0.99$… Is this the deal?
May 13, 2008
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A couple of moments ago I have seen the last video post of Loren Feldman on 1938 Media… and I was really surprised… and sincerely not in a Good way… It’s more or less 5 months that I proudly follow Loren on his Blog, and I enjoyed really a lot his sincerity and creativity… I loved the puppet show… but I was shocked when he said that he is gong to charge 0.99$ for some of his episodes…

He has a good point, he has to gain something form his work… I think that he is right, period… but what it is strange to me is a couple of things. I always thought that Loren was something against in Gaining money from Blogging, saying to people that he gains money not by blogging, but by having a job… and that he blogs just for fun… and I still agree in this opinion. Then arrived the puppets and Zong, he got money for is creativity and got a sponsor… I’m really happy for him, but I think that something changed. He says that he is going to charge for some episodes 0.99$ and that is an experiment. The experiment involves his sponsor… to access to the content you have to send an SMS to the sponsor and the sponsor sends you a code to access to the content… so you spend 99 cents for a SMS that Zong will get a part of it (looking for  incoming carrier fees), of that money a part comes to Loren (that’s my guess anyway). So Loren is making money not only for himself, but also for the sponsor… that will be a good experiment regarding the possibility to distribute content over the internet using mobile services…

A couple of questions come on my mind… The code that Zong will provide expires after 7 days, so after that for you to see the content there is the need to send an another SMS. Now thinking about what iTunes offer… for 1.99$ I can get an episode of Lost, I can see it without any kind of restrictions… and Apple gets only a really small part of the profit from the selling. I really hope that the episodes would be really of hi-quality for the content and for other factors.

In my opinion that experiment is a try that can get to something different, but there is the need to consider that for a lot of people Internet has to be free and the included content that is generated. At the end the only ones that are going to pay are users that has some ethic about supporting the creation and the fatigue of the creator… like the people that buys the episodes of Lost on iTunes instead of downloading it on a torrent. It’s up to the user… but in my opinion 0.99$ are too much, there is the need of a great value of the episode, because if you  are following lot of video blogs and they start to do  the same thing of Loren a user is going to spend lot of money, and is not going to be cheap… following lots of people… so users would abandon and select other free platform and video bloggers.

For Loren will start a big marketing and creative campaign to create addicted users, that are going to pay for content… will see the result of the experiment… I have some doubt on some points… but there is the need to try…

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