>advance </li></ul><ul><li>percentage of revenues </li></ul><ul><li>They sell to audience </li></ul><ul><li>Who pays for film </li></ul><ul><li>$ to distributor </li></ul><ul><li>$ to filmmakers </li></ul><ul><li>$ to investors </li></ul><ul><li>Everyone is happy </li></ul>
    11. 15. Old World $ -- Reality <ul><li>Play Festival Maybe </li></ul><ul><li>Sell to Distributor/Broadcaster (s) Maybe – forever, everywhere </li></ul><ul><li>advance $0 - $15,000 avg </li></ul><ul><li>percentage of revenues 30% - 60% after expenses </li></ul><ul><li>They sell to audience Hopefully </li></ul><ul><li>Who pays for film If theaters book it or buyers buy </li></ul><ul><li>$ to distributor But, </li></ul><ul><li>$ to filmmakers </li></ul><ul><li>$ to investors </li></ul><ul><li>Everyone is happy </li></ul>
    12. 16. Old World $ -- Reality <ul><li>Play Festival Maybe </li></ul><ul><li>Sell to Distributor/Broadcaster (s) Maybe – forever, everywhere </li></ul><ul><li>advance $0 - $15,000 avg </li></ul><ul><li>percentage of revenues 30% - 60% after expenses </li></ul><ul><li>They sell to audience Hopefully </li></ul><ul><li>Who pays for film If theaters book it or buyers buy </li></ul><ul><li>$ to distributor But, </li></ul><ul><li>Marketing, P& A, staffing, </li></ul><ul><li>cross-collateralization, </li></ul><ul><li>fees, delivery, </li></ul>
    13. 17. Old World $ -- Reality <ul><li>$0 to filmmakers </li></ul><ul><li>$0 to investors </li></ul><ul><li>No one is happy…and you don’t even own your film anymore </li></ul>
    14. 18. $
    15. 19. “ On the one hand information wants to be expensive, because it's so valuable. The right information in the right place just changes your life. On the other hand, information wants to be free, because the cost of getting it out is getting lower and lower all the time. So you have these two fighting against each other.” Stewart Brand at the first Hackers ' Conf erence in 1984
    16. 20. Free <ul><li>(Plus fee) </li></ul>
    17. 21. <ul><li>Why Pay? </li></ul>
    18. 22. Value has Changed
    19. 23. Old Media World Value: Scarcity New Media World Value: Overabundance
    20. 24. When Copies are free, you need to sell things that can’t be copied. Kevin Kelly, Better Than Free
    21. 25. <ul><li>Like What? </li></ul>
    22. 26. IMMEDIACY
    23. 27. IMMEDIACY
    26. 30. AUTHENTICITY
    27. 31. AUTHENTICITY
    28. 32. AUTHENTICITY $500 (limited edition of 15) 5 Sold! Only 10 left! * -Signed CD/DVD and digital download. * -T-shirt* * -Signed Cymbal and sticks. * -Meet me in Venice, CA and we go floating in a Sensory Deprivation Tank (filmed and posted on youtube). * -Dinner at Sizzler (get your $8.99 Steak and &quot;all you can eat&quot; Shrimp on)
    29. 33. AUTHENTICITY Text
    30. 34. EMBODIMENT
    31. 35. EMBODIMENT
    32. 36. PATRONAGE
    33. 37. PATRONAGE * $10 - Unpolished Rock (but with potential) Level: A free digital download of the album, when it's released. * $25 - Polished Rock Level: An advance copy of the CD. Weeks before the masses. … * $2,500 - Emerald Level: Mentioned as an executive producer of the album -- whoop-di-doo! * $5,000 — Diamond Level: I will come and do a house concert for you. Invite your friends, serve some drinks, bring me out and I sing. Actually, this level is a smart choice economically. I've played many house concerts where the host has charged his guests and made his money back. I'd go for this if I were you. * $10,000 - Weapons-Grade Plutonium Level: You get to come and sing on my CD. Don't worry if you can't sing - we can fix that on our end. Also, you can always play the cowbell.
    34. 38. PATRONAGE
    35. 39. PATRONAGE
    37. 41. Accessibility also equals Convenience
    38. 42. FINDABILITY
    39. 43. Generatives <ul><li>Immediacy </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Give them something now </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Personalization </li></ul><ul><ul><li>To their needs </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Interpretation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>with study guide, or commentary </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Authenticity </li></ul><ul><ul><li>From you directly, signed by you </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Embodiment </li></ul><ul><li>Speaking Fees </li></ul><ul><li>Patronage </li></ul><ul><li>Support the artist; Radiohead model </li></ul><ul><li>Accessibility </li></ul><ul><li>Make it easy to get </li></ul><ul><li>Convenient </li></ul><ul><li>Findability </li></ul><ul><li>Work with partners who make you findable </li></ul>
    40. 44. CwF + RtB = $$$ Mike Masnick, TechDirt
    41. 45. CwF + RtB = $$$ Mike Masnick, TechDirt Connect with fans, give them a reason to buy and make money.
    42. 49. Blog: Email: [email_address] Twitter: @b newman01
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