On Sun, 19 Jun 2005, Tim Brooks wrote:
> An eloqent statement of the problem, and in the London Times as well.
> Thanks, Dick, for forwarding it. I don't know why so many collectors and
> professionals "can't get involved" in the copyright debate when our culture is literally
> being stolen out from under us and locked up tight while we sit quietly by.
> People, and noise, and protest can make a difference. I hope our British
> colleagues are not as uninvolved as we were in the 1990s.
As for protesting...pity we don't have the money to lobby instead. I
wonder, what leverage do libraries, archive, and small record labels
really have. God bless Naxos for putting up a fight with Capitol.
So, what could a library or a small record label do? What if all libraries
agreed to protest the Bono law...and the Gatt treaty...by closing our
doors for a week. Sometimes I wonder who would care. Yet, with libraries
be reactive as opposed to proactive, the notion of such an action would
be difficult to sell.
For me the great pity is that there is all of these wonderful recordings,
broadcasts, etc. that won't be made available to those who would value them
because the cost of getting rights (not just the cost of paying rights,
which for a broadcast of a major orchestra can run into six figures...plus
the legal costs, etc.--and assuming the broadcast is indeed covered by
copyright) makes it too expensive.
On the classical email list, I was just responding to a post about the
music of the late David Diamond. Someone mentioned how sad it was that the
Delos cycle of the recordings of his symphonies was not finished. While Naxos
has picked up what Delos has done, and perhaps they can finish the cycle,
there are broadcast performances that could be issued. I also think of the
countless other broadcast performances of our American culture that remain
locked up due to the costs for rights, legal fees to identify and locate
ownership, etc. What does the Boston Symphony, or the AFM gain by having
its old performances kept from the public? Perhaps if there was a general
clearing house for such a license...for example, the AFM could get a rate,
similar to the cost for mechanicals for each disc pressed, and if some
demonstration of a "reasonable" effort at locating ownership
could be determined, so much could be made available to the public.
How do we inform the law makers that we all are losing?
I just read the recent discussion of copyrights in the latest ARSC issue
and am feeling even more depressed than usual about the topic.
Coupling that with my research (sparked by the exchange on this list) into
cataloging...well at least I might get an article out of it...and then the
government won't even let me buy my Zoloft from Canada!