domenica 14 settembre 2014

Obsolete Capitalism: Prototypes of disintermediation at the turn of the 20th century (Pt. XIV - The Birth of Digital Populism)

Prototypes of disintermediation at the turn of the 20th century

In the last two decades, cybertech economy has transformed our conception of the flow of contemporary capitalism. Starting from from the late nineties, entire established sectors of the twentieth-century’s economic system have collapsed or have been totally rethought, following the continuous development of the cybertech revolutions. Among the fields that have been disintermediated the most are music, publishing, finance, communication and the most classic of intermediation sectors: credit. Since the end of the past century, what used to occur over long economic cycles has begun to take place at a much faster pace; this is partly caused by revolutionary technological breakthroughs. In the case of the rise of MP3 - the most emblematic of all cases - this change happened over a two-year period. For example, the impact of Napster on the industrial market between 1999—2001 was incredible. Internet allowed the sharing among millions of people of a single musical work through peer-to-peer sharing. This rapidly erased all marketing issues, such as copyright, national and international regulations. The new standards abolished the previous ones: the sudden collapse of the music recording industry facilitated a change of the overall system economically-bound to the music world, from the label to the recording studio, the distribution, the retail trade, communication strategies, video-clip and finally phonographic media and artists’ management techniques. It is a real hi-tech revolution that has turned artificiality into reality while fostering a pirate-sharing communication of data. Such cyber-disintermediation is detrimental to established markets and it is also at work in the 5SM: a sort of Napster platform of the twenty-first century politics with Beppe Grillo and, above all, Gianroberto Casaleggio as Shawn Fanning and Sean Parker. Their aim is to provide a free social service to the political industry. (...)

Painting: Stelios Faitakis

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