Tag Archives: Creative Future

iKeepSafe Inadvertently Gives Students a Valuable Lesson in Creators’ Rights

Post Syndicated from Andy original https://torrentfreak.com/ikeepsafe-inadvertently-gives-students-a-valuable-lesson-in-creators-rights-161023/

Children and students of all kinds are some of the most valuable assets to society. After all, they’re literally the future of the planet. As a result, hundreds of groups around the world dedicate themselves to protecting their interests, from general welfare and healthcare to Internet safety.

One of the groups dedicated to the latter is the Internet Keep Safe Coalition (iKeepSafe), an alliance of policy leaders, educators, law enforcement and technology experts.

iKeepSafe has launched a new initiative in partnership with pro-copyright/anti-piracy group Creative Future called the Contribute to Creativity Challenge.

“We know that when students are given the opportunity to be creative, they not only learn to make conscious choices about sharing their creative work, but they also understand the value of respecting the rights of other creators,” iKeepSafe says.

The challenge is a competition which requires students to submit electronic projects that center around the importance of behaving well online, such as respecting copyright and related rights.

“To participate, each entrant will need to submit an electronic project educating others about the importance of being an ethical, responsible online digital citizen,” iKeepSafe notes.

“The submissions will be judged according to the judging rubric and the winning entries will each receive a $75 Amazon gift card for books or classroom supplies.”

For those submitting entries the exercise of considering what makes a good digital citizen should be an enlightening one. Indeed, the creative process itself should also be enjoyable and educational, further sweetened by the prospect of a few bucks should the entry be a winner.

But for those young creators getting involved, there’s another equally valuable lesson to be learned from this exercise, even at the tender age of 12.

It’s quite likely that some participating students will be considering getting involved in the business of content creation, whether that’s in the music, movie, TV, or publishing sectors. With that in mind, they should consider the terms and conditions of any contracts entered into. This competition is a great place to start.

The Contribute to Creativity Challenge has five pages of T&Cs (pdf). They include rules that submitted content cannot infringe other people’s intellectual property rights or condone any illegal activities, which is fair enough.

However, since this is all about being creative and respecting creators’ rights, we took a look at what rights these young creators will have over their content after it’s submitted to the competition and what uses it will be put to thereafter.

“By entering the Competition, each Entrant hereby grants to Promoter and their assigns, licensees and designees a non-exclusive, irrevocable, perpetual license to use, copy, publish, and publicly display the Entry and all elements of the Entry (including, but not limited to, the Entrant’s name, city and country, biographical information, statements, voice, photograph and other likeness (unless prohibited by law)) in whole or in part,” the conditions read.

Of course, some kind of license is required if the competition operators are to be able to do anything with the entries. However, it also means that whether the entrant likes it or not (or even understands the legal jargon), their submitted work can be published along with their photographs until the end of time by iKeepSafe, “in any and all media either now known or not currently known, in perpetuity throughout the universe for all purposes.”

In perpetuity. Universe. All purposes. And, just to be clear, “without notification and without compensation of any kind to Entrant or any third party.” (emphasis ours)

Of course, there will be many students who will relish the thought of their projects gaining some publicity since that could really help their profile. However, it seems likely from the conditions of the competition that what iKeepSafe really wants is free material for upcoming campaigns.

“The Promoter shall have the right, without limitation, to reproduce, alter, amend, edit, publish, modify, crop and use each Entry in connection with commercials, advertisements and promotions related to the Promoter, the sale of Promoter’s products, the Competition and any other competition sponsored by Promoter, in any and all media, now or hereafter known, including but not limited to, all forms of television distribution, theatrical advertisements, radio, the Internet, newspapers, magazines and billboards,” the conditions read.

The eagle-eyed will have noticed that student entrants grant iKeepSafe a non-exclusive license, which usually means that they are also free to exploit their works themselves, a luxury that an exclusive license does not offer. While that’s a good thing, a subsequent clause could conceivably muddy the waters.

“Entrant agrees not to release any publicity or other materials on their own or through someone else regarding his or her participation in the Competition without the prior consent of the Promoter, which it may withhold in its sole discretion,” it reads.

Just to be absolutely clear, there’s no suggestion that iKeepSafe are leading students down a dark path here, since their overall goal of promoting ethical behavior online is a noble one. That being said, would it really hurt to properly compensate student creators featured in subsequent campaigns that will largely exist to help businesses?

After all, the message here is about being ethical, and with Creative Future on board – which represents rightsholders worth billions of dollars – there’s more than a little bit of cash lying around to properly compensate these young creators.

Perhaps the key lesson for students and other creators to be aware of at this early stage is that some companies and organizations will be prepared to exploit their creative work while giving little or indeed absolutely nothing back.

Today it’s a harmless school project competition entry on ethics, but in a few years time it could be something worth millions, ask George Michael.

Finally, if being ethical and responsible really is the goal, perhaps students and competition operators alike should consider a much less restrictive Creative Commons license.

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

Steal This Show S02E02: ‘The Platform Is You’

Post Syndicated from J.J. King original https://torrentfreak.com/steal-show-s02e02-platform-160913/

stslogo180Returning guest Holmes ‘I’m on a boat‘ Wilson (Fight For The Future) checks in from… a boat in the harbour of Rio de Janeiro.

We discuss the ongoing attempt to extradite Megaupload’s Kim Dotcom to the United States, why Creative Future is publicly dissing his organisation, and what (if anything) should come after big torrent sites.

We then take another twenty minutes to discuss how decentralisation of media is contributing to the rise of the kek-worshipping alt-right. How does P2P affect political power in general? And what’s the importance of meme-creation in a distributed media environment?

