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Thursday, February 09, 2006

You cannot download the creative process

I love this quote, but before I get to it, let me tell you the story.

ArtistShare is a new venture in New York City with the objective of enlisting fans to fund an album in exchange for an insider's look at the creative process.

Its founder, Brian Camelio, says that "the business model focuses on creating new music, rather than the sale of music already made." If you listen to what is available in the market and even have only a vague understanding of how the music industry operates, you will realise that this is a great idea.

In fact, it is the new business model, that I promoted so frequently when criticising the music industry in their attempt to kill off internet downloads from companies such as Kazaa.

The new business model is build up on the premises that "fans who support ArtistShare musicians receive perks such as early samples of songs, signed CDs, online composition lessons, and even free concert tickets. Musicians get something too. ArtistShare helps them build their websites and develop their fan base online. When an artist wants to record an album and needs money to rent studio time or hire backup musicians, the ArtistShare team develops a menu of options for fans to support the project. For instance, US$20 or US$30 might get you an advance version of a new recording, US$400 could include an autographed copy of the score, and for US$3,000, an artist will compose a song for you."

One of the most successful ventures so far is Grammy-winning jazz composer Maria Schneider - as if this isn't evidence that the model works. Really, you can download anything, copy anything but in the end, it is just that - a copy. The creation of it is different and valued more than a loaf of bread - or, as the founder said: "You can't download the creative process."

(By Asia Business Consulting)