Is there a way to reward people for popular content?

Russell if I can make more profit with less risk then why take the risk of piracy?

I will not call it stealing because it’s copyright infringement. But I will say people just want to make a buck and if you give them ways to do this without hurting artists the vast majority of fans would choose that option.

Competitors on the other hand might encourage piracy of a competing artist which is why you might want to form alliances.

This is a matter of incentives. You have plenty of money which can be made here and only the very greedy would have to become pirates.

Last but not least, piracy doesn’t work well when you can’t keep up with the production rate of the artist. If the artist is releasing a song at a time and you don’t know what is next then as a pirate you have to compete with the fan distribution network as well as try to anticipate the moves of the artist in advance.

Say I’m a fan and I can download a song for free or buy the token? Since I don’t know what the token is worth and I can earn tokens by buying them from the artist if I’m into the idea that the artist could provide future value I would buy the token. Then if I have these tokens I’m not going to market the pirate site because that would reduce the value of my tokens.

If it’s easier to buy the tokens and the tokens are cheap why not just buy the tokens if I have the money to play that game? If I play that game I could turn $20 into $2000 if the album is a hit. If I don’t play that game then I get as much free music as I want but I can’t make money from it (and instead a pirate takes all the money).

Why would I make a pirate money when I can make that money myself as a fan?

We should probably be talking about film instead of music because the music problem is more easily solvable, they’ll always have live performance, and anything that applies to film will most likely applying to music but not the other way around.

One LLC won’t make more than, at most, 2 films a year. The whole process is rarely under 6 months. It’s more commonly around a year, but even the more productive filmmakers usually only can manage 1 film every two years.

So regarding everything you explained which was on a pseudo-techincal level, could you explain to Teenage Girl from New Jersey how to get her new “Hangover: Part IV” movie and her new “Justin Bieber: Greatest Hits” album? How could we get this to appear on consumer front-end, I mean.

I dispute this will be the case until the network is used world wide as a major content distribution platform. Until then the vast majority of popular copyrighted content uploaded to MaidSafe won’t come from the authors but from pirates, who will then reap financial rewards. This will set the tone and affect how the network is viewed by the world while it is growing, and can in my view severely hurt it. It’s far worse than regular pirating where the pirate gets nothing.

50 cent just released his album and accepted Bitcoin. If artists don’t keep up with the technology then it’s their fault if they miss out on the profits. The fact that they aren’t making a profit would encourage them to keep up with the technology and be early adopters.

So I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing. Sure the big artists would try to generate bad press but it didn’t work out well with Napster and will not work well here. You cannot stop a technology by trying to sue people or using mafioso tactics. You have to actually make use of the technology and adapt it to your purposes by co-opting it.

So you could be right that in some cases the rights holder might not be first to upload but that is the risk of being an artist. If I’ve got a great idea what would stop someone else from hacking into my machine and stealing my idea to upload it to the MaidSafe network before I can even complete it?

These sorts of situations are going to happen until people figure out how to upload their own work first. If people think it’s still safe to upload their work to their blog thinking no one will pirate it then they’ll find out the consequence of doing that after the fact.

I think independent artists are always aware of this possibility. In some cases the big companies have stolen the work of independent artists and then sued them using the laws against them.

At least when you’re first to upload then you have proof that you actually created the work. If you upload it to your blog or Youtube then copyright law determines who owns the work. What if you actually uploaded it first but someone else somehow has the copyright or the patent?

So if you just go by who uploads it first then copyright law is determined on MaidSafe not in the courts. If a bunch of hackers steal someone’s idea and upload it to MaidSafe first then they own it and it’s just as far as if a bunch of hackers steal your work under the current system and give it to a big business (espionage style).

You’re not able to stop it from happening.

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I think too much is reasoned out of the perspective of new content that will be produced after MaidSafe is operational and not about content that’s already out there at the moment. That content will be uploaded by pirates on a massive scale, original authors don’t stand a chance to beat the pirates unless they’re among the very first who know about and support MaidSafe. We can’t stop pirating, but we can refrain from paying pirates for sharing copyrighted contents.

