xkcd follower wrote:Also, who let the lobbyists of movies to have more power then those of the tech lobbyists? I think this is skewed in so many ways.
I've wondered this in the past (though in a more general sense- why entertainment has so much more influence) and I've had some ideas for why:
1. Movies & music are probably two of the most exported sections of the economy. Many (most?) big budget movies now make more money abroad than they do in the US.
2. Entertainment can be fairly easily outsourced to anywhere that tends to have lots of people that speak English- there isn't as much institionalized knowledge needed (which is not to say that there isn't any at all), unlike much of the tech world.
3. Entertainment is hugely consolidated. Three music labels make up ~80% of the music industry by revenue. Of those three labels, two of them are also major movie publishers- Sony & Warner. The third, Universal, is a subsidy of Vivendi, another huge media company. Between movies and music, there are probably less than a dozen companies* that control ~80% of the revenue. Contrast this with technology, in which there are many big-weights, all pulling in various directions. And some of the tech companies get absorbed (either by being purchased, or being subsumed after being the purchaser) by media companies: see Sony & Comcast.
4. Entertainment makes a lot of stars, and those stars will frequently play a big part in campaign contributions on top of the money provided by the companies themselves.
5. Entertainment is heavy in California, even more so than technology, which while being solidly democratic in presidential elections, has a lot of house seats in play, and doesn't seem to have the state legislature consistently dominated by either party.
6. Tech companies don't have a strong history of lobbying- from what I can gather, they're still figuring it out. Entertainment companies, on the other hand, I wouldn't be surprised to learn if they were the ones that invented lobbying.
Or, in short, my assumption is that it comes down to: media throws more money around, and does so with a more consistent message. If Microsoft, Intel, IBM, GE, Westinghouse, Apple, Google, Oracle, and so on, all agreed on a message and lobbied for it together, I'd bet they'd actually get what they wanted. In practice, even the tech companies that work together frequently (such as Intel & Microsoft, or Apple & Google), seem to hate each other.
As per GoDaddy, I have to agree with Griffin- this is just a retraction of public support. They still want it happen, they probably already played most of their hand to get it passed, and they aren't going to go ahead and try to oppose it. So, essentially, they're jerks.
* EDIT: I didn't check by revenue, but the Big Three music labels (Sony, Warner, and Universal) are ~80% of their revenue, while the MPAA has only six members: Disney, Sony, Paramount, Fox, Universal, and Warner. All three music labels show up in the MPAA member list in some form, so there's only about half a dozen companies making up most of money in entertainment.