Retarding the future

David Friedman’s post on The Death of Copyright, New Art Forms, and World of Warcraft:

As increasing bandwidth makes it more and more difficult to protect movies by either legal or technological means, I expect that we will see more and more of a shift away from conventional movies towards substitutes that, like games, are different each time you play them.

There is, however, a countervailing effect. As it becomes easier and easier to replace actors with computer generated images, the cost of making movies, even quite elaborate movies, will fall. For the net result, stay tuned—for the next decade or so.

Nothing new for anyone paying attention, but a nice summary of where content production is headed — server-mediated or supercheap.

Protection of old business models presumably slows the transition of capital and talent into the service of the new, perhaps lowering the probability Hollywood will be a dominant center of cultural production in the long term. Or perhaps the additional wealth afforded by protection now puts Hollywood in a better position for the future. Regardless of impact on Hollywood’s prospects, protection now would seem to retard the future.

One Response

  1. [...] By that time I expect most entertainment to be some combination of supercheap, server-mediated and advertising. [...]

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