Allow me to catch up a bit to earlier replies:

I have shown how it can be gamed, until someone shows a solution how it can be stopped I can’t be asked to show how it can be done in a permanent way. All the solutions so far are vague:

It also doesn’t solve:

This is also still vague. The Proof of Unique Human thread hasn’t produced a truly reliable or feasible solution, and the ideas that are there would also be implemented on a higher level than the content reward system, which tends to be problematic. That higher level has to constantly evolve to fight new exploits and thus constantly changes. Security is a big issue here, how do we determine which systems on that higher level are valid input for the content reward system? That’s an insane challenge if the systems on that higher level constantly change.

I think for-profit piracy would harm MaidSafe’s reputation far more than traditional non-profit piracy.

We also have donations. It’ll work relatively well since the payment system (SafeCoin) is on the same platform as the content being accessed, allowing a seamless donation experience. In my opinion that’s the way to go for free content, donations/crowd funding.

An automated reward system by the network itself needs to have well defined rules and robust algorithms that can’t be cheated, and that requires an objective unit of measurement of popularity. ‘Views’ or ‘Downloads’ are not good objective units of measurements, since they can be faked or automated. A view or download from an automated script using a valid MaidSafe account that belongs to a unique human is counterfeited popularity. People can make arrangements and software that gives them financial motive to do this. Groups can view/download each other’s contents through automated means every day and all share the reward.

So far I don’t see how an automated reward system is going to work well, it’ll be a mess.

I moved 7 posts to an existing topic: Proof of unique human

Yeah, my other issue with Nymi is that we have people on this forum arguing against using Safecoins as a system to lower bot control by requiring cost, but we seem okay with purchasing a 100 dollar item to solve a similar problem. If we’re gonna go that route then just charge 100 dollars for uniqueness. That’d probably work just as well (charging 100 dollars is not a good idea).

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Agreed @russell. I also don’t think requiring entry costs to lower the amount of bots is a good idea. Besides, merely lowering the amount isn’t enough to implement systems that rely on unique human users, that requires NO bots whatsoever, not just a lower amount. We need a fool proof system, something half-baked is useless at best and destructive at worst.

Or you can just use micropayments. There are a lot of ways to do it but this has to be done if MaidSafe will ever be useful commercially. We must monetize content.

Full-proof, or fool-proof? Assuming you meant full-proof, my fear is that it can’t exist. I really, really want there to be something, I sure do. People have always tried to get something for free. And now that freedom of information is tied to “freedom” of entertainment (or, just plain consuming for free), the problem is worse and artists will suffer financially. I always find it funny where “lets fight the man and even the playing field” types are so gung-ho about building a system that just hurts individual and independent artists. I think its just defensive, and I like to imagine they don’t want artists to be unpaid. I think the two are so intertwined that to criticize one executes also criticizes the other.

I think the freedom of information movement is fatally flawed in a future where everything is information (3d printing, etc) when it can’t be subsidized by other things. And I think there’s a theoretical distinction between a manuals on architecture and Twilight. Problem is there isn’t a physical distinction. I think the premise is often built on a philosophy that cannot work (I do not believe in anarchism. Everything I’ve read on it sounds flawed and assumes too much cooperation by people, no checks and balances).

That said, what is is. And its a system we have to work within. I can digitize a movie, I can send that movie to someone, and as anonymizing, distributed systems gain traction (and they will), then we have to work within those confines.

@luckybit makes a great case for the token-based system. There’s something interesting in the idea of people being paid to distribute other people’s work. I think the model he describes is complex and I can’t imagine a teenager bothering with it unless they’re obsessed (and if we only could monetize on the fanatical, we’d make very little). But there’s SOMETHING there. I also read a similar model described by @benjaminbollen that sounded similar, and was equally intriguing. I think that’s a brilliant starting point.

EDIT: I’m actually for using a small amount of safecoins to verify accounts. Pocket change amounts. You could get it from a friend, even. I’m a big fan of the idea of someone who wants a bot swarm will pay handsomely for it.

I like the micropayments idea a lot (makes me sad the dictionary doesn’t recognize that word yet…).

This sounds a bit deceptive, but in the same way subscriptions work, I think micropayments could too. Set it and forget it kinda thing.

