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back to article Creatives spin copyright licence that sticks to web

A range of organisations from across the global creative industries have formed a coalition with the aim of developing a universal standard framework for licensing out use of their copyrighted material. The Linked Content Coalition (LCC) officially launched late last month and said its "remit" over the next year is to "create …

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Anonymous Coward

Lipstick on a pig

All the big corporations, the "rights holders", the collection agencies... but where's the artists, the authors? Seems there's something missing here.

Like, oh, the general public. Creative works are nothing without an audience, so if you're going to drum up new ways to "do copyright", you should indeed include everyone including your eventual customers and those that would be but right now rather take without compensation, ie work with them to turn them into paying customers. Where's the various pirate parties, the civil liberties organisations, and so on? Or is this no more than yet another self-congratulatory industry wankfest? We've seen too many of those already.

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This post has been deleted by its author

Good Luck..

Since only realistic way to stop file sharing of copyrighted material is by shutting down the Internet.

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Bronze badge

Re: Good Luck..

Hell, even that won't work - "Mix Tapes" were the in thing during the 80's, before anyone had access to T'Tubes, and now we have USB sticks big enough to hold a hundred movies at a time...

Not that I would condone either practice, etc. etc.

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Silver badge

Bottom line ...

If it's available digitally, it's available digitally.

It is completely impossible to stop casual sharing of digital information.

EOF

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Holmes

Re: Bottom line ...

Indeed, not distributing via DVD and BR would go a long way to reducing infringement. Stick to cinema release/live concerts only and the problem pretty much goes away.

Yes, you'll get some camcorder usage, but that's generally rubbish and not worth the effort.

No physical control, no security.

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Silver badge

Re: Bottom line ...

Also, if it's available in analogue, or just available at all, then it's available digitally. Somehow, someone will find a way to digitise it or bypass DRM.

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Pissing at the wind

you can't even write your name.

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FAIL

I won't buy anything I can't rip

Goodness me. No instance of the dread initials DRM in the whole article (although admittedly "rights management" does get a single mention). Looking at the site (www.linkedcontentcoalition.org — which has a Flash entry page to show how clued-up they are about where content is consumed these days), in the 63 pages that Google hits, DRM appears just once, and that's in "scare quotes". I fear that, much as it might like to, the coalition cannot ignore or skirt this issue.

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DRM

...by any other name.

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Anonymous Coward

Hmm...

East India trading company is back.

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Unhappy

Copyright is broken...

...so just break it some more.

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Hopefully

This will include a method for how we trade second-hand downloads, e-books, etc. They really do need to get that one sorted, it's not rocket science. If digital is to survive, they need to do this.

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"Technical work will be undertaken by experts from across the media industry"

Given the basis of copyright as a tool to secure a social good, perhaps involving more than just those set to benefit financially might appropriate?

Whilst this is billed to develop "a universal standard framework for licensing out," and so seems more about rights management, interested members of the public, which is supposed to be the primary beneficiary of the effects of copyright, should perhaps be involved.

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(Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

Re: "Technical work will be undertaken by experts from across the media industry"

"Given the basis of copyright as a tool to secure a social good"

Indeed it is.

"...perhaps involving more than just those set to benefit financially might appropriate?"

You want to start a committee? :-)

I'm not necessarily disagreeing - but it certainly hasn't been necessary so far, because creative markets ensure that all the interests are aligned.

The brutal reality today however is that the people who benefit financially from the content are not the creators of that content. They get a free ride. Perhaps you might want to start there?

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FAIL

Conspicuous by absence

In this article about the 'creative industries' is any mention of anyone who actually creates stuff. This seems once again to be about the publishers and distributors trying to hang on to their old business models again.

I'm a photographer and have been in the business for over 35 years. I've yet to have any contact with any of those named in the article which hasn't been about them trying to steal work from myself and people like myself, e.g. music publishers using my images in a commercial context without permission to illustrate and market their products.

The individual creator always gets the short straw while the corporations scream about infringement. It's that imbalance which needs to be sorted out.

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Re: Conspicuous by absence

It's that imbalance which needs to be sorted out.

Part of the irony being that this was one of the reasons for the Copyright Act 1709 — to remove control from publishers, and put it back in the hands of authors...

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Re: Conspicuous by absence

Not a personal dig, just the other side of the coin ... it is sometimes possible for people to over estimate how creative they are.

