Free Ride: How the Internet is Destroying the Culture Business and How it Can Fight Back
Do you read newspapers online? Own a kindle? Download television programmes so you can skip the adverts? Over the last decade the traditional media - newspapers, music, television, films and books - have been systematically ransacked by digital organisations. Every media business has had to contend with the growing consumer demand for free online content and the Internet allows technology companies to reduce the price of content to zero by letting them build businesses with content copyrighted by others. MySpace attracted a user base larger than the population of most European countries, in part by letting its audience stream music, then sold itself to News Corporation for $580 million. But what are the consequences for cultural businesses? Is the result inevitable cultural impoverishment? "Free Ride" is the essential guide to a global marketplace in transition: where we are, how we got here and what we have to do to avoid cultural meltdown.
Do you read newspapers online? Own a kindle? Download television programmes so you can skip the adverts? Free Ride explores the implications for modern culture of all these activities and asks how businesses can fight back against the expectation that everything we value should be available for free.
Meticulously researched book...Levine's solutions are sensible...it's a vital discussion we need to be having -- Davin O'Dwyer Irish Times Levine is an engaging, provocative writer, and there is much to like about Free Ride...an entertaining read, with an entertaining cast Observer Pugnacious and well-researched -- Steven Poole Guardian Important -- Bryan Appleyard Sunday Times