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Saturday, November 08, 2008

Lunchbox Lab on Digital Distribution: Audio File

This Thursday, I went to the first in a series of "Lunchbox Labs" that are being organized by several film-related organizations here in the Boston area. (Filmmaker's Collaborative, LEF, Central Productions, Color of Film, and the Mass. Production Coalition among them.)

This one focused on digital distribution, and the lunch-time discussion included folks like Susi Walsh of the Center for Independent Documentary; David Tamés; Jim Flynn of EZTakes and iArthouse; Chris Renzi of Netfilm; Denise DiIanni of WGBH; Sean Fitzroy; Lyda Kuth of The LEF Foundation; Bonnie Waltch of Filmmakers Collaborative; and Cynthia Close of Documentary Educational Resources.

I recorded most of the conversation (aside from the first three or four minutes, when everyone introduced themselves.) It's not a wonderfully-produced podcast, but it may be useful to folks thinking through the digital distribution landscape. We talked about iTunes, EZTakes, Amazon/CreateSpace, the re:frame project, new business models and new formats filmmakers should be exploring, and lots more. It's about an hour-long.

The MP3 is here. I'm the first person to start jabbering.

The description we were sent before the lunch is below -- though we didn't cover all these topics.

"The November 6 Lunchbox Lab discussion will focus on film/video distribution on the internet for independent filmmakers. Navigating through the maze of new media platforms such as VOD, video downloads, cable and broadband models can be daunting for filmmakers considering other forms of distribution besides theatrical and traditional broadcast. New models of distribution are constantly being created or evolving , for example websites such as indplay ( connects filmmakers directly with licensors allowing filmmakers to have more control over distribution. Our hope is to engage in exploratory and purposeful conversations including answering these questions: what are these new platforms? how does a filmmaker/distributor navigate these new platforms? Which ones have worked successfully and which ones have not? How are small independent distributors working with these new technologies? Who is making money and how? Are there ways in which this community can do trials to test the efficacy of different methods? Are there opportunities to incubate some projects?"

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