This is an excellent article from Techcrunch:
Sections I liked are:
a) Media scarcity is dead. In the future my son will have a flash drive that he will pay $29 for that will have the capacity to hold all movies and music ever released by a major label, studio or tv/cable network.
b) But the entertainment industry has a vested interest in the success of this new type of convergence, as within it lies the secret to its continuing prosperity. The only way to block the incredible ease of pirating any content a media company can generate is to couple said experiences with extensions that live in the cloud and enhance that experience for consumers. Not just for some fancy DRM but for real value creation.
c) They must begin to create a product that is not simply a static digital file that can be easily copied and distributed, but rather view media as a dynamic “application” with extensions via the web.
d) Even today if you look in the iTunes App Store you will see a myriad range of “Apps” that are just evolved ways to package media. While the traditional part of iTunes still mirrors the product taxonomy of a Tower Records, the App Store is creating a folksonomy of media products. It is where new ideas evolve, thrive and go instinctively based on market power. The App Store is where the action is. This is where evolution is unfolding as direct consumer spending spurs media development.
e) In preparing this post, Erick asked me, “Is Apple is a media company?” I thought about that and the answer is really that Apple is what media companies are missing. The missing part of the puzzle is what made media conglomerates such juggernauts in the past. Namely, distribution.
f) The internet is stripping them of their control over the how their products are distributed. Media companies used to be able to create scarcity merely by delaying the distribution of their products across different channels–theaters, pay-per-view, DVD, cable channels, network TV, and so on. The internet disrupts this ability to create media scarcity. It is such a huge disruption, in fact, that it threatens the fundamental profit engine of the media business.
g) If you are a media exec and you look at your product and at the end of the day it’s a digital file that can be copied, then you have a serious problem with your format. Think of your product like a pie chart of the value you are giving the consumer. If 100% of the value is in that file, it is not a sound approach for defending the future of your business. However, if a portion of the experience is derived thorough an integration with a Web component that will yield additional value in functionality or social elements, then it will be more sustainable. There are many such examples emerging in the app store (I am T-Pain, TapTap and many more). Applications that let consumers interact with the media. Create things and share them with their friends. These will not only make the consumer the one who markets your product, but also create an unprecedented level of engagement. That level of engagement will directly map to reduction in piracy as consumers will pay for this experience and wont be able to copy it.
h) Sell access and experiences, not media files.