Here’s an example of why broadcast TV still exists (aside from live sporting events and tv premieres): I’ve found myself on numerous occasions flipping through my movies. What do I want to watch? Ugh, I’ve watched Back to the Future 100 times… not that. Hmm, Primer? No… Triangle? Nah… Maybe I don’t even want to watch a whole movie. I think I’ll just watch TV. I flip through the channels. Nope… nope… nope… hey, Back to the Future is on and its 5 minutes in. I just kinda look at it for a minute, then 2… then 10… then all of a sudden 2 hours have gone by and I’ve watch the entire film I didn’t want to watch to begin with.

Okay, SO. That said. I think a similar logic could happen in micropayments. You’re not sure you want to pay for something. Well, its on a 5 cents to begin with. Whatever. I’ll stop if its bad. Okay, still going. Into it, into it. 90 minutes have gone by and I’ve paid $4.50. Or whatever. You see what I’m getting at.


It’s already like that for independent artists. Independent artists have already adapted at this point. It’s not profitable to be a content seller at all at this point and most money is maid in advertisements, touring, merch, premiers etc.

I don’t think we’d have less art or less films if actors and actresses made them for cheaper. I do think perhaps we might have lower quality film/art for a while as people adapt but I do think we will adapt.

A lot of production cost and inefficiency is just wasteful. Making a movie shouldn’t cost millions of dollars. In fact if we can bring down the costs to making a movie then it can be a lot easier to make profits from movies.

At the same time it means Hollywood as we know it will have to change. Movies probably will not be made in the United States as much. Actors/actresses probably wont be paid as much.

But a lot of cult classics were made on a shoe string budget. I’m convinced that we will still have plenty of entertaining movies and even blockbusters. I would still prefer to go to the theater to see it on the big screen in 3d.

To say that the artist is hurt by this technology would be like attacking the home theater for ruining the theater experience and damaging the profitability of the art. If I’m wanting to watch a movie I’m not going to want to see a low quality grainy pirated copy and I’m not going to want to see it months later in high quality. If I want to see it the same day then I’ll pay to get it in the highest 4K TV quality the moment it’s released.

The key to making the on-demand streaming technology work is to build micropayments in. If you have micropayments then it will feel free to the viewers. There will not be a need to go look for the credit card or think about paying because the micropayments would send coins per minute.

It’s just like with 1800 numbers, you could do that with a site where only people who buy the movie ticket can access it on their home theater the day of release. This way the production company would release it to theaters and to the MaidSafe theater the same day.

Micropayments have advantages over subscription models. Subscription models don’t take into account your actual consumption. People who consume more should pay more. This wouldn’t stop piracy but it would make it so that if you do want to pirate and resell these movies you would have to somehow record the stream and then re-stream it for free.

Why would anyone stream anything for free when they could get paid by the production company itself to restream it officially? This would mean our option if we are the production company is to let our fans get a cut in the profit so they put up the vast majority of the streams or we let pirates do it.

Teenagers will get involved I think because teenagers like money too.

Teenagers could be doing stuff like this instead of working retail/McDonalds and that is a good thing.

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We’ve kinda been over this already, but are you in any way involved in film or television? Have you worked in an Industry environment before? (Genuine question because I don’t know you. Maybe you’re sitting across from me in this coffee shop on Sunset. That’d be aaaamazing).

I ask because there’s a lot of misconceptions people have about film and television in terms of cost.

Right out of the gate, whatever the total cost of a movie was (this cost 100 mil, 50mil, etc), cut that number in half. Half of that was the advertising budget. So production costs on a 100mil movie are actually 50mil.

Actors, while not actually part of the advertising budget, are actually kind part of the advertising cost. Tom Cruise charges a ton of money to be in a movie because he knows the movie will make a ton of money because of him. And so do investors. They’re will to risk millions of their own money

Most Hollywood companies are risking the farm on every film. If they had 2 or 3 big flops in a row, they’d go under. Yup, hard to believe, but its true. When I say flop, I mean like Cutthroat Island (100mil production cost, 10mil made in theatrical release, 90mil net loss, I think if I remember right). They’re spending a lot of their money and always at risk.

Most people on a film are making a lot of money, on the surface. But most people don’t work year-round. The other part of the year is spent looking for other work. Plus, outside of unions there’s no benefits.

