God, I love being part of a trend! Especially when that trend is to dump your over-priced, inflexible and poorly serviced cable TV via Time Warner Cable.
According to CNet:
The cable operator only gained about 49,000 new lines for a total of 34.2 million during the quarter. And basic video subscriptions decreased by 197,000, to 13.1 million. This drop was attributed to customers ending their service, but was also due to the fact that Time Warner Cable sold some properties.
Aside from the obvious reason that paying close to $100/month to watch TV is a tough pill to swallow in this tight economy, the free alternatives just continue to become easier to access. I dumped my TWC TV service almost two months ago and continue to see everything I want – I just don’t pay through the nose for the privilege.
While I hate to see anyone lose a job due to a business downsizing, I simply can’t root for Time Warner Cable in this particular battle.
There is a compelling post by CNet’s Matt Asay exploring the various potential of future music business models.
So I think the “adoption tax” model is promising. The future is flat-rate: you subscribe, you forget about paying for individual transactions, you enjoy more music than you ever have before.
While I certainly see the appeal of this sort of approach I just canceled my cable TV service because the all-you-can-eat approach wasn’t worth the cost – and, of course, because of all of the alternative means to get that content.
Right now, the same is true for music. There are so many free ways (both legal and piratey) to acquire music right now that the idea of adding a new monthly music bill to my accounting seems like a stretch.
I’m constantly impressed and inspired by the varied ways people have devised to make money through clever use of the internet as a nearly free distribution and communication device. Beyond the bloggers out there able to build up enough of a following to live off the ad sales (no such luck here) there are all sorts of other methods being tried..
I really like the growing number of people mentioned in this CNet post who camp out on a famous stretch of road and take pictures of the passing motorcycles:
“At first, as I drove along this stretch of highway as part of Road Trip 2008, I was confused as to what was going on. But after seeing two such vehicles at corners, each of which had a URL emblazoned on the side, I figured it out: The photographers were taking pictures of the riders and drivers, and then later posting them online, hoping that people will visit their sites, see pictures of themselves on the famous road, and decide to fork over a few bucks for a high-res image.”
Is this easy money or a get-rich-quick plan? I doubt it but it is another person finding a way to work for themselves and probably have some fun doing it.