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Movies Making Money – The Business and the Arguments

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Over the last couple of weeks a number of articles have come to my attention which, in different measures, I thought provided some great background information on how the business facets of the film and television industries work and what types of arguments can be made for and against the types of copyright reform which many think are necessary to facilitate the continued survival of the entertainment industries in light of digital technology:

  • The Economist wrote about Hollywood’s disc problem: video nasty, highlighting how innovative business models and delivery systems have undercut the gargantuan DVD/Blu-ray cash behemoth
  • in a longer, much more detailed piece, The Economist looked at Hollywood and home entertainment: unkind rewind, a brilliant little explanation of the economics of the film/TV industries and how the increasingly rapid closing of different “windows” of exploitation (eg theatrical, pay-per-view, home video) is impacting different elements of the distribution chain (how unhappy do you think theatre owners are that movies will soon be available for home consumption in as little as eight weeks from their initial theatrical release?)
  • with a hat tip to Lon Sobel, Peter Yu’s Digital Copyright and Confuzzling Rhetoric offers an enjoyable read on the various arguments being advanced by many parties in the ongoing struggles for copyright reform – he covers four arguments in favour of stronger protection and enforcement, four arguments against it, and offers five strategies for making more convincing the arguments of the entertainment industries