To get this post, make sure you check out the podcast or read up on Quarkboy’s (Sam Pinansky) new project, from the ANN Cast link below.
[Quarkboy’s announcement is potentially huge news, but since it’s not really official yet, despite that he has confirmed it to the degree of his internet presence. So I guess I’ll spin that post for later, when it’s a real deal, hopefully this Autumn.]
[Quarkboy:] …patronage… [You can start at 31:20]
ANN Forums (post transcribed to an easier-to-read format):
Surrender Artist wrote: Would fans who fund a project have any influence over the production, such as delegates on the production committee? Would they be treated as people who had just placed really, really advance preorders or more like shareholders entitled to some portion of the revenue?
Zac [Bertschy] wrote: It’s full circle, though.
“Okay, we’ve removed your ability as an artist to make money through traditional means by breaking laws that nobody enforces.
Now, if you want to make a living as an artist, you have to do it this way.
By the way, if you want to make money this way, I get to dictate to you what your art has to be.”
There are probably millions of people who see nothing wrong with this model whatsoever.
[Quarkboy wrote:] But the micro-patronage model avoids this problem by essentially making any individual opinion too small to matter.
Doesn’t having a million donors giving $1 allow an artist more freedom than 1 company providing $1 million in a budget?
I don’t really see how
“By the way, if you want to make money this way, I get to dictate to you what your art has to be.”
doesn’t pretty much apply to the way things are today with large corporate funding. Think about how many anime directors have probably been told “Hey, we want you to use this song for your opening and ending.” because the music production company is a big part of the committee…
ANN Forums (the next dialog in the same discussion chain):
[Zac wrote:] I guess then it boils down to this: “Hey artist, who would you rather be a slave to? A huge soulless corporation or your demanding fans and their terrible ideas?”
I don’t think creative input should be part of *any* micro-patronage thing, or even any “angel investment” scenario. If the idea here is to empower the fan to more directly support the artist, we should also have total creative freedom for the artist baked in to any agreement. After all, everyone’s buying in because they believe in that artist’s vision.
Penny-Arcade, 3/16/2012 (about Bioware’s response to Mass Effect 3 ending issue):
Ownership is a very complicated business when it comes to cultural product, though. They succeed by virtue of the fact that we, as players, incorporate these stories into our lives. I’ve always wondered what the conflux of digital goods, interactive storytelling, algorithmic content creation, and democratized funding mean for an idea like authorship. I think we’re beginning to find out.
Do you need me to spell it out for you? It’s terribly exciting.