CDM and Creative Commons “Non-Commercial” Images

(CC) Giulio Zannol. Sampling and online reuse are enormously common in our culture today. But if you really believe in making some of that culture freely accessible, it follows you must also make free licenses explicit. Simply taking something because it’s there isn’t fair to the person who created the content, whose rights should come first, and it doesn’t help advance the cause of free content. If we want content to be more freely accessible, we need to give first priority to those materials explicitly licensed for free use. All of that is to say, we need to obey the …

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Help EFF Save Web Content: Prove Podcasting and Media Patent is Wrong

Act now, or this puppy is in grave danger. Podcasting pug photograph (CC) zoomar. Patenting the use of all episodic media on the Web might sound absurd, but the US Patent and Trademark Office has granted just such a patent, to a company called VoloMedia. It’s a significant issue, one that could threaten the freedom of all media distribution online. Wherever you are in the world, you can help. Intellectual property law was created in order to protect genuine inventions and innovation from exploitation. But predatory patents, based on bogus claims and attempting to stake out broad rights, threaten to …

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“Visual Attacks,” Guerrilla Projection, Safety, and the Law

GVJ08 from XPLOITEC on Vimeo. With all the coverage of guerrilla projection and projection mapping outdoors, last week I asked the CDM community what safety and legal considerations came into play with this work. It’s well worth reading through the full comment thread: Can Mobile Projection Get You in Trouble? How Do You Plan? Some of the highlights: Generally, while projection is only light, the use of the building face is considered the use of private property – this seems to be true around the world. Some countries even have specific legal restrictions on commercial use or projection in general. …

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“Visual Attacks,” Guerrilla Projection, Safety, and the Law

GVJ08 from XPLOITEC on Vimeo. With all the coverage of guerrilla projection and projection mapping outdoors, last week I asked the CDM community what safety and legal considerations came into play with this work. It’s well worth reading through the full comment thread: Can Mobile Projection Get You in Trouble? How Do You Plan? Some of the highlights: Generally, while projection is only light, the use of the building face is considered the use of private property – this seems to be true around the world. Some countries even have specific legal restrictions on commercial use or projection in general. …

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PBS Open Content: Remix That Documentary, Creative Commons-Style

Stock footage has long been a VJ cliché, and remixes in and of themselves aren’t always meaningful. But in the right hands – just as in audio sampling – sampled content can take on new life. It might even find an unrecognizable form. And with publicly-funded documentaries, why not give the actual content back to the people who supported its creation, whether they render it as entirely new art or political material. The US public broadcasting network, PBS, is doing just that with its Open Content series. For instance, I recently watched an episode of NOVA on the future of …

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Subprime: The American Housing, Financial Crisis, Animated

Putting complex political issues into the form of art sometimes falls on its face. But art’s unique power to personalize and make big issues specific can be a powerful asset. We were already big fans of the animation work of Beeple, but the latest, hand-animated digital creation is especially poetic. It’s an essay on consumption, and it doesn’t focus – as the news has – on the crisis itself. Instead, in watching the idea of shelter blown to absurd proportions, in simple graphics reminiscent of The Sims, it gets at a notion of consumer excess that goes well beyond just …

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Inside the Performance Rights Act, And Deciding Who Gets Paid on the Radio

Performers don’t get paid for radio play, even if writers do. Billy Corgan – yes, the Smashing Pumpkins Billy Corgan – is getting in on the issue, testifying to Congress. So should you be on Billy’s side, or the broadcasters? That’s a trickier question. Photo (CC) Andra Veraart. Policy, intellectual property, and changing business models remain hot threads to follow on this site as we watch the transformation of music distribution in the electronic age. This time, we welcome a new contributor to look inside the issues. Surprise: one radio host sides with the record industry, and the issues may …

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Congress Restores Arts Funding, Drops Arts Stimulus Ban, After Public Outcry

Photo CC Brian Talbot. Here in the US, Congressional Democrats have reversed not one but both bad decisions on the role of the arts in the economic stimulus package. Provisions that would have blocked any stimulus funds from reaching arts centers, museums, and theaters have been dropped. (Golf courses and casinos are still in the ban. Maybe this time, someone read the actual legislation.) And the US$50 million (out of some $800 billion) that would go to the National Endowment for the Arts, dropped from a Senate version, has been restored to the bill. It appears both of those changes …

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Democrats, Republicans Join to Ban Arts Stimulus, Declare Arts Worker Jobs Not “Real”

Fore? Photo: Dan Perry. Folks, we have a lot of work ahead of us. To wrap up the thread I started, the plot in US politics, in the space of a few short weeks, has gone something like this: 1. A new Administration could bring new vision to making the arts part of the economy. 2. Arts spending is wasteful. 3. Any spending on anything should be specifically prohibited from reaching the arts, as that would be wasteful and evil, and the arts are the best symbol of Waste itself. I live on Wall Street (technically, on the corner of …

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