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Alan's Greenspam - A canned meat, that although perfectly preserved when on the shelf for 19 years, instantly putrifies upon opening.

Tonight---- We dine at Warren's Buffet!

New DRM pricing model

You know....for DRM

Digital Rights Management has many problems, not the least of which is an equitable pricing model. Equitable for the customer, for the content creator and for the distributor. By placing pressure on any of these parts of the system you can promote piracy, content deterioration or distribution collapse.

Conversely, bandwidth providers (at least here) are ripping the ring out of it. Most notable are the cell-phone signal carriers and network providers. But our ISDN providers are not far behind, and our ISPs are a close third.

The basic model of provision of service across these platforms is the same. A network/infratsructure owner, a licensed service provider (effectively an outsourced billing entity) and a suitably securitised consumer.

Currently online DRM distributors take content cost + distribution/marketing cost and formulate a price. Current consumers take price + bandwidth cost = total cost. No wonder there is piracy...

The distribution cost, for the consumer, is to some extent being "double discounted", or in layman's terms "Charged twice".

Everyone involved in the content creation, content distribution and content delivery is entitled to a profit. But that does not mean the consumer has to pay twicet twice, or n times, per transaction. I would bet money that if it becomes economically insignificant to access content, and punitively significant to pirate content. Piracy would evaporate. Measures have recently been put in place for the punitive side of piracy. This will not stop it. You need to provide incentive to purchase legally not incentive to hide piracy...

This implies a combination of "therapies". Don't try and encrypt or otherwise restrict distribution. Just make it easy and cheap to buy content. Make it punitive enough to *not* share. I.e. Subsidise the content distributor's costs with revenue from bandwidth generated from consumer side.

So where does the extra money come from? Well it comes from the massive profits of bandwidth.

As a distributor of content you get revenue from the bandwidth providers for attracting downloads (ergo bandwidth). As a consumer I am already shelling out for it, I won't notice. It makes sense for distributors, and for network operators. Which means it makes sense for content creators and content consumers.

[Oct 09 2007, last modified Jun 10 2010]

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