Sage Freehaven !Goddammit
Tue, Sep 04 2012, 08:37 PM EDT
>it's no longer about getting exposure but, as you put it, taking up the role of 'gatekeeper'
That 'gatekeeper' mindset has to die, and this generation has to kill it.
The record labels served the role of gatekeepers for the music industry for decades, and nothing seemed poised to stop them from staying in that role for decades to come -- until broadband Internet and hard drives with multiple gigabytes of storage became a reality.
Napster became the first major volley against the old gatekeeper system. When the gatekeepers fought back and stopped Napster, other services took its place. Every time the record labels struck one down, two more would take its place. Nowadays, we have a filesharing protocol that doesn't rely on a centralized service (Bittorrent) and fewer major record labels (from the Big Six pre-Napster to the Big Three nowadays).
The 'gatekeeper' model can't -- and won't -- survive in the long run because the Internet makes it easy for people to circumvent the gate and get into the walled garden that the gatekeepers work so hard to protect.
Gatekeepers try to make themselves the center of the marketplace, decide who can enter the marketplace, and screw over the content creators when it comes to payouts. Enablers, on the other hand, help content creators remain at the center of the marketplace by providing artists with the tools and services to streamline the creation, distribution, promotion, and monetization of creative works.
Artists also have to find ways to branch out into business models that offer a better chance of success than the 'paysite' model. While ClubStripes has this old model in place, it also supplements the paysite with premium goods (such as printed books). 0r0ch1 also hit upon a good idea for income (well, supplemental income, anyway) with his 'Doodles for Donations' streams. Even a 'give it away and pray' model (you offer a product for free and ask for donations from people who liked it) can work in certain circumstances.
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