jun 29

Everything Is Free

Who thinks Chris Anderson is wrong about the future of free? None other than that other guy whose books you buy at the airport, Malcolm Gladwell!


Okay, so I may have picked up Outliers at an airport, but I bet you can't guess which airport. Maybe you're not so omniscient after all.

posted by editorlisa at 11:48 AM on June 29, 2009

Free is not a business model. End of story.

posted by info at 12:19 PM on June 29, 2009

Runyon's T-shirt Slogan: "There's no free lunch"

...but as we see this playing out in our national politics, people sure do believe they can get services they want, and not have to pay for it.

Perception of price tied to value have started to diverge.

posted by taulpaul at 12:54 PM on June 29, 2009

Here's how to "save" the music industry: price songs by bit rate at around a 5 cent average per song, like MP3Fiesta does. That gets old curmudgeons like me spending 20 bucks a month buying a shitload of music, instead of zero a month at iTunes, where it costs the same amount to download an album as it does to buy the CD, which of course is bullshit because there aren't manufacturing and shipping costs, only storage, which as Gladwell points out, is basically free now. I'm sorry, basically Free now. It would also get all the young pirating hipsters more likely to pay for their horrible music, because the price point is low enough and they get the added convenience, audio quality and extras like liner notes or whatever other media the music industry should be offering.

Pirating would still occur, of course, but it wouldn't be as much of an impact on sales.

I don't know what the fuck to do about writing. Those guys are screwed.

posted by sac at 2:05 PM on June 29, 2009

Chris Anderson has never heard about opportunity costs

posted by John at 2:24 PM on June 29, 2009

Looking forward to the Gladwell piece.

As for Anderson, his thing made a lot of sense if you look at the present. Of course the farther out you go (beyond 24 months or so) it's impossible to know how things will shake out. But for now, yeah -- lots of stuff has gotten so cheap that companies can give it away for free!

posted by alesh at 5:04 PM on June 29, 2009

Can I claim credit for "airport books", or is that something that's already ubiquitous that I only *think* I thought of?

posted by Anil at 6:47 PM on June 29, 2009

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