Chokepoint Capitalism: How Big Tech and Big Content Captured Creative Labor Markets and How We'll Win Them Back


Author: Cory Doctorow (Author),


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"[Giblin and Doctorow] deliver a lucid and damning exposé of how big business captured the culture markets."
Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

"Giblin and Doctorow make a convincing case that taking on Big Tech and Big Content--seemingly a lonely and demoralizing endeavor--is, in fact, an opportunity for community."
The Atlantic

"Provocative . . . What makes this book so refreshing is that it never lets its reader off the hook. The authors remind us, repeatedly, that our ignorance is being weaponised against us. If we don't understand how big business established its chokehold over us, how will we ever be able to wriggle free of its grip?"
The Guardian

"Nerdy, sharp, radical and readable."
The Financial Times

"A searing and comprehensive take on the oligopolies that control creative markets, from publishing to music distribution to film distribution."

"Chokepoint Capitalism is the book we need now. Comprehensive and accessible, stirring and enlightening, it is a roadmap for taking immediate action against the corporate chokepoints that are crushing our creative workers and, increasingly, the rest of the middle class as well."
The Progressive

"Chokepoint Capitalism is a wake-up call. The emphasis it places on the need for a collective response to chokepoint capitalism gives the book its radical edge."
--The Conversation

"Totally readable."
The Spinoff

"This book is an absolute must-read for anyone who senses that the predominant economic mythology is a lie . . . and who is ready to finally start fixing the problem."
--David Sirota, writer of
Don't Look Up

"Chokepoint Capitalism tells us how the vampires crashed the party and provides protective garlic."
--Margaret Atwood, author of
The Handmaid's Tale

"Searing, essential, and incredibly readable."
--Adam Conover, comedian and host of
The G-Word

"An urgent, profound, and approachable take on what it's going to take to save our culture. If you care about books, movies, or music, read this book right now. And share a copy with a friend."
--Seth Godin, author of
The Practice

"Chokepoint Capitalism is a Why We Fight for a long-overdue uprising."
--Kaiser Kuo, host and cofounder of
The Sinica Podcast

"Giblin and Doctorow persuasively argue that copyright can't unrig a rigged market--for that, you need worker power, antitrust, and solidarity."
--Jimmy Wales, cofounder of Wikipedia

"I loved this book. . . . It helps us all see the locks and chains and the ways to chisel through them."
--Zephyr Teachout, author of
Break 'Em Up

"Brilliant and wide-ranging."
--Lawrence Lessig, Roy L. Furman Professor of Law and Leadership, Harvard Law School

"Every creator will find inspiration here."
--Anil Dash, CEO of Glitch

"Capitalism doesn't work without competition. Giblin and Doctorow impressively show the extent to which that's been lost throughout the creative industries, and how this pattern threatens every other worker."
--Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist

"A tome for the times . . . The revolution will not be spotified!"
--Christopher Coe, artist and cofounder of Awesome Soundwave

"Chokepoint Capitalism couples its legal-economic critique with provocative, sometimes utopian, prescriptions for fairly remunerating authors and performers."
--Jane C. Ginsburg, Morton L. Janklow Professor of Literary and Artistic Property Law, Columbia University School of Law

"If you have ever wondered why the web feels increasingly stale, Chokepoint Capitalism outlines in great detail how it is being denied fresh air."
--Mat Dryhurst, artist and researcher, NYU's Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music

"Chokepoint Capitalism is more than a clarion call for a new, necessary form of trustbusting. It's a grand unified theory of a decades-long, corporate-led hollowing out of creative culture."
--Andy Greenberg, writer for
WIRED and author of Sandworm and Tracers in the Dark

"Not just a fascinating tour of the hidden mechanics of the platform era, from Spotify playlists to Prince's name change, but a compelling agenda to break Big Tech's hold."
--Eli Pariser, author of
The Filter Bubble and cofounder of Avaaz

"A masterwork . . . It's a necessary read for any artist in the entertainment industry."
--David A. Goodman, writer, executive producer of
The Orville, and former president of the WGA West

"An infuriating yet inspiring call to collective action."
--Douglas Rushkoff, author of
Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus and Survival of the Richest

About the Author

Rebecca Giblin (she/her) is an ARC Future Fellow and Professor at Melbourne Law School, where she leads interdisciplinary teams researching issues around creators' rights, access to knowledge, and the regulation of technology and culture. She is Director of the Intellectual Property Research Institute of Australia (IPRIA) and heads up the Author's Interest and eLending projects (authorsinterest.org; elendingproject.org), as well as Untapped- the Australian Literary Heritage Project (untapped.org.au). Chokepoint Capitalism is her latest book. She also wrote Code Wars and co-edited What if we could reimagine copyright?. Follow her on Twitter (@rgibli)

Cory Doctorow is a bestselling science fiction writer and activist. He is a special advisor to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, with whom he has worked for 20 years. He is also a visiting professor of computer science at the Open University (UK) and of library science at the University of North Carolina. He is also a MIT Media Lab research affiliate. He co-founded the UK Open Rights Group and co-owns the website Boing Boing. He is the author of more than 20 books, including novels for adults and young adults, graphic novels for middle-grade readers, picture books, nonfiction books on technology and politics, and collections of essays. Follow him on Twitter (@doctorow).

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