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[Nettime-bold] Re: <nettime> why art should be free 1/3, 2/3, 3/3
Jim Carrico on Mon, 15 Apr 2002 22:43:02 +0200 (CEST)


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[Nettime-bold] Re: <nettime> why art should be free 1/3, 2/3, 3/3


Excellent essay - is this up on the web anywhere? - I run a site 
covering "gift economy" issues (potlatch.net) and would like to place 
a link to it. (I can point into the nettime archive if not.)


>
>I'm not proposing that creators be locked into open licenses for all 
>their projects. Individuals could choose on a project-by-project 
>basis which works to be open licensed and which to be distributed 
>based on the closed terms of traditional property. I'm just not sure 
>there's a good reason to call the latter work art; "commercial art" 
>strikes me as a contradiction in terms.



a point which may be of interest - anyone using the GPL to 'copyleft' 
a work of software is always free to negotiate seperate licences on a 
case-by-case basis for the same work.   That is, if I've created a 
piece of GPL code, and you want to use it in a closed-source project, 
I can grant you an exemption if the terms are mutually agreeable. Of 
course, this must be agreed-to by the creators of all works from 
which mine may be derived, so it is only really applicable in the 
case of a 'created-from-scratch' work.  The point in any case is that 
publishing under an open licence doesn't necessarily preclude 
exemptions - but the creator is always in control of this process. 
This is I think an important distinction to make when considering the 
broader cultural dimensions of 'free' licencing.  In numerous 
conversations with musicians over the years, it's been repeatedly 
confirmed that most artists don't mind having fans circulate their 
work, as long as it's properly attributed and a good quality copy - 
not chopped or mangled in some way - *but* they are violently opposed 
to anyone making money off of their work without permission and 
compensation.  As soon as a musician learns that publishling under a 
"strict GPL" licence would allow coca-cola or the gap to use their 
music in an advertisement, for instance, without any special 
permission or payment, their interest in such a licence rapidly drops 
off to zero.  The only way we're going to make headway toward a more 
sympathetic attitude is to advocate a licence regime which makes a 
clear distinction between 'non-commercial sharing' and commercial 
activity.  I presume that the Creative Commons project
is working on this potential legal minefield.  the Open Music project 
has already laid some groundwork here, with their red, yellow, and 
green licences - see 
http://openmusic.linuxtag.org/showitem.php?item=209 - but I would 
presume that there are numerous devils in the details (eg. 
determining what exactly consitutes commercial activity in any 
particular context.)

cheers,
Jim Carrico

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