[cc-community] Copyleft And Commerce

Greg London email at greglondon.com
Thu May 25 20:32:43 EDT 2006

> There really should be a Free Music Foundation that pays session
> musicians an honest rate to lay down drum and guitar tracks,
> commissions songwriters to perform acapellas, and gets the
> documentation required to prove that the tracks are clean for use in
> other BY-SA work. They may accept contributions from commercial
> projects *if* they pass due diligence. This really is the sort of
> project that is needed, there are artistic and video and literary
> equivalents that are needed as well.

I agree, and I see problems in teh way:

(1) What is the minimum amount of time that a person needs to
invest to make a contribution to such a project?
How does that compare to the amount of time that it takes
a complete newbie to contribute a minimal improvement to

A typo on wikipedia can be fixed in seconds.
A small article contribution might take several minutes.
The smallest guitar track would take half an hour maybe?
(assuming Joe Guitar Player happened to surf to the site
for the first time and decided he wanted to contribute
something, he'd have to set up his gear, pipe it to his
computer, play, record, do a couple takes to get it just
right, then send it into the site.)

(2) What is the minimum amount of equipment needed to make
a contribution to such a project? Compared to wikipedia?

Wikipedia requires a computer and internet connection.
A music project requires that, plus, music equipment,
recording equipment, decent microphones, and maybe a
system that is set up some distance away from the computer
so that the fricken fan noise doesn't get into the track.

(3) What is the goal that would motivate large numbers
of people to make small contributions to this project?

Linux promises better software through transparency.
All bugs are shallow. Wikipedia promises the world
of information freely available on the net, and people
get to write about the topics that are important to them.

Would free music be better sounding than all rights reserved?
Would the goal be bigger, like free movies?
Would the movies be better?

I don't know the solutions to these problems,
but I think they are solvable. And I think
they need to be solved before a free music
project could ever be successful on the same
level as linux or wikipedia.

(1) minimum time to contribute needs to make
it easy for someone to find music they're
interested in contributing to. If a newbie
musician could record a track, upload it to
the site, have it analyzed by some software,
and figure out where similar music is, then
that might help. Maybe a guitarist could upload
a guitar track, and then software could find
possible drum tracks that could go with it.

The genre "rock" is simply too big and too
varied to help. I've been looking for music
for a video project idea I have and have been
completely overwhelmed trying to find something
that has a certain feel to it.

(2) not much you can do about that, you need
a guitar to make a guitar track. but it might
help to have the above mentioned software
so that people with no instruments could
start with one track they like, and then find
other tracks that would fit, and/or find
artists who have uploaded similar tracks
and put a request out for a new track.

(3) A song project is too small.
An album project might be a good seed.
Or maybe a small set of albums.
But a seed for what? It has to be big
enough to inspire people to contribute
and small enough to be achievable.

Bounty Hunters: Metaphors for Fair IP laws

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