So, what happens if the porn industry realises it was wrong about piracy?
Let me start by saying I am not a fan of piracy, nor do I condone it. However, I think that some people have blamed everything to do with their falling revenues on piracy and I am not sure that is sensible.
The Music and Film industries have just come out and admitted they made up most of the figures about piracy. (No shock there). It’s pretty hard to keep saying an industry is being fucked by pirates that continues to beat all historical revenues.
The porn industry still claims that it is those devious pirates. But has no actual evidence to prove this. Clearly, tube sites have had SOME effect on porn sales, but they be all and end all? I’m not convinced.
What if it wasn’t piracy, but the industry itself that was to blame?
People who download stolen content do not represent a lost sale. They were never GOING to buy your stuff. Just like the x million that downloaded that last blockbuster movie. That isn’t a lost sale. It’s just someone downloading a movie.
Now, the record and movies had it right for ages, they could do anything and it would sell. There wasn’t much choice. The big five went through the vinyl revolution, then tape, then CD, then high end CD, and refused to accept digital. They sold what they wanted to consumers and the consumer had no choice. Then iTunes happened and there was choice and consumers bought digitally. Just the tracks they wanted. Low and behold, they make money. How successful is netflix? Why on earth would you PAY when you can pirate movies? Because it is good service? Good quality? Fair pricing? You can stream it to your xbox…
Porn has been fisting it’s customers for years. Diallers, circle jerks, hidden x-sales, banged credit cards, making it impossible to cancel (Playboy UK made people WRITE A PHYSICAL LETTER to cancel!!). etc.
Then comes the content. It stopped being good, didn’t it? Generic porn is everywhere. Shot by idiots with a camera and a copy of premiere of FCP. For every Dean Capture or Met Art there is a DVTimes or an ArseWithClass. They actually think they are making porn. They aren’t. They are pointing a camera at a naked girl. Not the same thing at all.
So, it kind of echoes music, doesn’t it? They fucked people for ages, then the people went ‘fuck you we are using Napster’. Then they said ‘ok you can download stuff but with DRM’. The people said fuck you we’re using piracy. Then they finally acquiesed and are letting people buy what they want how they want and it is working. They are making a fortune again.
Can you see the parallel here?
Why doesn’t the porn industry have a think about what they could learn from the mistakes the music and movie industry has made.
Did mass law suits stop piracy? No. It encouraged it by making people aware of thepiratebay etc. Did government legislation work? No, Sweden, France, China have not decreased piracy at all since they passed their laws. Sweden has increased the use of encryption though. The problem is the people making the laws have no idea how the technology works. And why it is pointless trying to stop it.
Maybe – and this is really out there – we should make a better product and sell it at a price people want to pay and make it easy for them to buy it?
What about the free-mium model? Works brilliantly for apps. Why not porn?
What about added value? Like NiN’s Trent Reznor making 750k in 3 days selling his last album even when he was giving away the songs for free on torrents?
Just some thoughts. Seems to be working for the other content providers.
Love to hear what you think in the comments…