Monday, February 21

Freedom of Expression®: Overzealous Copyright Bozos and Other Enemies of Creativity

FOEcoverThis is not a video, and it's not a piece of audio, but I'm podcasting it anyway because this is an experimental blog and this PDF is an exemplary example of open media which should be exemplified. If it breaks anyones ANT or other podcasting app, I apologize. The problem is podcast apps are not there yet, not that I'm doing something wrong. One day perhaps they'll put PDF's in digital document libarary app, and images in a slideshow viewer just like they put mp3's in iTunes. Until then, I guess I'm going to on occassion screw up peoples podcasting apps.

So, here's "Freedom of Expression®: Overzealous Copyright Bozos and Other Enemies of Creativity". Available for free of course. It must have just come out. I haven't even read it yet, but I will. Perhaps after we all "steal" it we'll go and buy copies and the writer will actually make money. Imagine that? A writer who encourages sharing. Profit withoutout draconian DRM. Crazy.

pranks-trademarkcertFor those of you who don't know Kembrew first drew attention for trademarking "freedom of expression" and suing the pants of the first major corportation that came along and dared use it. Thank you Kembrew McLeod for putting your money where your mouth is.

Read it: mcleod-freedomofexpression3.pdf

In 1998, university professor and professional prankster Kembrew McLeod trademarked the phrase "freedom of expression" as a joke, an amusing if dark way to comment on how intellectual property law is increasingly being used to fence off the culture and restrict the way we're allowed to express ideas. But what's happened in recent years to intellectual property law is no joke and has had repercussions on our culture and our everyday lives. The trend toward privatization of everything?melodies, genes, public space, English language?means an inevitable clash of economic values against the value of free speech, creativity, and shared resources. In Freedom of Expression®, Kembrew McLeod covers topics as diverse as hip-hop music and digital sampling, the patenting of seeds and human genes, folk and blues music, visual collage art, electronic voting, the Internet, and computer software. In doing so, he connects this rapidly accelerating push to pin down everything as a piece of private property to its effects on music, art, and science.

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