Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wanna See My YouTube Video? You Might Have To Move To Siberia

I'm not out to rip off anyone. I believe in fair use, i.e., taking someone's work and mixing it in with other portions of artistic expression to create something new. I'm against plagiarism, stealing credit for another person's work. I'm against exploiting an artist's talent to make unfair profits.

As you notice there are no ads at this blog. Almost all of my creative endeavors are for personal expression, not focused on making money or even breaking even. Now if someone takes my work in its entirety, claims it as their own and makes money from it, then there's a problem.

I'm learning how to digitally edit video and audio. It's a hobby, not a business. Recently I put up a montage of images I found via Google using "Venus" as a search keyword and then linking them together with transitional EFX, ergo its title "Transit of Venus." Apparently there was no problem using those images after I had uploaded my project.

In the tags I mentioned the band "Shocking Blue" because I used its old hit entitled "Venus" as a music soundtrack. I found a free download of the song via Google. No sooner than my video was up, this greeted me:

So I uploaded the video sans music, no soundtrack, and that wasn't blocked. Apparently WMG -- Warner Music Group -- had a problem with my song choice. Of course, the video lost a key component. I added this description to the musicless copy:

OK, I'm assuming that the original version with the soundtrack was blocked by the Warner Music Group (WMG). So here's it without the music. Now if you want to really enjoy it, cue up your legally purchased copy of the song "Venus" by Shocking Blue and start playing it when the first image appears after the credit title. Or go elsewhere on the Net, repeatedly play a copy of the song until it becomes a mindworm, and then let it keep playing in your head while watching my video. Of course, "recording" a song in your head that way might violate the copyright of WMG. They might send out the Thought Police to block that song from your memory.

Let me also add that I don't think my fair use of the song "Venus" will bankrupt WMG. If anything, it will probably jog people's memories and create an interest in it and Shocking Blue.

After seeing -- not hearing -- my song-castrated video I decided to press on, learning how others counter-challenged megacorp WMG, once again using Google. I found out how to file a dispute with YouTube when a video is being challenged re: an alleged copyright violation. So now the video is unblocked -- at least at the time of this writing. You can find it here:

And if it's not there, then WMG has stifled one person's freedom of expression. But not completely. Since the restriction pertains to the USA, you'll have to travel to Siberia and use a computer there to see my little "transgression."

WMG: Promoting universal standards.

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