For at least six years they have been watching as MP3 rips the music industry a new one and they watched the RIAA struggle to contain the hemorrhaging. They watched the RIAA attempt to deter the public from downloading copyright protected music by suing university students, young children, and their grandmothers. They felt the public outrage and witnessed the insignificant effect of the legal battles. And it seems that in the past six years, all the Movie Picture Association of America (MPAA) has been doing is watching. The MPAA has taken little or no preemptive action to prepare their industry for P2P file swapping in the age of Broadband Internet. Now it’s too late.
As one of the pioneers of the MP3 craze, I have a distinct perspective when it comes to copyright issues and the Internet. Since my departure from the MP3 scene in the late 90s, I have been keeping up with developments in the MP3 arena and I strongly believe that proactive initiatives like Apple’s iTunes and PureTracks.com that are currently relieving pressure on the music industry, will ultimately be the solution to the RIAA’s copyright infringement problem. So, where is the movie industry’s version of iTunes and PureTracks???
Currently box office sales are doing better than ever, yet last month the MPAA took the RIAA’s route and began suing P2P users. I don’t believe that Manny the stuntman will ever be getting laid-off as a result of downloaders; it will be Pay-Per-View, Blockbuster and Rogers Video taking the hit. People will still go to the cinema for the better sound, bigger screen, and the overall superior cinematic experience. But, why go to the rental store when you can simply download the newest video release in 20 minutes with the next generation Bittorrent client.
In Canada, Rogers currently has the best platform to offer up a movie delivery system via Broadband Internet. It is really as simple as putting 2 and 2 together. They have Rogers Video, a movie rental store, and Rogers High-Speed Internet. It’s not rocket science! They could offer quick downloads through their internal networks and charge customer accounts. Instead however, Rogers has just come up with a different strategy, free delivery of videos from their rental stores. A strategy that is just not going to cut it in the long run.
Unfortunately, time is quickly running out for the MPAA. The next generation Bittorrent client being developed by those at Suprnova.org is going to do to the movie industry what Napster and KaZaA did to the music industry. Get ready MPAA, “Exeem” is on its way!