File spoon-archives/lyotard.archive/lyotard_2001/lyotard.0103, message 20

Date: Wed, 07 Mar 2001 10:14:41 +0000
Subject: Re: The rearview mirror stage

Hugh and all

Assuming the below is acceptable the following question needs answering.

How would artists make a living in a capitalist or neo-capitalist society?  In
the old state-capitalist societies (aka communist)  it was possible to survive,
barely, if you were a 'good' artist on the state stipend. Not just a question
for music but also for textual and image production. This is not an issue
relating solely to transnationals but to us all.

Technology is not making intellectual copyright obsolete, rather it is making it
easier for its users to break copyright and to not pay for the copies made. This
is not the same thing surely....

I would like to see some more exploration of the issue touched on below of
technological excess and redundent features endlessly added to technology, which
of course the users never use...


hugh bone wrote:

> Technology is making CD copyrights obsolete.  Copyrights and
> patents encourage the creation of something unique.  The intent was to help
> artist or inventor recover costs and make a reasonable profit.
> The intent was not to copyright a CD of Windows and let Bill Gates sell 100
> million copies of that CD for  several hundred dollars each,  and make
> copyrighted modifcations every two or three years so he could become the the
> wealthiest man on Earth
> In spite of copyrights, technology and competition are reducing the value of
> Windows.  It has become enormously complex with many features most users
> don't need.
> Big pharmaceutical corporations are patenting genes, which is
> another way to prey on the public in the same way they market
> prescription drugs.  Now Congress is expected to use public funds to help
> pensioners pay for them.  This will encourage the drug companies companies
> to raise the absurd (but protected) price of new drugs to new heights.  .
> Regards,
> Hugh
> >      I completely disagree with your analysis. If Napster is required to
> > compensate the recording industry for the unlicensed distribution of
> > copyrighted material, is this such a bad thing? After all,  there are
> > provisions in the Constitution to protect copyrights, as well as a body of
> > statutes which are clearly intended to exclusively protect the creator of
> the
> > copyrighted material. Directly on point, the 1976 Copyright Act has
> > provisions for the exclusive commercial appropriation of the copyright for
> > the life of the author plus 70 years, entailing the exclusive control of
> the
> > distribution, public performance and reproduction of the material. In my
> > view, as well as the court's view, Napster did not substantially comply
> with
> > the spirit of the relevant statutes (especially the distribution component
> of
> > the statute).
> >       Napster profited from copyright infringement. They profited from a
> > parasitical relationship to the recorded music, from the ingenuity and
> > creativity of the rightful copyright owners. Their ethical stance is no
> > different than a distributor of stolen watches or stereos.  Napster simply
> > facilitated the unlawful distribution of copyrighted materials, which is a
> > prima facie violation of criminal statutes.
> >       Why should someone invest time and money in the production,
> > manufacturing, marketing and distribution of music, if they are not going
> to
> > be compensated for their efforts?  Why should a pharmaceutical company,
> for
> > example, invest millions of dollars in R&D, marketing, manufacturing and
> > distribution if the patent is not going to be enforced?
> >        Implicitly, you are questioning the wisdom of the intellectual
> > property statutes. Their repeal would be unfair to creators of
> intellectual
> > property, as well as injecting disorder into the market economy.
> >                             TRV
> >


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