Re: piracy, copyright and mp3s (was DeCSS ruling)

From: Digital Cutup Lounge (
Date: Fri Feb 04 2000 - 23:12:20 MST

"Robert J. Bradbury" wrote:

> As I and others have pointed out, the best model is to produce
> the "copyrighted works" cheaply enough that it eliminates the
> incentive to "steal" work.

This is what has happened in Hong Kong with video compact discs (VCDs),
the most common format for movies. The real licensed VCDs only cost US$5
or less now, because they have to compete with pirates. Even so, rampant
piracy here has very seriously impacted the local music and film
industries. Pop record sales are down 50% from their peak five years ago,
and the film biz is in even worse shape.

Which leads to a related question which has been on my mind a lot lately,
wonder if any of you Extropians can shed fresh light on this: how can
musicians (or other creative types) make a living from their work in an
age of perfect digital copying? Mp3s are just the beginning, after
all...when everyone has broadband access and massive hard drives we won't
even need to compress the files, we'll just keep them at CD-quality as
wavs or aifs.

Any ideas?

Personally, I haven't bought many CDs since six months ago because I
usually listen to Internet radio or mp3s. I'm not even talking about
piracy, there is so much FREE music by unsigned artists out there if you
take the time to look, and personally I really enjoy finding interesting
new music that no one else has even heard of...I was DJing last night in a
club here and played quite a number of unknown tracks from


John von Seggern
rave culture researcher
The University of Hong Kong

digital DJ -- producer -- bassist Digital Cutup Lounge

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