Again, see earlier, actors and actresses will ALWAYS be paid a lot. They’re generating a majority of the films money. They are part of the advertising by just being in a movie. A film with Nicole Kidman is guaranteed money, as where a film starring me isn’t.

This is probably the largest misconception and the biggest problem in how the world views film. Indie films cut a LOT of corners, yeah. But there’s one corner they’re cutting that they don’t mention: equipment costs. Indie films – ones that look and sound good, not things like Paranormal Activity, I think you and I would both agree if every film that came out was a mumblecore or found footage horror film, people wouldn’t be too happy – indie films subsidize their productions by working on larger movies. They get free rentals. Now, maybe you think people shouldn’t be paid for work, and that labor should be free “for the art.” I’ll roll with that. Now what about hard costs like camera, lights, electrical, generators, portable shitters, and basically any equipment to accommodate anywhere from 30-100 people? Super low budget movies (under 1mil) tend to shoot around 16-20 days. A medium budgeted comedy (~35mil) shoots for about 45 days. Once we’re in blockbuster territory, we’re talking far beyond that. Months and months probably. Who’s gonna buy that stuff outright? It’s so expensive. And if it breaks? Why risk buying an $80,000 camera? Need insurance. Plus location costs, unless you want to shoot every movie in someone’s apartment. Food? Lodging? And safety for locations so that people aren’t killed by trains (Sarah Jones). The average film set goes for 12-16 hours a day. The price goes up exponentially. This isn’t 4 guys in an overpriced recording studio to use a “specially custom build soundboard.”

So basically, what I’m saying is that big cult classics where actually just milking off of the system. They could work on a weird indie thing because their costs were subsidized by bigger movies that rent the equipment. I can give out a free camera rental or a light kit to a film shooting for 15 weeks because I know some other guy will rent it for 90 days at a full rate.

Not to mention, indie films like to brag how low their budgets are (like how big films like to brag about how high theirs are). So they numbers are always honest. If you took most indie films (lets say a bigger one, like Juno) and you wiped out ALL labor costs, the equipment rentals alone were probably close to a million. Eh, probably a bit lower.

Basically, some stuff you can’t cut corners on because its not labor. I’d say a film like The Hangover (i use this because its a nice big example with a medium sized budget) probably had over a million in hard production costs (physical items rented on set) that can’t budge.

Screenwriting is another thing. Whoa, someone sold a script for 150,000 dollars? Figure scripts take about 3-6 months write and don’t always sell (pretty rarely sell, actually). Then, some of that goes to agents, union fees, taxes. I’d say on a $150,000 script sale the writer sees about 40k of that. That’s kind of not a lot of money. And the only reason it sold was because there was someone actively looking for buyers.

Those bloated producer salaries and distro costs, definitely could come down. Some union rates have gotten too high, definitely. Although the nice thing is they provide health insurance.

To be fair, the home theater DID hurt the theater experience. Not the profitability, but only because they charge so much more now. Take a look at ticket sales vs ticket prices. Ticket sales are on a steep decline.

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Ahh, okay, now that I’ve had my daily diatribe on the misconceptions surround the film and tv industry…

Yes, I completely agree with you. I think this is a good idea, and I think people would actually be okay with it. I don’t think people should pay for a movie if they watched part of it and walked out. This remedies that. And I think people would appreciate it. The Film Industry still views a Movie as a single product that must be consumed whole. But the benefit is that, unlike an apple, one bite won’t ruin it. Micropayments are HUGE. And I’m shocked no one is doing it. Are there any examples of it in use?

I think I’m just confused about this whole concept. I can’t see it in my head. If Maidsafe exists, and it’s using deduplication, then theoretically there’s only one real file (in the Platonic sense). So then network is distributing that file. What service is Cindy providing?

Russell anyone can make a low budget movie and have it become a hit. I’ve seen people do exactly that and a good film can be made by film students for under $100,000.

Then you have the big budget Hollywood film with super star (over paid) actors and actresses. I respect their work and a lot of the time their films are of higher quality but there is no reason why a movie must cost hundreds of millions to make when technology should be reducing these costs.

Maybe newer business models can help. Actors and actresses will always make money but in different ways from how they do today.

