Monday, August 31, 2009

Live Streaming, what does it mean for you?

This one's for you actors.

Recently I included a post that mentioned this super cool thing that The Pittsburgh Irish and Classical Theater was launching called LIPLO (live in person, live online, aka selling tickets to see live streaming from a live performance in the comfort of your own home). The idea was to create new forms of revenue, and create an online buzz (read revolution) loud enough to land butts in seats well into the future.

Unfortunately it seems it will not be so this time around. While the theater managed to get rights from the author, and the television network that owns the movie version, they were unable to get results from Actor's Equity and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. Sigh.

I know this isn't the first struggle where unions have butted heads with businesses over the history of well unions, but I find it disappointing nonetheless. Here we have a bold new strategy that, if successful, would greatly benefit the entire performing arts community (including the ACTORS and TELEVISION AND RADIO ARTISTS), yet it's caught up in the red tape of bureaucracy. I guess I can't blame them, the unions need to be cautious when opening up their contracts to radical new terms like these, but isn't it time? Hasn't the performing arts world dragged it's heels long enough, resisting moves for progress?

Now you know how I feel about it, what do you think? Will live streaming performances save the performing arts from financial ruin?

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