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Yep, The Free Model Just Totally Sucks

Via Gizmodo, Boing Boing, and other channels, the story of how the surviving members of Monty Python’s Flying Circus decided how to fight the tide of low-quality clips of their work showing up on YouTube.

Rather than the usual take-down notices and lawsuit threats, they made a huge selection of high quality clips freely available in their own channel, pointing out that the proper thing for those who enjoy the laugh-chuckles to do would be to buy the DVDs. They increased sales by 23,000%, or a 230 times growth factor.

Now I haven’t seen any absolute numbers, so it could be that they went from 10 units a week to 2300 units a week, and that’s less impressive than if they went from 1000 to 230,000 … no, you know what? It’s freakin’ impressive no matter what the baseline number was.

No doubt there will eventually be a plateau effect, when everybody who was ever willing to buy the collected Monty Python DVDs has done so, and the addition of new consumers occurs at a much lesser rate than the giant rush of pent-up demand that we’ve just seen rushing out into the channels of commerce like a huge, metaphor-laden thing.

But from my perspective, it’s just another example of the rewards possible when you provide compelling & quality content, develop a relationship with your audience, give them a means to support you, and invite them to do so.

Thanks for the link. From the page source on the pythonline site:

@import "/misc/drupal.css"

So it looks like the Pythons are running on Python

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