Content as a Hostage

Aug. 19, 2022 [technology] [gaming]

Joining SaaSS and GaaS, I propose CaaH. Content as a Hostage, also known as the exclusivity model. Present something that a user wants and make sure that the only place they can obtain it is through your own delivery platform. This has lead to the fracturing of streaming disservices into a million individual copycats who essentially host only their own internal works. CaaH was really perfected on gaming consoles which each held ransom some games to entice suckers into buying dedicated hardware. A strategy which has worked brilliantly against some demographics.

It is most prevalent right now in movies and games distribution. Some studio does not want another publisher to take a cut of their sales so they setup their own storefront and revoke all copies of their media from any other source. While this fixes the author’s revenue problem, it abuses the freedom of choice of their clientele. Those who watch runs of shows often complain of having to subscribe to dozens of various streaming toll roads.

Freeing The Hostage

There are two ways to address the issue. First, would be for the author/publisher to make their work available again through other sources. If they wish to keep the prices cheaper on their home turf, that’s understandable. Ideally, this would accompany the removal of DRM, although that remains a seperate issue.

Second, is to turn to file sharing (which industry erroneously refers to as piracy) as many have decided to do. Think of it as a just punishment for publishers who seek to put up blockades restricting where people can and cannot reach their content. It is the only assured way to be able to watch what you want, when you want, where you want and however you want.

There was only one storefront that I know of which did things right by serving their movies as DRM-free raw files for a one-time purchase. GOG unfortunately only carry movies oriented to video gaming and the site does require javascript, but their model serves as the only example of content delivery that I would be willing to pay for.