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Youtube vids increased Monty Python DVD sales by 23,000% on Amazon !!!
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Re: Youtube vids increased Monty Python DVD sales by 23,000% on Amazon !!!

cyberpainter wrote:

...Being a visual artist, I do not think it's anyone's right to copy my artwork and use is as they wish. I want them to buy my artwork....

But artists and musicians have a right to make money off their creations, and to try to stop others from stealing it.

I understand what you are saying but what gives you the right to make money off your art? Before revox steps in with the legal explanation, I am talking philosophically here.

I am not having a go, I am just asking you and others to think about this.

Where does the right to make money off art come from? If you say you made it, you don't exist in a vacuum and other people have contributed in all sorts of ways. It is very capitalistic or libertarian to demand money for your creation. Moreover, art (of all kinds) borrows heavily from society and influences (Look at Stereolab. Where would they be without Neu, the US army etc?) and artists are the first to complain if Macdonalds sues for breach of copyright. For years, art was not a money making vehicle. Look at cave paintings and the entire history of music prior to printing and recording. The idea that someone owns a chord progression would still be considered a joke in much of the world.

If you have the right, how much are you entitled to? A rice farmer in Thailand is entitled to money for his rice but I will only pay about 2 dollars per kg so he has to accept bugger all. A souvenir maker in Kenya handmakes a statue but she cannot expect more than a couple of bucks for her work. Perhaps there are thousands of starving artists for a good reason.

Of course this raises questions about regulations and royalties. If govts and companies had not sat on their hands so long, ignoring the technology then systems of the type revox talks about could have been in place. Of course, like a band now on the radio or the farmer growing wheat, you cannot expect too much from a product that is easily accessable and so your dreams of getting rich through licencing are likely to go unfulfilled. As labhead rightly pointed out in his last post (thanks), this thread suggests that maybe (if your product is good) the best thing that could happen to you is that it be freely and widely distributed on the internet.

And you say it is stealing. Is there a difference between stealing a facsimile and the original. If kicked down your door and stole your painting then you have lost an object. If I steal a print from a store then one copy is gone and you and the retailer may be worse off. If there are 1 million prints, probably little harm is done. If I steal a facsimile jpeg off the internet are you any worse off? Would you even know?

The myth around pirating tries to equate stealing facsimiles with break and enter and shoplifting and I am not cetain that they are same. Of course if I sell the stolen jpegs then you could say something is awry but what if I just look at it? I could potentially visit your site every day and look at the picture so what does it matter if I save myself the bandwidth and save it on my hard drive?

I know I am being provocative but I am asking people to think about the concepts here rather than simply buying what the law or regulators or companies or artists tell us.

I welcome replies.

Feb 15, 2009, 11:53


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