Creators vs Producers
I was looking at the meaning of ‘businessman’ in an esteemed dictionary service. This is the example it provided:
This got me thinking: What is the difference?
Doesn’t a businessman write? But more importantly:
Isn’t writing a business?
Aren’t writers businessmen?
Won’t writers do better if they realize that they are businessmen?
The sites on the internet that give suggestions to aspiring writers are filled with lines such as:
treat your writing as a business, Content Entrepreneurship. etc.
I wanted to go on a dictionary-journey to see what it all may mean?
and so I went. This time with the Cambridge travel services.
Buying and selling are self-explanatory. Yet,
physical books are goods while e-books are services.
any type of writing present in the physical form is a good and
any type of writing present in the digital form which requires a physical device is a service.
But this is not just about writers and writing. What I noticed was every single thing and activity that involves money is a business!
Be it a diplomacy of a politician, lecture of a professor or an autobiography of a yogi.
What’s the point?
Business, Entrepreneurship are terms and activities that have already reached a point of extreme ubiquity.
There is no point using those terms anymore.
The most difficult mental adjustment for anyone surviving and living from — thinking, creating, revolting, activisting — is identifying with the term ‘business’.
But the fascinating thing is that, if we are exchanging money, or any type of goods or services, we are in business.
So, how do we differentiate people who are ‘greedy’, hence, pursue business in a traditional sense and those who are ‘non-greedy’ and pursue creative value?
The key terms to use are — a. Producers b. Creators. Hence, the key questions to ask are:
What is one selling?
What business is one in?
We can define producers as business people who sell:
- Products and Creations developed by others.
- Managing and Organizing such creators.
This is similar to Karl Marx’s Capitalist
Capitalists are the business owners who organize the process of production and who own the means of production such as factories, tools, and raw material, and who are also entitled to any and all profits.
Let us now define Creators as business people who:
Similar to the labor in Marxist sense:
…labor (which Marx termed the “proletariat”). Laborers do not own or have any claim to the means of production, the finished products they work on, or any of the profits generated from sales of those products. Rather, labor works only in return for a money wage. Marx argued that because of this uneven arrangement, capitalists exploit workers.
These types of business people sell their creation to the producer who then sells that creation in the market. Writers, talkers, painters, philosophers, scientists, intellectuals, inventors, engineers, programmers, artists, etc. fall under this category.
I say this is how we differentiate people who pursue ‘traditional business’ and those who pursue ‘creative value’.
The first category of business people are producers while the latter are creators. The former might have vision, suggestions to a creation, but that is not sufficient to make them creators because:
In order to be a creator, the answer to the following question:
What is one selling?
has to be — that which I have discovered, written, directed, edited, conceived, engineered, invented, programmed, drawn, played, composed, performed, painted, designed…
Eg. Medium is a producer, we who are writing are creators.
Just as in the Marxist sense of labor, today’s creators
do not own or have any claim to the means of production, the finished products they work on, or any of the profits generated from sales of those products. Rather, labor works only in return for a money wage.
As we all head deeper and deeper into knowledge-economy, this distinction I think becomes very important. We have an ever-increasing number of people creating content these days. With this increase, there will also be an increase in the number of producers ready to capitalize. Those who do not directly sell their own creation, will always make more than the creator.
This is a very important thing for the creators to remember.
Those are the revenues generated by YouTube and Netflix respectively in 2020. That’s a huge amount of money for the producers to play with!
Although they are softwares, which are creations, they are not creative businesses because they have already acted as a platform and are selling someone else’s content for their subsistence instead of their own direct creations with nothing below.
History is once again repeating itself as the producers of today are accumulating huge sums of profit by acting as mediator platforms for production and distribution. They seem to not care what happens to the quality or the nature of the content in their platform. The only difference is that the black suited bosses of yore who judged have been replaced by algorithms that locate profit better than a human mind for the producers.
Internet today has provided tremendous opportunities for the creators to come together, observe the numbers and think of solutions. Just because YouTube is an extremely important platform doesn’t make it invincible. At the end of the day, they are selling someone else’s content.
I think the creators of any type should always keep this in mind. At the end of the day, the producers thrive only because of the creators they have. Creators should be able to form a truce between themselves and not fall into the divide and conquer of the producer. The only enemy for a creator is the producer. It has always been so. If a producer is having an undue advantage, then that producer has to be replaced because at that point the producer is working for an exponential nature of increase in profit, destroying all types of quality and values.
Since every profession is a business, it’s best for the creators to be one step ahead of the producer in making deals. Else, the producer as always will keep on winning.
- Business is an ubiquitous term
- Every activity that involves money and resource is a business. It’s about buying and selling.
- Everyone involved with this are business people.
- There are two types of business people: a. creators b. producers
- This is an important mental and psychological adjustment as it immunes creators from greedy businesses
- The most important question is — what do you sell?
- Creators sell content they have created to the producers while producers sell it in the market
- Producers will always earn more than the creators.
- The Internet has allowed creators to group and organize like never before. Advantage has to be taken.
- Producers have to be checked and balanced by the creator
- Producer and their algorithm ought not dictate the content, creators should
- Producers should be replaceable
- Since every profession is a business, it’s best for the creators to be one step ahead of the producer in making deals