Kevin KellyBetterThan FreeIf something can be copied for free, whatmakes people pay for it?
Kelly’s IdeaKelly suggests that, in an environment whenalmost anything can be copied and madeworthless, anything that cannot be copiedbecomes scarce and therefore valuable.
Kelly believes there are Eight uncopyablevalues or ‘generatives’ that can be combinedor used singularly, in order to make someonewant to pay for a product or service ratherobtaining it for free.KEVIN KELLY
Accessibility In paid-for products an individual is given the ability to storethe product wherever they want.This enables them to accessit securely whenever and usually in a pretty tidy way. Incontrast a free product that may be illegally downloadedwould have to be backed up, saved, stored, moved aroundetc..And this will get very boring. An example could be Spotify – they allow all your music to bestored in one easy simple place online or offline.
Number of subscribers to Spotify The service had approximately ten million users as of15 September 2010, about 2.5 million of whom were payingmembers.Total users reached 20 million by December 2012,five million of whom pay a monthly subscription fee thatvaries based on locale.
Authenticity Consumers are able to grab key software applications forfree, but even if they dont need a manual, they might like tobe sure it is bug free, reliable, and warranted. When products are bought directly from a band then this isensured.The paid-for items will come with an assurance ofvalidity and often extra items such as a signature fromperhaps a band to give extra authenticity. iTunes is an example of a reliable source for paid-for songsthat often offer live performances and exclusive tracks fromcertain artists.
Number of ‘subscribers’ for iTunes Last year iTunes reached an estimate of around 20 millionmonthly visits and payments and in 2008 iTunes reached astaggering figure of 5 billion total downloads on their site.
AUTHENTICITYGiven the multitude of fake copies on the internet, anything that hasactual value is often copied. A copy has a few flaws that an originalauthentic version would not have, an example of this is piratedsoftware. When looking for software some people will choose anauthentic version because with authenticity comes bonuses such astech support and bug fixes which you may not get with a piratedversion. Whilst the software itself is free, if it is not authentic it loses it’svalue, therefore the value is not in the software, but the authenticity.Another example is within’ the music industry, when many copies ofalbums are released to pirate websites, these files can be copiedincorrectly and contain the wrong formatting. This is normally provenwhen the pirated music files are played on stereos and the instrumentsdo not pan correctly to the different outsources.
Authenticity…The difference between paying for a product and illegallydownloading is its quality/authenticity. For example illegallydownloading a film will usually be pixelated and out of sync withthe sound however subscribing to a movie channel or music appwill guarantee the authenticity and quality of the product.A product example we can use is Spotify which is an online musicstreaming app which has three membership programs the first isfree but it gives you a limited amount of time each week and youwill have adverts in-between every couple of songs played, a £5.99subscription which removes the adverts and lets you stream spotifyon your phone and then a £10.00 subscription which means you cando everything in the premium subscription and also stream musiceven when you’re not connected to the internet and also get tolisten to albums early before anyone else.
FINDABILITY• Netflix – Categorizes by genre, popularity, release date etc• Cookies on websites allow relevant material that is to your interest toappear first.
Immediacy…Immediacy is how quick you can access something such asNetflix which offers you to stream TV shows and moviesinstantly for £6.99 a month and you can do thisimmediately whereas if you illegally download a movie itcould take ages for it to download and after downloadthere could be troubles with the footage such as badquality and sound errors.People who illegally download music on websites, forexample youtube2mp3 you will experience bad qualitysound and it could take a while for it to downloadwhereas if you buy a song of ITunes this will only takeseconds and you will get a better quality and you will getthe album artwork and information on the song.
PATRONAGE• Kelly believed that the customers want to pay for the contentthey are getting. He said they wanted to pay the creators. Butthe customers will only pay for the content if it is easy to get andthey can quickly download it, it will also need to be a decentprice that is not to much or the customer will look else where forthe music. The band Radiohead allow people to download theirmusic for free and the listeners can donate money towards theband. They recommend $5 a download but they do not have thisas a fixed price.
PatronageIt is my belief that audiences WANT to pay creators. Fans like to reward artists, musicians, authorsand the like with the tokens of their appreciation, because it allows them to connect. But theywill only pay if it is very easy to do, a reasonable amount, and they feel certain the money willdirectly benefit the creators. Radioheads recent high-profile experiment in letting fans pay themwhatever they wished for a free copy is an excellent illustration of the power of patronage. Theelusive, intangible connection that flows between appreciative fans and the artist is worthsomething. In Radioheads case it was about $5 per download. There are many other examples ofthe audience paying simply because it feels good.What this means, is that we are more likely to pay for a product If we know it’s going straight tothe creator or the artist, if it’s benefitting them rather than a record company or a manager forexample. People will sometimes believe that the artist is deserving of the money they make andthrough appreciation of the artist and as a mark of respect people will choose to pay for whatthey can get for free, not because that’s the only way to get the product but because they believethe artist deserves it therefore the value goes above and beyond what the track itself is worth.Another example of this would be faith to a particular brand such as a Windows user choosing tobuy a package of software from Microsoft, rather than downloading it because they appreciatethe effort that has gone into writing the software and are therefore willing to pay theprogrammers.
PersonalizationA generic version of a concert recording may be free, but if you want a copy that has beentweaked to sound perfect in your particular living room, as if it were preformed in your room, youmay be willing to pay a lot. The free copy of a book can be custom edited by the publishers toreflect your own previous reading background. A free movie you buy may be cut to reflect therating you desire (no violence, dirty language okay). Aspirin is free, but aspirin tailored to yourDNA is very expensive. As many have noted, personalization requires an ongoing conversationbetween the creator and consumer, artist and fan, producer and user. It is deeply generativebecause it is iterative and time consuming. You cant copy the personalization that a relationshiprepresents. Marketers call that "stickiness" because it means both sides of the relationship arestuck (invested) in this generative asset, and will be reluctant to switch and start over.What this means, is that Kelly believes that, due to personalisation not being able to be copied.Images and artwork, for example, can be easily found for free with as little effort as just googlinga vague description of what it is that you want. However, for custom artwork that is personal toyour needs, this cannot be copied, and therefore has value through its exclusivity due to thecustomer’s individuality. A further example of this is the value of a CD would increase if it wassigned by the artist and addressed to you, the value of the cd isn’t on the music but thepersonalization and the time of the artist.
PERSONALIZATION• Personalisation can influence a person to buy a product/serviceor a membership for a website etc. For example, aspirin is freebut aspirin that is tailored to your DNA can cost a great deal. Itrequires an ongoing conversation between the consumer andthe creator, the fan and the artist or the producer and the user.The relationship that is represented through personalizationcannot be copied. It can keep people invested in the samemembership/ site etc. because they will be more reluctant toswitch and start over, this is what marketers call ‘stickiness’.
EVALUATION OF KELLYS IDEAS.• As a group we have decided that Kellys idea is effective asdoes account for the majority of the reasons as to why peoplelegally obtain media over the web, however there are someother reasons.• The main reason we feel that Kelly has not discussed in hisarticle is the fact that some people may want to pay for mediaas they feel it is the morally correct thing to do, as they areagainst stealing and illegal actives.