December 30, 2007

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Cliff Baldridge.

The self-described “Multi-Award Winning Super-Producer and Director” has just put out a press release that begins,

  SANTA BARBARA, Calif. & LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Santa Barbara Arts TV today announced that they have formed a content and advertising partnership with YouTube, now allowing the YouTube community to engage, interact and monetize the Exclusive, A-List Social Media Content on The Santa Barbara Arts TV YouTube Brand Channel at http://www.youtube.com/SBARTSTV.

A few (among many) money grafs down is this pair:

  Santa Barbara Arts TV content is now monetized through our YouTube Partner Channel via Google AdSense Video Units and The Google AdSense YouTube Video Units Player. Santa Barbara Arts TV Content is now listed in the AdSense Content Providers Area as Santa Barbara Arts and AdSense publishers are currently monetizing our content.

  Google AdSense Video Units enable AdSense publishers to display relevant, targeted video content within a customized, embedded player that’s ad-supported. Google is working with select YouTube content partners including Santa Barbara Arts TV to supply the video content. AdSense Video Units Program is available in the US and will roll-out to the UK, Ireland, Canada and new countries where video units are available allowing the enabling and enriching of websites and blogs with relevant video content while enabling Webmasters and Bloggers to earn extra revenue from the relevant, non-intrusive ads that accompany the videos.

As if this weren’t scammy (and spammy) enough, there’s THE OFFICIAL SANTABARBARAARTSTV.com YOUTUBE PARTNER CHANNEL itself. It contains this subtle message from Cliff:

  WE ARE ADSENSE ENABLED!!! WEBMASTERS AND BLOGGERS MAKE MONEY THROUGH YOUTUBE AND GOOGLE ADSENSE…SPEAK THE TRUTH AND HELP PEOPLE AND CHARITIES AND KARMA WILL LOOK OUT FOR YOU..RESIST NEGATIVITY..SHOW COMPASSION TO THE MISGUIDED…LIVE YOUR DREAMS…DO NOT MISUSE PEOPLE…BE LOVE BE LOVED…WEBMASTERS AND BLOGGERS MAKE MONEY THROUGH YOUTUBE AND GOOGLE ADSENSE AND THIS PROGRAM IS NOW AVAILABLE IN AMERICA AND SOON TO ROLL OUT IN OTHER COUNTRIES IN A STAGGERED ROLLOUT AND THE PUBLIC CAN NOW MAKE MONEY FROM OUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL THROUGH GOOGLE ADSENSE WELCOME TO THE YOUTUBE MONEY CASHCOW REVOLUTION: SANTA BARBARA ARTS IS ONE OF THE HUNDRED COVETED ORIGINAL YOUTUBE PARTNERS WHO IS CURRENTLY ADSENSE YOUTUBE VIDEO UNITS ENABLED.

  MEANING PEOPLE, CHARITIES, WEBMASTERS, BLOGGERS, WEBSITE CREATORS CAN ALL MAKE MONEY NOW, THIS IS AN ECONOMIC REVOLUTION. COURTESY OF YOUTUBE.

  THE SECRET THE SECRET OF ATTRACTION IT IS NO SECRET IT IS A GIFT WE GIVE AND WE GET! POSITIVE KARMA

  NAMASTE

Cliff seems to be a happy guy who enjoys what he’s doing, so … what the hell.

Via Edhat.

[later...] Cliff, clearly a good-natured guy, posted a response here.

In The RIAA is Right, Robert Scoble offers a tongue-in-cheek take on the RIAA’s insane idea that ripping one’s own CDs is illegal.* Among other things he says,

  5. This behavior will make sure people buy (or steal) music directly from bands. See how Radiohead did it. By doing that the price for music will go down thanks to fewer intermediaries. RIAA is just helping us get rid of them, which is good for everyone who loves music. See, they are on our side! I’m looking for a site that lets us do Vendor Relationship Management with bands. Doc Searls taught me about VRM. What is that? When we can get the company to do what WE want. Radiohead put the power of setting the price in OUR hands. Brilliant.

Robert is right about all but one thing. Because VRM is about independence as well as engagement, it can’t come from “a site”. Or from anybody other than ourselves. It’s something that lives on the buyer’s side, allowing him or her to relate independently with many suppliers, on terms that are mutually agreeable.

I unpack some of this in a comment under Robert’s post.

A few months ago I also proposed a VRM system that would extend the RadioHead model to any artist.

* According to this post, that’s not really what the RIAA is doing, but they’re “still kinda being jerks about it”.