Category Archives: Copyright

Against copyright

Schermafbeelding 2019-05-25 om 10.35.01

Recently, in the gym, I heard a song by Enrique Iglesias. An old classic, I don’t know the name, but the chorus goes ‘you can run, you can hide, but you can’t escape my love.’ This made me think: how funny would it be to make a video parody where a beta sings those lyrics, totally creeping out the woman he sings it to, probably stalks her or something. You know, exact same lyrics that turn women on when sung by high status man, but when a sung by a low status man, suddenly horrible. Good stuff.

Then I thought to myself: not a chance it’s gonna happen. Apparently, the copyright police has become so tyrannical, that by this point you cannot even hum a song in a youtube video without risking it being copyrighted. Talk about stupid greed.

Now people will say: ‘yes perhaps that is stupid, but there should be some kind of law to protect artists from other people using their content without permission.’ I disagree: there should be no such law. Let people re-use other people’s content without permission. Hell, copy-pasta my stuff all you want, if you really want to you can even pass it off as your own and turn a buck on my blood sweat and words. I don’t care.

The thing is, and this becomes really obvious on the internet, that artists gain traction because people spread around their content. Will I be sued for using an image of Pepe? No I won’t, so I can safely spread images of Pepe. Whereas I cannot even hum a song of Enrique Iglesias, so I will not be spreading songs of Enrique Iglesias. To expect otherwise, i.e. that people will continue spreading your stuff when you actively undermine them in doing so, it is just plain self-defeating greed.

I guess Metallica were among the first of major artists publicly consumed by greed when they sued Napster. The truth of course, is that Metallica should’ve sent a personal thank-you note to Napster for spreading their music. The only reason I even know a decent amount of Metallica songs is because I can listen to them for free. Metallica, you’re good, but you’re not that good. No artist is that good. What is going on is a fundamental feeling of insecurity: ‘I am missing out on revenue when people pirate my stuff.’ Nah man, when people are spreading your memes, it is free advertisement. Of all the people showing up at your concert, how many have actually bought your album versus how many have listened to your pirated music? Pretty sure the ratio tilts to the latter.

Now, the greed of individual content creators didn’t need to be a major problem, but unfortunately we live in a decaying prog society, where, if the state can screw us over, it will screw us over. Since there’s censorship to be made in copyright claims, of course the state was going to get involved. Ostensibly under the name of ‘protecting the artists’ but pretty obviously in actuality to extort and to censor. No one asked for the EU to regulate memes. Absolutely no one. But it happened anyway.

Whenever the state sticks its nose in business not absolutely necessary to stick its nose in, things tend to go very badly, because in the absence of being able to do even tiniest amount of good, only bad eggs stick around. Copyright laws are not absolutely necessary, not even necessary, even counterproductive, hence all the state-involved parties are bad eggs

As for content creators: when you excise copyright power on your own memes, you kill them. People are gonna steal and copy your stuff, but this is a compliment, since standard procedure is that people ignore your stuff. The more your stuff is stolen, the more it spreads, and the more it spreads, the more people will be inclined to actually buy your stuff.