Thursday, March 08, 2007

Copyright and Fair Use, SCMS 03082007

Richard Patterson -- The pragmatics of the public sphere in British Public Cinema

Five Areas

  • The creative economy and Public Policy

  • Space Regulation and Market Management Policy

  • The Creative Archive

  • The BBC Creative Futures

  • Contracts and Pragmatics

This started at the University of Glasgow and the whole point of the project was to think about sustainability

The creative economy and Public Policy -- this is at the top of the agenda right now and is seen as a sustainable one where copyright enable agencies place the UK in a competitive advantage. The issue here is in the IP review and the creative economy review was done throughout.

The BBC is interested in public value texts as it has to justify pound's spent

The Creative economy agenda has really spread througout a good portion of the world, including Australia. However, the question is what is creativity? Philip Schlesinger

Space Regulation and Market Management Policy -- doesn't find it very useful as it is a spatial metaphore and this is not very useful for me. I find it very much more useful is information spaces and creativity. What are the new spaces involved in the production of technology. In the UK the issue at work is Citizen rights,

I am invested in the creative capital of the nation at the BBC -- so that those who commission the work, the BBC, should have some ownership. BUt recent decisions have made these rights reside not in the public rights.

The BBC has a unique place in the UK economy as it has changed from a demoralized one to a much more happy one right now. It aspires to be the most creative of them all. It still has a public value test in some ways to fulfill its charge. The public value test takes the citizen value .

The organizational structure that is key is that the creative archive is to make this aarcive of BBC work to download and repurpose issue. This is a public sector partnership and shows how the BBC is trying to make these things available to the people.

The number of downloads has been huge and the questions is now how do you pay for it as a public vendorship. Books in the public libraries get royalties from borrowed books. From the outset many commercial concerns opposed this at first.

Jennifer Lynde Barker -- Animating Racial Representation --While I was working on digital media I ran into some issues about the problems fair use and educational fair use is a foreign concept to commercial media and today I want to look at the educational versus the lucrative. Also, it can be used to stifle understanding of past issues of media.

The project that I was working on was to give us a CD rom that would be for colleges and high schools for education of African Americans in early cinema. Fair use should have covered us but the NEH and various publishers refused to consider fair use a viable category to make claims. And proving who held copyright was difficult to determine who actually held for many materials such as Cabin in the Sky. And in many cases studios would erect many standards and barriers to use to make them use good. For example, including a scene where an actor would have to clear it can be especially problematic.

Often it is clear that institutions would keep certain scenes out and see what you could include would often be kept at a minimum. This was especially true as cartoons were often banned and this is due in part that cartoons are often marketed to children. Banning objectionable cartoons allow these corporations to maintain a squeaky clean image. Corporations can then whitewash projects. Disney claims that they have banned several films so that they won't offend, but it is clear that they are trying to keep their image up. For example, the objectionable mickey mouse cartoons have been released in submenus and are in the vault and Leonard Maltin talks to introduce it and you can't skip through that (you can for other Silly Symphonies features). It's a way maintaining image.

The Warner Brother's banned eleven are a number of cartoons that cannot be shown in broadcast television but they are available in bootleg form.

Besides pirated videos things like YouTube keep these things open. Open by strengthening fair use then you can create film history in the classroom, instead of the board room.

Mark Benedetti -- Encoding Piracy -- In the beginning there was piracy and this was true in Lumiere and Melies. The piracy of films in early cinema was a way of distributing film. All of this happens in a world of legal supremacy today. Piracy is not curtailed through copyright law.

New strategies -- watermarking prints began in the 1980s and this flourished as a way to trace where the copying came from. With the onset of digital you had a problem and there was a new way to do this -- anyways, it is there. The codes are there and they exist as a set of 4 reddish brown dots. The industry is quite silent about this.

The code has some lively public discourse. DeLuxe labs who came up with the new code will not talk about it. The MPAA will not discuss it as they do not want to tip off potential pirates. This is CapCode is essentially not discussed.

So, now I will take up a Deleuzian take on it looking a difference and repetition and simulacrum.

Who does this -- low pay people working in labs, disgruntled Academy members. The academy claims it is these people who are forcing people to do this. They are wrong since it is the object that does this. The simulacra is at work here. There is no degraded copy from an original, just multiple versions of a simulacra that are the results of sources of difference.

The simulacrum in these cases simply shows up the original as another simulacrum. It refutes an idealist epistemology.

The "original" is marked in CapCode and the unmarked original is disgraced by not taking on the legitimate markings.

I am not here to make an easy argument about the progressive politics of piracy. In China pirated forms of cinema open up that closed cultural market. It isn't necessarily liberating. It is something else since piracy is a form of capitalism, one that operates outside specific legal conditions.

Piracy is theft and this act relies on the law. The simulacrum marks this morality rather than an original and a copy. Piracy exists as a threat to morality rather than capitalism.

Lindsay Fullerton -- Captives of Copyright: Documentaries in the Digital Age -- Begins with the example of "Happy Birthday", owned by Time Warner and is owned until 2030. For example the filmmakers of Hoop Dreams paid $15,000 for one verse of the song

In the digital age doc filmmakers are dealing with the Wealth of Materials in the age and the oppositional Restrivtion of Materials

Why are docs so much more affected. AV films are their bread and butter. Sometimes images are irreplaceable

There are moe and more people making docs than before. One of the reasons is that digital video is easy to make and many more venues where it can happen.

We also see more and more docs -- in commerce we have seen a rise of 85% from 2002 to 2006. Also digital channels are key

There are more and more channels in which this can be seen.

The Center of Social Media conducted a survey in 2004 of 45 pro doc makers. What they found was escalting costs, complicated clearance process and self-censorship as the key problems.

A slide on Fair Use and what it ostensibly covers.

One of the key issues at work is that of Fair Use is beginning to be adopted by insurance companies.

Public domain issues. lifteime of the author plus 70 years or 95 years if held by a corporation.

Let us at Tarnation (2004) -- edited by iMovie and originally it cost $218 and after clearance of copyright it cost $400,000. In Eyes on the Prize from the 1980s it was off the screen for over a decade because of lapsed copyrights and only cleared the works for 5-10 years.

To mediate this relationship the Center for Social Media created a "statement of best practices in fair use" -- one success is This film is Not Yet Rated and Downhill Battle which released the Grey Album. Creative Commons is another way that you can use this and place certain things with a CC license.

In 2005 Downhill Battle planted bitTorrent seeds of Eyes on the Prize. It was downloaded, gained publicity and have gained the money necessary to clear the copyrights again.

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1 comment:

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