I've had some comments wondering what all this has to do with Tech-IP issues. It's not technology, I'll grant you that. But fundamentally copyright was invented to promote the (commercial) freedom of creative expression. What's happening now, essentially out of sight of everyone except the fundamentalists who monitor it, is the extinguishment of a large segment of that freedom. What good is a copyright if you can't show your works? What value is there for a royalty on a performance that can't be staged?
I can't think of another time in American history when a small cadre of fundamentalists exercised such effective control over the content of mass media. And the ongoing complicity of the media oligarchs in this is a dereliction of their duties to the public and to their shareholders.
Once again we must turn to non-US media for reporting on these events. From both ends of the spectrum - Fox is pixellating a cartoon character's backside, and PBS is censoring scenes in a BBC drama documentary (Dirty War) as well as cutting out an expletive used by Dick Cheney in Sometimes in April, a film about the Rwandan genocide.
Everywhere you turn, it's fear fear fear. Execs are afraid of the fanatics, the networks fear the FCC, and lord only knows what the fanatics fear. Nobody seems to be afraid of what scares me - that the chilled atmosphere will deaden the spectrum, that the US will fall behind in culture and education, and that we're coming to accept a silent, rule-less, post-facto censorship regume as the norm.
Pass me some digital music news, please. That's got to be less depressing.Posted by dr. wex at January 20, 2005 09:06 AM