it is a given that traditional, big business tends not to understand the internet. most industries that can benefit from the internet also tend to be too stubborn to adapt to it.
the classic example, of course, is the music industry. years of crying about how "illegal downloads" are killing the industry has seen the industry survive, but not flourish as it could because as a general rule they won't let you buy download tracks from other countries.
this is purely the record labels being stupid. when an artist has control over their music - as is the case with Metallica, The Rolling Stones and indeed the excellent Ed Kowalczyk (formerly of Live) - they have no problem with you, the fan and the consumer, buying their downloads wherever you are in the world. sign up to the likes of EMI or those perennial shitbags Sony, however, and your fans outside of the UK and US cannot purchase downloads from the likes of amazon and what have you. as the labels themselves block the sale, they refused the income and thus cannot cry about a "loss" when a fan is unable to throw money at them, instead having to either just not hear the music or resort to a less-than-official, considerably cheaper download.
there is no doubt a whole load of red tape and "regional rights" nonsense about why they can't sell downloads as worldwide as the internet is, all of which is made to look stupid by the fact that if i click on amazon now i can order the CD of an album and have it sent to me but not the download of it.
it's interesting to see another industry has apparently learned not one thing from this scenario. have a look at the below. it's an advert i received in the email tempting me to purchase the new Dan Brown novel digitally.
for all the faults in his literature ("time froze for a second" indeed) there's no denying that his books are very, very good entertainment and a most delightful read. i am of course interested in his new book, then, as are millions of others, and so, armed with a fleet (well, 2) of ereader things, i clicked on the link.
can you guess what happened when i clicked on the link? yes, i think you can......
true genius, that. Inferno, whether it be any good or a load of tosh, is likely to be the biggest selling novel of the year. it's going to be a high demand title, so as one can theoretically never run out of stock of a digital title i find it fascinating that they are refusing to sell it around the world.
just what is it, i wonder, they think people with these ereader things will do? simply not read it? spend a fortune on shipping the hardback and wait a few weeks? download it free from an unofficial source on the internet? the latter seems more plausible and that's the problem.
whereas Dan Brown and the publisher already have lots of money, and thus can probably afford to miss out on income (note not lose, for refusing money has been their choice), other writers and publishers cannot. encouraging people in this way to seek out a free copy rather than pay for it, and i do believe most would prefer to pay the artists, has the knock on effect of sending people off to do this all the time, so keen is the industry in question to block potential sales. they will cry that illegal downloads are killing the industry again, and yet they are the ones who will not sell their products!
people will continue to write books and have the read, just as people will still make music and it will be heard. it could all be a lot more profitable for the creators, however, if some common sense was introduced by the businesses that release them. whatever reasons or excuses come up in regards of why some won't sell digital releases internationally are ones that would be worth working around.
be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!