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Free Ride: How the Internet is Destroying the Culture Business and How it Can Fight Back

Free Ride: How the Internet is Destroying the Culture Business and How it Can Fight Back [Kindle Edition]

Robert Levine
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product Description


"Meticulously researched book...Levine's solutions are's a vital discussion we need to be having" (Davin O'Dwyer Irish Times)

"Levine is an engaging, provocative writer, and there is much to like about Free entertaining read, with an entertaining cast" (Observer)

"A book that should change the debate about the future of culture" (New York Times Book Review)

"Brilliant... A crashcourse in the existential problems facing the media" (The Times)

"Important" (Bryan Appleyard Sunday Times)

Book Description

Do you read newspapers online? Own a kindle? Download television programmes so you can skip the adverts? Free Ride explores the implications for modern culture of all these activities and asks how businesses can fight back against the expectation that everything we value should be available for free.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 622 KB
  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital (6 Sep 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B008YUNL5Y
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #154,360 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This is an excellent survey by the journalist Robert Levine. He has a point of view (that copyright does represent something important), but he covers the various parties - media companies, ISPs, google, artists, who are all effected by free copies made of copyrighted works online. He explains how some companies (particularly google and sites that host copyrighted materials) ARE making money from these materials, through advertising, yet the rights owners (either the author or the publishers) are making nothing. This doesn't seem right. Yes, the marginal cost of copying a song, or an article, or a movie, is very close to zero, but as he says, did anybody think that when they bought a music CD they were paying $15 for a plastic disc? Levine's argument is that in the longer term this will damage the culture, because in the old publisher / record label / newspaper model, creators had a guaranteed income and marketing for their works. Record labels might have been making big profits, but their artists did pretty well too. In the new world, Apple with their gadgets, Google with their advertising, ISPs with their broadband networks, all make money from the trade in copyrighted materials, all benefit from them, but none of that money goes to the artists or into developing new artists. The 'safe harbour' provisions of the US Digital Millennium Copyright act, a big subtopic in this book, means that ISPs are not responsible for illegal copying of copyright materials on their network, but the activity itself remains illegal and at the same time media companies (e.g. Guardian, record labels) are losing more and more revenues each year. Read more ›
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
4.0 out of 5 stars Clear and well documented. If the subject interests you this is a must. 5 July 2013
By MikeMR - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The book starts with a great overview of where the current situation comes from, from the earliest Betamax case to the current efforts to make legal content more convenient than piracy. At some points it becomes dense with too many names and examples but overall a great book.
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