Glen Hiemstra, Gerd Leonhard

Commercial vs. Shared Culture
13 minutes, 6.3mb, recorded 2007-08-17
Glen Hiemstra, Gerd Leonhard

In the digital world, where information can be spread easily, there is a counterforce attempting to lock it up. Shared culture, such as the creative commons movement, continues to be fought against by traditional commercial culture. Gerd and Glen discuss these issues, assessing how things are likely to change in the future. They talk about how content owners have found ways to quickly filter internet content to assert their copyright rights.

They also share some examples about how companies are trying to find ways to be part of the sharing process and Glen talks about how a corporation has "stolen" the future. Finally, the two discuss what the possibilities are for publishing, comparing the online/blog process versus the traditional book process.

This program is also available in video. You can click on the player below or download the video file (QuickTime/MP4, 60MB).


Based in Switzerland, Gerd Leonhard has spent over twenty-five years in the technology and entertainment industries. In 2005, Gerd co-authored the critically acclaimed book "The Future of Music" which has become a must-read for music industry professionals around the globe. Gerd's second book "The End of Control" is now available for free at, further expanding the scope of his work into TV, Film, Radio and Print Media. Gerd's clients include the EBU/ ABU, SonyBMG, the BBC, RTL, Granada International, Nokia-Siemens, ITV, Unisys, Gracenote, and the European Commission. He is much in demand as a speaker at many leading events and conferences around the globe, and is considered a leading blogger and visionary.

Gerd is an expert on the drastic changes that are impacting content, media and communication companies as a consequence of the rapid deployment of new, disruptive technologies, and of convergence; he is equally fluid in technology, legal issues, social and cultural contexts, business models and general trends that affect media and communications. Gerd is also a serial entrepreneur, with a focus on digital music, currently serving as CEO of Sonific LLC, a San Francisco based company that provides music applications and widgets for blogs, social networks and online communities. He also holds a Jazz Performance (Guitar) Diploma by Berklee College of Music (87), and is the recipient of Berklee's Quincy Jones Jazz Masters Award (1985).

Glen Hiemstra is the founder and owner of Glen has advised professional, business, and governmental organizations for two decades. He is the author of Turning the Future into Revenue: What Businesses and Individuals Need to Know to Shape Their Futures, from John Wiley & Sons, 2006. Previously he co-authored Strategic Leadership: Achieving Your Preferred Future.

An expert in preferred future planning, Glen has worked on projects that range from science and technology, to economics, demographics and transportation, and energy and the environment. He has also served as a technical advisor for television programs set in the future. In a first career, Glen was an award-winning educator. He has been a Visiting Scholar at the Human Interface Technology Lab at the University of Washington, which works on virtual and augmented reality technology. He is on the Advisory Board of EcoMedia.


This free podcast is from our Future Talks series.

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