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Here we'll explore the nexus of legal rulings, Capitol Hill policy-making, technical standards development, and technological innovation that creates -- and will recreate -- the networked world as we know it. Among the topics we'll touch on: intellectual property conflicts, technical architecture and innovation, the evolution of copyright, private vs. public interests in Net policy-making, lobbying and the law, and more.

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October 16, 2008

Maybe Art Isn't A Business

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Posted by Alan Wexelblat

Seth Godin has a post on his blog warning that maybe art should be - or must be - for its own sake, or for the sake and enjoyment of the artist creating it.

Godin is arguing against the idea that you should take what you love and turn it into a business. This love-into-business notion is circulating in a couple of forms now, all of which proposing to tell you how to spend your time "monetizing" your blog or hobby or avocation, whatever it happens to be. If you Google the phrase "fire yourself" you get over 1.2 million hits.

I'm torn - on the one hand I think Godin has a point. Most people aren't going to make a penny off of whatever it is they love. There just aren't that many people wandering around with cash in their hands looking for unemployed bloggers to "monetize." On the other hand, I think it's critical that we do come up with new business models and have people testing them out because it's so screamingly clear that current models are BA-ROKEN.

(Interestingly, Godin's blog entry from today is about the evolution of marketing, a key component of monetizing one's art. And apparently he's got a new book coming out on the topic.)

Comments (2) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Big Thoughts


COMMENTS

1. Number9 on October 16, 2008 4:05 PM writes...

To tell people to just give up and take jobs they don't care about for the free time it offers is admitting defeat before the battle has even been fought. "Maybe we can't make money doing what we love" is nothing new. Lots of people take jobs they hate just because they pay well. The new question for our time is "maybe we *can* make money doing what we love, all of us and not just rock stars and athletes."

The way artists do business is changing. No longer do musicians absolutely need to be discovered by a record label, which in turn will only want to make safe bets on what will sell. It has started with established artists like Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails and will hopefully extend to everyone else in the future. Your link to the Dreamcafe post about business models for artists shows that we're still figuring things out. Don't let Seth Godin bring you down, we're only just beginning to really talk about these things.

Permalink to Comment

2. DrWex on October 17, 2008 3:30 PM writes...

Oh Godin's not bringing me down. I'm one of the lucky ones who has a day job doing what he loves already.

What concerns me is whether we've got any way to test new models other than one-off anecdotal "well, it worked/didn't work for me" stuff.

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