Copyright© Connor Nelson
In the film “Steal This Film II” they talk about the effects of pirating and copyrighting and how the development of technology has allowed us to do this much easier. I agree and think that yes, it is true that with the amount of technology we know have today it is easier for us to copy something without even knowing it. As said in the film the development of printing technology, computers, movies, and all other advanced technology it is almost near impossible to stop pirating and copyrighting. File share is a huge concern on the internet and has been ever since it came out; people use it to download movies, games, and music, an example of what use to be a huge file share is Napster. Many lawsuits have been charged to companies like Napster along with people that are using it for free downloads, and is called a network segment. This film mentioned that copyrighting will never stop, and I also agree with that since a lot of people use it for music downloads because it is free. Some people download free music without even thinking that its illegal and some of these people are getting finned thousands of dollars from the record companies that own the song, I believe that they have the right to sue but not ridiculous amounts of money for just a few songs. Another problem that arises in this film is the idea of taking someone’s song and adding something of your own to it to make a remix, and I can see how people would get mad about it and saying that it’s their own, and I for one would probably get mad but this is also something we cannot change. Copyrighting is something that we cannot change at this moment in time, the only reasonable solution at this time seems to be lawsuits, and that’s what the majority of the record and movie companies are doing.
Not too long ago, literature was a pretty straightforward concept for me to define. Literature can be poetry, stories, books, newspapers, indeed, literature to me was anything that I could read, and, for the most part, that stayed put as I read it. Ever since taking the Culture and Technology English course at Capilano University, however, my entire conception of what literature is has shifted.
As our class clicked through the multiplicity of electronic works in the Electronic Literature Collection Volume 1 site, I came to appreciate the more abstract forms literature could take; words forming in a dance of looping string, a story told through my curious clicks, a poem that immersed me in its textual, visual, musical painting. No longer is literature an activity where I simply sit and scan words on a page or screen, my comprehension dependent on the ability to decode words, but is a dynamic interaction with textual and visual elements, where comprehension may not be the end result, but, indeed nor is it meant to be like I used to believe.
In the earlier stages of interacting with this foreign world of words and stories, the frustrations of my confusion was indeed a common feeling. More often than not, the pieces evoked thoughts of loss, futility and anger. Why is it that I value this new form of literature then, if my experiences seem to be more predominantly negative? The answer is simple: because I felt something. The electronic literature collection not only forced me to engage with the texts presented to me (or that I had to find for myself), they manifested stronger emotions than I had experienced with any other assigned book, article, or poem in print or as a pdf. Never before had I felt like destroying a certain author’s work, and never before had I been mesmerized and fascinated by simple words on a screen, their meaning redefined through various motional or interactive elements, and the barriers of language and thought disintegrating through the imaginative execution of textual art. Not only has my aesthetic view to defining literature has changed, but my understanding of its emotional power has evolved as well.
Though I might have once seen the concept of literature as a finished and closed book, my recent experiences with the ELC-1 has reopened it to a chapter I had never read. My views of the what literature is capable of now exceeds that of the enthralling story, and informative essay, and acknowledges the artistry of literary presentation, as well as the involving and interactive characteristics literature can take. My relationship with literature has been changed for the better, my engagement one that dreams of the vast possibilities and interpretations written language can take. Forget plot outlines, trains of thought, the consistency my literary concept of yore described… the static view is gone; I now read for the thrill of the literary unexpected.
Technology: Friend, Not Foe.
In Kirkpatrick Sale’s article, “Lessons From the Luddites; Setting Limits On Technology,” he makes it clear that he does not like the rapid growth and influence that technology is having on the world. I believe that Kirkpatrick is fighting against the wrong thing. Technology is a anything that makes our lives easier. Yes, Kirkpatrick did say that these technologies are getting more complicated to use, but as time goes on, these technologies will further improve and become easier and more user friendly. An example of this would be the computer. If we look back at the first computers, they were complex, big, depended on more then one person to operate. However, people would be lost if they had to sit back down at a type-writer or write ten page papers by hand. How would they correct themselves when they made that one error? Heck, I bet that
Mr. Sale wrote his entire article on a computer, making mistakes and correcting them every few lines. Also, the other reason that I believe that Kirkpatrick is fighting a battle that should be shifted in other directions is because technology, like the computer, like the car, like a knife and fork, can only do what it is supposed to do only if someone tells that piece of technology to. An example of this is a car. Lets say I step in to a car, that car is not going to do anything until; first I put the key on the car and second start the car. Even then I still need to put my foot on the gas and turn the wheel. What I am trying to say is that industries might be becoming automated, but it is not technology that is doing that. It is the people running the companies, looking to increase their already humungous salaries.If technology was in better hands and could be used to increase profit margins maybe people wouldn’t have to work at all. If technology could take over all of the industrial jobs in the world, leaving people to work jobs that incorporate culture more then stress levels would go lower. There is much more to way Kirkpatrick is wrong to fight against technology, but the person behind the wheel of technology is the biggest problem that industry and nations lively hoods face.
Word Count: 390
Open Journal System
Journaling has evolved over time. It use to be that one would have a diary of some sort, and in the diary, would write there thoughts, poems, streams of consciousness, or whatever else they felt like. Now as we move forwards in a time where technology has advanced and changed, journaling can be done online through websites such as the Open Journal System.
The Open Journal System website, close to something of the blog site types, allows people of different backgrounds to publicly publish their work. In a sense it is much like a newspaper, but completely online.