Wedding photographers are an example. The venue, people and outfits are all laid on, they charge a reasonable hourly rate as a skilled professional photographer, and what they produce is hopefully good quality but usually not especially original or creative. If you are lucky they have managed to get a group shot where nobody has their eyes closed.

At that point they really have done their job and ought to take the money, hand over the jpegs and go away. But no, they use copyright to gouge the happy couple and their relatives for every single print.

Somebody always gets screwed over by copyright, but it isn't always the creator.

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Go

Give Up

It won't work.

I wish they would just get on with actually doing their usual bluff and stop "supporting creative people". I figure there'd be a short period of not much being produced before someone steps into the breach and offers services that people have been asking for for ages, namely - everything available for free via ad supported streaming services alongside premium (but still reasonably priced) physical media with no drm and no unskippable BS, for fans and collectors.

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(Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

To understand the Linked Content Coalition...

You need to read this:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/04/09/breaking_the_internet_no_property_no_privacy/

It isn't about DRM or stopping anybody.

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Anonymous Coward

So... these guys don't really understand the issues either?

That piece says a couple of things I'd agree with, even some things I've been saying myself, if in a different way. But it doesn't really explain to me what's going on here. Have they finally let go their fight against that basic property of computing and thus the internet, that copying is a (nearly) free action?

I think conflating copyright with privacy isn't the way forward. They share depending on the notion of ownership, but each does so in wildly different ways. I mean, suppose you'd assign copyright to help with privacy issues. Suddenly people might start demanding royalties for their part in their favourite website's access logs, for example. That doesn't sound workable to me, nor does it seem to help with either problem much.

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Non-creatives

Wake up, your business model is totally shit and dose not make as much money any-more - deal with it you bunch of pussies! Yes, you're all pussies - you're scared, you cry yourselves to sleep saying "why do the big horrible general public steal my copyrighted work its not fair wa wa wa I want my mummy!" you bunch of pathetic, outdated, delusional, non-creatives!

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Gav
Boffin

So what's the solution?

It's always the same with these IP/Copyright/DRM stories. You get a comments forum full of budding MBAs dispensing advice about broken business models, condemning industries for their inertia and inability to compete against their own product being given away for free.

But surprisingly for the internet, where opinions are never in short supply, very few people have any credible solutions for what should be done to fix things. And, no, I'm not counting "do live concerts and sell t-shirts" as a credible solution. Not all creators of original material are bands with a fan base who buy t-shirts and attend live concerts.

So what's to be done? The creators of the original material need to make a living. They need to have some incentive to continue to produce material, or they will stop and go get a paying job. What method can those who consume the product reward its creators? Anyone?

Or are we just here for another round of unconstructive moaning and criticising?

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Anonymous Coward

Excuse me?

Isn't it the job of business to figure out a business model that works, that is viable? *cough* Certain people *cough* have made it a habit of lobbying for more laws to forcibly prop up what increasingly looks like a failed business model. Moreover, in doing so they've failed to support, indeed outright exploited, the very creators that the legislation they're banking on was aimed to support. The cost was to be borne by, well, everyone else, in the form of ever increased policing, of ever less freedom to do whatever you please including in your own home. Why should people protesting such abuse, including abuse of law, by (as at least they like to style themselves, given the largely fictious "damage" numbers they like to spout) all-but-bust businesses fix their business models for them? Who's running that business then?

Anyhow, I'd happily make constructive suggestions, and lo and behold, I have. The basic idea goes like this: Pray tell, why and who for did we invent copyright in the first place? Compare and contrast with current situation.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Excuse me?

Defending your business is a legitimate business technique.

Media companies have (in theory) vast archives of material which they have paid for and has some (opinions differ as to actual value) potential to be sold.

Their options are to make it available at some price or not.

So far they reckon on availability at a certain price and trying to stop copying.

Those outside the companies in question have different opinions as to the right price point.

If a given media company fails to stay in business, likely its media collection will end up in the hands of another media company, (or possibly "shredded"), and not likely to be bought up by a coalition of the willing to make it freely available for the benefit of mankind.

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FAIL

Re: Excuse me?

No, sorry, not getting the problem here. There's no sign of the IP industry going bust any time soon—just ask the producers of the new "Avengers" movie. Music sales are not stellar, but they're also still pretty decent given that we're all still in a recession too.

