2003 February 9

(entry last updated: 2003-02-09 15:34:06)

  • Sarah Lai Strickland’s new weblog (what *is* it, by the way, with the "rateyourmusic.com" link in all these Corante weblogs that makes them so agonizingly slow to come up from time to time?!?!) is an excuse to look at an earlier piece of hers from the Seattle Times on the problems of the public domain – how to value it, what to do with it and just how difficult it is to discuss it in the face of ubiquitous copyright. The idea that something might be valuable without being owned remains troubling to many.

  • Cory Doctorow points to an article in The Guardian that shows what is happening when broadband provides are viewed as moving too slowly to connect parts of rural England – WiFi rollout by communities unwilling to put up with being treated like second-class citizens.

  • From A Copyfighter’s Musings, we have Responses to Valenti – Derek Slater has assembled comments on the Valenti interview that he worked on. (For completeness,the Slashdot discussion)

  • From yesterday’s NYTimes, a discussion of Sean Combs recording/production contract, and what it takes to get somewhere in the music industry today.

  • The New York Times also covers the business and occasionally worthwhile output of song-poems, and the search, as Arnold Kling might put it, for content among the cr*p.

    And the songs, or the overwhelming majority of them, go no further.

    Most deserve oblivion. They’re trite sentiments set to generic music. Yet precisely because song-poem hacks will sing absolutely anything, among the tens of thousands of song-poems recorded every year are a few so improbable, so skewed, so far beyond the imagination of more professional songwriters that they have a fractured charm all their own:

  • A little off-topic, the Times Magazine has James Gleick on the history and future of spam.

  • Declan reports on the RIAA response to the Verizon appeal.

    Matthew Oppenheim, a senior vice president at the RIAA , said in a conference call Friday that Verizon was exaggerating the privacy risks of complying with requests made under the DMCA. Verizon and its allies, including a former Clinton administration privacy official, have suggested that copyright holders should file a “John Doe” lawsuit to unmask suspected peer-to-peer infringers instead of wielding DMCA subpoenas.

  • The Boston Globe supports the Verizon position in this editorial:

    THE RECORDING Industry Association of America does not want to suggest that it will be suing millions of computer users for sharing music files over the Internet. But its power to have them subpoenaed, affirmed by a federal judge last month, raises grave privacy concerns and ought to be appealed, as Verizon Communications intends to do. The industry has a point that most file sharers are violating copyright law, costing it substantial business. The advent of file sharing has radically transformed the music business, however, and the industry cannot rely on legal action to quash technological advances.

    …Instead of forcing Internet service providers to reveal the names of file sharers, the industry ought to work with them to turn copyright violators into paying customers.