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.

Cory Doctorow: Think Like a Dandelion : Reproductive strategies for the Internet era

The following is a summary from Cory of a recent feature:

My latest column in Locus Magazine, "Think Like a Dandelion," came out of a talk I had with Neil Gaiman about the bio-economics of giving stuff away for free. Mammals worry about what happens to each and every one of their offspring, but dandelions only care that every crack in every sidewalk has dandelions growing out of it. The former is a good strategy for situations in which reproduction is expensive, but the latter works best when reproduction is practically free -- as on the Internet. causing an odd guilty sensation...

I hear great things about Tor Books from a few Science Fiction authors who use them as their publisher. When they launched with their newsletter that included a link to a free eBook, I sighed up right away.

As much as I would like to be reading more fiction, I haven't been able to keep up. In fact, I've only read part-way through the first book, and I've already downloaded 5 books as part of their newsletters. I now feel guilty downloading when I might never have the chance to read.

Does software piracy disclose a ‘generation divide’, and is this a problem?

A recent ITBusiness article by Warren Lee commented on the perception that younger people tend to place less value on "intellectual property" than older people, as well as suggesting that corporations often think they can treat ethics like a buffet where they can pick-and-choose those issues which benefit them.

I'm not convinced there is anything new as far as ethics is concerned, and that those who most claim moral outrage at copyright infringement are sometimes a key source of the problem. The claims of harm from software piracy may itself be part of this questionable corporate ethics.

Read full article on IT World Canada's BLOG.

Tell the CRTC to require financial disclosure by Canada's large broadcasters

Friends of Canadian Broadcasting have asked everyone to send a letter to the CRTC about financial disclosures from broadcasters.

Broadcasters are important stakeholders in the Copyright debate, and need to have adequate financial disclosure to accompany their policy claims. Broadcasters are being asked to pay royalties on ephemeral recordings which should be considered private and not covered by Copyright, but they also have their own copyright in their broadcasts (as well as content they have actually created themselves) and try to impose similarly invalid controls on the private uses of their broadcasts.

Tentative deal between WGA and AMPTP

There is a tentative deal between the Writers Guild of America and Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP).

While I consider this great news, I also worry that once the strike is over both groups to be together again blaming all lost revenue (including that caused by the strike) on citizen ownership/control over new communications technology and networks.

Copyright formalities, technical measures, and what a modernizing Copyright treaty would really look like.

Julianna Yau has posted a BLOG article titled Roles and Responsibilities on the Web. While I discussed the ISP liability question on Friday, I wanted to address something she wrote at the very end.

A television marketplace prediction for 2008

While I wanted to spend more time fleshing this out, I'm going to have to just say it before January is over. I have a very specific prediction for 2008 relating to the television marketplace.

Saskatchewan government to look at artist bill

An article by Angela Hall for the Leader-Post talks about provincial Status of the Artist legislation. One of the proposed changes is to require written contracts between professional artists and those that enlist their services.

Public Domain Day 2008

Wallace McLean details for us one of the most important days of each year, Public Domain Day for 2008!

Lets take a moment to think about all those types of creative works where the "author" is not as clear as it is with a book. This includes creativity like recordings, performances, broadcasts, motion pictures or still photography, all which should not have their cultural recycling dates tied to the death of the most often unknown and unknowable author(s), but some fixed date such as the date of recording/taking or the date of public publishing/communication/etc.

Lets work hard to restore sanity to the copyright term for photography which was only recently broken to become life+50 in Canada.

The Generational Divide in copyright morality or creativity experience?

A very interesting article by David Pogue about a possible generational divide on issues around the morality of infringement. It talks about a presentation he did where he would go through a set of copyright-related scenarios asking if people thought it was wrong -- in general audiences he would get more hands going up as the scenario became more morally questionable. At a college with entirely young people, only a tiny number of hands went up.

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