Saturday YouTube: Harlan Ellison on Creative Piracy

2 thoughts on “Saturday YouTube: Harlan Ellison on Creative Piracy”

  1. Ah – Mr. Ellison. Eloquent as always. He always manages to hammer home his points in a humorous, if brusque, fashion. I can see this particular battle continuing on multiple fronts (Fallout 3 for the XBOX) for a while. I wonder what the outcome will be…..

  2. There was a time when I probably wouldn’t have agreed with Mr. Ellison. Like most people, I’ve made copies of songs and movies from friends.

    But I’ve changed my view lately, and I suppose that’s because I’m now on the other side of the fence. I’ve written a few short stories (nothing compared to Mr. Ellison’s work, but I’m proud of them nonetheless) and I’d be upset if I found my work on someone elses website without permission.

    Or if someone was making copies of it and passing it around without at least giving me due credit.

    But this brings me to a conundrum. I’ve posted a couple of my stories on my blog and of course I want people to read them, and course there’s no charge for reading them. What if someone copied and pasted my story and put it in their blog without permission and no credit?

    Would that be fair? I think not. Now, if said individual included a link to my blog, or if they at least asked me for permission to do so, then I’d consider that all well and good.

    At the same time, what if this sort of “piracy” brought me more exposure? What if my name became famous amongst certain circles and college students in Vancouver, Canada were sitting in an English class dissecting one of my stories? Wouldn’t I love that? Of course I would.

    I guess, what really matters is the creators intention. Obviously, illegally copying and trading music and movies is wrong, and most major artists and studios don’t like it. But I think several smaller ones don’t mind a little “viral piracy” and actually consider it their bread and butte.

    *Sigh*…the debate continues.

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