"NPG Sanctioned" fan-run Prince website - yay or nay?
I know the survey is still open and happening, and perhaps this discussion will be better informed once we have the results of that (please consider filling it out if you haven't done so already!), but in the meantime, I thought I'd continue the conversation that Seth and Dr. Funkenberry started last week on Spreecast (starts around the 9min mark) regarding a fan-run, but NPG-sanctioned Prince website.
If I understand the Doc correctly, he was floating the idea of a fansite, headed up by himself or someone else that Prince trusts, and managed by a core group of fans - it could even be as simple as a Facebook group, or else a website community.
The key thing seemed to be that, as a fan base, we would effectively be paying a license for any music and videos that were uploaded - ie. not buying one copy, but rather paying a distribution fee of sorts (I assume) so that Prince and the band are fairly compensated and then that cost is presumably shared by everyone who partakes in listening to the music.
It seems to be a similar model to how he distributed his 20ten album; ie. Newspapers would pay him a lump sum for the rights to include the album in every copy of their newspaper and presumably this was paid for out of their marketing budget. That way, Prince didn't worry about what happened to the music - if it was shared illegally, if it was sold on eBay, etc... - because he'd already made his money.
So if he's charging a distribution fee for every piece of media that he gives fans for this pseudo-official fan site, then he no longer has to worry about what becomes of it once it goes up on the site. Rather, that becomes an issue for the fans that are sharing the cost of those clips.
ie. The more people that belong to the site, the more money there is to spend on music and videos to share collectively, so the less incentive there is to share the music with those who haven't helped to pay for it.
I'm not really sure it would work, but it's an interesting idea and does force the discussion of how to control illegal sharing onto the fans, rather than it being soley the artists' problem.
So, if this were to go ahead:
- Would you be interested in being involved in running/maintaining/moderating the community?
- Would you contribute money to be able to watch videos/music/etc...?
- What would you want prioritised if we had limited funds to buy music? Rehearsals, old songs, new songs, remixes, etc...?
- How would we decide what we would spend our pooled resources on? Collective vote?
- Do you think this model could work?
btw, I realise this has been discussed to an extent on the Doc's site and on the Spreecast thread in P:M&M (http://prince.org/msg/7/391990), but there were lots of different things being talked about on that Spreecast, so this is just honing in on one aspect, and perhaps one interpretation of what Prince is considering with respect to a new site, or at the very least, an idea he is wanting feedback on.
[Edited 1/14/13 18:05pm]
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