Interesting article over on Wired – Thinking outside the box office (thanks, as usual, to http://tech.memeorandum for highlighting it)

The article makes a great point about why current copyright legislation increases piracy, i.e. it makes it difficult to use stuff in the way you want to:

I was channel surfing the other night and Gus Van Sant’s Psycho was on. It would be fascinating to do a mash-up of Gus’ version with Hitchcock’s version…

…So right now, I could do that at home and give it to a friend, just as something for them to watch on a Friday night. But we don’t live in a world where that can be made commercially available. So it goes underground. And underground is just a sexier word for illegal. It’s frustrating.

Here here! I would often like to include an image or media clip to stress a point in a presentation or article. But until we see better implementations of copyright and micro-payments, it is just too difficult and/or slow and/or expensive to do so. I lose the opportunity to help enhance my content (or else use the clip illegally) and the content creator loses the opportunity for additional recognition and revenue.

Hopefully the disruption and benefits that mash-ups are starting to provide, combined with efforts such as the work of the Creative Commons organisation, will push us towards a change that is long overdue. The technology is ready and (not always) waiting…

And while I’m on the soapbox, who thought it would be a good idea to plonk an anti-piracy advert at the start of film DVDs? As if it wasn’t bad enough having to sit through the copyright notice. For goodness sake, if it were a pirated copy, the pirate would have edited out both elements when making the copy, so all you are doing is annoying people who bought a legitimate copy of the film, lecturing them about something they didn’t do. Doh! Stick ’em at the end of the film (hint: there’s a reason why the legal small print comes at the end of a contract). It might help media companies if they didn’t keep giving people reasons to be annoyed with media companies…

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