The Copyright Alliance has penned an open letter to both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, along with other presidential candidates. They urge all candidates to respect the current copyright system.
The letter starts off with a quick introduction on who exactly the Copyright Alliance is. They write that they are members of the creative community. Admitting that their political views are diverse, they stand together on the core principles and “appreciate” the opportunity to share their views with the nation’s current leaders and future ones.
In their first point, the Copyright Alliance “embraces” the internet as one of the most powerful forces that promotes democratic strengths not only for the world we live in, but also for all creative industries. They go on to write that the internet has the ability to inspire what they consider positive change and help improve lives. How about in regards to advance creativity in the actual creative industry? Simple. The internet both removes barriers and fosters dialogue between newcomers, their fans, and their audiences.
Now that they’ve established who they are and what they believe in, where exactly do they stand in regards to their copyright views? Easy to answer. The Copyright Alliance believes in a very strong copyright system that doesn’t penalize artists, but rather, promotes creativity, which, in turn, will lead to a healthy creative economy. They believe that the internet has the power to deliver both cultural and economic value to billions of users worldwide, and apparently, it helping them make massive profits.
What else does the Copyright Alliance want 2016 candidates to know? The bold assertion that copyright both promotes and protect free speech. It’s not only about having the freedom to say what you want and the freedom to express yourself any way you want. It’s also about having the freedom to create and preserve the value as well as the integrity of what they have created. Copyright law isn’t only protected by the First Amendment; it also has “built-in free speech safeguards.”
What about those who want to use the internet to undermine actual creativity? That’s what copyright is for. According to them, the internet is a wonderful tool for science, education, health care, and other disciplines, as well as the way to boost creativity and not stifle it.
So then, should the Copyright Alliance be the only one standing up for creativity? Of course not. The creative community must also do their part to stand-up against so-called advocates who simply exist to denigrate and block efforts to keep and promote creative content.
So, what’s their purpose in writing the letter? They want American’s leaders to,
“maintain America’s commitment to the right of creators to determine when and how they share their works in the global marketplace.”
This entire letter not only sounds noble, but the actual words are inspiring. That’s all well and good, right up until you take a look at its members page, where you’ll find notorious harassers of copyright law, including the MPAA, Viacom, and the infamous RIAA, among others, who have shown a quick tendency to chase after alleged small-time copyright infringers just so that they can get in on what internet users are actually earning.
There’s no word yet if the presidential candidates have actually seen this letter, and what their take is on it. But they’ve also posted a change.org petition along with CreativeFuture.
Copyright? image by Stephen Downes, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC by 2.0)