The reign of the cultural gatekeepers is over
The once seemingly impenetrable edifice beyond which ideas and riches could be realised has cracked and is about to shatter. The traditional Gatekeepers of culture are finished. The book publishers, art galleries, record labels, movie distributors and stock brokers, all have held, for an inordinate amount of time, the key to fame, fortune and immortality for artists and entrepreneurs.
These gatekeepers over time developed fanciful hoops for they’re hosts to jump through in their quests, only to protect themselves. It’s all about minimising risk to your investment, because after all it’s the arts and who want’s to take a loss because of the whims of a mostly predictable but yet fickle public. There you are asking four or five bankers for one million dollars each. Success rate; 10% or less.
Web 2.0 has unleashed the power of the crowd and in a mere two years we have seen the emergence of a new manifestation of capitalism. ‘Micropreneurism’ today with very little initial outlay an person or group can ask a million people for just five dollars each. Success rate; 70% or more.
The quality of culture being created is also being magnified, when art is no longer watered down for mass consumption. Decision making, strategy and creative advantage stays with the creators and producers and not deferred to the financiers and then to their accountants.
Suddenly there isn’t enough gatekeepers to cover the opening gates, by preferring to hoard and stay élite they have left themselves thin on the ground. The reign of the gatekeepers is over because creative professionals have other options now they no longer represent the only path, to survive the gatekeepers will have to share the treasure.