[cc-community] No creativity without copyright (was: Benjamin Mako Hill on Creative Commons)

Greg London email at greglondon.com
Tue Aug 2 13:56:27 EDT 2005

>>> making a living indirectly and altruistic donations would not be
>>> enough to maintain the current level of progress.
> It shows that because that is what it has been chosen to show. This
> is one of the many problems with Game Theory, it's the theorist's
> board and pieces.
> Economic Game Theory does not capture cultural creativity any more
> than military Game Theory captured the situation in Vietnam in the
> 1970s:

yeah, sure, game theory can be misapplied.
so can a screwdriver or hammer. Just because
some moron tried to pound nails with a pair of
pliers doesn't mean pliers are no longer good
for plier-ing things.

This has become plain silly.
Take any of the arguments that push the idea
of fan clubs spontaneously forming, pooling
their money, and paying an artist so they can
release their next work, and apply that argument
to any physical product, and you see it for the
fantasy that it is.

It's like arguing that Apple should give its
computers away for free, and people would see
how good they are, pool their money, and then
pay apple enough money so they can come out with
a new version.

This is one massive rhetorical shell game.
It is a smoke screen, hand waving, and word

Artists invest time, energy, money, training,
materials, and take a risk that it will all
pay off. That they're product is abstract doesn't
change the fact that like any business, they
shouldn't get paid for their work.

"But record labels make all the money, not the artists"

Irrelevant. Up front compensation is the point.
That technology has removed the need for several
layers of management and several layers of middlemen
doesn't change the fact that artists should be able
to get compensated up front.

"But poeple don't make a living in the
 music (insert industry of choice) business anyway".

Irrelevant. If Music or whatever industry is the
equivalent of some guy who builds furniture in
his basement because he loves woodworking and then
sells it to pay for his tools, he should be able
to do that. Just because he isn't making a fulltime
salary on furniture manufacturing doesn't mean he
can't build a cabinet and sell it. And just because
he doesn't make a living on it, doesn't mean he should
give his works away, and wait for people to simply
donate money to him.

"But fans will pool their money and pay the artist"

Yeah, and if physical goods were distributed
to each according to his needs, from each
according to his ability, then we wouldn't
need this silly "money" thing at all.
It would all just somehow work out.

If you want to give your creation away, go for it.
If you think you cna make a living off of donations,
great. However, if you are arguing that such a
system should replace the current copyright system,
then you are kidding yourself. If you want to keep
the copyright system, fix the terms and DMCA, and
use the donation system within copyright, that's fine
but irrelevant.

What I'm talking about is a model for the whole system,
not just the part that you want to play in.

The concept of copyright, of getting paid up front for
your work, is a valid, and fair, concept. if terms
were fixed and if the DMCA were wiped out, then the
compensation would actually match teh work put into it.

If you want to give your work away and trust to the
good graces of your fan club, that's your choice,
and I applaud your generousity. But I'm looking at
modeling the system and figuring out the best way
to promote progress of arts and sciences in a fair
and reasonable way, in a way that's designed, not
based on rhetoric.

Bounty Hunters: Metaphors for Fair IP laws

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