Save the date! Dec 8 Fair Deal event in Auckland

Fair Deal: 8 December event inviteThe 15th round of the Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations will take place in Auckland from December 3rd to 12th. New Zealand artists are likely to be affected by provisions in the TPP dealing with copyright.

The Creative Freedom Foundation is part of the Fair Deal coalition, which strives to keep the TPP from changing New Zealand’s Copyright Act. We’ve grown to include 11 domestic partners and 9 international allies.

On Saturday, December 8th at Toto Restaurant in Auckland from 6 to 8pm, the Fair Deal coalition will host a public event on the TPP, featuring a number of flash talks from our international and domestic coalition members on TPP issues, intertwined with relevant performances and displays from New Zealand artists (see attached flyer for info on the presenters & artists).

Please join us for this event, which will feature free nibbles and modestly-priced beverages (first come, first served).

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTORS

Could this be you? We’re looking for Kiwi artists who have made work (any media) that is relevant to issues of public domain (remaking old works), copyright and fair use (eg sampling). Works are to be screened at an upcoming event in Auckland in early Dec, and there is room for short live performances too.

There is a budget for artist fees for contributors. If you would like your work to be considered, please get in touch with curator Dr. Dan James ASAP: danuntitled at gmail dot com. Note that this project is a very fast turnaround – the deadline for expressions of interest is 5pm Fri 16 Nov.

Not In Our Name: ACTA defeated!

ACTA was supposedly brought in to protect artists but it would have done more harm than good. Thankfully it’s been killed in a vote in the EU with 478 against and only 39 for.

Strasbourg, July 4th 2012 – The European Parliament rejected ACTA by a huge majority, killing it for good. This is a major victory for the multitude of connected citizens and organizations who worked hard for years, but also a great hope on a global scale for a better democracy. On the ruins of ACTA we must now build a positive copyright reform, taking into account our rights instead of attacking them. The ACTA victory must resonate as a wake up call for lawmakers: Fundamental freedoms as well as the free and open Internet must prevail over private interests.

Read more at laquadrature.net.

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How TPP affects NZ artists and what the US wants our police to do next

Copyright in New Zealand (image courtesy of Wikipedia http://bit.ly/yAcWwi )

Last week the CFF attended a Stakeholders Briefing on the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), a treaty that will affect copyright in New Zealand, the United States and other nations. New Zealanders have just spent in excess of $600,000 to develop an enforcement regime (apparently for the benefit of Rihanna) in the Infringing File Sharing Act, but more changes are on the way that affect public and artistic rights.

Summary of TPP copyright issues

1. The negotiations continue to be secretive even by WIPO standards. Some documents won’t be released for at least four years after the agreement is signed.

2. The US are pushing for New Zealand to adopt:

  • Internet termination for households, businesses, and organisations;
  • A policy for the NZ Police to prioritise copyright enforcement even at the detriment of other police work;
  • The effective removal of Fair Dealing rights by expanding the protectionism of DRM/TPMs, including criminalising the bypassing of DRM/TPMs when exercising legal rights;
  • Allowing copyright holders the ability to ban parallel imports of copyrighted material (eg DVDs), denying New Zealanders the right to purchase overseas content;
  • An expansion of copyright duration to: death of the author plus 70 years, or 105 years from date of publishing for sound recordings and film.

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Dutch pave the way for protection of mashups and remixes

Gareth Hughes

Gareth Hughes, Greens Party

While much of the world considers how to take rights away from the public and remix artists alike the Dutch have other plans,

Much to the displeasure of the wider EU, the Dutch want to liberalize their copyright laws to explicitly allow remixes and mashups. The irony is that their inspiration is not political movements like Sweden’s Pirate Party, but America’s laws about fair use.

In the U.S., fair use protects the use of copyrighted material for commentary, criticism and the like. But automated tools for detecting copyrighted material (on e.g. YouTube) and the overly-broad Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which allows anyone to request that an infringing work be taken down, put the burden of proving that a work constitutes fair use on the content creator. This has a chilling effect on the kind of work everyday people release on the web.

Here in New Zealand the Green’s Gareth Hughes is supporting a change to allow parody and satire remixes. If New Zealand is going to have an trade agreement with the U.S. that includes copyright changes (TPPA) then wouldn’t it be fair to get the same rights as U.S. citizens?

 

The Listener: Where is the digital revolution taking us?

Bronwyn Holloway-Smith 2011

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Peter Griffin talks to artists and technologists about the ongoing digital changes,

“The TPPA is secret; we don’t really know what is in it. It’s making sure we aren’t selling ourselves short just so we can get some milk powder into the United States.” With three-strikes laws passing around the world and the shadow of SOPA and PIPA online piracy legislation looming large in the US
[...]

“Copyright was founded on the premise of giving artists rights to make money, to have a temporary monopoly where they can control their work and to try to monetise it so they can make more work,” she acknowledges. “But the second half of copyright is about enabling public rights. As long as that pressure is coming from copyright holders to expand rights in their direction, we are going to need to keep up the pressure to maintain the public rights.”

Read more at The Listener.

‘Ireland’s SOPA’ to pass without parliamentary vote

Take action. Protect the Irish Internet from censorship

Stop SOPA Ireland

Wired UK report that “Ireland is soon to have a law similar to SOPA passed that would give music and movie companies the power to force Irish ISPs to block access to sites suspected of having copyright infringing material on them.” (emphasis ours)

“Irish citizens won’t have a chance to lobby their democratic representatives because there won’t be a vote on the law [...] in the Irish Parliament. Instead the law is being enacted by ministerial order because it is being prepared in the form of a Statutory Instrument.”

Sign at the petition against it at StopSOPAIreland.com.

Paolo Coelho Invites You To Pirate His Books

Paolo Coelho 2005 Dubai desert

Paolo Coelho

As a highly talented and internationally successful writer we won’t even attempt to explain his case better than him:

“I have nothing against people earning money from their books; that’s how I make my living. But look at what’s happening now. [SOPA] may disrupt [the] internet. This is a REAL DANGER, not only for Americans, but for all of us, as the law – if approved – will affect the whole planet. And how do I feel about this? As an author, I should be defending ‘intellectual property’, but I’m not. Pirates of the world, unite and pirate everything I’ve ever written!…

Some people will say: You’re rich enough to allow your books to be distributed for free. That’s true. I am rich. But was it the desire to make money that drove me to write? No. My family and my teachers all said that there was no future in writing. I started writing and I continue to write because it gives me pleasure and gives meaning to my existence. If money were the motive, I could have stopped writing ages ago and saved myself having to put up with invariably negative reviews…

When you’ve eaten an orange, you have to go back to the shop to buy another. In that case, it makes sense to pay on the spot. With an object of art, you’re not buying paper, ink, paintbrush, canvas or musical notes, but the idea born out of a combination of those products.

‘Pirating’ can act as an introduction to an artist’s work. If you like his or her idea, then you will want to have it in your house; a good idea doesn’t need protection. The rest is either greed or ignorance.”