Rip: A Remix Manifesto: FAIL!

I saw some references to Rip: A Remix Manifesto (probably on Lessig’s blog, I forget) and it sounded interesting and right down the line with my political beliefs. I went to the site and see they are doing an “open source film tour.” OK, interesting. You have to create an account to book a showing and download the film. Hmmm, OK, I created an account. Then I went to look around the site. I see the download page but it is always empty. I clicked around and at one point I got this message:

NOTE: You must accept the screening agreement in order to have your event approved and published. Please click the checkbox next to ‘I have read and agree to the terms of the B-Side Screening Agreement,’ and submit your event.

They want to approve my event? That is, I may have gone this far without a guarantee that I’ll be able to even go forward with this? This isn’t really fitting my particular vision of what an openness entails. In fact, about this point I realized that I have stopped giving a shit about this movie, I don’t want to hold a screening, I don’t want to download it and I’m not really interested in watching it or attending anyone else’s screening. My window of interest, that period where I was willing to grant this project of few hours of my very scarce time, has now closed.

You can talk the open talk all you want but when actions are out of line with that, I stop wanting to be involved. If you want the upside of “open source” you have to accept the loss of control that comes with it. What this looks like to me is a compromise that is the worst of all worlds.

Put another way, using the lyrics of the Clash:

But, you grow up and you calm down and
You’re working for the clampdown
You start wearing the blue and brown and
You’re working for the clampdown
So you got someone to boss around
It makes you feel big now