I have not read Chris Anderson's new book, "Free: The Future of a Radical Price" (Hyperion; $26.99) but last night I read Malcolm Gladwell's review in The New Yorker, "Priced to Sell." Then this morning I read comments in Chris Brogan's blog: I Believe Mark Cuban is Right
which lead me naturally enough to Mark Cuban's blog: Free vs Freely Distributed and of course to Seth Godin's disagreement with Gladwell's review on his blog: Malcolm is wrong. I'm not going to weigh in on the future of newspapers or whether "Free" is the new price point but I do have some thoughts about distributing educational video, its value and who pays for it.
Several points in the "Free Debate" seem to be clear even if not everyone agrees on what they mean.
Consumers are increasingly expecting information for free.
The cost of distribution is so low that when you "round down" it is free.
Someone is still going to make money somewhere.
Some of the areas of contention are:
Who controls the distribution of information?
Who gets paid for what?
What will the marketplace do?