The Future of Streaming Video
Now what's kind of interesting here is that everybody in TV looks at the music industry collapse as the Bad Story and iTunes as the plausible premise for digital entertainment distribution. iTunes makes money. QED, there is money to be made in digital distribution.
But drawing this conclusion ignores one of the fundamental facts about iTunes -- it is a de facto monopoly. As Clay Shirky writes quite shinily here, a series of lawsuits and circumstances cut off pretty much all other music distribution channels online. Tying the system in to great hardware was the clincher, of course, accelerating the process. But end of day, if you're buying a song quickly, easily and legally in the US, you're buying it from iTunes.
The TV humans are missing the point of this plausible premise -- you can make money off digital distribution as long as you have a monopoly. It's a little shocking that they're missing this, as the massive financial success of the entire television industry up until recently was based on them having a monopoly. A taxpayer-funded monopoly, no less . . .