Regarding this entry, Curt comments:
I agree with items 2 and 3 (especially item 3!!) but I kinda support DRM. I think an artist should have the right to be compensated for each purchase of a piece of their art. Sure, it’s easy enough for the more technical-minded to convert a DRM file into an unprotected mp3 but why make it easy for them?
Had breakfast with Jon this morning and we discussed DRM among other things.
I asked, how does DRM compare to racial profiling? I mean, isn’t DRM assuming that a person buying music will trade it, give it away, and someone else will steal it?
I think we clearly have two choices:
1. We can circle the wagons, tie down everything, install security cameras everywhere, put DRM on all music (for it to be effective it would have to be on every CD as well) and assume that every other human is out to get us and to take away what is ours…
2. We can teach that a musician’s livelihood depends on income from music sales and concerts. Hm, what a lot of musicians seem to forget is that for thousands of years musicians made a living from concerts and teaching. Less than a hundred years ago the medium of recorded music created the recording artist – some of whom are unable to perform anymore…
It comes down to what kind of world you want to live in. Do you want to put most of the money into weapons and the military (clearly the current choice) or do you want to allocate more money to education? In the first case we end up with very powerful “smart” weapons and a relatively un-educated people, in the second case we have a smart public that can find ways to defend itself. Or to speak in musician’s terms, do you want to think up more and more powerful DRM schemes (which costs money also) or do you want to create a love for musical expression in the public that makes DRM unnecessary. Me, maybe I am a romantic, a dreamer and idealist, but I want to educate people and foster a fertile ground for the arts. If a kid can’t afford to buy my album and a friend can give him a non-DRM copy of my music, I am all for it.
I can’t answer that question… personally, I haven’t reached a level of success with my music to a point where I could afford to allow people (or want people to have) free access to my compositions. Call it greed, perhaps? Or maybe the financial reward is my measurement of success? I think it would be much easier to “let go” once I had the freedoms in life that come with a certain level of finacial security. I know of a few artists that I think could reap HUGE financial rewards for their music and they actually give it away – or donate all proceeds to charity (GNOMUSY, for one).
Do you really believe that success or financial reward creates freedom or happiness? I was just as happy in Santa Fe in the late eighties, living in a tiny studio apartment, working in a store during the day and performing my guitar music at night. Sure, when radio stations and record companies started calling in the Summer of 1989, it was exciting, but I was also weary of it. I didn’t want to lose my freedom and happiness. Whenever you place happiness or freedom outside yourself, outside the here and now, by saying if I only had a real studio, if I only had a better guitar, if I only had a recording contract, a powerful manager… – you cannot reach it. Don’t you see that the only person who places your freedom, success and happiness out of your reach is you?
You know what, I think success came with Nouveau Flamenco exactly because after years of wanting success I stopped caring about that. I just wanted to play guitar and make music. I recorded NF in a shitty studio on a crappy guitar and I was happy doing it.
I hope you can stop placing success, freedom and financial security outside your self and can enjoy creating music. I shall look forward to hearing the results of that.