A great debate on SOPA – understanding new business models and who is really losing money

Today, Wikipedia and hundreds of other sites are blacked out to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act, SOPA.

It is a great effort and getting a ton of publicity, which is exactly what the goal was. The next step is education and progress.

A great place to start is with this debate between Leo Laporte and Nilay Patel. Both are content creators and experts in all things internet (Patel is even a former copyright attorney).

Listening to Leo’s points completely changed my point of view on this topic.

There is also an audio version (mp3).

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  1. I usually respect Leo’s opinion but not this time. I can’t believe he says that online piracy has not damaged copyright owners. Has he seen the music industry? He says that a musician that made $1m instead of $10m is OK. He criticizes Nilay as hypothesizing and the goes on to say that the establishment wants the internet to go away. Not that the pre-online world was perfect – the music industry made much too much money but it was from prices that consumers were willing to pay until someone said, “here, take it for free.” I don’t use The Pirate Bay even though it’s tempting to do so. I also dismiss most of Hollywood’s blockbusters. I love the democratization that the internet has brought to musicians, film makers, writers, etc. and like the fact that media companies are forced to respond to the overwhelming pace of the Internet. However, if an oversees company is selling fake goods that are imported to the US, customs has every right to stop that import. Why can’t the same be said about digital goods. These pirate companies are flaunting their illegal behavior and making millions of dollars in the process. A solution must be found and perhaps SOPA is not the answer…

    1. Marc – thanks for your comment. As for “prices that consumers were willing to pay” I never had that chance. When I was growing up and then as an adult paying off student loans and saving money, I could never afford the music I wanted.

      CD’s at $17 a pop were just too expensive for me. I would buy one not like all the songs and then be upset that I couldn’t get others. It always frustrated me. Add in that for years as a kid I did not have cable so I missed out on MTV.

      Pretty much my whole experience with music prices were miserable. I would debate that consumers were willing to pay. My opinion is that they were forced to pay it.

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