Re:Create Recap- November 29, 2018

New Copy This Podcast Episode: Do You Know How To #dotheshiggy? In the latest Copy This podcast, host Kirby Ferguson examines the popularity of Drake’s hit song “In My Feelings” and copyright’s role in helping it become a viral dance craze. The episode also features insight from music business executive, cultural critic, and media professor Casey Rae. Tune in to learn more about other ways fans have helped drive the popularity of new artists and renew the popularity of older artists and works.

#SaveYourInternet Mobilizes In Fight Against EU Copyright Directive. With the EU’s controversial Copyright Directive under discussion now between the EU Council and the European Parliament, Forbes featured an interview with Xnet Communications Manager Sergio Salgado about the #SaveYourInternet movement his Spanish activist group is helping to push. Salgado explained that the current aim of the movement is to put pressure on MEPs to oppose the internet regulation by helping people understand “the hidden dangers of the new European Directive.” He pointed out that more than two million European citizens mobilized against the Directive: “We can win…this is a historic opportunity to create copyright laws in Europe that are up to the 21st century.”

Facing Empowered Public Interests, Another Copyright Term Extension Looks Unlikely. For once, the content industry and digital rights advocates seem to agree: copyright term extension is not expected on the legislative agenda for the next Congress. Ars Technica interviewed a variety of groups to confirm that groups like MPAA and RIAA are not planning to push legislation to retroactively extend copyright terms as they have done in the past. “After the SOPA fight, Hollywood likely knows that the public would fight back,” said EFF’s Daniel Nazer. “I suspect that Big Content knows it would lose the battle and is smart enough not to fight.” Some traditional content creators actually oppose extending copyright term. The Authors Guild “does not support extending the copyright term, especially since many of our members benefit from having access to a thriving and substantial public domain of older works…If anything, we would likely support a rollback to a term of life-plus-50 if it were politically feasible.”

Challenging “The Male Gaze” Of Copyright. Boing Boing’s Cory Doctorow explored the work of law professor John Tehranian, who has criticized the “complex and often nonsensical way that copyright determines who is an ‘author’ of a work and thus entitled to control it, and shows how the notion of authorship reflects and amplifies the power imbalances already present in the world.” Tehranian pointed out that gender imbalances have resulted in copyright’s “male gaze.” For instance, the illegal footage of Erin Andrews was initially protected by the felon’s copyright. Similarly last year’s Fearless Girl statue facing down Wall Street’s Charging Bull was challenged as copyright infringement. “It’s no coincidence that the legal concept of authorship disproportionately elevates the parties with the most power to the position of author,” wrote Doctorow.

Smartphone Photography Competes With Professionals. New software and smartphone technology has helped to democratize the photography world, resulting in stiffer competition for professional photographers. As photographers face declining incomes, the industry has advocated for changes to copyright law such as the CASE Act to create a small claim tribunal in the Copyright Office. Jonathan Band wrote a Project DisCo post explaining why the industry should instead transition to new business models: “The energy of associations representing photographers would be better directed toward helping photographers develop business models and skills that would allow them to thrive in the digital environment, rather than lobbying Congress to make changes to copyright law of questionable utility.”