Publishing an e-book does not mean authors can skip the most important step of all–mastering the craft. A friend of mine, Trent Cameron, sent me an interesting link about online file sharing (pirating or information liberation, depending on how you look at things) and how it affects content creators.
For those unfamiliar with the idea of openness it may come as a surprise to hear that Sam Bozzo, a film director, embraces the idea of people sharing his movies online. From the article:
“For me, the [online sharing] was ultimately “free advertising”, and I am the only truly independent documentary filmmaker I know making his money back this year.”
But he goes on to say something equally interesting about how pirating does hurt bad or mediocre movies. People watch them, are unimpressed, and they don’t tell their friends, nor do they buy the product. The good films, however, are shared, talked about, and people generate buzz which ultimately leads to more revenue in DVD sales or box office sales. Again, from the article:
“With “Blue Gold” already available on DVD in North America, UK, Japan, and Australia, the initial fear of a filmmaker is that each person who downloads a torrent would have instead paid to buy or rent a DVD if the torrent were not available. I feel this is false for many reasons. For an independent film like mine, most torrent users would have never heard of my film if not for the torrent. Unlike a large blockbuster film, I had no advertising money to spread the word of the film, so the torrent leak provided another outlet to hopefully create a viral campaign of word-of-mouth. The main point, though, is that this only worked because the film is a solid good film (for the target market at least), so word of mouth could only help the film.”
I’ve said it before, and I think it’s worth repeating–E-books and The Open Model aren’t shortcuts to publishing. They are additional options now available to writers.