Wk 1 Comments to Classmates: Copyright Laws Here is my second comment post to a classmate:
Wk 1 Reading:
We Can Copy, Right?
I graduated High School in 1999 and was starting my freshmen year of college when the mp3 boom began. I had just moved out of my parents house and moved into my first apartment with my friend Mike. We were the type of guys who loved to be on the forefront of everything especially the internet. My buddy Mike got a Job working for the cable company, who at the time were rolling out lightning fast (slow by today's comparison) cable modems. These modems were to replace the old dial-up connection that many of us first encountered in the old AOL days of the internet. Little did we know that this modem would open up a whole new world to us and put us on a path to total local celebrity status. We first entered a chat room in using a little known program called My Internet Relay Chat or Mirc for short. Here we found a whole community of collectors of a small music file known as an mp3. The first songs that we downloaded were the classics like The Beastie Boys Fight for your right (to party), or Ozzy Osborn's Crazy Train. Soon we discovered a new program making its way around the channels known as Napster. This was a revolution in the Person to Person, or P2P file transfer protocol that we were using in Mirc. The only difference was that you did not need to ask people if they had the file, here all you had to do was type in the name in their search engine and you were shown multiple hits of the file, and which location had the fastest connection to retrieve it. It was an amazing concept that me and my friend Mike wished we had come up with.
Soon we were having people come over challenging them to find the most rare songs they could think of, like Bob Marley's Guava Jelly or Slick Rick's original Ladi Dodi. With all these fiends coming over to complete their searches we amassed a large library of songs, and soon became the go to apartment for parties and music lounging sessions. Many people would ask where the music was coming from and I would reply "From my computer." No one believed me so I would always give them a tour and show them my setup and my playlist on the original mp3 computer program WinAmp. They were amazed, but many of my friends believed this was a fad and would soon go away like 8-tracks. I was so sure this was not a fad that I used the topic of mp3s and the future of music as my final persuasive argument in my public speaking class.It was a great time of my life broadening my love for music and making my first few year of college completely worth while.
Why did I start this blog off with this story? Because even though I believe an artist has the right to protect his work, I also believe that the trading of mp3's is not the nail in the coffin that record industry makes it out to be. I remember when I was about 4 or 5 years old hearing how the VCR was going to kill movies and ruin the art of cinema being seen on the big screen. The industry soon found out that the proliferation of home media not only helped the industry, but added on a whole new consumer base that they had never thought possible. I believe the same can be said for the mp3's. The proliferation of the mp3 only adds to the appreciation of music thus raising music to a new and higher standard than ever before. Before mp3's I lead a sheltered life, only buying the occasional CD for bands that the radio told me were popular. After I started downloading mp3's my musical education grew, exposing me to the rich sounds of reggae, the unique rhymes of rappers like Biggie and Tupac, and the eclectic sounds like radiohead. Mp3's forced me to broaden my horizons, listen to new bands on a whim, and go to more live shows and concerts than ever before. The mp3 was a game changer for many young people back in the early 2000's and I believe it still is for many youths today. The fact is, I spent more money on music after the mp3 age than I did before.
Sure there are those that abuse the system and take take take, but don't forget about those how give back. Today we see a plethora of musicians trying to make a mark in today's industry who may not have ever had a chance before. Take Justin Bieber (no really take him, haha), he got his start by posting videos of his talents on YouTube, a video site with its roots stemming from the mp3 sub-culture of the early 2000's. With this new medium many more artist can fill the world with their talents, or lack there of, allowing the American culture to determine who is worthy of praise and who is not. This I believe is what the recording industry is afraid of, we the people now have the power to determine who is popular, not the gigantic spin machine that we call the Recording Industry Association of America. The RIAA now in today's world seems insignificant, the power is now placed into the peoples internet. Artists now see that they can produce and market their art on their own with only a simple $1000 computer and an internet connection. Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails fame found this out when he released his own album off the internet all on his own and asked for donations instead of a set price. It are these situations that the big corporate giants hate because there is no need for a middle man any more.
The creation of the Creative Commons is the next evolutionary step of the P2P transfer protocol, that was so famously smashed with the demise of napster, bearshare, and limewire. This new P2P system places artist right directly on the property the individuals wish to use or listen to from their own computer. By placing the option of fair use back into the hands of the creator we limit the corporate stranglehold our ideas and though have been suffocating from for so long. Creative commons is a breath of fresh air for the little man who normal stands beneath the shadows of the corporate giants.
My Comments back to her:
Great Great Post! Ok, now I really feel old because I had no clue that a lot of this was going on in the music industry. Limewire, well yes I did use that for a time but not very long. I remember those AOL days and MIRC, in fact met some great people there. I am one who listens to the radio and base what I listen to from that. The invention of the MP3 for me just meant that I could pick and choose what I wanted, and even not the whole album!
My barbershop hobby has also kept me in a box so to speak, because I tend to listen to that genre of music a lot! Did we share music?,Yes we did. We shared arrangements, not to steal them, but to experience them. We tried to perform them well, and make them better. I guess you can say a form of remixing! There I said it LOL.
I really do fall on the side of Creative Commons, it just makes sense to me. Creative Commons just allows for expression of an artist, and the license for the artist to say hey you can do this and this with it. So In that case every one wins.
Thanks for the education MP3 and the remixing culture.