Corporate concentration (and profits) have breached the stratosphere. An ever-expanding constellation of industries are now monopolies (where sellers have excessive power over buyers), monopsonies (where buyers hold the whip hand over sellers)—or both. Rebecca Giblin and Cory Doctorow argue the result is ‘chokepoint capitalism’: rigged markets where powerful corporations have managed to position themselves between workers and customers in ways that allow them to extract far more than their fair share of value.
Nowhere are chokepoints more endemic than creative labor markets. Chokepoint Capitalism details breathtaking abuses being carried out in almost every place creativity meets money: book publishing; Hollywood screenwriting; game development; news; music streaming, publishing, and ticketing, and more. Deconstructing the playbook used by Big Tech and Big Content to create their chokepoints, Giblin and Doctorow show the problem to be fundamentally one of power imbalance. But they don’t stop there - they have a whole bunch of detailed, rousing, unabashedly hopeful proposals for change. In conversation with David Goodman, who was President of the WGA during its recent successful strike against the major Hollywood talent agencies, they’ll show how creators and audiences can work together to widen these chokepoints out—and get artists paid.
Cory Doctorow is a bestselling science fiction writer and activist. He is a special advisor to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, with whom he has worked for 20 years. He is also a visiting professor of computer science at the Open University (UK) and of library science at the University of North Carolina. He is also a MIT Media Lab research affiliate. He co-founded the UK Open Rights Group and co-owns the website Boing Boing. He is the author of more than 20 books, including novels for adults and young adults, graphic novels for middle-grade readers, picture books, nonfiction books on technology and politics, and collections of essays. Follow him on Twitter (@doctorow).
Rebecca Giblin (she/her) is an ARC Future Fellow and Professor at Melbourne Law School, where she leads interdisciplinary teams researching issues around creators’ rights, access to knowledge, and the regulation of technology and culture. She is Director of the Intellectual Property Research Institute of Australia (IPRIA) and heads up the Author’s Interest and eLending projects (authorsinterest.org; elendingproject.org), as well as Untapped: the Australian Literary Heritage Project (untapped.org.au). Chokepoint Capitalism is her latest book. She also wrote Code Wars and co-edited What if we could reimagine copyright?. Follow her on Twitter (@rgibli).
David A. Goodman has been writing professionally since 1988, when he was hired as a staff writer on THE GOLDEN GIRLS. Since then, he has written for over twenty television series, including WINGS, DREAM ON, STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE, and FUTURAMA. He has been a showrunner/executive producer for FAMILY GUY, AMERICAN DAD, ALLEN GREGORY starring Jonah Hill, and THE ORVILLE. His recent movie, HONOR SOCIETY, premiered in 2022 on Paramount Plus. He served on the Board of Directors of the Writers Guild of America West from 2006-2014, served as Vice President from 2015-2017, and President from 2017-2021. During his two terms as President he led the successful struggle to eliminate talent agency packaging fees, as well as helping to secure the first portable paid family leave clause in a union contract.
This ticketed event will take place at the Beverly Hills Library Auditorium located at 444 N. Rexford Dr., Beverly Hills. Please note that masks are required at all times.
Tickets include a copy of Chokepoint Capitalism, which will be handed out at check-in. There is also a ticket only option that does not include a copy of the book.
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