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cheyenne_h on 02/26/2015 at 09:00AM

Radio Free Culture #38: Wishing You A Happy Fair Use Week with Ellen Duranceau

"Transmitters-5" by Adam Bowie. 2011. CC BY-NC-SA via flickr.

Happy Fair Use Week 2015! WFMU and the Free Music Archive are proud to bring a special episode of Radio Free Culture, a weekly podcast exploring issues at the intersection of digital culture and the arts, for this occasion. 

In this episode, Cheyenne Hohman, RFC host and current Director of the FMA, spoke with Ellen Duranceau, a librarian at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and copyright/fair use expert. We talk about the four elements of fair use, how to determine if your use is fair, and talk about other issues around the edges of copyright, music, technology, and more. For more info, try fairuseweek.org, the Fair Use Week tumblr, or check out this Fair Use cheat sheet

Check out the podcast on WFMUPRX, or subscribe to the Radio Free Culture via iTunes, or listen here: 

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cheyenne_h on 02/24/2015 at 11:00AM

It's Fair Use Week 2015!

We know copyright is in need of some, ahem, reforms. But did you know that there's some wiggle room built in to the US Copyright Statute? This Thursday's Radio Free Culture will have a whole show dedicated to it. But until then, you might want to check out some of the resources, musings, and more related to fair use! The official definition of Fair Use is as follows: 

Section 107 contains a list of the various purposes for which the reproduction of a particular work may be considered fair, such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Section 107 also sets out four factors to be considered in determining whether or not a particular use is fair.

  1. The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes
  2. The nature of the copyrighted work
  3. The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole
  4. The effect of the use upon the potential market for, or value of, the copyrighted work

But that's not very exciting, is it? Here are some ways that it's generally safe to use things that are still under copyright:

  1. Criticism and comment -- for example, quoting or excerpting a work in a review or criticism for purposes of illustration or comment.
  2. News reporting -- for example, summarizing an address or article, with brief quotations, in a news report.
  3. Research and scholarship -- for example, quoting a short passage in a scholarly, scientific, or technical work for illustration or clarification of the author's observations.
  4. Nonprofit educational uses -- for example, photocopying of limited portions of written works by teachers for classroom use.
  5. Parody -- that is, a work that ridicules another, usually well-known, work by imitating it in a comic way.

Here are some examples of Fair Use in action! 


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fair use week, fair use
cheyenne_h on 02/19/2015 at 09:00AM

Radio Free Culture #37: Playing in the Public Domain with Nicky Case

image courtesy of Nicky Case, from the Coming Out Simulator

WFMU and the Free Music Archive are proud to present a new season of Radio Free Culture, a weekly podcast exploring issues at the intersection of digital culture and the arts. 

In this episode, Cheyenne Hohman, RFC host and current Director of the FMA, spoke with Nicky Case, a game developer who has chosen to license everything under CC0, a 'public domain' license available via Creative Commons. We talked about recent work, including the Coming Out Simulator, the Parable of the Polygons, the Public Domain Jam, and more! 

Check out the podcast on WFMUPRX, or subscribe to the Radio Free Culture via iTunes, or listen right here: 

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ckutmusic on 02/12/2015 at 03:18PM

Joshua Zubot & Luke Loseth on If You Got Ears

Josh Zubot is Montreal's man-about-town for violin. Playing everything from free jazz to bluegrass, you can find his name in the credits of countless local projects: Subtle Lip Can, Ensemble Supermusique, Land of Kush, and the list goes on... 

But now, Mr. Zubot is giving the violin a different spin. Enter Luke Loseth: the multi-instrumentalist behind Holobody and all-around electronics wizard gave Zubot's violin the special treatment with a healthy dose of live processing. The two musicians had never met before, and in true experimental fashion were put in a room and given the sole instruction of "make something." The resulting piece finds the traditional instrument being taken in a wholly different direction, with layers of effects bending its pitch and timbre into a finale of noisy cacaphony. 

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Listen to the entries in our FMA microSong Challenge! Artists from all over the web - and the world - entered super-short songs into our contest (and the public domain)! Winners will be announced soon, but until then, give 'em a listen. 

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