It's really stupid to charge for sermon downloads

Shane the man with the tats has gone and said what I've been thinking for ages. It's really stupid to charge for sermon downloads. And I agree. You can read his full post here. Here is my recent experience.

Back in August I had the pleasure of attending a conference now famous for Mark Driscoll's 18 theses. As I listened his sermons they were awesome. So I filled out the form to allow them to charge me 50 bucks (I think that was the only option) and send me a full set of DVDs for the conference. No option to download.

Meanwhile I and others blogged about his 18 points and interest went through the roof. The powers that be in Sydney released the 18 point sermon for free download. I waited for my sermons... and waited... and waited... and waited. Finally almost two months later I received my set of $50 DVDs in the post. So I paid 50 bucks and waited 2 months for a sermon that was released free anyway. Not good enough people! Not good enough.

If Crossroads can turn around a sermon recording and host it free online within a couple of days surely the all the powers of Sydney can do the same. I assume it's the 21st Century there too.



Mikey Lynch said... 12/10/2008 2:46 pm  

"I assume it's the 21st Century there too."


Astrid said... 12/10/2008 9:40 pm  

oh that sucks mike. and $50 thats a lot.

there are two options
1. ring up and demand a refund and act like a upset customer

2. prepare your own 18 theses to present for next year. making one of them 'your've got to live in the 21st centery' you prob won't make it but I think you would be good at it but you don't have the huge mark driscoll reputation to really stirr things up

Claire :) said... 12/11/2008 4:52 pm  

Damned right. I've always wondered about this a bit, and I guess it comes back to your Christianity and capitalism vs socialism thing of a little while ago (man, sucks being out of the loop!), but I've always wondered whether it's really moral to charge more than the cost of burning and P&H for sermons etc. Of course it's free to download - it costs you a bit of bandwidth, it costs them a bit of bandwidth, but that's okay, you're both paying for that anyway. Maybe because the people who buy the physical items shouldn't be propping up those who don't it'd be okay to stick a $2 download charge on it, but that just seems petty.
How many DVDs is it? I don't think you can ever justify paying more than $5/disc, and another $8 or so P&H, maybe, so $20 seems fair. $50 is surely profiteering. Then to decide you've had your profits and everyone else can have it for free... doesn't really seem right.

I'm fine with paying for physical copies and not for electronic copies, but if this is a Christian thing, in my world view it's immoral to charge anything other than the cost of provision. And in that case, they should have said upfront at the time of the conference or whatever it was that there WOULD be this choice! (as there always should be! sticking things on a server is much easier than pressing disks!).

I think you're right to be upset. I'm pretty sure you're right, I *think* it's the 21st century in Sydney too... :)

Anthony Rochester said... 12/12/2008 10:47 am  

I dunno..

a DVD is a whole lot different to an online mp3. Its very easy to record the audio and put it online. Recording video, editing it, and getting DVDs pressed is very much more expensive and takes a lot longer to do. That's just how it is.
Also, they didn't put the audio for the whole conference online, did they.

mike said... 12/12/2008 11:21 am  

My point is very simple. I don't think anyone expects (should expect) in this day and age to have to wait for DVDs to be printed up especially when it comes to sermons.

My point is that this kind of information could be uploaded for free download almost instantaneously.

Anthony Rochester said... 12/13/2008 11:45 pm  

a whole conference worth of video footage? Isn't that several hours worth of video? I think that's a bit much to ask for instantaneous online access to..

mike said... 12/14/2008 1:57 pm  

I'd have been just as happy with audio (And I reckon everyone else would have been too)... Like I said Crossroads can turn an audio sermon around in a couple of days. Sydney is lagging behind.

Post a Comment