More snow last night. About 2-3 inches. The sun is out and makes it all sparkle. As I turn around a corner I see the mountains, covered in fresh and blinding white snow.
More thoughts on sharing and DRM:
Sharing is a very important, maybe the most important way to create culture. You can share books by lending ones you really like to your friends. That’s how knowledge spreads. You find a book you love, one I have never heard of, or maybe one I have passed on because I don’t like the cover or the author or the theme, and you lend it to me and I read it because I want to see what it is you like about it… and maybe I’ll love it, too. Maybe I’ll buy another copy to give or lend to another friend.
We can do the same thing with music. Even before copying CDs became a possibility there was the exchange of CDs. I’ll borrow these two and lend you these.
I think it is typical of our present-day culture that we are trying to eliminate that most basic element of culture: sharing information, sharing beauty, sharing a different POV. By adding DRM to files – presently that means music, but movies are starting to be downloaded regularly and once there is a reader that doesn’t look and feel like crap books will be downloaded as well – we are eliminating sharing. You won’t lend me your reader, because then you would not be able to read other books, and I am not going to camp out in your house so I can use your reader when you don’t…
We need to educate: it is OK to copy a few songs, even a whole album for your friend, or several friends – but it is most certainly not OK to make that music album or book available to all on the internet. That is not sharing – that is indiscriminately giving something away and most certainly piracy. We need to teach people the difference between sharing culture, which is of supreme importance and adds value – and piracy, which subtracts value and affects the livelihood of the author.
In the afternoon Genpo Roshi asks me for a brief blurb for his upcoming book Big Mind/Big Heart: Finding Your Way. I suggest:
The new book by Genpo Roshi is the missing manual for human living. Every human should receive it at birth.