However, if you want your arguments to be taken seriously, I strongly advise you stop pointing at the activities of a tiny, tiny minority of rights holders as being representative of EVERY bloody copyright holder. Not every bloody publisher is Disney, for fuck's sake! Most publishers, across all media, make a decent, but not amazing, profit each year. Disney-PIXAR are not the norm.

The entertainment industries are in a transitional phase and most of their managers are well aware of the challenges they face. Most know full well that they're heading for an age when their services are mostly about packaging. Indeed, many publishers are moving in that direction already.

But music, movies and novels are NOT the only copyrighted works that need protecting. This is not just about entertainment, but about intellectual property rights in general. It's a much bigger picture, and a lot harder to solve than most of you appear to believe.

Sorry pirates, but it's not always about you.

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Anonymous Coward

"not always about you"

Pray tell, how is it not legitimate to wonder what that "tiny, tiny minority" populating the list of participants in the article are up to now? Especially in light of them being the ones favouring high-handed approaches as evidenced by, oh, lobbying for pick your buzzword-y legislation du jour, along the way throwing away quite a lot of copyright industry credibility. Credibility that is needed even more than legislation for the system to work, and that somehow will need to be won back.

Yes, there are a lot of other parties around, and indeed the proverbial honest small-time artist isn't being served by all this. You're not the first to observe that, thank you. Now, if you have anything else to add, please do try again. This time without trying to reverse cause and effect, maybe?

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Re: So what's the solution?

"very few people have any credible solutions for what should be done to fix things"

Your request for a solution pre-supposes that there is a problem. Until music could be recorded there was no problem, musicians earned a living by performing. Until movies came along actors made money in the theatre. Until TVs were common film studios made money through cinema distribution and still do. At each stage, in each form of media, there were business opportunities created by the ability to disseminate content through reproduction and distribution models that could be controlled. These conditions were created organically, just as the Internet has created a situation where the reproduction and distribution costs are tending toward zero and it has become (almost?) impossible to "protect" a viable economic model based on these models. I would ask why we should lament that? There are plenty of other industries that went to the wall because their business model didn't stack up any more - coal mining, steel etc. If you want to preserve the creative "industries" why don't we copy the EU Common Agricultural Policy and have a Common Creative Policy, where we all pay our taxes to subsidise a bunch of self-entitled, loss-making creative types? Of course I'm being facetious but, after all, agriculture is a broken business model too isn't it? We only protect it to avoid dependence on imports and prevent third world countries developing lucrative commodity markets.

Copyright is actually a grant of a monopoly on distribution, its there to protect the distribution model, not primarily the artist or creator (though Thoreau's amendment allowed certain controls on reproduction). That is why this article pays scant regard to the actual artists and creators. However creating art in its truest sense is more of a human instinct or compulsion, rather than a productive capitalist activity. I have faith that whatever economic conditions prevail, whatever the viability of creative activities, real artists will create, regardless!

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Flame

Re: So what's the solution?

My only regret is that I have but a single thumbs up to bestow!

The line seems to be that if there was an epidemic of common sense and all legislation regarding intellectual "property" was repealed world wide tomorrow, that all creativity would cease altogether immediately and we would spiral down into a dark and boring world devoid of any progress or entertainment value.

What a huge load of horseshit. How did we get to where we are today then? Only by the good graces of the "Intellectual Property Industry" in places like ancient China, Egypt, Greece, Persia, India, Rome?

I've always said, and I'll say it again: even if you penalized people for singing songs and telling stories and drawing pictures and inventing things, guess what it would be just like the unwinnable war on drugs, people would still do all of those things.

Anybody claiming that we would all be harmed by the total annihilation of American Idol, Backstreet Boys, Big Brother, Harry Potter, Survivor, 100s of millions of dollars to tell a story that was originally told with a 50c comic book or even more astounding Battleship, etc etc ad nauseum, well I'll bet you've got some "prime" real estate or a used car to sell as well.

I'll bet you a trillion dollars that I'll still be able to go down to the pub and see a live band, or go see a play at the theatre, or go down to the gallery and see some art, or find someone to tell me a story I haven't heard before. Or even more specifically be able to hire someone to create a logo for a business, or take photographs at a wedding, or sculpt a big ass statue of yours truly.

So toss a fucking match on it all already. This is a new age, if you have something to say you can send it around the world and back at the stroke of a key press, so get all the arthritic pablum rationing dinosaurs out of the god damn way. Whatever we end up with can't possibly be half as retarded as what we have right now.