Steal This Show aims to release bi-weekly episodes featuring insiders discussing copyright and file-sharing news. It complements our regular reporting by adding more room for opinion, commentary and analysis.

The guests for our news discussions will vary and we’ll aim to introduce voices from different backgrounds and persuasions. In addition to news, STS will also produce features interviewing some of the great innovators and minds.

Host: Jamie King

Guest: Holmes Wilson

Produced by Jamie King
Edited & Mixed by Riley Byrne
Original Music by David Triana
Web Production by Siraje Amarniss

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.

Anti-Piracy Groups Petition Clinton & Trump for Tough Copyright Laws

Post Syndicated from Andy original https://torrentfreak.com/anti-piracy-groups-petition-clinton-trump-for-tough-copyright-laws-160907/

trump-clintonAs the presidential election moves towards the home straight, millions of individuals and businesses in the United States are considering how the outcome might affect them.

Unsurprisingly, powerful groups in the entertainment industry are also weighing the implications and with billions at stake, who could blame them.

Of course, just like the rest of the population, neither Hollywood nor the major recording labels have a crystal ball, so in recent months their public lobbying efforts have been mindful of the possibility that either Clinton or Trump could get into power.

This week that trend continued, with the publication of a new open letter and the launch of a petition by two influential anti-piracy groups, the Copyright Alliance and CreativeFuture.

The Copyright Alliance is a true powerhouse which counts the MPAA, RIAA, Viacom, Oracle, Getty Images and many other corporations among its members. CreativeFuture is a huge coalition of some 450 companies in the film, television, music, and book publishing sectors.

In their letter addressed to “2016 Political Candidates”, the groups describe themselves as members of the creative community, who despite political differences are united in their goal of reducing piracy.

“While our political views are diverse, as creators, there are core principles on which we can all agree. And we appreciate the opportunity to share our views with our country’s current and future leaders,” the groups write.

What immediately becomes apparent in the letter are the glowing references to the Internet. With lessons learned from the SOPA debacle which was perceived by many as an attack on the world’s most important network, Copyright Alliance and CreativeFuture begin by cheerfully praising its positives.

“We embrace the internet as a powerful democratizing force for our world and for creative industries. We recognize its ability to inspire positive change and improve lives,” they write.

“In our creative industries, the internet has helped to advance creativity by removing barriers to entry for newcomers, fostering a dialogue with fans, audiences, and consumers, and providing numerous additional ways to reach them. The internet holds great potential to expand creativity and free expression.”

While one might have strongly expected a ‘but’ at this juncture, the groups are careful not to set up a clash of ideals. It’s not difficult to see that their aim is to quietly assure that the successful protection of copyrighted content does not have to come at the expense of the Internet.

“We embrace a strong copyright system that rewards creativity and promotes a healthy creative economy. The incredible cultural and economic value that the internet delivers to billions of users is based in very large part on the efforts of creative content makers whose livelihoods depend on being compensated for their efforts,” they add.

“Copyright should protect creators from those who would use the internet to undermine creativity. The internet can be a great tool for creators just as it can be a tool for science, education, health care, and many other disciplines. However, when misused, it can harm creativity and stifle freedom of expression.”

And if anyone missed the hints that Copyright Alliance and CreativeFuture are supporters of both creative content and the interests of the Internet, the groups quickly take the opportunity to underline that again. However, one gets the impression that their definition of online freedom might not be the same as that championed by Internet activists.

“Our current and future leaders recognize that a safe and secure internet benefits us all. And all parties recognize the importance of strong copyright protections in their technology policy platforms because protecting copyright and internet freedom are both critically important and complementary — they are not mutually exclusive,” they write.

“A truly free internet, like any truly free community, is one where people respect the rights of others and can engage in legitimate activities safely — and where those who do not are held accountable under law by their peers.”

Interestingly, the letter also warns 2016’s political candidates against “organizations and advocates” funded by “online platforms” that claim to be “pro-creators and pro-audience to mask their own self-serving agenda.”

These groups are not mentioned by name but the likes of EFF and Fight for the Future have been spoken of in similar terms and have appeared in negative articles published by the Copyright Alliance earlier this year.

“[The nameless groups] denigrate or block effective efforts to preserve and promote creative content, including enforcement of existing laws and voluntary industry initiatives,” Copyright Alliance and CreativeFuture warn, adding:

“The creative community is rightfully wary of any company or organization that claims to be ‘against piracy’ when their actions do not match their words.”

And of course, even if not mentioned by name, no appeal would be complete without a subtle reference to Google and/or YouTube. Trump and Clinton are left to fill in the gaps and asked to do the right thing.

“Internet platforms are making massive profits from creative contributions to the internet’s growth. It is not too much to ask that content creators should be able to share in the value they provide,” the groups write.

With the election likely to go to the wire, Copyright Alliance and CreativeFuture are keen to ensure that anti-piracy measures are seen as a universal concern, no matter where people reside on the political spectrum.

“There is no ‘left’ or ‘right’ when it comes to respecting copyright. The creative community stands united in support of a copyright system that will continue to make the United States the global leader in the creative arts and the global paradigm for free expression,” they note.

“Our copyright system is not perfect but, like democracy, it is better than the alternatives. It works. We urge our leaders to maintain America’s commitment to the right of creators to determine when and how they share their works in the global marketplace.”

In support of their open letter, Copyright Alliance and CreativeFuture have also launched a Change.org petition in an attempt to get 5,000 signatures supporting their cause.

“Whether you are a Democrat or Republican, liberal or conservative or libertarian, strong and effective copyright is not a partisan issue but rather one that benefits our entire country. We ask that you stand with us by adding your name to this letter – to show political candidates that we stand united, we stand creative,” they conclude.

Open Letter to 2016 Political Candidates

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and ANONYMOUS VPN services.