Third Nyan Cat Award For Web Based Idiocy: Cathy Caverly of Creative Commons.

Nyan Cat awards are given for outstanding achievement in disinformation, web myths and general web based idiocy.

I just read with some amusement this article in the UK Guardian whereby author Phillip Pullman rightly calls piracy “Moral Squalor”. But that’s not the part that’s funny. It’s the quote that they use for “balance” from Creative Commons Chief Cathy Caverly.

“By default, copyright closes the door on countless ways that people can share, build upon, and remix each other’s work, possibilities that were unimaginable when those laws were established.”


Permission is the foundation of civilization or have you forgotten that Ms Caverly?

But it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the Chief of Creative Commons would utter such idiocy. For they claim they offer a license “that lets creators take copyright into their own hands”. WTF? It actually does the opposite. Isn’t this a false statement? False advertising? Fraud? Reading that statement I can’t imagine there are NOT artists out there that unwittingly put their now valuable work into Creative Commons thinking they were gaining more control over their work when in actuality they were doing the opposite. I’m not a lawyer but isn’t there a problem misleading people in this manner?

Plain old normal copyright IS creators right to their works in their own hands.

Creative Commons licenses are a permanent surrendering of some or all of your copyrights as an artist. To use the same analogy these CC licenses take creators’ works from their hands.

Now some people see Creative Commons as a elaborate put up for a particular large Internet corporation that would like nothing better than to monetize every book, film, photograph and song without ever having to ask permission of the author. They often point to Sergey Brin’s (Google) financial support of the organization and the fact that his mother-in-law is the vice chair. Or they point out that their board is completely dominated by people with ties to technology companies and opponents of Copyright. I don’t agree with this. The pseudo-intellectual Creative Commons movement was afoot long before Google existed. Still one can certainly argue that Creative Commons are “useful idiots” and I won’t object.

But here is the question that no one is asking:

“Why are Creative Commons licenses even necessary?”.

For you can do everything you do with Creative Commons that you can do with old-fashioned-non-googly copyright! For instance I allow the non-commercial sharing of recordings of my bands live shows on the non-profit Internet Music Archive. There are thousands of our recordings on the internet music archive. All I had to do was state on our website that we allow this. Voila. Thousands of recordings appeared.

Neither do we object to fans posting ukele cover versions of “Take the Skinheads Bowling” on their facebook pages. And may I remind you that the Grateful Dead enacted their famous taping policy without a Creative Commons license?

Photographers who wish to freely share their photos in any manner commercial or non commercial may state so on their websites without using a Creative Commons license. Plus they have the added advantage of being able to change their minds later. Something that is not possible with a Creative Commons License.

Why is it left to me rather than a real journalist to point out that there is no point to Creative Commons licenses? Where are the grown-ups?

Well perhaps I’m too hasty. There may be ONE point to these Creative Common licenses:

They serve to confuse the public as to the true nature of copyright. And that looks suspiciously like propaganda to me. “Useful idiots” indeed!

Therefore we hereby present our 3rd Nyan Cat Award to Cathy Caverly of Creative Commons. Enjoy.

Free Culture’s Epic Fail – If Free is Working, Why Fight Copyright?

One of the argument’s that is often trotted out by free culture advocates and the copytheft hive mind is to make hay of any artist or creator who gives away their work willingly as an example of how free models can work to benefit creators. Well, the truth is that creators have been employing “Freemium” models long before the birth of the internet. Previously, musicians would for example employ street teams to canvas consumers exiting the concert of a similar type artist and give them free music.

However, it was also the creators choice to determine what would be given away for free, how much of it and for how long. In other words, the creator embracing the power of free, also retained the power of choice. Unfortunately the simple concept of choice and consent has been lost and the faucet free can no longer be turned off.

The power of free, works best with the creators power of choice.

After all, anyone can surrender their Copyright, opt out, or even use Creative Commons. Which also begs the question, if Creative Commons is the solution, shouldn’t there be enough content available after 10 years to show how much better Creative Commons is for artists and creators than traditional copyright protections?

If there are really so many people, creating so much great content, and willing to give it away for free wouldn’t this alone render Copyright a useless and antiquated concept? Why argue so aggressively to take what is not given, when there is so much being given away freely?

It makes no sense to oppose the protections granted in Copyright or to deny these rights to those who wish have them, when there is so much content being made available for free. Why so little faith in free markets? Why not honor the artists and creators who chose not to give their work away by removing their work from the businesses of the exploitation economy? Why not let an honest marketplace chose between the products made available willingly for free, and see how they perform against those who wish to charge?

If we are talking about free markets, wouldn’t there be a great benefit to the artists and creators who embrace “permissionless innovation”? If there are so many benefits to artists and creators in “permissionless innovation” it would attract more than enough creators eager to reap the rewards. We think the answer is pretty obvious as to why so many in the free culture movement insist on wanting to take rights away from artists and creators. Simply put, “permissionless innovation” is nothing more than theft for profit, without consent or compensation.

It appears many of these so called new business models are so deeply flawed as to be incapable of functioning with only willing participants. In other words, they can only function with unwilling participants, who have not granted consent and who are not being compensated.

The epic fail of the free culture and copytheft movement is to have so little faith in their own philosophy so as to not believe that creators and artists would actually, willingly surrender enough content of high enough quality to allow their models to function.

CopyLike.Org – If You Like Open Source and Creative Commons

Check out this Organization:

If you like open source software,
or Creative Commons licensing,
then you like copyright.

Open source software relies on copyright to force all future
development to remain open. Without copyright the orginal
creator wouldn’t be able to stop people closing his code.

Creative Commons licenses let us decode what rights to give
away. For example, we can allow people to use our work only if
they credit us, or only for non-commercial purposes.

Copyright gives us these choices. Without copyright, anyone
could use our work for anything, including selling weapons.

That’s a very good reason to like copyright.

Defend Copyright.
It’s All We Have Left.