[opendtv] Re: Is 'Fair Use' in Peril?

  • From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "OpenDTV (E-mail)" <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 3 Dec 2004 16:59:27 -0500

Craig Birkmaier wrote:

> Bottom line, it is EASY to demonstrate that direct
> sales revenues are already far, far greater than
> the revenues after the direct sales period for
> theatrical and certain kinds of TV releases (e.g
> the episodic programs created for paid services
> like HBO and Showtime.

Sure, for certain types of content, as you list. But
not for typical broadcast fare, I wouldn't think.
For example, are direct DVD sales of West Wing
making NBC more revenue than the weekly broadcasts
do? I expect not.

I understand your idea of the waterfall (from
direct sales to broadcast distribution, in that
order of precedence). But that doesn't really change
anything about whether Congress should or should not
allow wholesale zapping of ads.

> I think this has already happened Bert. There are
> MANY ways to buy content directly today. 85% of
> the country pays for a multichannel advertiser
> supported TV service, and about 30 % pay for premium
> channels.

> Now people are paying about $10/month for satellite
> radio. The PRIMARY motivation to date has been to
> avoid ads.

That won't last. Just as cable TV had to add ever more
ads, to show an increase in revenues without simply
jacking up monthly fees, I will predict the same will
happen to satellite radio.

What matters in all of this is that *even* for
subscription media, the advertizing model has to work.

I don't expect that Congress would allow people to
create ways to bypass the checkout counter in your
local Giant Food supermarket. *Even if* the
supermarket were on the decline as a way of selling
food, I seriously doubt Congress would permit people
to develop ways of walking out without paying. (Please,
no outbursts about food stamps.)

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