Last Sunday, we linked to the story about a monkey who took a photo and resulting legal issue of copyright around the image. Well, Techdirt who first asked the question, “Who Owns the Copyright?” just received a takedown notice requesting that they remove the monkey photos.
This week’s Required Reading examines how copyright law impacts images by animals, art’s LGBT problem, a history of English, China’s political prisoners, against reviews and Frank Lloyd Wright’s dislike of intellectuals.
Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts has initiated a course for contemporary visual artists to protect themselves and their art projects. It is an introduction to legal issues that is designed to make “legalese comprehensible and manageable.”
Online we encounter more information than ever, but we also lose a hell of a lot. On May 3, the blog WeLoveViral posted a photos and a video titled “Swimming Pool Illusion.” The YouTube video embedded in the post is titled “Amazing Japanese Fake Pool” and has been viewed (as of today) 6,211,210 times!
The problem is that the pool is question is neither a pool, nor Japanese. In fact, it is an artwork by Argentinean artist Leandro Erlich titled “Swimming Pool” (2008).
One of the most important social, political, and artistic concerns facing us today is the question of access: our ability to share media, our ability to take ownership of or simply to view films, music, and other forms of art. In the past, non-digital and only finitely reproducible media created a certain type of economic exchange and ownership which has long been upended by file sharing. Every day millions of people download and stream films on the Internet in an alternative form of exchange more related to cultural capital than economic capital. This is a political action accomplished as easily as downloading the flat version of Avatar.