Louis C.K.: Self Distribution Experiment Really Worked

via Dan Frommer. Louis C.K.:

The show went on sale at noon on Saturday, December 10th. 12 hours later, we had over 50,000 purchases and had earned $250,000, breaking even on the cost of production and website. As of Today, we’ve sold over 110,000 copies for a total of over $500,000. Minus some money for PayPal charges etc, I have a profit around $200,000 (after taxes $75.58). This is less than I would have been paid by a large company to simply perform the show and let them sell it to you, but they would have charged you about $20 for the video. They would have given you an encrypted and regionally restricted video of limited value, and they would have owned your private information for their own use. They would have withheld international availability indefinitely. This way, you only paid $5, you can use the video any way you want, and you can watch it in Dublin, whatever the city is in Belgium, or Dubai. I got paid nice, and I still own the video (as do you). You never have to join anything, and you never have to hear from us again.

Direct from the source via the Internet, thanks to a lot of chatter by a lot of websites with a lot of viewers, to the customer. Nice. It helps Louis C.K. is a big name in comedy. One thing though: The red text on black is a visual torment.

Update: via John Gruber. Louis C.K.’s Q&A regarding piracy on Reddit:

To steal from someone and not feel bad, you either have to be a sociopath or view the act differently. One way is to remove “Someone” from the equation. You’re not stealing from a person. Big companies do a lot to help people view them as less than human. I heard a speech by Noam Chomsky who said that corporations are like super humans. They cannot be hurt like a human can and they never die. They are not susceptible to scrutiny or accountability. This makes them more profitable. If companies want to enjoy these benefits to some degree they have to live with what else comes with being not human. You miss out on compassion, forgiveness, camaraderie, empathy, trust all kinds of shit.

Update 2: via MG Siegler. Louis C.K.:

So it’s been about 12 days since the thing started and yesterday we hit the crazy number. One million dollars.

12 days. US$1 million. Here’s how he will break it down: $250K goes to cost of production, $250K to staff and others, $280K to charity, and $220K for him and his family. This works.