Entrepreneurs, Artists Need Open Access, Your Culture Needs It

Antonio Meucci invented the telephone. A poor guy who had barely enough to file a patent. It took years for him to save enough money so that he can send make his invention work with Western Union Telegraph Company.

But Graham Bell made all the profits who was his lab mate.

If Graham Bell didn’t invent Telephone then what was his contribution. Well, he invented the Bell Systems which made the connection possible. A sort of interoperability which makes connection happen.

After Bell patented the idea. Suddenly there was a problem. He alone couldn’t wire all of USA.

So he needed interoperability. Help and trust from many different telephone company.

Rockefeller Story

He was the richest men in history. He joined hands with big competitors so they become big in unison. And then they made a deal with railroads so they would get rebates for their oil shipments.

Then he went to all other competitors – to give an offer. Join us or go bankrupt. Because he will lower the price so that they can’t compete because the distribution was monopolized.

Once this was in place and you have a system where new entrants can’t go solo. Competition become practically non-existent.

Beer Story

5 years ago, the beer tie system in the UK was outlawed. The gist is if you want to open a pub, you either had to take all the risk and open up the bar. Or you can do a deal with one giant brewery and they will set you up.

But in exchange, you will pay 60 cents more in each beer you buy from them. And you have to buy from them. Over time, you will be making less than minimum wage.

And if you were a new brewer, you can’t sell to those pubs. So the dominant breweries stayed dominant.

Movie Industry

If a few movie studios owned all the theatres. Then it is impossible for an artist to show up if they don’t connect with those movie studios.

Basically, if the market is owned by monopolized people or company then there will be a bad impact.

Net Neutrality

It sounds complicated because those who are against it want to make it complicated.

Consider this, if you are the owner of a pipe. Then you need to consider all the traffic (cities who need pipe) the same. Because if you don’t then we will go back to the old age of Rockefeller impacting distribution.

If someone is forbidden to distribute then they can’t scale.

Most of them wouldn’t happen if the government was perfect. But they aren’t. Because there are lobbies supporting a government who have money and not many competitors.

Case in point, AT&T and Verizon are spending hundreds of dollars to stop net neutrality so that they stay at the top and/or earn huge loads of money.

TLDR: Scale that comes from lack of interoperability, scale that comes from forbidding others means established competitors can use government to stop others from scaling. Basically insulating them from new innovations.

BAR exam & Game

Earlier you could go and take the BAR exam and become a lawyer. Then they changed the rules. So if you get the BAR passing certificate from some accredited institute only then you are a lawyer.

That makes it hard for innovators who can help people pass this exam in 6 months.

Earlier Nintendo games had patent. So if you are an innovator who has a cool game idea, you can’t make games for Nintendo without their permission.

Do you think innovation will happen more here? NO, right.

AOL story

Once AOL ruled the internet. If you want your site to be seen by the world then you need to have it on AOL.

Now, you can build a site and it is open for the world to see. This is a massive change. Open access to everyone compared with restricted access.

Established players want to control distribution, technology, access to users, labour and government regulations to keep innovation away.

While consumers want innovators to do as they please without any hindrance.

Conclusion

As citizens, you have to support Open source, API so that the system is open and there becomes no monopoly.

And as entrepreneurs, we need to be aware that you might have the same instincts to become a monopoly.

Someone out there is another Antonio Meucci, one who doesn’t have enough money. Someone who doesn’t have the patience to get over the hurdle created by monopolies.

Your job is to help that person, make them found and help them so they can change things for better.

Every healthy community of any kind is based on innovation which encourages playing, new ideas are encouraged. So you need to fight every day who are trying to restrict the play.

You can’t say – you can’t play.

Questions

  • Do you recommend any books one should read before graduating from college?

Books can make a great impact if read at the right time.

The beginning of infinity by David Deutsch

Just Kids by Patti Smith

Secrets of closing the sale, see you at the top by Zig Ziglar

  • Insights on consultants who work on a one-to-one

You can become a coach. But there are many coaches. Hence, getting clients is hard. People who have a coach aren’t looking for coach. And people who don’t have a coach aren’t looking for coach either.

Having a coach is a private thing. Because we don’t talk about it. Seth’s advice for coaches is to go for group coaching. Group works better because other people help.

And if you do a good job, it spreads. Slowly you will get more clients which will help you keep doing work that matters.