...engaging and discerning culture, as a way of life...

May 07, 2010

rip! A remix Manifesto - 6

You can watch the entire film here. If is also streaming on Netflix.

This film takes its message to heart.  It was made as the first open source documentary because its message is that open source is the future of creativity, even for music and film. The project and film were created by Brett Gaylor, who uses Girl Talk and Disney (and a little Napster) to try to make the point that copyright and intellectual property rights in the 20th century went awry. Gaylor formats the film around the four principles of the remixers manifesto. 
1. Culture always builds on the past
2. The past always tries to control the future.
3. Our future is becoming less free.
4. To build free societies, you must limit the control of the past.

By setting it up this way he then goes on to talk about how we need a different view of the past and laws that will allow us to be more free, rather than the current laws which constrain creativity. Two of his strongest examples are Lawerence Lessig and Brazil. Lessig is a lawyer who argues for the value of open source technolgy and the founder of the Creative Commons. Brazil is a contemporary example of a country that has moved away from copyright law and works as an example of the creativity that is available to those in poverty when ideas are free floating for anyone's use. Musician and former Minister of Culture Gilberto Gil has been influential in trying to make Brazil more open source when it comes to music.

While at times the film seems to get distracted or go off track, for the most part this is a very well made film. It is bound to start up interesting conversations about what we think of intellectual property and how best to use it for the betterment of society and the world.

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