Culture

Whether free culture allowing all citizens to fully participate, or centrally owned/communicated/controlled culture, at the root of much of the debates are very different ideas on cultural policy.

Unnamed politician: "We are very much in support of protecting creative rights."

Unnamed politician: "We are very much in support of protecting creative rights."

The above statement is extremely common, is said by nearly every politician. I received something similar very often when asking questions during this campain.

The problem is that it says says absolutely nothing.

The issues we face can not be answered as a "yes or no" type of question, as everyone supports the arts, creativity and innovation. Nobody that was opposed to these things, or wanted "something for nothing", would ever speak up in public and say so. This may contradict the claims of some who wish to misdirect everyone from who their opponents really are, such as Bulte who believes that her opponents are "apologists for pirates".

Canadian science fiction author Cory Doctorow referenced in Macleans article on Bulte scandal

Canadian (born in Toronto) science fiction author Cory Doctorow posts a BLOG article talking about a Macleans article about the Bulte scandal that references him.

In supporting stricter copyright laws, Bulte has taken a stand on a highly divisive issue among computer users and artists, groups that make up a significant constituency in her riding. Indeed, one of boingboing's editors, the novelist Cory Doctorow, happens to be a former resident. The attention that blog has given to the fundraising story is one of the reasons the issue has gained such momentum, not only in Canada but internationally. "Her legislative history is an attempt to import the worst elements of the American copyright system to Canada," said Doctorow, who now lives in London, England. "I don't know that she's been bought, I just know that it looks pretty dirty."

Canadian Media Guild Says 'Election Campaign Silent on Future of CBC'

An article in Broadcaster Magazine offers some insight to what the Liberals, Conservatives, NDP, BLOC and Green Party have to say about the CBC.

The Guild has asked all candidates across the country whether they support an increase to the CBC's parliamentary funding of 1 cent per day per Canadian to pay for increased local and regional programming. The Guild sent a questionnaire to all candidates from the Liberal Party, the Conservative Party, the NDP, the Bloc Québécois and the Green Party. So far, we have received more than 80 responses.

Vote Arts 2006: The Canadian Arts Coalition:

The Canadian Arts Coalition created a Vote Arts 2006 site to promote a single proposal: "To increase, by $5 dollars per Canadian, funding to the arts delivered through the Canada Council."

I support this proposal.

I do so with the following clarification: Some of the members of the Arts Coalition are also proponents of unbalancing copyright to favour specific incumbent intermediaries over creators and audiences. While I do not agree with these views, I do strongly believe that all levels of governments should have programs to support the arts. I am involved in copyright to protect the interests of creators, including people like myself, from the very proposals promoted by some of the Arts Coalition members.

The direct funding of the arts by government can be targeted at creators directly and benefit Canadian creativity far better than changes in copyright which have recently tended to favour third party special interests.

Why should I care about the revenues of intermediaries?

(Also on p2pnet, mp3newswire)

Various legacy intermediary industry associations, such as branch-plant versions of foreign industry associations such as CRIA, CAAST, and CMPDA, are often telling us how much of a decline in revenue they are observing. They then ask governments to "fix" this problem.

I don't doubt that the major labels and similar associations have seen a decline in revenue. I also don't doubt that there has been a decline in revenue with the distribution channels that they control, such as the retail of mechanical media.

We can see clearly now...

As reports of inappropriate behaviour by a major Liberal supporter of Bill C-60 and strong-arm tactics by major music labels increase, a bright new future is dawning for the majority of Canadian musicians. The independent music scene is experiencing significant growth while the hit-manufacturing major label market continues to stagnate.

Now this news is reaching the mainstream. During this morning's bus ride, I listened to CBC's The Current where Anna Maria Tremonti interviewed several indie music insiders. All of them confirmed what those of us who do not support the control culture architected into Bill C-60 by the incumbent copyright industry have been explaining: new technology opens new avenues for new artists.

Barnaked News: The Stick is in the mail

(Covered by: p2pnet, MP3Newswire)

It is great when a musician and a label reaches out to a fan. I have been a fan of the Barenaked Ladies for a number of years, but have not purchased any albums since 2000 because they got caught in my boycott of major labels. Their label, Nettwerk Music Group, was listed as a member of the major label monopolist lobby group the CRIA, and I had decided that I would not pay money to companies that were lobbying so hard to attack my rights as an independent creator and user.

Jane Siberry opens best artist's digital music store

This BoingBoing article includes:

Canadian chanteuse Jane Siberry has created an online music store that's a model of how artists can capitalize on the goodwill of their fans to line their pocketbooks and disseminate their music. Her store sells non-DRMed MP3s and encourages fans to spread the word.

I read about this in a Museletter which I suspect will be posted to her fan BBS soon.

Owning ideas - an essay by Andrew Brown

This essay in the Guardian by Andrew Brown includes:

The difference between ideas and things is obvious as soon as someone hits you over the head with an idea - so obvious that until recently it was entirely clear to the law.
...
There are some download services where the music you have already downloaded will no longer play if you stop your subscription. The obvious answer is to pay for it with money similarly protected - special digital rights money, which would vanish, like fairy gold, when you stopped playing with the new toy. Nobody would accept payment on those terms. Why are there companies which think the opposite is fair?

Firefox plans mass marketing drive -- volunteer video marketing...

This article by Ingrid Marson, Special to CNET News.com includes:

Beard said the corporation is planning a "big marketing push" that will coincide with the release of 1.5. This will include a community marketing campaign that will encourage Firefox fans to tell the world about their favorite browser by publishing home-made videos on a Mozilla Web site.

This will be fun to watch. Not only will it demonstrate the power of P2P advertising, but also how many everyday citizens have the interest in making videos. This isn't something just for the 'big boys' any more, and governments need to realize this so that their laws aren't always trying to shut down this legitimate creativity.

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