The World’s Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Music — What makes this list particularly relevant is its recognition that innovative music companies include record labels, both major and independent.
Can Private Photos be Used in Political Ads Without Permission? — An anti gay rights group used a wedding photo of a gay couple to create a political flier without the couple’s or photographer’s permission. This week, a federal judge refused to dismiss a copyright infringement claim brought by the photographer and couple based on a fair use defense raised by the advocacy group.
Who’s a jerk? The site that tagged millions of Facebook users ‘jerk’ — “The FTC filed a complaint on Monday alleging that Jerk.com dishonestly harvested personal information from millions of Facebook users to create profiles that labeled people either ‘jerk’ or ‘not a jerk.’ The site then reportedly told users they had to pay $30 to access ‘premium’ features that would let them dispute the ‘jerk’ tags.” The complaint raises charges of deceptive representations, and it was initiated by Facebook, rather than the users affected, but there are parallels to copyright. Jerk.com misappropriated Facebook users’ expressive content. And though the personal information is not inherently commercial, the sharing of it with Facebook is a commercial exchange—it is what Facebook’s entire business model is premised on. Finally, for those who place substantial emphasis on the incentive function of copyright, this case demonstrates why copyright’s incentives are still a good fit even outside the paradigmatic professional publication context. Facebook users disseminate their photos and other expressive works on the service with certain expectations; having their content scraped by sites like Jerk.com is very likely outside those expectations. If such occurrences became commonplace or unenforced, it would create a disincentive to disseminate personal content.
YouTube Hurts Music Album Sales, Research Finds — The research, from R. Scott Hiller and Jin-Hyuk Kim, refutes in part the idea that services like YouTube have a promotional effect on music sales. Rather, there appears to be a significant substitutional effect.
Fire the robot — “Toyota, which just yesterday announced a recall of more than six million cars for a variety of defects, is having second thoughts about its robot culture. A longtime pacesetter in factory automation, the company is putting a new stress on nurturing human expertise and craftsmanship.”
Girl Talk Q&A: On Sampling, Disney & His First Ever Music Video — The spiritual successor to Jive Bunny reveals in an interview that on his latest project, “We cleared the samples for this song. I didn’t feel like my ideals were compromised when we did that. I evaluate each piece of work on its own merits. I don’t think of it as anarchy. I think about each work separately and consider whether it qualifies for fair use or not. In this case, we needed the clearance.”