Monday, January 12, 2009

How Open Source could save the Media Industry

Youtube was a brilliant idea. Allow users to sign up for accounts and upload video after video after video. Without dolling out so much as a penny Youtube managed to gather millions of user-created videos that other users could watch and enjoy (or not). It was content created by the masses at no charge to the owner.
But if you read the licensing close enough you realize that basically once you upload a video you can not modify said video (or any aspect of the youtube experience). You can not redistribute user videos on Youtube even though the user may have no copyright on the video.

I would like to see the Youtube experience taken a step farther. I would like videos, as long as the creators of said videos would agree, to be modified. Say, for instance, someone makes a short movie but wants to know how to improve the movie. The creator could upload the movie and ask other users to help to finish the creation. Open Source!

Where I am going with this is simple: the media industry (especially the recording industry) is severely broken. And because of the greed at the top of that particular food chain is so strong, it’s going to take a miracle to fix it. I think open source might very well be the solution.

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