This weekend's blog entry on creatorscopyright.ca by Christopher Moore comments on the recent cancellation of the Hockey Night In Canada theme song by CBC. Unfortunately it puts so much political spin into the issue as to make even the likes of David Frum dizzy.
No serious person on any side of the copyright debate has ever argued, or ever will argue, that creators are not "entitled to be paid in proportion to the value of the work they provide" Though frequently Chris and others on the maximalist side of the copyright debate try to paint their objectors with this brush. As he does here.
Unfortunately Chris, not unexpectedly, gets this issue of what is due artists completely backwards. As Chris would have it, the artists, or song writer in this case, would set their price and the CBC or anyone else who wanted it, would dutifully pay it. Trying to negotiate less, or wanting a wider breadth of licence from what is being offered, is, in Chris's eyes an attempt to rip off the artist. In a free market, and especially when dealing with non-necessities, the value of an object, whether a commodity item or completely unique, tangible or intangible, is never set by the seller alone. It is also determined by the buyer and what the buyer is willing to pay. No one should be compelled to buy something, much less compelled to buy something at a price they have no control over. The CBC was not subscribing to any "dubious new ideology that creative work should be freely (freely as in unpaidly) available". They were offering what they thought was reasonable value. That neither the CBC nor the song writer were able to come to an agreement was as much the song writer's fault as it was the CBC. And it most certainly had nothing to do with Michael Geist.
That Chris would call Michael's arguments anti-copyright, or that he would argue the CBC are copyright abolitionists, frankly speaks more about his extreme and blinkered ideology then that of whom he is arguing against.