Tuesday, April 29, 2008

In Tune

Australia’s music piracy group, MIPI, launched a ten minute online video today in which a number of local musicians discuss the difficulties they face as artists in the digital age. Intended to highlight the impact of file sharing and piracy, the movie is called InTune. It downplays the rock star lifestyle and emphasises the uncertainty artists’ face. While those interviewed support the use of the internet to gain exposure and to extend their audience, the rate of technological development and dynamic nature of viral marketing avenues is raised as a complication as is the lack of income derived from traditional sources such as album sales. This movie, designed for distribution to high schools, lacks any real educational qualities with no actual statistical or factual information and is more easily classified as an emotive and shallow attempt to address the file sharing issue.

FUDucation [Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt Education] is a term that I have used with respect to many of the educational initiatives that have been attempted in recent years including the Captain Copyright saga in Canada. While there are other sources of educational material for high school students in Australia, and more to be released this year, there remains a distinct gap in providing material that highlights the availability of alternative remedies and the need for copyright law and the content industries to adapt.

Perhaps they should look to providing a more balanced approach. Earlier this year the Green Party of Europe released a video supporting file sharing and suggesting that major media corporations exploit artists and lobby for laws that protect themselves:

In truth the turbulence in the digital music environment is something that should be celebrated and both sides should recognise the impossibility of providing a respectable representation of the issues in such short clips. Neither attempt provides enough information to enable students or members of the public to make reasoned and informed decisions.

Further Reading
Australian Music, In Tune <http://www.in-tune.com.au/ > at 29 April 2008

The Age, Please Don’t Rip Off Our Music (29 April 2008) <http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2008/04/29/1209234824947.html> at 29 April 2008

Australian Copyright Council, Education Resources on Copyright for Children
<http://www.copyright.org.au/information/specialinterest/kids> at 29 April 2008

ArsTechnia, RIAA writes its own "news" for local TV stations (21 December 2007) <http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20071221-riaa-writes-its-own-news.html> at 28 December 2007

Zeropaid, UC Berkeley Starts 'Learn Before You Burn' Campaign to Fight Campus Piracy (17 August 2007) <http://www.zeropaid.com/news/8961/UC+Berkeley+Starts+%27Learn+Before+You+Burn%27+Campaign+to+Fight+Campus+Piracy> at 19 August 2007

ZeroPaid, IFPI releases so-called 'inconvenient truths' about file-sharing and piracy (1 June 2007) <http://www.zeropaid.com/news/8818/IFPI+releases+so-called+%27inconvenient+truths%27+about+file-sharing+and+piracy> at 16 June 2007

p2pnet.net, Australia's MIPI: helping kids (26 April 2007) <http://www.p2pnet.net/story/12067> at 30 April 2007

BoingBoing, Michigan State U forces students to watch RIAA videos (21 February 2007) <http://www.boingboing.net/2007/02/21/michigan_state_u_for.html> at 23 February 2007

Slyck, Captain Copyright - The Beginning, the Middle, the End (6 February 2007)<http://www.slyck.com/story1396.html> at 8 February 2007

p2pnet.net, Captain Copyright bites the dust (5 Februar 2007) <http://www.p2pnet.net/story/11223?PHPSESSID=a65691ed414ba81b40a397181f1fe6ab> at 6 February 2007

ZeroPaid, Green Party of Europe creates new video supporting file sharing (22 January 2008) <http://www.zeropaid.com/news/9210/Green+Party+of+Europe+Creates+New+Video+Supporting+File-Sharing> at 30 January 2008

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