The Sky Is Rising!

by Christopher Paul on January 24, 2013

Many companies who feel threatened by technology and the untapped and often hidden benefits it brings often resort to a “the sky is falling!” mentality and do whatever then can to stop it. Look at the music and movie industries. They are constantly pushing for new laws, restrictions, and schemes to deter what is seen as theft but is usually more a more efficient marketplace.

When questioned on their data, they tend to fall back on the sky is falling cry and, “but, but, piracy!” argument. Others, however, release studies and data to support the idea that these industries are thriving and infringement, though it does happen, isn’t having a negative effect on content creation. It’s often difficult to put into context this counter data but TechDirt has done a good job of highlighting what a non-issue technology is for the entertainment industries. They just released their latest “The Sky Is Rising!” report which shows what has grown and by how much.

What we found this time was that, as expected, there are some big differences within different countries – with some doing better in certain areas, and some struggling in other areas. But, on the whole, the general picture was the same. The various industries were growing. The amount of content being created was growing. The number of new services enabling new business models and new ways to distribute content were growing massively. It’s an exciting time, and the key point is, once again, that there is no “conflict” between tech and content. Rather the two work hand in hand together quite well, with new services enabling all sorts of growth opportunities for artists.

The article links to their full report in PDF and text formats. It starts with some interesting infographics and then moves on to the core content broken up by content industry and then by region. Of course, not every region is targeted (this is a European study) but you can see how it’s not all doom and gloom as the legacy gatekeepers would have you believe.

As usual, it’s an interesting read. I’ve downloaded it to iBooks and will be going through all 42 pages in the PDF over the weekend.

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