Monday, May 10, 2004

Sources on Filesharing

I notice there are a fair few of you interested in the filesharing debate, and thought I'd point you to some central resources. I freely admit they may be a bit skewed, and not in the RIAA's favour, but they should all be good background reading.

The Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF), an organization almost as old as the Internet, has put together a great resource site presenting their arguments about file sharing, and some ideas about how people can continue to download and share music, and artists can still get paid. Start here, and then go here for the full story.

Also, I was lucky enough to be at a symposium on digital music last year where the guest speaker was Fred Von Lohmann, Senior Intellectual Property Attorney at the EFF. There is a transcription of my scrawled notes at my personal blog, and for a version that makes more sense, you might like to check out the video of his talk as well.

I can also highly recommend Darknet and the Future of Content Distribution (MS Word doc) / (pdf) as a primer on the Internet underground and its implications for the established order.

Free Culture, Lawrence Lessig's new and highly influential book on the subject of copyright and "piracy" is available for free download in pdf format and really shouldn't be missed. Lessig is the man behind the International Creative Commons organization, which aims to develop alternative voluntary licensing for creative content such as music, bypassing the clunky, antiquated and repressive intellectual property regimes we have now. Example: artists can release their music with a sampling license attached - inviting mash-ups and remixes without inviting people to steal and resell their music. Check it out!