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Tuesday, January 22, 2013


Since my return to the Caribbean I cant remember ever asking for a discount on anything. Sure, I will take a fair discount if offered but I usually believe that the price offered is the price the service or the product is being sold at. If I get it lower great, but I wont actively lobby for it. I wont go into a supermarket, look at an overpriced can of beans, and mentally calculate the margin from import (I worked in wholesale as my very first job after school). This is despite knowing its probably 3-400% margin on what its imported at. I am not obssessed with managing someone elses outcomes and risks.

Nope...I dont.

Yet, a supermarket man, an event owner, an insurance man, a telephone man, pretty much everyone who sells products and services they do not compromise cost on, and I never twist their arms on, see creative works as eminently negotiable and discountable. They will and have even approached employees behind the scenes to massage them to provide creative services at lower costs, of course directly.

As Daffy Duck would say its Deshpicable !

Its a common story whichever creative resources I speak to. The Caribbean has literally become a haven of intellectual theft. Barbados is one of the biggest leeching locations in the world, and countries like Dominica and Antigua routinely steal creative works, including music, photography and creative works, for reuse. Its an ideosyncracy which is odd when you consider the Caribbean has probably the greatest concentration of cultural and creative resources in the world.

A man will get 6 months in jail for stealing a bag of biscuits, but someone can take an ad, or a musical riff and reuse it without permission with a much greater 'theft' value and nothing is thought wrong. This is no watershed moment for me. The people who often decry the value of creative works usually cant do one even if you left them for a month with every possible tool and inspiration. And most people can upsell insurance and resell a can or beans or a bag of rice. I think we need to create a spoof campaign.

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