Why I Hate The Word Content (And You Should Too)

I remember when Dan Schoenbrun first sent us the screener for collective:unconscious, an anthology film about dreams, nightmares, volcanos, suburban paranoia, and the state of race in America. We were like, damn – that content is tight.
Psych. We never said that. Literally: no one has ever said that. Think about the last movie you fell in love with, the last show you went to, the last song you hit repeat on. Watching Paul Dano shred using Daniel Radcliffe’s corpse as a surfboard. Leafing through Wiki’s lyric sheets, an ode to a Lost New York. Listening to Badbadnotgood redefine jazz and genre. That’s not content. That’s art.

At a time when 211 million pieces of ‘content’ are uploaded to the Internet every minute, at a time when new digital studios are popping up every day, the majority of artists still have limited access to direct support for the development of their work. The unfortunate reality is that less than 5% of music streaming libraries will ever be played. Only a fraction of independent films will ever find their audiences. Middle-class distributors are disappearing. Smart, talented filmmakers are quitting the industry all together. (If they can even break into the industry– there are 15.24 male directors for each 1 female director… not to mention #oscarssowhite.) Digital distribution lives and dies by discovery, which often leaves diverse stories untold.

I joined BitTorrent because our goal is to fix that. We’re building a decentralized, global creative network, not another centralized studio. We don’t buy ‘content’. We invest in artists. Because outside voices need to be heard. Because one thing is for certain: the future of art is not ‘content’.

Today we launched The Discovery Fund, an open initiative dedicated to supporting diverse creators seeking global distribution for original work. Through this initiative, we’ll partner with 25 creators, providing grants and promotional support for original, uncompromising projects. The rules are simple. You make something awesome. You own it. We back it, and help you find a global audience for your big idea.
Together with you, let’s redefine what it means to be an artist in the digital age. Our goal is to support the world’s next wave of straight-up brave storytellers and outside voices. If that sounds like you, we’d love to hear what you are working on. Our doors are open. And the future of creativity is yours to write. Apply here.

Straith
Written by: Straith

Straith leads creative initiatives at Bittorrent

  • Elizabeth de Moya

    Its a noun. Chill out.