pirates need to keep it on the D/L

26 December 2010

Soundcloud started issuing takedown notices to people posting unauthoried remixes and mixtapes.

A few thoughts in response to the Ripley's post:

have you all chosen and publicly displayed a CC license ?  

I need to do that too.

If it was widespread then all artists would have this, it could be easily checked to ensure a mix is free to go.  Only artists on restrictive labels would get flagged.  Mixcloud could scan and ok the mix automatically.  All artists should have URLs where their license can be retrieved and verified.

I don't think Soundcloud is a Walled Garden unless you think that by wall that means they will fight to protect any illegal actions you take within their courtyards.  Walled Garden means that they don't allow things out or that they stifle competion.  So its a misuse of the phrase I think.

Google/YouTube was prepared to fight to change usage laws and has done so with varying degrees of success.  Its immature to expect them to win just because you want them to win.  Its immature to expect them to take the bullet for you just because they have sympathy with your usage style.  Somebody has to pay a lot of money to fight to change laws.

Soundcloud is very small, you cannot demand of them to sacrifice potentially their entire business in order to defend something they never went into business for (remixes and mixtapes).  They are there to support new music, that's their focus.

Actually originally they wanted to support discussions about pre-released music like comparing different versions, looking at cues for music for video etc.  That's what the little comment bubbles are for. Its supposed to be for not yet finished music. But they got caught up going in a different direction because people liked seeing a new flash player.  btw. that flash player is SoundManager,  the same thing you see on my site.  Its open source.

If you want to distribute copyright violating works then do so like a proper pirate and keep it on the D/L, and stop complaining when you get busted on mainstreet. Hip Hop was built on jacking other people's beats.  Only Toys buy their paint.  

Post it on big sites till they start taking heat, then say bye and thanks to them for putting up with it and move on. It is not their fault.

Run bitorrent on your web server so you can keep it running all the time.  As people add nodes, as people cop mixes, it strengthens and nobody can take it down.

  1. 1 mister gold teeth thief says...

    Hiphop was built in a radically different litigious climate…

    only toys buy their paint and it's not graf if it's legal, sure, but the graf / physical theft / realworld scarcity comparison seem a bit disingenuous esp since the Soundcloud takedowns seem to involve free fan-made remixes and mixes — not instances of un-improved/unremixed/unaltered major label songs for grabbing.

    thanks for the fresh take though, much to think about here…

    I've always thought of CreativeCommons licenses as weird, though,, i definitely fall on the pirate side here; why slap a legal band-aid on work which DOES nab from many sources (even as it creates new spaces)? Why shoehorn DJ culture that critiques standard notions of authorship and ownership with sexy aplomb into any legal framework (esp. when we dont have lawyers to back it up)?

    re: SoundManager, that doesn't enable the timeline commenting, does it?

  2. 2 timeblind says...

    yes I do want to know WHO issued the takedown. these labels are short sighted, that is for sure. we all agree on that and that businesses use/abuse of copyright needs to evolve.

    my main point here is I think its unfair to blame Soundcloud. if I have to settle on one point that is, which I rarely do. I usually ramble.

    the one CC license that is relevant is the one that says its ok to remix and release that as long as its shared. ie. you can do a fan mix and post it on soundcloud. just don't put it on iTunes. large labels could get with that but they figure they should not negotiate with terrorists. I mean the barbarian hordes.

  3. 3 timeblind says...


    Foucault: ‘What difference does it make who is speaking?’ ‘The mark of the writer is … nothing more than the singularity of his absence.’

    A Foucaultian analysis of George Bush's Decision Points:


  4. 4 timeblind says...

    Hank Shocklee was talking years ago about having a fair way to license samples without everybody getting lawyered up and throwing ludicrous offers back and forth. This greed on the part of the owners was what caused Diddy et al to replay and rerecord rather than sample. Its a legal dodge.

    There should be a standard rate to use a sample and the owner should not be allowed to deny usage anymore than a composer can deny a new recording of a composition. (Though I think a composer does have first right of refusal for the very first recorded release)

    This would alleviate it. It would actually force people to iTunes their fan mix rather than give it away, and a large and fair percentage should go to the originator.

  5. 5 ripley says...

    Nice points!

    According to several of the accounts in the links (and my blog post) it was IFPI/Universal that triggered a massive sweep on the 23rd.

    A great comment in the thread from Mad Decent:"Soundcloud went on some crazy copyright raid on Thursday. They took down rusko tracks from our mad decent soundcloud saying that the track was owned by mad decent…..."

    The walled garden metaphor works for me because if this goes through, the only people allowed to play and grow will be the people who can get inside. I dunno about "competition" I was talking more about collaboration, communication and maybe even communities. Of course there are different layers of communication that you might see as more or less valuable (remixer to "original" if those categories matter more, rather than remixer to "fan" or "other remixer" or "dj")... but it's worth thinking clearly about whose communication we should value.

    And I wonder how do you define main street?

  6. 6 jace says...

    re: Hank, its a weirdly unfair playing field as is: the big artists like Kanye can afford to pay for (astronomical) sample fees or for the sample-recreation services. Ghislain was the 1st person to point that out to me.

    i'd love to see sampling integrated into songwriting percentages (which happens nowadays often, just in addition to the random license fees). considering the sample-source as an additional songwriter makes a lot of sense… and %s ensure that if it goes big, everybody eats.

    i wonder if there are any legal reasons for Soundcloud not yet mentioning why they're doing takedowns. that type of explanation/clarity would help all the DJs who feel cheated — b/c yr right, its unfair to blame them wholesale.

  7. 7 timeblind says...

    probably they haven't made an announcement because they want to make damned sure they make the correct announcement considering how quick everybody is to condemn anything that smacks of Cooperation with the Corporate Copyright holders. one weak phrase and the anti-corporate mob will rip them to pieces. I mean its already started. would you post something over xmas weekend under those conditions ?

    @ripley LOL Mad Decent are probably like "oh yeah, we did hire that lawyer guy. what's he been up to ? oh we're suing ourselves ??"

    @jace yep, it would be so simple to solve. but it would have to be a simple clearance website like those "license a beat" things. but no lawyers. everybody should eat but for them.

    soundmanager is just the flash sound player. I hate the comments anyway. its like having 60 MCs doing shout outs while your track is playing in the background.

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