With odd exception, old people don’t like change. Big surprise. Then again, young people aren’t particularly fond of it either unless there’s something in it for them.
But in the case of music and entertainment biz attorney turned scribe Bob Lefsetz, when it comes to change, just bring it.
Some excerpts from a recent Lefsetz missive:
******* I don’t want to pay for sports.
I’m not talking a trip to Dodger Stadium, or Staples, but I’m not too eager for that either. I wait until one of my well-heeled friends coughs up a courtside seat, otherwise I just stay home and ignore the whole damn thing.
I didn’t used to be this way. I lived for sports.
But then the Yankees were free on TV.
******* People think Napster ruined the music business. What they don’t realize is it was a harbinger of things to come. Turns out most people didn’t want the album. Sorry all you musos making and devouring full length statements. With the advent of the CD, albums became so long, you could have sex, take a shower and call your mother and still have time to take out the garbage before they played through…as soon as people got the option to download just what they wanted, they gave up on the old model.
******* Kind of like with TV. My cable bill is insane. Of course I want the high speed Internet, the super high speed I pay for. But all those TV channels? I haven’t got time to watch them. I finally canceled Cinemax and Showtime. But what bugs me is sports. Because I’m paying a ton of money for something I never watch, and so are you.
Well, maybe you’re watching, but everybody with a cable subscription is paying. We’re subsidizing your lifestyle. Against the modern welfare system? Then you should be against the cable TV bundle.
But they tell us if they de-bundle it we’ll pay more!
What a load of hogwash. The truth is sports and niche channels profit handsomely via payments from providers, which are garnered by ripping off subscribers. They just don’t want the gravy train to end. But it’s gonna.
******* The only place where people buy more than they want is Costco. And they do so because it’s so damn cheap. But all the content industries are charging us a fortune, and as soon as the public gains an option, people bolt.
******* The big story of the winter is “House Of Cards,” on Netflix. Delivered all at once so people can binge. This is the future. Reruns are done. It’s got to be all new all the time on television or we’re tuning out. Remember waiting for new episodes of “Seinfeld”…that model is toast!
What else don’t you want? Lefsetz queries.
******* The opening act. Once upon a time you got to the show early, believing there was a reason to pay attention to the opener. Now you know someone paid someone behind the scenes and for your $100 ticket you don’t want to be bored, you’ll arrive for the headliner, thank you.
******* And it’s newspapers too. What kind of model is that? A surface reading of the news so you can sell advertising? I can get the surface on a zillion sites online, believe me, if someone shoots up a school or Congress grinds to a halt, I don’t need a high-priced reporter to tell me the story.
******* And ignore the press. The Netflix backlash? Nobody wants to rent a DVD anymore. Reed Hastings was right. Streaming is not only the future, it’s now. If you don’t make your stuff available for streaming, that just means no one is gonna watch it….You’d better make it easy and cheap or free or feel like free, because very few people are truly interested.
******* Cable TV is gonna crumble. It’s gonna happen overnight. Kinda like the switch from film to digital photography. You remember, we were hearing that digital was coming for a decade, but it didn’t. Then, overnight, digital cameras exploded and film disappeared and Kodak went into the dumper.
So why am I still paying for you to watch?
That’s the question.
And I’m not the only one asking it.