Buzz, Balls & Hype
Is running an absolutely brilliant three part series by Barry Eisler:
I’m not arguing that labels offer no value other than distribution, just that distribution has always been their *key* value, the one thing that only they could offer. They’ve lost that key value; the challenge now will be to find ways to replace it with something else — for example, some combination of imprimatur, branding, marketing, and other residual values. But because none of these values offers nearly the barrier to entry that distribution did, other players will move into what today is the labels’ exclusive domain. Not all labels will die, but even the survivors will lose clout and profitability.
For labels read publishers and then it might be worth panicking for a while. But most importantly read:
The New Quote
Above comes from this interview with Cory Doctrow on Kottke.org (speaking with Joel Turnipseed):
What Andrew Keen has got his pants in such a ferocious knot about is that we are losing our “culture.” Basically, if you unpack his arguments they come down to this: He thinks The New York Times did a pretty good job of figuring out what was good and he doesn’t like the idea that they’re not the only way of doing it and that it’s getting harder to figure out who to listen to and media literacy is getting harder and that means bad stuff is going to become important and that wouldn’t have happened if only the wise, bearded, white-robed figures at The New York Times had been allowed to continue to dominate our culture. That’s really where he’s coming from at the end of the day.
Hat Tip Rob @ Snowbooks