I forgot about this. That’s my fault for modeling it in my mind on how the Internet is today instead of how MaidSafe would be when it works. You’re absolutely right that you would have to tailor it ot MaidSafe. This is the reason why monetization has to be built into the core.

If it’s just done after the fact without much thought then streaming video which we all agree should be monetized will be a bit of a challenge. The ideal situation is you want to be able to have a monetization API of some sort where the producer can choose any kind of monetizing mechanisms they choose.

I think for movies micropayments make more sense than advertisements. We could have an ad free web which is something many of us want, and we could have ad free television. Micropayments would pay for all content we want and as long as we keep buying Safecoins or Bitcoins to support our consumption we will not even think about it.

This would be best for everyone because every listen of a song, every access of a movie, would generate money for someone.

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Here’s the thing. They’re NOT overpaid. If I produce a film as an indie with new actors, let’s say I make 2million. Total production budget ran me 1 million. I made 1 million dollars. Now I take that same movie, I hire Tom Cruise. He asks for 50 million. The film goes theatrical (more theaters take the movie because Cruise is in it) and makes 60 million. 51 million cost, yielding 9 million returns. Wouldn’t I just do that? That’s kinda what I mean about advertising. Celebrities SELL movies. They’re the market at work, they’re just their own product. That might change as time goes on (celebrity vehicle returns have dropped over the years, which is why you don’t see almost any romantic comedies out of hollywood anymore. Romantic comedies are almost exclusively celebrity vehicles). But right now, it still works well, and you can tell investors “Look, Cruise is attached!” and they’ll throw money at you.

A student film is subsidizing the cost of production because students are often getting paid board and have access to free equipment rentals. And access to post production equipment. Students also tend to be rich + white. Which is a problem in itself (people who can work 15-20 days in a row for 16 hours a day tend to be the children of rich people, who statistically in the US tend to be white, which just perpetuates a cycle, although that’s a different discussion). I was on a lot of those kind of projects. Their tuition, and every other student’s, is paying for those movies.

I’m really not concerned with actors and how much they get because celebrities will never go away. We worshipped greek gods as celebrities, then roman gods, then kings and queens. Then the media came around and we have our new round of celebrity worship and manufactured gods. That’s never gonna stop (youtube celebs, I’m looking at you!). It’s in our nature to build pedestals, place celebrities on them (and eventually knock them off with rocks). /celebRant

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This may be true but the process is changing. We are entering into the hyper connectivity phase now where people can be made a celebrity involuntarily. Radical transparency / lack of privacy means the media can have far more power than ever before.

I think it’s one of the worst times in human history to be famous and I think it’s also easier to become famous than any time in human history. That is of course another subject though.

About film students tending to be rich and white that can easily change. One way it can change is through crowd funding which would allow you to do some things that you couldn’t do before. Funding will not come from the same places and movies will not be produced in the same way.

I don’t know exactly how it’s going to play out but I do know it’s going to change.

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I definitely agree with this. Fame ≠ money, like it used to. That’s no more evident anywhere than in LA. You’ll end up at bars hanging out with an actor who’s “that guy, from that thing… what’s his name again?” He’s famous strictly by definition, but he’s not wealthy. He’s complaining at the same 8 dollar drink as me and lives with roommates in the valley. Same with the youtube celebs. It’s getting harder to market the celebrity brand, thank god.

Yeah, I hope this is true. The use of higher education is completely outbalanced by it’s cost. The only purpose it serves is networking and guidance/pressure. Having people around you making you push harder. The knowledge is (and should be) freely accessible.

I have a few issues with the crowdfunding model. The echo chamber effect, as well as people funding sensational ideas because its the only thing to go on. High concept sells on paper, but execution sells final products. No one would have funded The Heat (unless the star power was used to gain traction, haha). But it was a very well received, popular, and honestly pretty decent comedy. Some folks say make the script available, but I think that’s dangerous for most genres. Mysteries and thrillers for obvious reasons, and comedies because, well, read a script to your favorite comedies. They’re soooo bad because all of the success is in actor rapport, editing, and timing. The scripts barely readable.

That said, I also really like the crowdfunding model for other reasons. It lets communities get things rolling.