Same s**t different day!
Does this story sound familiar? When the printing press was invented they told Charles Dickens and Edgar Allan Poe that the horse had bolted, you'll never get anyone to pay you royalties abroad on your books any more, you'll have to go on tour and sign books that people have printed themselves because you can't stop them printing your work across America (the world), it is too vast to police it properly!!!!
Then when Performing Rights Organizations, like ASCAP, first suggested collecting royalties in USA some thought 'It's impossible to do. Shop owners, and broadcasters have never paid for music so they won't pay for it now. It's impossible to police and enforce copyright laws! It's a HUGE undertaking that will never succeed"
These PRO's, armed with only shoe leather, paper and pens (not a computer in sight) achieved what some thought was impossible and it was undoubtedly worth it.
Charles Dickens campaigned in 1842 for international copyright laws to be upheld; he called for better education and enforcement to protect IP, 40 years after the death his efforts proved not to be in vain.
The technology exists NOW to do everything we need it to do - track, trace, transparently account and pay the right people without infringing our civil liberties. FACT! And all from the comfort of an armchair!
We face the same challenges. Our forefathers did not buckle; they refused to accept the unacceptable! They (ASCAP, BMI, SESAC, PRS, GAMA etc., etc.) took on the enormous task of creating the licensing system that we benefit from today. As MLK says, "the time is always right to do what is right". It's up to us to not resign ourselves to accept the scraps from the Internet table, but instead to put in place a system of micro licensing and accounting so that these massive "Tech Titans" have to pay/share - not just by advertising or by taking your 'data' for free in exchange for giving you someone else's 'data' for free! Or paying below market value set by a rate court. We must let the copyright owner decide what they want their copyright to be priced at.
Remember every algorithm relies on human input of data, whether it be Google translate or Google play. When the Tech Titians don't pay the humans fairly for that data jobs are lost and the Tech Titans get richer and richer.
The digital economy is not an economy if there is no proper exchange of money, it becomes a "Feudal System" where the GAFAs (Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple) RULE and get rich on the backs of everyone else working on their digital real estate.
I'm not a luddite raging against the machines and wanting to destroy them, insisting people buy cd's, photos and books etc. - NO! Far from it! I am asking us to stand up and insist that these machines (and ALL future technologies) be programmed to work fairly for everyone.
In each technological revolution most people are asleep, then when they wake up people either 1) shaft each other for as long as they can, or 2) they work to make it fair for everyone or 3) they hope (but doubt) someone else will sort it out, ideally before they die!
Which one are you?
"The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men (and Women) Do Nothing" Edmund Burke
Join the Monday Breakfast Club or the Tuesday dinner, (email us and get added to the list.)
Join every organization that represents you.
SHOW UP! Sit at the DOJ or Copyright round tables (the next one is May 13th in California) to discuss safe Harbor or consent decrees etc., etc.! You either have a seat at the table or you're on the menu. Write to your congress representative. We are all very busy and none of us want to do any of this work! If not me and you, then who? If not now, then when?
Block chain may be a technology that helps create the system, but belief in the NEED for humanity and fairness will fuel the creation of this new system and every system in the future, just as it did in the past!
Believe it, then build it and they will come!
The next big tech development event is Berlin Music Tech Fest and "The Blockchain Lab from 23-27 May is by invitation only, bringing together the best minds in blockchain technology to develop and innovate new open technology through collaboration around a series of problems, challenges and provocations."