Allthestreams.fm: A blatant piracy site or a campaign to change streaming’s core model?

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Image source: Allthestreams.fm

Allthestreams.fm is a site that aggregates video streams coming from several legitimate streaming services, with the tagline “Pirate Radio for Streaming.” (!)  My first reaction was to wonder who on earth would put such a site out there?!

I thought that it was at least one of at least three things: a blatant piracy site that’s attracting some unwanted wanted publicity, a public relations campaign designed to shine a light on streaming fragmentation – or – a completely naïve effort by someone who has no idea of the legal forces that could be trained against it.

Frankly, I doubted that it was for the third reason…  And it’s there to make a point.

Why it matters

Allthestreams.fm is a taunt at online video aggregators and producers to change the basic premise of their business model from being one of scarcity, to one of abundance; and as such, I have to say it’s genius.  Someone needs to raise the question in a way that gets peoples’ attention.

It’s produced by an Internet art site called MSCHF, and an interview by The Verge with the site’s creative director tells the story. “We’re going to play anything and everything we feel like. We’re going to make a Frankensteinian playlist of media that none of the streaming platforms could ever recommend to you because it would cost them the profits of their exclusively-owned content.”

Chipping in my own £0.02 worth: changing the scarcity model of streaming would reduce my likelihood of infringing behavior, and I’m sure others would agree.

Hypothetical question: Would MLB.TV like it if I watched only my local baseball team when their video service offers access only to out-of-market games?

Hypothetical answer: My own belief is that lots people access their local games via VPN so they can trick MLB.TV’s platform that they are out of town.  I imagine that MLB would prefer to reduce that infringing behavior.

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