Digital monopoly a bigger threat than piracy says Miramax

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From Torrentfreak:

If we believe the words of the MPAA and RIAA, piracy is the root of all evil resulting in billions of dollars in losses every year.

However, not all of the big players in the entertainment business subscribe to this theory. During the MIPCOM conference where movie and TV moguls gather, Miramax CEO Mike Lang and Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos touched on the subject of piracy. Both appeared to have a rather positive stance towards the issue.

Lang, whose company today debuts the Blu-Ray version of the cult classic Pulp Fiction, emphasized that people don’t necessarily want to pirate, as long as they get what they want. “Innovate or die,” should be the motive of entertainment industry companies, where it’s key to listen to customers.

“Piracy has not been the bigger issue for our company,” Lang noted. “I think all consumers at some point in their life , whatever market of the world, don’t want to pirate. They really don’t.” …

Another problem, related to the pricing issue, is the emergence of digital monopolies such as the one Apple has in the digital music business. This threatens the music industry more than piracy, Miramax’s CEO suggested.

“Apple is the strongest company in the music industry because there was not enough competition, and still to this day there is not enough competition. As an industry it can’t then influence, packaging, merchandising – all the things that are vital,” Lang said.

4 Comments on Digital monopoly a bigger threat than piracy says Miramax

  1. Lang misses the point about piracy: It’s not whether people “don’t really want to pirate;” it’s whether or not they will, given the opportunity…

    About the only thing a digital monopoly (and feared unfair pricing of goods) tends to cause is… more piracy.

    But what does Lang care? He makes his money from TV and DVD resellers like Amazon, and his salary isn’t dependent on how many of his movies sells. No wonder he doesn’t really understand the piracy situation.

  2. No, I agree with this, most people don’t want to pirate. But the thing I fel the big company excecs forget is the average population goes to work all week and receive a small wage compared to the execs. $30.00 for a book is a big decision for some. Books are not a budgeted item and is purchased with surplus cash. Most don’t have surplus cash and have to go without something to buy the CD,DVD or book. So the potential of pirating is there, we have all been trained for instant gratification by the big companies and therefore don’t want to save up for the books and DVDs, we want them now. Price differences, high prices and global restrictions confuse us, so the easier path is sometimes taken by the pirate. Personally I feel bad if I pirate something, but it doesn’t stop me. I will always purchase if I can, at what I consider is a fair and affordable price. Though my opinion of fair is probably different than the resellers. I can say though that every film or book I downloaded, I eventually purchased when I was able too. That’s the other thing the music companies and anti piracy mobs forget to mention, is how many of us end up purchasing after downloading(pirating). Bet they know.

  3. And I’ll bet the number of people who eventually buy is a significant fraction of what they pirated earlier. “The Devil made me do it” excuses don’t make up for doing wrong.

  4. Clytie Siddall // October 9, 2011 at 3:31 am //

    Steven, when geographic limitations were imposed, I was stuck with favourite book series which I wasn’t allowed to complete. I wanted to buy the ebooks, was hanging out to buy them, but I wasn’t allowed to buy them, because I live in Australia. I wasn’t even allowed to buy titles from series by Australian authors!

    Even more annoyingly, in the time since, I’ve followed series which I _have_ been allowed to buy, only to find that one or two titles on the way through the series will suddenly be withheld from my purchase, for no available reason. The following titles will be available, but volume five? No answer from the publishers.

    I write to the authors, who nearly all say in bewilderment, “But I insisted on world rights for ebooks!” I offer to buy the ebooks directly from the authors, but their contracts forbid that.

    I can quite understand people looking for pirated copies in this case, which is very common for the majority of English speakers, who live outside the U.S.

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