I'm always jealous about continuous income!

24 Oct 2010 - 2:23am
3 years ago
10 replies
934 reads
obeyux
2010

Musicians have developed their own system to get continuous income (royalty), and also it can be used universally, but designers have very weak guidance.You think is it impossible to make similar kind of system like music industry in design world?  

music industry is also facing  a threat these days. But I think this doesn't change the royalty system, because they have regulations, global unions...and so on. 

Why designers cannot make this kind of regulation? Because distinct characteristics of design area? Or designers' special personality to avoid to muster?

Comments

24 Oct 2010 - 9:05am
Rhonda Ranney
2010

I understand what your saying...

However this industry is collaborative in a unique way, one final great project is built on so many creative AND technical ideas. There is no lead singer or band or writer etc...that gets the credit. Design, in my opinion is intended to be built up, made better, made useful and about creating the best possible end user experience. To do that it takes teamwork, collaboration and many great minds.

There would be no "royalties" left to dole out... 

On Oct 24, 2010 3:26 AM, "obeyux" <silentsong@naver.com> wrote:
> Musicians have developed their own system to get continuous income
> (royalty),
>
> and also it can be used universally, but designers have very weak guidance.
>
> You think is it impossible to make similar kind of system like music
> industry in design world?  
>
> You might think that design industry is also facing  a threat these days.
>
> But I think this doesn't change the royalty system, because they have
> regulations, global unions...and so on.
>
> Why designers cannot make this kind of regulation? Because distinct
> characteristics of design area? Or 
>
> designers' special personality to avoid to muster?
>
> (((Plea

25 Oct 2010 - 6:05am
Christian Snodgrass
2008

Also, from another side, those designers that tried to charge royalties for every little thing would never get any work. There is no designer great enough to overcome the business sense of paying a royalty.
I agree with what Rhonda said as well. There are many hands that go into making the piece.
Besides, with royalties they have to make several million sells before they get much money. There are few design pieces that get that much solitary attention.
- Christian

On Sun, Oct 24, 2010 at 10:17 AM, Rhonda Ranney <rboyz77@gmail.com> wrote:

I understand what your saying...

However this industry is collaborative in a unique way, one final great project is built on so many creative AND technical ideas. There is no lead singer or band or writer etc...that gets the credit. Design, in my opinion is intended to be built up, made better, made useful and about creating the best possible end user experience. To do that it takes teamwork, collaboration and many great minds.

There would be no "royalties" left to dole out... 

On Oct 24, 2010 3:26 AM, "obeyux" <silentsong@naver.com [1]> wrote:
> Musicians have developed their own system to get continuous income
> (royalty),
>
> and also it can be used universally, but designers have very weak guidance.
>
> You think is it impossible to make similar kind of system like music
> industry in design world?  
>
> You might think that design industry is also facing  a threat these days.
>
> But I think this doesn't change the royalty system, because they have
> regulations, global unions...and so on.
>
> Why designers cannot make this kind of regulation? Because distinct
> characteristics of design area? Or 
>
> designers' special personality to avoid to muster?
>
> (((Plea

(((Plea
25 Oct 2010 - 9:05am
Moses Wolfenstein
2010

I'd just like to point out that with regard to royalties and the production of music, this is not a model that works for most musicians as a mode of subsistence. David Byrne had a great article in Wired a little while back about the different music distribution and profit making modes in the music industry. It might provide an interesting point of reference (between this thread and the one about rock stars) for highlighting the ways in which the musician metaphor falls short for thinking about work in design:

http://www.wired.com/entertainment/music/magazine/16-01/ff_byrne?currentPage=all

-moses

--
Moses Wolfenstein, Ph.D.
Associate Director of Research
Academic ADL Co-Lab
www.moseswolfenstein.com
Twitter: @mosesoperandi

25 Oct 2010 - 8:16am
smitty777
2010

I agree with Rhonda - actually, in some ways my paychecks are my royalties. 

That being said, there are ways to gain real royalties from your design work: http://mashable.com/2009/02/28/sell-designs-online/

 

 

25 Oct 2010 - 9:10am
obeyux
2010

First of all, Thank you so much about your sincere answers. I totally agree with the specialty of design projects, the cooperate jobs. And also yes, of course, designers can choose royalty contract, but I mean musicians have a regulation, and it means any group or person can gain money if they register their name in order to defend their rights to continue making a profit from that music. 

Musicians can get regular money after 50 years (maybe 70 years?) when they die, they have associations which can monitor about piracy, and help to get regular income as well.

Except getting help from design law (I know registering design is almost useless and takes too long time...)

Designers ever tried to make have this kind of minimal level of protection system or union/organization? If design associations can do this kind of agent it would be great help for newbie like me, or any other professionals....

 

25 Oct 2010 - 12:35pm
hersh
2010

Yes, I agree with above comments. Design is usually not the product that agencies can sell on your behalf and give you royalties. One provides design as a service instead.

However, there instances where you can sell your design as a product.

1. Sell stock designs like Smitty mentions above.

2. Patent it. Neilson and many other companies earn royalties when the license their patents out. Eg: the design for emphasizing search words in context snippet of results page is a patent lent out to various companies.

3. Brand as a product. Just like fashion designers or architects, build a your name and start negotiating.

Ad agencies have debated this topic as well. Some have gone from hourly model to ROI model, others just have an asking price plus hours.

25 Oct 2010 - 2:25pm
Paul Bryan
2008

The differences are mainly cost and defensibility of intellectual property.

- Music copyrights cost little to nothing, depending on the approach you take, and are typically very strong.

- Design patents are expensive to file and defend, and are relatively weak compared with other forms of IP.

Living in a town that boasts the most bands per capita in the USA (Athens, GA), I'd have to question your assumptions about musicians and steady income. The designers definitely drive better cars.

Paul Bryan

Blog: http://www.virtualfloorspace.com

26 Oct 2010 - 3:36pm
Jess Judge
2010

Only the most successful of musicians ever found the royalty approach provide real lasting financial income. Most modern muscians realize that a sustainable income hinges more on performance fees, akin to the services designers provide (direct pay for direct activity). Hoping to create continuous income flows based on past work is likely a realistic model moving forward.

Also, I recommend watching this TED talk from Johanna Blakley before you start calling for *increased* IP protection in the design world:

http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/johanna_blakley_lessons_from_fashion_s_free_culture.html

-Jess

26 Oct 2010 - 7:05pm
Christian Snodgrass
2008

Also, all of that protection has to be paid for... which is why musicians may get less than 1% of the money which comes from royalties, by the time everyone else has taken their share.

27 Oct 2010 - 11:05am
obeyux
2010

Dear Jess,   Thank you!!

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