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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Week 1-Copyright

Oh, the world of copyright. To be honest with you, it scares the crap out of me. As a teacher, I make my kids cite all the sources they use in research and creating presentations. As a student, I use things that are mine personally (pictures) to be sure that I am not violating copyright laws. It's easier for me to use my own images, than to try and use something from Creative Commons and use it wrong. If I need music, I'll create my own GarageBand loops or find something from freeplaymusic.com. I know I am not distributing my work for profit, but I still freak out to think I am possibly violating some law.
Good Copy, Bad Copy was interesting to watch. It's eye opening to see so many artists and producers out there sampling from each other. I am not sure if I think it's right or not. I can't imagine music without other music. So many times, you hear a song on the radio that sounds like another song, or has been redone by another artist. This is more exposure for the artists, but at what point does the song writer get credit for this. Some recording artists are mega millionaires, but what about the song writers, the behind the scenes people, producers, mixers and so forth. When do they get all the public recognition and mega millions?

9 comments:

  1. Andrea. I agree with you about your feelings and fears on the issue of copyright. However, as an educator, I always feel that if we don't attempt to push the envelope than there is no room for growth or change. For instance, Creative Commons is one of those envelope pushers that sort of stands up to some of the laws that don't make things easy for us as teachers to enhance and provide an opportunity for students to create/re-create something different for their own generation. I think the fear comes in when we don't fully understand how to go about copyright and Fair Use, and that is just an issue of learning the guidelines. I too can get a little intimidated with copyright stuff and possibly breaking a law or infringing copyright, but at the same time I don't want my fears to cause me to shy away from giving the best to my students. Great post Andrea!

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  2. @ Andrea
    We are very fortunate to have been exposed to the resources to create our own music, media and unique content through this program. I have to admit that prior to entering this program, I was unaware of Creative Commons and not really sure of how “fair use” worked. This makes me wonder about how many people are just ignorant to the new copyright protocols or standards. My instructional design clients always stipulate in the contract that they will own the copyrights to the materials created for them. Therefore, I require them to provide the content and any images being used in the training materials being developed. The same practices we viewed in the Good Copy, Bad Copy film are prevalent in some corporations. I have seen managers intentionally “borrow” and alter content they did not own. In my observations, these actions reflect the values of an individual decision maker rather than a company policy. I think the public must be educated about how copyright practices affect them personally. For instance, a typical corporate training video could cost $900. This video includes a licensing fee to cover the cost of the company using the video multiple times within the organization. Basically, even if they purchased single-use content, the production company knows they will try to leverage the investment as much as possible by copying the DVD. So, they cover the expected infringement by accompanying the purchase with a licensing agreement. Good post!

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  3. Andrea,
    I agree 100% that copyright is one of the most confusing and scary things we have to deal with. Most, I feel, is kind of a "Boogyman" syndrome type of scary. But, when in doubt, after this program you have an idea of how to create your own art for projects. Just remember that you need to put that CC license on your creations also, even if it is jsut to show your support for them.

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  4. I agree with you, Andrea. It is scary, and when you care about doing the right thing, abiding by the law is important. I think what might help us both is what Gregg mentioned, simply understanding and following the guidelines for Fair Use and Creative Commons. For me, it's finding the time to sit down long enough to read and try to get an understanding of those guidelines.

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  5. Andrea,

    I agree with you if scares me a little bit about breaking copyright laws in my classroom. Especially now with all the budget cuts. School systems are only buying classroom sets of books so teachers have to be careful about what material they copy for the students. Using your own music and photos are the easiest thing to do. I had a couple of girls who competed in FBLA in the area of Business Presentation. Their topic was how does Facebook help a company advertise. I was so worried that they would try to use Facebook's logo in their presentation , but they didn't and they got 4th place!

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  6. Andrea, I agree with you so much that I stated much the same thing in my post! I am so worried about making a mistake in giving credit, that I just use my own stuff! I like the idea of using freeplaymusic.com. I did not know about that and haven't explored it. As someone who makes many podcasts, that is exciting!

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  7. @ Andrea Shike,

    I totally understand your fear. I also try to use my own pictures and now, more than ever, I try to keep updating my visual repertoire. I teach Spanish, so I have to use a lot of visuals in my vocabulary and grammar presentations. However, when I ran out of pictures, I use Microsoft Clip Art as we can use them since we have bought a license with them. I also ask my students to bring in their own pictures or to use Clip Art for their projects, and I always ask them to cite properly. I feel like I just can't be safe enough. I think that copyright culture as it stands right now is a culture of fear and punishment and I think it should be different. I think that there should be right to ownership and yet freedom to take in what has been given to us and create from it our own understanding. Where there's freedom, there's growth and learning. I still think that copyright is necessary, especially to protect and honor the creator, but I think that its fundamentals need to be reexamined. At the core, that's what the culture of remix that we saw in Good Copy Bad Copy is all about.

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  8. good reaction to be concerned about copyright, but what to do next is more important than living in fear (which might be overstating things). :-)

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