Hollywood has Gorillas in the Midst!
Remember the movie “Gorillas in the Mist”. It starred Sigourney Weaver, and was based on the research and life of Dian Fossey. Well this release is about Gorilla-minded people, however they aren’t in the “mist”, they are in the “midst”, and they are a huge problem for the movie industry!
The movie industry has enough problems with movie piracy, that putting gorilla-minded people in charge to solve it, just makes things worse, and actually prevents the movie studios from getting a solution to this problem.
Gorillas put a lot of reliance on one dominant member, called a silverback, both for defense, and to make all the decisions. Unfortunately, the silverback isn’t necessarily the smartest, just the biggest and most aggressive. With it’s physical size and strength it has a simple management style – do what I command, or else – give me what I want, or else – and get out of my way, or else. It will use this approach to deal with any challenge to its dominance, both from within the group or coming from outside. Unfortunately this approach is ineffective against poachers. A silver-back and the whole troop are neither, prepared, organized, or equipped to deal with poachers. As the legendary Sun Tzu would say – the battle was won before it began.
The movie industry is trying to defend against movie pirates, the same way gorillas do against poachers. It too sends out its own big bad ass silverback defender, also known as the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America), headed by Chris Dodd. Like a silverback, the MPAA tries to intimidate and assert its perceived dominance. And like a silverback, it too will charge at anything and everything. Find a group of thousands of alleged movie pirates – charge – and try to put them all through the court system. If foreign governments won’t do what they’re told – charge – and put their countries on a naughty list. If the federal government doesn’t provide what they think they need – charge – and try to force through “police state” type legislation like SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and PIPA (Protect Intellectual Property Act). When still not able to stop movie pirates – charge – and start attacking internet search engines like Google. In each case the MPAA’s charges have been actions done more out of desperation, than a clearly thought out defense, since the backlash from their attacks were poorly considered or anticipated, and their actions have had little or no effect on stopping movie piracy. In actuality, these actions have all had serious negative effects on the movie studios reputations. And now with a scandal about money and favors to state Attorney Generals, it is just getting worse.
The MPAA’s futile and gorilla-minded approach could be considered noble, if there was no other alternative. However, there is a real and workable alternative! This alternative involves getting the movie industry better prepared, organized, and equipped. It also means not just keeping up with technology, but implementing the systems and technologies that are ahead of what is currently out there. Both the MPAA and Movie Labs (Motion Pictures Laboratories, Inc.) were informed that an alternative was available, and that it was valuable, sensitive, fragile, and that having the right security over these processes was of the utmost importance. They were both given an opportunity to help “facilitate” getting it to the studio CEO’s, and it was completely risk-free. Unfortunately, due to their conflicts of interest, and some combination of ignorance, arrogance, and pride, they chose not to respond to the offer – not even a question about it. Not even a “no thank-you”.
As for employees at the big studios, any request to speak with a senior executive about stopping movie piracy results in an insistence in a redirection back to the MPAA or Movie Labs. Their response constantly comes down to “its their policy” and “that’s all they can do”. With billions of dollars being lost and millions of people’s jobs affected by movie piracy, it is both disappointing and surprising that they don’t take this more seriously. Sending anyone to the MPAA or Movie Labs is nothing short of an exercise in sheer and utter frustration.
The studio CEO’s should be made aware that their people in the MPAA and Movie Labs have serious conflicts of interest. Being a “facilitator” and “helping” doesn’t seem to be enough for them. If it’s not their way it’s the highway. Their need to be the dominant leader in the industry, even though they are completely ineffective, is more important to them than helping the industry get the help it needs. It should be no surprise that this is the same way a silverback gorilla thinks.
The reason the movie industry can not get a solution to movie piracy is because there are too many closed-minded bullies with their own agendas preventing the studios from getting a solution!
Glenn Stencell is an Intellectual Property Protection Expert who is a specialist in the movie industry, and has a workable solution to movie piracy.