I always seem to end up in discussions with people about the new age of film distribution. Historically, you had to go to the theater to watch a movie and then it was gone. Then came the era of Beta Max and Video Players which allowed people to watch movies again and again after the run in theaters was completed. If you were lucky you had the opportunity to catch it on TV. The applied to the music world as well, but not as substantially because music was beyond just being played on the radio or at a concert. 8 Track and cassette tapes made it easy to transport around one’s favorite music from place to place. Ok, the vinyl album I was observed loading in to my backpack from time to time to go play over at a friend’s house, but that was on rare occasion.
Today, there are so many options available to a producer of entertainment content for distribution, in this world of Video on Demand and ITunes, that if someone of the old school methodology didn’t keep up, he would be left far behind. This was the focus of a recent AP focus story about the CEO of Blockbuster Video and his move to a greater market share. Read the article here.
As the new CEO James Keyes states for the article,
“This is an industry in transition and a company that hasn’t been able to keep up with that change,” said Keyes, named CEO in July. “But Blockbuster is one of the best-known brands in the world. We’ve just got to find ways to use technology to make the company more relevant.”
I think this is a firm and accurate philosophy that should be adhered to by everyone, and not just film distributors. Necessity is the mother of invention. There are new ways of accomplishing what we have become accustomed to. And, the local consumer, being inherently lazy and cost efficient, is going to follow the path of least resistance. We are long way from the days of “Boom Boxes” on our shoulders and Walkman radios on our hips. If any company wants to remain a player in the game, just like Darwin’s evolutionary theory, they will have to learn to adapt to the changing environment.