December 15, 2011
How Louis CK Changed The Game
Did you guys catch it? Louis CK revolutionized stand up comedy again.
No, it wasn’t his act, and no, it wasn’t his ground breaking FX series.
This time Louie did something on his own terms that resulted in a great success and forever changed the game.
If you are reading this then you probably know what he accomplished. Louie experimented and it paid off big time. He fronted the money to film one of his shows at Beacon Theater last month. He had it professionally shot with 6 cameras, and professionally edited. This was DVD quality footage, not some half assed production that would insult his legions of fans.
What he did next was a stroke of genius. Rather than handing the footage over to a network, Louie came up with the idea to sell downloadble copies of it to his fans for just $5.
Five dollars to see a new special from the top comedian out there right now. With that $5 you own the special. It is not DRM encoded so you can share it to your heart’s content. You can even burn it onto a DVD and Louie even provided artwork for you to print out. Louie politely asked people not to share it via Torrent in which they complied.
Everyone was skeptical at first as to how he would earn money from this concept. In modest, Louie fashion, he posted the sales figures & profits and as of today he has grossed over $500,000 with a profit of $200,000 for himself.
Once again, the game has changed.
It will be interesting to see how this effects networks and other venues in stand up comedy. Will every performer go for the quick buck, or will they ride it out and wait for this trend to end?