Thursday, June 04, 2009

Right To Pay

Rights are absolutely central to everything to do with internet TV, and today I spoke at the inaugural Media By Definition conference which addressed this theme, and it was interesting to hear the different perspectives from traditional TV, gaming and the music industries.

Those attending in the know fully expect that this month's Digital Britain report will recommend strong policing of ISPs against file sharing and that the UK will become on par with France in terms of clamping down on content piracy. However, I have less confidence in the appetite that exists for any anti-populist moves by any politicians in the UK at the moment.

However, during the conference, one theme recurred for me - that some companies are very good at charging for content (BSkyB, for example), whilst others (music companies) are not doing as well.

Turning content into a utility seems to be the solution; if a package is attractive enough, viewers will pay a premium, and the rumours coming out of the US about Hulu charging for their service would seem very deliberately leaked. Microcharging and packaged offering would seem to be the way forward over item billing.

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