Freedom to Meme #SavetheMeme

Just so you know, copyright is not a “right”, but a legal fiction that exists because government says so.  Copyright is a government backed monopoly that not only facilitates the control of culture, it allows censorship.

I take photographs of lots of things, but I started going out of my way to photograph politician since attending a Wikimedia Foundation meeting in Toronto.  This became more mission than hobby when I had trouble getting permission to use the Creative Commons licensed photograph I had chosen to illustrate a blog.  The creator didn’t understand the license she had chosen would allow someone to use of the image in a way she did not approve. Although I could have gone ahead and used the image anyway I respect the wishes of other creators, even if I disagree with them.  My own thinking is if the government gives out such monopolies, and worse, allows the force if the law to fall on private citizens (which it never had before) at minimum the government owes it to the public to explain this law to citizens clearly and concisely.  Most people don’t understand copyright issues because no one has.  Every citizen who uses any sort of digital devices needs a crash course on these laws, because they law can be used against us. As a blogger I understand the value in using illustrations in my blogs, but as a free culture advocate, I am very much aware of the ease with which copyright law can be used to silence free speech. Especially political speech (which is, of course, why government is happy to grant this monopoly.

And so I photopgraph politicians and publish them on Flickr and Wikipedia to make them available as widely as possible.

As a creator, I especially hate what the ever increasingly onerous copyright regime is doing to culture. Although I’ve been busy working for electoral reform, whenever I can, I use social media to amplify copyright issues. This is one of those times. Apparently the EU is contemplating yet more copyright law to further constrain culture. This little video will give you an idea of just what this means:

This is a heads up to those of you in the EU, it’s time to step up and call your MEP to Save The Meme


Since this might in fact trigger censorship, here’s a plain text breakdown of the video

A new copyright reform is going on in the EU
It proposes to create an all mighty censorship machine
and forces Internet companies to be the Internet Police
Act now to defend your freedom of expression
freedom to educate
freedom to meme
freedom to parody
freedom to remix/mashup
freedom to GIF
Freedom to dance to music
Freedom to wiki
Freedom to quote
Freedom to gameplay
Freedom to play
Freedom to video cosplay
All this user content and many more could disappear
if the #CENSORSHIPMACHINE is created.
We can still prevent this from happening.
Tell your MEP to STOP the #CENSORSHIPMACHINE at https://savethememe.net

We deserve a copyright that respects our RIGHTS and FREEDOMS and doesn’t cripple the Internet
This mashup could also be censored by copyright
so please MULTIPLY & SPREAD
🙂

STOP
#CENSORSHIPMACHINE
https://savethememe.net

Video Credits

Art 13 of the new EU copyright reform threatens our right and freedoms.
Act now to STOP the #CensorshipMachine at:
https://savethememe.net

Mashup video by: Xnet
With the support of: EDRi, EFF, La Quadrature du Net, Bits of Freedom and Open Media.

Music by Revolution Void.

Xnet
https://xnet-x.net/en/

 

PS: My one quibble in the video:
“We deserve a copyright that respects our RIGHTS and FREEDOMS and doesn’t cripple the Internet.”
As my old friend Crosbie would tell you, there is no such thing. You can have copyright or you can have rights and freedoms, but the former is the antithesis of the latter.

Jamendo … music makes my soul dance

Allison Crowe photo by Adrian du Plessis
Canadian Singer/Songwriter Allison Crowe

Jamendo gives us back the ability to discover music through sharing.

Because everything on Jamendo is Creative Commons licenced.

I’m emailing my nominations for the Jamendo Awards, but I thought I’d share them with you too. I don’t think this music is every bit as good as what you would hear on the radio.

It’s better. 😀

My Jamendo Awards Nominations

Allison Crowe (pop)

ALÓ DJANGO (world)

Distimia (España) (Instrumental)

Revolution Void (Electro)

Josh Woodward (rock)

The James Quintet (urban)

i am this (experimental)



Because the music on the radio all started sounding the same.

Can you differentiate between Justin Bieber and Brittney? I can’t. That’s why I stopped listening to the radio.

So for a long time I was only listened to my vinyl, cassettes and CDs. My only possible introduction to any new music was been what I hear at venues like the Beaches Jazz Festival or Uptown Waterloo Jazz Festivals. If I like it, I buy the CDs the artists are selling.

But I found Jamendo just when my record player pooched and I’d worn out Paul Simon and Huey Lewis cassettes.

Since I’m a wee bit older than the average university student, I had to research what was currently hot for my novel, “Inconstant Moon.” and frankly the only new mainstream music that I could find worth listening to is Black Eyed Peas. The E.N.D. is the only Big Six CD I’ve bought in years.

In the normal course of events, it takes hunting and sampling to find the music that resonates with me. I’m not about to stop listening to the old music I’ve grown to love, but I find it far easier to find great new music on Jamendo than on the radio.

More than any other single source I am aware of, Jamendo is the source for music that can be freely downloaded for personal use.

Which means that, since discovering their website, I have been able to discover new music again. And I know full well that I have barely scratched the surface of what awaits me on Jamendo. That’s why I love Jamendo, even though technical difficulties have sometimes prevented access, or as now, voting in their contest.

It’s crazy. At a time when the technical barriers to people being able to share culture are at an unprecedented low, and the large distributors that have been milking and funneling culture into homogeneity have been seeking to prevent it with copyright law.

Yay Jamendo.



Image Credit:

Allison Crowe by Adrian22 at en.wikipedia
under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License (cc by-sa)