Archive for December, 2008

New Music

December 29, 2008 Comments off

We started the new music link section, so have a listen.

Recommended Reading: Troublesome Young Men: The Rebels Who Brought Churchill to Power and Helped Save England

December 22, 2008 Comments off

What does a history from a period decades ago have to do with the current situation? A fascinating study of how different kinds of people (most noteably the Tories under Neville Chamberlain and those aligned with Winston Churchill) dealt with the “gun to the head” tactics of the “Narzis” before Herr Hitler and company showed their true swastikas.

The book is a wonderful history of London society during the period between the first two World Wars, but is also as gripping an analysis of legislative decisionmaking as “Thirteen Days” is of the executive, and with as much (or more) at stake.

It’s the content, stupid…

December 21, 2008 Comments off

Here’s a makeover test for you…try watching a couple videos on Hulu and then watching a couple videos on YouTube. That is, try watching professional content then amateur content. Including amateur copies of professional content.

The difference in production values is really quite remarkable. Hulu looks like something worth paying for and YouTube looks like…well, something not worth paying for.

I was watching some Madonna, Secret Machines and Big & Rich videos on YouTube–oh, wait, those are all Warner Music Group artists, I couldn’t have been watching those videos on YouTube, Warner pulled all their content from YouTube today–and the quality was really just awful in comparison to Hulu.

I guess that’s what happens when you have creative folk running an outlet for creative folk–they actually care about how it looks and sounds.

Great resource for IP fans

December 16, 2008 Comments off

We’re very fortunate to have Professor Doug Lichtman at the UCLA School of Law, and you can experience just how lucky lucky is at Professor Lichtman’s podcast site

I highly commend the podcasts to anyone who is serious about intellectual property. Professor Lichtman has a great sense of humor–you can always tell when someone has mastered a subject as they can inject wit into the material.

In the words of Gust Avrakotos, there’s no reason why this can’t be fun.

Life with Larry

December 6, 2008 Comments off

Music Publishing and the Google Books Settlement

December 2, 2008 Comments off

The Google Books settlement agreement makes for an interesting read. Trying to figure out what is means is challenging.

Whenever Google is involved, I know that if you don’t think they are taking advantage of creators, it’s because you haven’t thought about it long enough.

So think about this.

As a fundamental point, the settlement includes “Books” and “Inserts”. So let’s just leave the rest of the settlement agreement alone for the moment and focus on these two defined terms.

What is a the defined term “Book”? A Book is a hard copy with pages, but is also defined as what it is not. A Book does not include “Sheet music and other works that are used primarily for the playing of music.”

OK, fine. Let’s assume they are not going after sheet music. They probably can’t read anyway.

But what is the defined term “Insert”? For starters an Insert must “Consist either of (1) text…or song lyrics; or (2) …musical notation (i.e., notes on a staff or tablature)….”

So an Insert has song lyrics and musical notation. Gee, that sounds like sheet music to me.

And further:

For purposes of receiving payments for the use of Inserts, the Settlement identifies two types of Inserts:

• “Entire Insert,” which is an Insert that is an entire work, e.g., …the entire lyrics of a song….

• “Partial Insert,” which is any other type of Insert. Partial Inserts include excerpts from a work (e.g….portions of a song’s lyrics).”

So a Book doesn’t include sheet music, but an Insert does. Interesting.

How they come to get their paws on the sheet music from which they can rip the lyric remains to be seen, but it’s probably courtesy of your friendly college librarian by the looks of things, unless somehow they are intending to fit print sheet music publishers into the “Publisher” class in the class action settlement.

Sounds like they intend to have a lyric server, don’t it?

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