By , January 31, 2014.

Ninja Tune Puts This Warning Sticker On All New Releases… — (Actually, just promo pre-releases): “You are not ‘striking a blow against outdated copyright laws’ or ‘liberating content from the corporations’, nor are you ‘promoting our records for us.’ You are making it much harder for the musicians on our label to make anything like a living wage for creating the music which you think is good enough to share.”

Pro photographers remind lucky amateurs: Viral pictures have value — “The age of the citizen photographer is upon us. And while anybody with a phone or camera can take a picture that goes viral, that doesn’t necessarily mean they will be fairly compensated for it. To help level the playing field, some media-savvy professional photographers are taking matters into their own hands, reaching out to amateurs who were in the right place at the right time and letting them know that their viral pictures have value.”

Keeping Fair Use “Fair” — A timely reminder given the House Judiciary Committee hearing on the scope of fair use this week. “The concept of ‘fair use’ is sometimes misunderstood to imply ‘free use’ in any situation in which the result is thought to be socially beneficial in some general sense; which may sound appealing to some but is ultimately damaging to consumers and our economy.”

And a straw child shall lead them: Fan Fiction as an Example of Web 2.0 Double Rip Off — One of the witnesses at Tuesday’s fair use hearing, Naomi Novik, spoke of her experiences participating in online fan fiction communities. A reaction: “It has never been the case that anyone even thought about trying to stop children from telling stories, making up plot lines, and generally getting some costumes and putting on a play in the barn. But Google wasn’t selling advertising for an afternoon of children’s play, either. And why should Google’s advertising team get to hide behind Captain Picard or the Lone Ranger?”

It’s history, not a viral feed — @HistoryinPics is the type of enterprise copyright skeptics love: a highly popular Twitter account that solely posts historical photos, without the original photographer’s permission or even attribution. But as Sarah Werner, those drawbacks are only symptoms of deeper issues. “[H]istory is not a toy. It’s not a private amusement. And those of us who engage with the past know how important it is and how enjoyable it can be to learn about it and from it. These accounts piss me off because they undermine an enterprise I value.  Historical research—indeed, humanistic inquiry as a whole—is being undermined by the constant plugging of economic value as a measure of worth, the public defunding of higher education, and the rampant devaluing of faculty teaching.”

CAA Publishes One-Sided Fair Use Report — Says Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, “There are a lot of problems with the College Art Association… but what’s more pernicious is how this nonprofit arts organization continues to champion the poverty and ignorance of artists, all while putting the blame on this thing called copyright law. “

1 Comment

  1. So, we have the Twitter account, History in Pictures, knowingly infringing copyrights, are published in news articles admitting it, and Twitter keeps it going with appended ads, promoted tweets, Superbowl fraud, hands over fist. But a week has passed, and Twitter are not blind to it now — but keep it going.

    Hmmm. Anyone want to state the case-law for willful blindness at a wholesale level, and the statutes to Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal (one of the biggest investors of Twitter)? I’m sure he’ll support retailers first who want to sell authorized, physical 8″ x 11″ photos, one sheet at a time, to customers rather than be collapsed by two male teens (one in Hawaii, the other in Melbourne, Australia) that are laughing in an unauthorized manner.