Archive for the ‘music’ Category

dear lily, adjust your sails

September 26, 2009

I hadn’t heard of Lily Allen until her thoughtless, ranting, anti-filesharing babble went mainstream. I also hadn’t heard of Dan Bull.


Back The TRUCK UP: buying v downloading

October 14, 2008

In a recent post on Jefferson, etc. I linked to a video that I had thought I’d seen before and then, upon further review, found out that it wasn’t what I thought it was. Confused? Yeah, me too.

The video I linked to is not properly contextualized to my post. When I posted, I thought I was linking to a video claiming “downloading” unauthorized copies is “stealing”. Instead, I unwittingly linked to a different video claiming “buying” unauthorized copies is “stealing”.


This is a HUGE difference. While it’s still absurd to think of buying unauthorized recordings as “stealing” (perhaps “complicity” if I knowingly do it), I understand why some may get angry and wish to call the sellers “pirates” who “steal”.

Check these videos (one & two) out. They are very, very different. And just to add to the confusion, the one that says “downloading” in the youtube title is the one that plays as “buying” while the youtube title claiming “crime” is the one that plays as “downloading”.

the Foos fight McCain

October 9, 2008

MSNBC reports that the McCain campaign is being asked by the Foo Fighters to stop playing “My Hero” at political rallies. The band released a statement claiming:

To have [the song] appropriated without our knowledge and used in a manner that perverts the original sentiment of the lyric just tarnishes the song.

Only property can be “appropriated”, not copyrighted work. Unfortunately, the Foo Fighters mistakenly refer to copyright as “Intellectual Property” which just confuses the issue. However, if we insist on playing the “property” analogy game, the closest action to “appropriation” would be to claim authorship. The McCain camp did not do this.

The only way to “tarnish” a copyrighted work is to change it and distribute or perform the derivative work without notice of the adjustments. Even then, “tarnish” is really in the eye of the beholder. There is no “tarnishing” when using a context (e.g. a rally) in trying to persuade an audience toward an interpretation of an original work left intact.  And while an exception to persuasion would surely be a rally promoting hatred, the McCain campaign is at worst promoting stupidity, not hate. So long as the song’s attribution stays intact, it’s used non-commercially, and is non-derivative in nature, I lean heavily toward laws allowing such uses of published art, regardless of how much I sympathize with the Foo Fighters in this case.

Putting the law aside however, I see it in the best interest of the McCain camp to cease using the song and honor the request of the artist. Politically, they’ve nothing to gain by fighting the Foos on this one.

canadian tunes

June 21, 2008

For fun, I asked a few Canadians in Twitter to name their favorite Canadian band. The Hip were a popular choice. The Barenaked Ladies, Rush, Bachman Turner Overdrive, and Neil Young were also mentioned as possibilities. While I like some of those artists very much, for now I’ll go with a band I’ve too many sweet live-show memories of to ignore…

understanding free software: who is in control?

April 23, 2008

Microsoft to customers:

As of August 31, 2008, we will no longer be able to support the retrieval of license keys for the songs you purchased from MSN Music or the authorization of additional computers. You will need to obtain a license key for each of your songs downloaded from MSN Music on any new computer, and you must do so before August 31, 2008. If you attempt to transfer your songs to additional computers after August 31, 2008, those songs will not successfully play.

When we use free software, nobody can control us this way.

my latest purchase…

March 3, 2008

Unlike Radiohead’s free beer release of In Rainbows, I bought Nine Inch Nails’ free speech release of Ghosts I – IV.

Thank you! Your order is now complete. In a few minutes you’ll receive emails from with your download link and receipt.

$5 download (1) $5.00
Shipping & Handling $0.00
Total $5.00

“protecting the artists”

March 3, 2008

Of course, any artist seeking money that was essentially obtained through legalized extortion is committing a wrong. Artists claiming a “right” to such money should be shunned just as harshly as the Recording Industry itself. However, this simply underscores the fact that the RIAA’s interest has always been in protecting its label’s business models, not artists.

Via boingboing.

Go U of O!

November 6, 2007

R/W Web:

According to the elderly gentleman in line at the coffee shop this morning who first told me about the news (we were discussing In Rainbows, which was playing on the stereo there) – the music industry needs to get with the times and stop taking their giant profits from the old business model for granted.

It’s nice to know some “elderly” folks get it. Usually they’re the ones I hear parroting RIAA propaganda whilst the young’ uns either get it or don’t give a hoot.

the coolest

October 26, 2007

Peter Kirn:

it’s interesting to watch artists try to out-cool each other on online distribution.

Indeed. The coolest would be CC licensed OGG files. I’d throw cash to that.

free radiohead

October 3, 2007

So a band I appreciate is doing something kinda cool. They are letting you choose how much to pay for a copy of their newest collection of songs. I say only “kinda” cool because what would be really cool is if after I pay for and download the songs, I find them to be CC licensed. I’m not as much interested in supporting a market of affordable music as I am in supporting a world where human beings can freely share culture.