ReCreate Recap: April 2, 2021

What Would Changing The DMCA Mean For Startups? When it comes to proposed changes to our copyright laws, the harmful impact on startups is often overlooked compared to larger technology and content industry companies. In a new blog post, Engine breaks down some of the proposals, including mandatory filtering and notice and staydown, and how they would harm the tech startup community and the users who rely on their services: “As policymakers consider changes to the law, it is essential they not stifle innovation and that they avoid changes that would exacerbate abuse.”

Sen. Wyden And SPARC Executive Director Discuss Copyright & The Digital Divide. During a recent webinar, Oregon Senator Ron Wyden stated his commitment to supporting a balanced copyright system that promotes fair use and the work of libraries, and cautioned that the Digital Copyright Act is not the way forward. “If the system is filled with draconian copyright laws and digital restrictions that make it hard for real news to be read, shared, and discussed, that particular vacuum is filled with more misinformation and lies,” said Wyden. SPARC Executive Director Heather Joseph brought attention to the importance of libraries having access to ebooks: “We can’t amplify content that we can’t access. And that’s really at the root of what libraries do for society.”

The Shift From An Attention Economy To A Creator Economy. In a recent Forbes column, Clara Lindh Bergendorff shares her venture capital perspective on the online power shift in favor of content creators. She argues that the digital world has progressed from an “Attention Economy” to a “Creator Economy” that focuses on the democratization of creative expression and entrepreneurship. The column points to social platforms that allow creators to showcase their talents more effectively and highlights creator websites like Patreon, Etsy and Shopify. “The social players are responding to the power shift, in the content creator’s favour, by introducing a range of features to help individuals on the platforms monetize their fans—realizing that if they don’t the creators will take their communities and potential revenue streams somewhere else,” writes Bergendorff.

TikTok Videos Driving New Wave Of Book Sales. A new wave of TikTok videos using the hashtag #BookTok is driving book sales by allowing readers to capture and share their emotions when reading a book. The New York Times reports, “For publishers it has been an unexpected jolt: an industry that depends on people getting lost in the printed word is getting dividends from a digital app built for fleeting attention spans. Now publishers are starting to catch on, contacting those with big followings to offer free books or payment in exchange for publicizing their titles.” Shannon DeVito, director of books at Barnes & Noble, stated, “We haven’t seen these types of crazy sales — I mean tens of thousands of copies a month — with other social media formats.”

Instagram Helps Restaurant Workers Launch New Businesses During Pandemic. Restaurant Business documents the trend of chefs and other restaurant workers launching their own business on Instagram after losing their jobs or being furloughed during the pandemic. Chef Thomas Boyce in Portland, Oregon described launching his Lasagna Project business on Instagram: “It went from being a goof to a potentially better moneymaker than my chef job, and I’m working from home…I can do this with very little overhead.” New York Chef Alain Joseph intends to keep his new business Twenty Order going. “I considered having my own restaurant for several years, but there are barriers to starting one as a chef of color,” he said. “I couldn’t raise the money myself and now I see that there are major flaws with the way the restaurant world was functioning on 8% margins.”