Andrew Keen talks with NYTimes.com inventor Martin Nisenholtz about innovation and online business models
Mr. Martin A. Nisenholtz serves as the Chief Executive Officer of Center for Communication, Inc. Mr. Nisenholtz serves as Vice President of New York Times Digital, LLC. Mr. Nisenholtz served as the Senior Vice President of Digital Operations of The New York Times Company since February 2005 where he had been responsible for the strategy development, operations and management of its digital properties. He served as Chief Executive Officer of New York Times Digital from 1999 to February 2005, after having served as President of The New York Times Electronic Media Company from 1995 to 1999, where he was the founding leader at NYTimes.com.
He served as Senior Vice President for digital operations of NYTimes.com. During that time, he was responsible for the development and delivery of electronic products centered around the content of the newspaper. He served as Director of Content Strategy of Ameritech Corporation, where he had been responsible for guiding development of new video programming opportunities and interactive information and advertising services. He founded Ogilvy’s Interactive Marketing Group in 1983. He worked at The Ogilvy Group. Mr. Nisenholtz worked at Ogilvy & Mather Direct and served as its Senior Vice President from 1983 to 1994.
He began his career in 1979 as an Assistant Professor and Research Scientist at New York University, where he participated on the founding faculty of the Interactive Telecommunications Program and worked on pioneering interactive media efforts in the areas of education, healthcare and public information. He has been a Director of Yellow Media Inc., since May 2006. He has been a Trustee of Yellow Pages Income Fund since May 2006. Mr. Nisenholtz has been a Director of eXelate Media LTD since July 2010. He serves as a Director of Center for Communication, Inc. He serves as an Advisory Board Member of TACODA LLC (also known as Tacoda Systems) and the New York Academy of Medicine. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Ad Council, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) Inc. He founded the Online Publishers Association (OPA), in June 2001. He served as a Member of the Board of Directors of The Advertising Council, Inc. Mr. Nisenholtz received a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania in 1977 and a Master’s Degree from the University of Pennsylvania Annenberg School of Communication in 1979.
“Jabberwocky” performed by Gardening, Not Architecture. Written by Sarah Saturday, Copyright 2012 Principiis Obsta Music (ASCAP), All Rights Reserved. Courtesy of SemaphoreMusic.com
In a recent article in The Hill Public Knowledge’s Gigi Sohn questioned why I have taken a position on Net Neutrality “so at odds with individual artists and so in line with Big Media”.
I would simply reply that my record in fighting for songwriters and artists is, pardon the expression, public knowledge. I have fought in every major battle for creators’ rights since joining the board of the Songwriters Guild of America (SGA) back in 1985.
As SGA vice president I fought alongside the Writers Guild of America, the Directors Guild, Screen Actors Guild, American Federation of Television and Radio Artists and the American Federation of Musicians to get the Bono Copyright extension passed. Public Knowledge opposed us.
As President of SGA I stood with these five unions representing the overwhelming majority of the “individual artists” Ms. Sohn claims I’m at odds with to fight illegal filesharing in the Grokster Case. Again, Public Knowledge opposed us. Where was Public knowledge during the 25 years I fought against the record labels on controlled composition clauses that insure that recording artists receive only 3/4′s of their royalties on their own songs? Where was Public Knowledge when I was the lead witness to boost royalty rates for artists at the hearings before the Copyright rate board?
It is not surprising that Ms. Sohn doesn’t get it. She has not spent her life as a creator or as an advocate for songwriters as I have. She has not watched as her friends and co-writers lost their jobs, their homes, and even their families, due to Internet piracy. She claims I ignore independent filmmakers. I guess she doesn’t know that my daughter is a student Oscar winning independent filmmaker (A Leg Up) or that my wife is a recording artist? (Hoagy N’ Me). Believe me, I’m intimately aware of what artists and filmmakers think. Continue reading
Sir, Christian Engström of the Pirates party (“Copyright law threatens our online freedom“,
July 7) is absolutely correct in his assumption that Elvis’s music does
not belong to him. It belongs to great songwriters like Otis Blackwell,
who wrote so many of Elvis’s big hits such as “All shook up” and
“Return to sender”, and who fought for years to protect and strengthen
US copyright law. Without copyright, Mr Blackwell would never have been
able to create that “common cultural heritage” that Mr Engström wants
to think of as his own.
He forgets that it isn’t technology that “opens up new possibilities” -
it is the people who create the technology, the very people who earn
their livings from patents and copyrights.
Carnes also notes that “The real “restriction” on Mr Engström’s access to an Elvis
song is a paltry 99 cents for a download on iTunes. For that he wants
us to abandon the copyright and patent laws that have been constructed
over hundreds of years.”
In the case of eBay and Live Nation, there’s yet another advantage: people visiting those sites are already looking for music related items, be they physical CDs, concert tickets, or fan gear. As Houghton notes, that’s a “logical point of purchase” for music downloads.
Of course the other side of the experimentation coin is that not every venture works out as planned. Last week, TechCrunch reported that imeem, a music streaming service, was facing some dire financial straits, largely because the business model was based on compensating record labels on a per-stream basis. The company is renegotiating its deal with the labels, instead sharing revenue on a per-user basis.
There was no way for imeem to know going in which model would be better: it just had to experiment to find the right one. And that’s what the future of digital content is all about: experimentation. Trial and error–and eventually, success. As long as the freedom to experiment is preserved, consumers, platform providers, and artists will find the business models that work best for all of them.
On the positive side , it looks like some of the scarier predictions about Conficker didn’t come true…yet. Of all PCs in the world that are the source of suspicious online activity, only 4% are infected with Conficker.c, according to security experts.
But it’s still disturbing to know that even if you think you’re doing all the right things, you could still be vulnerable. One-in-four Americans having fallen prey to the more destructive cyber-security problems–according to 60 Minutes–is certainly a high number, one that we should all be working harder to avoid.