Posts Tagged ‘mpaa’

Yochai Benkler On SOPA, PIPA and MegaUpload

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Understanding PIPA / SOPA

Friday, January 20th, 2012

If you don’t pay attention to any other information out there about PIPA and SOPA you must watch this – and then share it with others – and talk about it amongst your friends and family – and yell in the ear of your elected representatives.

This isn’t just a US issue – it affects ALL of us.

I’m especially pissed at the moment because of the US government twisting the arm of New Zealand to arrest the owners of Megaupload, seizing their property – and then subsequently shutting down the Megaupload site, without the benefit of PIPA/SOPA. The Justice Department claims about “massive copyright infringement” ring hollow when you consider what preceded these actions: Megaupload was poised to become a serious business competitor to the established music industry. Universal Music Group makes a call – badda-bing.

So why should I be so pissed?

Our online video production, Ruffus The Dog’s Christmas Carol was being distributed for download via Megaupload. We, like may other legitimate businesses, have been using Megaupload (and other sites similarly targeted by the large media corporations) as a practical means of distributing our content. It allows us to bypass exorbitant bandwidth costs and negate the need for any usurious deals with established media distributors.

In the coming weeks you will see more heavy-handed legal actions like this – and increasing vitriolic responses from those affected – as big media and corrupt government take off their gloves and masks and come out swinging for open and undisputed control of the internet.

The net is more than a series of tubes, more than just another top-down distribution system and much more than just a thorn in the side of the dying music, film and television business models. The net has become an extension of our nervous system; it is how we hear and see and speak in this world – and it is being forcibly taken over by entrenched powers who don’t like it when we stop listening to them and choose instead to talk amongst ourselves.

Fuck them.

Download Disobedience

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

Nifty little info comic courtesy of the InfoAnarchy Wiki. Just cick on the image to see it full size.

Download Disobedience

Pass it on.

And while you’re at it – go sign the Public Domain Manifesto. As blogged on BoingBoing by Cory Doctorow:

The Public Domain is the rule, copyright protection is the exception. Since copyright protection is granted only with respect to original forms of expression, the vast majority of data, information and ideas produced worldwide at any given time belongs to the Public Domain. In addition to information that is not eligible for protection, the Public Domain is enlarged every year by works whose term of protection expires. The combined application of the requirements for protection and the limited duration of the copyright protection contribute to the wealth of the Public Domain so as to ensure access to our shared culture and knowledge.

Read it. Sign it. Talk about it.


P. S. Thanks for the comic link, Fred!

P. P. S. If you want to get really fucked up squirrely ass mad about all this corporate ownership of the entire fucking world bullshit be sure to drop by Michael Geist’s blog where he looks at the secret ACTA negotiations that start today in Mexico where this agreement is being designed to extend far beyond counterfeiting and how it will reshape domestic law in many countries, including Canada.

Will Copyright Laws Stifle Creativity?

Sunday, August 30th, 2009

There’s been a lot of bullshit happening in Canada as the Harper government does its best to look pretty whilst wearing the brown lipstick of the U.S. media industry. You can find out more about the pitiful shenanigans of the music industry, blatantly stacking town hall meetings to discuss copyright reform, and the suppression of alternative voices at these so called “open and public discussions”, on other blogs like Michael Geist and Jill Golick or and BoingBoing. I’ve ranted and raved about it before – and doubtless will again – but right now it’s the weekend and I’m lazy and I’m gonna go lie down and read a cheap mystery novel.

In the meantime, here’s a short video of Prof. Lawrence Lessig giving a talk this past February at the New York Public Library (along with Steven Johnson and Shepard Fairey) addressing the very real concerns that our copyright laws are being hijacked by dying media industries to support a failed and archaic business model and in those efforts to stem the inevitable tide of technological and cultural progress they are stealing our voices, stealing our right to speak and hear about our world.

Will copyright laws stifle creativity? If the major media companies are allow to corrupt our elected officils and subvert our democratic processes to assert their right to define what culture is – as in: whatever they sell us and nothing else – then Yes the laws of copyright are a threat to creativity and freedom of speech as well as freedom of thought.

Make noise. Kick these fuckers in the nuts.


P. S. Actually the mystery novel is not cheap, it’s Dashiel Hammett’s classic “The Big Knockover” – in case you were wondering.

Thru-You – Kutiman Remixes YouTube

Thursday, March 12th, 2009

This is a really cool music video put together by Kutiman. I found it over on Lawrence Lessig’s blog.

The music you hear has been composed from the audio of the YouTube videos you see. This new work has been created entirely from remixing old work. Lessig uses it as an example of what his book REMIX addresses, namely: the existing system of copyright is busted all the fuck up and it needs more than mere reform.

The ability to do this sort of work was never envisaged by the original creators of copyright law – yet the existing powers who benefit the most from these decaying rules (RIAA, MPAA, etc.) continue to pervert the copyright laws through misinformation, litigation and corruption of the judicial and legislative processes, not for the oft proclaimed protection of artists rights but to retain their dominant position of control and profit which they see eroding before their very jaded eyes.

TorrentFreak reports on how major artists are starting (finally) to fight back against the greed of the media industry with the formation of their own lobby group.

Watching further examples of Kutiman’s remixes only serves to reinforce the notion that the old rules of copyright no longer apply when new technologies invade and evolve our cultures. Our rules need to evolve or dissolve to address the needs of everyone, not just a self-elected business elite.

In time, all this will be sorted out and we will eventually find ourselves living in a world that makes a little more sense and is still filled with music, stories and moving pictures to enhance and entrance our lives. In the meantime we have to put up with the bullying and hypocritical posturing of the deep pockets and lying loud mouths of the old school decaying dinosaur music, film and television industries. Okay fine. Let ‘em rant. Let ‘em rave. Just don’t let ‘em have their way.

We’ll still be here after their long gone.

For now – enjoy the music – and make some of your own.