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Silver badge

Re: So what's the solution?

Solution, Gav? There is no solution.

Copyright, when it comes to digital works, is simply not enforceable. In fact, I'll go as far as to say that the entire concept is laughable, given human nature.

Note that I'm not exactly representative of most freetards. The last CD image I downloaded was the Slackware 2.2 installation CD in 1995ish ... I don't watch movies/TV, have no use for games, have never downloaded binaries from Usenet, have never used a torrent, and own vinyl copies of all my digitized music. What I am is a realist.

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Gav

Re: So what's the solution?

What you say is true, but it would leave the production of music, films, books, whatever entirely in the hands of amateurs. People who cannot do it full time because they have to spend their day earning money. Do you believe that amateurs can provide the output and quality previously provided by full-time professionals? Personally, I can't see how they can. Someone who spends their working life doing something is always likely to be more practised at it than someone who only does it a couple of hours in the evening. Someone who is paid to do something is always more likely to devote greater resources to it, because it's an investment in their living wage, not just a hobby.

A significant part of development over the last 1000 years has been allowing creative people to specialise at what they are good at, without having to spend 8 hours a day in the fields earning their next meal. Is this where we want to return?

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FAIL

bless

They're still making us jump through too many hoops. Let's take skygo for example. For the £100 subscription we get the privilege of having 2, lets count em 2 devices. You can change devices once per month. Great. So I decided to swap my PC for ipad. It wouldn't let me add the ipad because it's jailbroken. OK fair enough except the other device i use is a jailbroken iphone and that works just peachy thank you very much. Attempting to add my PC back also failed because I went over the limit of devices by just showing the license server the ipad. A quick email to sky gets the result of a standard letter saying devices could only be changed once a month. Another email to sky explaining about hoops, DRM and downloading the TV instead because its easier finally gets the account reset. So then after installing the app on the PC and downloading last weeks F1 show I press play and whats this SD only ffs. NOT GOOD ENOUGH

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Anonymous Coward

Re: bless

The more money people give to Sky the more money they have to bargain with and ensure that Freeview and other channels get absolutely nothing on them.

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Re: bless

possibly the only forum in the world where you get called out for freetarding and then called out again for using mega corp inc. cant win!

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Anonymous Coward

What works?

Nothing works, so do nothing...

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Silver badge
Stop

While they're discussing this hokum...

...please throw in the arbitrary nonsense that is region locking. Not just DVDs, but on-line stuff too. I would pay for a Crunchyroll sub to get my animé fix (subbed in English). Instead I get a couple of options and an apology about the good stuff not being licenced in my area. Where does this fit in to a free market economy model? I have cash, I have a want, somebody else is making arbitrary obstacles. So I pursue alternative options.

But the biggest pile of cack is digital downloads from Amazon. The various Amazon's I frequent (.fr, .com and .co.uk (not found mp3s on .co.jp yet?)) actually manage to hold rather different selections when it comes to the less popular artists. So I find a track I like that .co.uk has. But I live in France, so .co.uk will absolutely not permit me to pay and then download. I can, however, buy the CD without a problem. I could also take myself to the UK, pay, download, and go back to France. What the hell? Where's the logic in that. I'm the customer, they are the provider. If I should choose to buy from here rather than there, what does it matter? All this regional licencing stuff is bollocks, can you imagine if Tesco started buying the rights to town centres and refusing access to people holding Asda bags? No, you go and shop where it suits you (for all manner of reasons, financial, psychological, or just 'cos you think the checkout girls are cuter - it doesn't matter). Thus to digital music. Why are we still existing in an arcane system with arbitrary limitations? Last week I bought a furoshiki from Japan, a book from England, and a set of DVD-Rs from Germany. No hassle whatsoever. But digital music and video? That's a whole different proposition. Even more ridiculous when the company that refuses to sell me music in digital format (and, sadly, it is not just Amazon) will happily sell DVDs and CDs of the exact same stuff. It's nonsense.

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Gav

Re: While they're discussing this hokum...

I think you have a mistaken understanding of the free market economy.

The seller is under no obligation to sell to you. The manufacturer is free to dictate any market restrictions on sales that they like, if they believe they are in their interests. You have no right to buy their product from whoever you like, wherever you like. Don't like this? Then you are free to buy something else from someone else, any time and any place you fancy. That is the free market economy.

It's certainly annoying, and I share your pain. But nothing about it defies logic or economics.

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