If you haven’t heard of Louis CK, you NEED to check him out. He’s hilarious (as you can check in the clip at the bottom of this article). But more importantly, this week he released one of his shows, Live at the Beacon Theater, for only $5. Instead of having a big production company set up, film and distribute his show, he decided to do it himself, all on his own, and then make it completely accessible – to everyone.
This experiment, to cut out the middle man, has been a resounding success. CK posted an update on the download site, and here’s a little snippet:
“The show went on sale at noon on Saturday, December 10th. 12 hours later, we had over 50,000 purchases and had earned $250,000, breaking even on the cost of production and website. As of Today, we’ve sold over 110,000 copies for a total of over $500,000. Minus some money for PayPal charges etc, I have a profit around $200,000 (after taxes $75.58). This is less than I would have been paid by a large company to simply perform the show and let them sell it to you, but they would have charged you about $20 for the video. They would have given you an encrypted and regionally restricted video of limited value, and they would have owned your private information for their own use. They would have withheld international availability indefinitely. This way, you only paid $5, you can use the video any way you want, and you can watch it in Dublin, whatever the city is in Belgium, or Dubai. I got paid nice, and I still own the video (as do you). You never have to join anything, and you never have to hear from us again.”
I strongly recommend you read the update for yourself… and buy the video. It’s well worth more than $5 in laughs.