Week 9 Copyright Issues

There’s nothing like finding the perfect research article that contains the most important (at the time) information in it…only to find VT “does not subscribe!” This is the issue that comes to mind when thinking about copyright and availability of different works. I also think of the many times I have done a PowerPoint presentation with images and wondered if I was citing them correctly…similar to other topics we go over in this class, the issue of copyright is very vague. With that being said, it was really cool to explore the Creative Commons website. I really like the idea of building a richer, more easily-accessed public domain on the internet but this is a very complex issue.

One somewhat recent copyright issue deals with Facebook videos, stolen from YouTube. Apparently, content creators earn revenue for views on YouTube but “freebooters” (people who copy the content and upload it to Facebook) have been making some waves. Not only are they taking business away from YouTube, but by uploading the content to Facebook, freebooters take views away from the original content creator, which translates to a loss of revenue. It’s very hard to hold others accountable for these acts and lawsuits around this issue can be very complicated. What do you think is fair?

Another copyright issue that came to mind was when Taylor Swift removed her music from Spotify. It’s not textbook copyright infringement but this is what she said about allowing her music to be streamed with Spotify:

“In my opinion, the value of an album is, and will continue to be, based on the amount of heart and soul an artist has bled into a body of work, and the financial value that artists (and their labels) place on their music when it goes out into the marketplace. Piracy, file sharing and streaming have shrunk the numbers of paid album sales drastically, and every artist has handled this blow differently.”

I think these two issues highlight the complexity of copyright issues on the internet and force us to think about this issue from the creator’s side, which I personally am not as familiar with.

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