Friday, March 11, 2005

Who leaked the Doctor?

With the new series of Doctor Who about to be released, it was hardly a surprise to read that the first episode had been leaked onto the Net.

Material ranging from the recent U2 album to the dire Matrix sequels have done the pre-release rounds to much media hype and outrage from the producers in what seems to have become the sign of must-have content in today's peer-to-peer age.

While I'm by no means suggesting that the prematurely returning Doc was deliberate (and I'm sure the BBC lawyers would back me on that), it does make me consider how risk-taking marketers with the right product could use the peer-to-peer phenomenon wisely by actually releasing limited content through this channel.

It's increasingly commonplace for artists with an album to market offer limited free downloads of their tracks and a natural extension would be the right P2P networks, some of whom are slowly moving down the road to a legitimate business model.

The problem is that such networks are hardly respecters of copyright once the full versions are released, but perhaps engaging with this huge community of potential customers can help begin to address the major challenge that content producers are facing.

No comments: