The Newport ban, and how the law impoverishes us all

Thanks to Welsh Liberal Democrat Assembly Member Peter Black for being firstish with the news that spoof music video Newport State of Mind has been pulled from YouTube after EMI lodged a copyright complaint. Everyone I know even remotely connected with Wales shrieked with delight upon seeing this video, and then posted it on Facebook and emailed it to everyone in their address books.

What’s interesting is how the media has reported this, with the Guardian and the BBC only considering it a bit of a shame that the law of nature copyright has washed Newport away.

EMI’s decision to ban Newport is like an object lesson in how the law is depriving us of our own culture, putting contemporary works off limits to us even for parody. It’s impossible that Newport State of Mind was putting Jay-Z and Alicia Keys on the breadline – in fact, it probably made EMI money by reminding people about the dreary original.

Rather than watching Newport 24 times in a row, as you intended to do this evening, I recommend you watch this video of Prof. James Boyle talking about ‘The Crime of the 20th Century and how we threw away our cultural heritage for no good reason’:

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Published in: on August 10, 2010 at 7:39 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. What do people think about starting up a Facebook group in protest?


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