Not only is it a place to publish work, and share work, and ultimately gives the experience of being an author, it also gives someone a chance to take on the role of an editor, or a peer reviewer.
While is great for individuals and their own use, the OJS I feel can also give a leg up to aspiring journalists and columnists. The OJS archives all work that the author chooses to publish, and therefore it’s easy for them, as well as others visiting their page, to pull things up when the need arises. It gives a systematic way to track publications, but also it can also be used as a way to see how the author has progressed and grown in their writing.
Even though it is like a blog, in the sense that anyone can use it for publishing, it goes one step further. The OJS is more complex, and doesn’t seem so juvenile.
I think that this journaling system is a great idea, especially when used for a project that includes many different people with many different ideas and writing skills. As mentioned earlier, it gives the opportunity to be an author, but it also gives the opportunity to experience all the different roles that are real-world jobs in a newspaper-publishing house. Thus far, it is one of the best journaling websites for people who wish to have the freedom to publish whatever it is they want, to get their work out there and accessible.
Word Count: 352
I steal music. According to my Itunes library, I’ve calculated that I would owe well over 6 million in music fees and that’s not including the fines that I’ll probably get if I ever get harassed by the government. And for what? I am passionate about music and I regularly go to shows to support my favorite artists. This is where I get caught in frustration. The support I show isn’t really how the music industry views support. Although I love the strumming of the acoustic and the honest waning of voices that live shows present and am willing to pay for it (sometimes $60 bucks a show), I should be buying albums at $15 each, just so I can say that I am legally listening to the music I connect to. At the same time, I download music for free, listening to bands that I never would’ve thought that I would follow but do because I have that choice to sample them. When I watched Brett Gaylor’s documentary ‘Rip Manifesto’ I realized that this isn’t just a personal annoyance of mine but was the beginning of a global shift of culture and ideas.
The documentary states that our culture is becoming more and more less free. This means that the rules of the past (being able to resample and reorientate art) are now forcing officials to clamp down the iron fist as our technology does the opposite; allows us more freedom to share, reproduce, and appreciate art forms that come out of the culture. This freedom will allow us to build upon past masterpieces and freely educate ourselves so we can become more involved in art, music and ideas without having to worry about the cost. But the cost is high now. Artists and art appreciators are the ones being made an example of when they do not conform to the long list of legalities that surround copyright. The documentary shows single moms, children and even a priest getting wrapped up in legal issues because of the music they’ve downloaded. I don’t think that’s fair to be under scruntinty by the music industy for being a fan of the music that they create.
I don’t agree with stealing and completely ripping off someone’s piece of art or music that they’ve poured themselves into but I do think that building upon such art is not illegal but inspiring. If everyone were to protect their creations diligently then what foundation would we create from? The scariest thing for me as an artist can be a blank canvas because until I put a mark on it, it remains void. So as much of a die hard fan as I am of my artists, I must face the reality that the same corporations that finance the music that I love might one day sue me because I steal music.
A couple of months ago I sent my computer in to have it repaired. Not only was it no longer connecting to the internet, but it stopped turning on. I was furious and I made sure I expressed to the repair man that it would be the end of me if he lost any of my photos or my music. “Number one rule, don’t lose my music!” Oh my music. When my computer came back to me a week later I was happy that the computer man had followed my instructions, except for one thing; the program for downloading music had been deleted. This got me thinking about whether I should continue with my deviant ways of downloading music illegally or if I should finally make an iTunes account and purchase the songs I wanted. Then I remembered “RIP: A Remix Manifesto,” the documentary written and directed by Brett Gaylor. The documentary looks into copyright laws and the issues behind making mash-ups, his prime example being the artist Girl Talk. Although the video does look into the legality of downloading music, it more so focuses on artists using material previously made by someone else to make something of their own. On this topic, I side with Brett Gaylor. Girl Talk should be able to mash together the music that their fans so enjoy, without the side thought that they might get arrested.
So what makes Girl Talk such a perfect example for a documentary that discusses using work done by previous artists to make something new? Girl Talk makes original music, but he does so by taking seconds here and seconds there of songs previously released by other artists. He makes entirely new songs out of them, where afterwards they don’t have the same rhythm or beats as they did before. In the documentary, Girl Talk says that he likes being able to do whatever he wants with the “untouchables” and that he can “put Elton John in a headlock” if he feels like it. Well the issue is that he really isn’t allowed to be doing whatever he wants with the songs because there are copyright laws. People own the rights to the songs that he uses and if he were to purchase them (he uses about 21 different songs to create just one Girl Talk song) it would cost around $262, 400.
Brett Gaylor bases the majority of the documentary on the fact that culture builds on the past, and he does so by providing numerous examples. In music, artists are always dipping into the honey pot of artists that came before them. They influence each other, such as Led Zeppelin finding influence from a Muddy Waters song, rock getting influenced by folk music. And then there is Walt Disney; a man who remakes works to make them relevant for the present age. If Walt Disney isn’t committing copyright fraud, then I don’t think it is fair to say that Girl Talk is. Walt Disney took animated sketches and recreated them into new cartoons, but he didn’t face the strict rules of copyright when he was doing so. Times change, copyright was originally put in place to encourage people to make art, not to discourage them. In some cases copyright laws are needed, but in the case of Girl Talk, they are bringing him down. Girl Talk makes his own music out of the songs he uses and people love it. He is not using these songs as a way to harm anyone, he is making music, and he should be allowed to do so without facing the hand of the law
By Ruby Flynn