Piracy is Good?

Piracy is Good? How Battlestar Galactica Killed Television is vital reading for anyone interested in digital distribution, as I am. What a great read! Marke Pesce specifically looks at the popularity of downloading TV shows through BitTorrent and what it means for broadcasters, who currently have a monopoly on distribution of television shows. His central point is that “hyper-distribution” channels like BitTorrent make the broadcaster redundant, since piracy has “short-circuited” the traditional producer=>broadcaster=>advertiser model that has sustained the television industry for 50 years.

Rather than having a downloaded show with commercial breaks, producers can sell what he calls “The bug” – screen real estate where the station ID normally sits. This is so simple, it might just work.


Ric Burns’ History of the WTC

A real treat last night on PBS, a network I haven’t had access to in 11 years, but thankfully managed to get access to last night at a neighbour’s flat to watch Episode 8 of Ric Burns’ New York: A Documentary Film. I thought it was going to be an hour, but if I had known that its conception and construction were as epic as it’s destruction was tragic I would have known better. This was as riveting as historical documentaries get, rivaling in scope the work of Ric’s brother Ken, of “Civil War” and “Baseball” fame.

There’s a great story on the film at the Twin Cities Pioneer Press with a quote form Ric Burns which I think says it all about the WTC:

“It was quite literally the most massive projection of economic power anywhere in the world after World War II,” Burns said. “In it, you see all the same forces that reshaped the world, the International Monetary Fund, the United Nations, the World Bank and the Marshall Plan. It was connected at the start, in 1946, to that tremendous projection of world power.”

That Al-Queda would have chosen the WTC as a target for their most ambitious terrorist attack comes as no surprise. It stood for everything they despise about the US.

I have to get this on DVD.