On Mon, 12 Oct 2009, Andrew Pam wrote:
"For the last hundred years, rightsholders have fretted about everything
from the player piano to the VCR to digital TV to Napster. Here are
those objections, in Big Content's own words."
What a bunch of jerks.
A) They are conflating artists with the music, book, and movie production
industries. Sadly, the entertainment industries confuse this issue by
purporting to protect the artist in the same way censors are purportedly
B) In the comments: "You do realise that making money is not some kind of god
given right?" What about fair payment for the use of people's labour?
According the the UN Declaration of Human Rights article 23.3
"Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable remuneration ensuring
for himself and his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and
supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection."
Most artists aren't the gazillionaires you see cavorting in entertainment
magazines. Their work is in demand, but they often get treated worse than
farmers by the production companies and society at large.
C) We have all this innovation for copying. Where is all the innovation to
make sure people are fairly paid for labour? Ted Nelson's presentation and
linking ideas were readily created and used by those developing the Web. What
happened to his ideas about micropayment?
D) Copyright laws have been abused, even artists complain about it. This
doesn't justify stripping artists of all means of making money from their
skills and efforts.
E) The cry of "We have a right to free and cheap stuff" comes at the expense
of Native Americans who had their country stripped from them, African
Americans who had their freedom stripped from them, Chinese sweatshop
labourers who have their rights stripped from them, and creatives who have
their livelihood stripped from them.
F) Do these people truly believe that all innovation is good all the time?
What about asbestos? What about the atomic bomb? Just because something
succeeds, does that make it good?
G) Do these people truly believe that making money alone is a higher value
than the humanity and cohesiveness that art and culture bring to a people?
H) It is very easy for the techies to make pronouncements upon creatives when
these people are in an industry where MANY members regularly make over six
figures and can feel noble when they donate some of their time and effort.
For a creative to achieve commercial competence takes the same sort of
full-time application as it does for someone to become a competent
programmer. Did the techies here learn programming by doing it on the
weekends, then strut around feeling they were as good as Linus Torvalds?
I'm sorry, but this article is not about facts, but simply about lampooning
industry people for expressing concerns about the direction innovation was
taking. Some of their concerns were legitimate, certainly many were not. I
see not one fact about the genuine repercussions on the creatives themselves.
What percentage of our population were creatives in Sousa's time compared to
now? What percentage are able to make a living? The author makes a few
palliating remarks at the end, but by then he has already thoroughly mocked
anyone who stands in the way of "progress".
BA (Hons), MFA, PhD
Nothing can withstand the powers of love, laughter and imagination