Another Enlightened Label

I’ve been reading the Creative Commons weblog and today I saw this interesting post about Fading Ways Music. All of their 2004 releases will be released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike license. They have a page explaining their outlook that sounds quite sensible.

Put simply, the above CopyLeft notice means that if a fan copies a CD to give to a friend, they are not breaking the law. Even if they upload an MP3 and share it with other web users they are not breaking the law as long as they are not making any money out of distributing the artists’ work. Contrary to what the RIAA and the majors are claiming, home taping in the 70s and the CD burning of today is not what’s hurting music – what’s hurting music is the fact that ClearChannel-style corporations are broadcasting crap music to such a high percentage of the population that people are giving up on buying music, because they are NOT HEARING ANYTHING THEY LIKE on the airwaves of today.

Again, here’s a group of people who see that the RIAA is spreading downloading FUD when they state:

Furthermore, Fading Ways will also provide an optional PayPal donations system for fans to contribute funds directly to their favourite artist(s) should they be uploading or copying their music – our goal here is three-fold: 1) to counter the RIAA-induced notion that downloading is somehow wrong; and 2) to generate a little extra income for our artists and the label in general; 3) provide the fans with a voluntary system by which they can congratulate and genuinely reward the artists’ work.

Interesting stuff. I haven’t listened to any of the music of this label yet, but it feels like this kind of thinking might be picking up steam in the music community. It would be ironic if the RIAA’s opposition to the sharing of music helps to nurture the conditions that make it become a viable long-term philosophy.

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Dave Slusher is a blogger, podcaster, computer programmer, author, science fiction fan and father.