Category Archives: Monetizing

Jonathan Coulton Making Half a Million a Year – with no Record Label

Jonathan Coulton Making Half A Million A Year – No Record Label

Jonathan has been at the forefront of those connecting with fans, and it’s working out pretty well for him. He sells his music with a Creative Commons (Some rights reserved, i.e. licensing and making money from it) so it’s impossible to pirate what’s freely exchangable.

And yet, he’s making really good money selling music, merchandise and concert tickets.

More to the point, he’s doing better than the vast majority of music acts that get picked up by the major record labels. If Coulton had signed with them, he’d be hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt!

Of course, defenders of the old system will insist that he’s an “exception,” but, really, just how many exceptions do we need until people realize that the market is changing rapidly, and those who embrace new models and new methods of distribution are finding that they can make a lot more money than they did in the past.

The comments are as interesting as the article.

Kevin Smith’s Red State Experiment has already Paid for Itself.

Kevin Smith’s Red State Experiment Has Already Paid for Itself

Kevin Smith announced that he would auction off the rights to Red State after a Sundance screening and then infamously sold them to himself, leading to a rant about the state of distribution for independent movies.

He planned on doing a series of screenings-with-director events leading up to an October theatrical release.  Well, according to reports he’s already close to, or achieved, payback of the $4 million budget.

Kevin Smith’s latest passion project Red State has already paid for itself, six months before it actually sees full theatrical release. Thanks to an ambitious multi-city road trip in which Smith traveled to screenings of the movie and spoke with audiences afterward, Red Statehas already made back the $4 million budget production company SMODcast Pictures invested in the film.

Now Kevin Smith comes with a built-in fan base that he’s cultivated over the years (and that is indeed part of any success in this new paradigm – first Connect with your Fans) but it’s not only working for Smith:

That said, Smith isn’t the only filmmaker experimenting with new types of distribution. Edward Burns, for instance, distributed his latest feature filmNice Guy Johnny, direct to iTunes, VOD and DVD last year, skipping theatrical release altogether. Indie filmmaker Sebastian Gutierrez distributed his Girl Walks Into a Bar directly to YouTube. And Pixar CTO and independent film producer Oren Jacob used a mix of social media and food banksto boost the profile of his documentary Ready, Set, Bag!

Power to the People: The Democratization of Film.

Power to the People: The Democratization of Film

This is a really good read by Jeff Steele that starts with how production has been democratized through the use of less expensive tools. That ignores a whole lot of costs associated with quality production that aren’t associated with less expensive tools of production, but let’s allow the point for the moment.

His primary point is that, while production is democratized, financing and distribution are not. Again, I wouldn’t argue.

Continue reading Power to the People: The Democratization of Film.

Piracy Once Again Fails To Get in the Way of Record Box Office

Piracy Once Again Fails To Get In Way Of Record Box Office

It seems strange to me that the various movie company players continually bleet how piracy is killing their industry and yet – even without changing business models – they still have record year after record year. Something just doesn’t add up.

Continue reading Piracy Once Again Fails To Get in the Way of Record Box Office