On Wednesday March 27, the Daily Dot and NAMAC co-presented this InterActs panel on the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. This lively and interdisciplinary conversation brought together creators, fans, educators, and tech and legal experts, to discuss how these two clauses of the DMCA are being used (or misused) by copyright holders and impacting (or threatening) creators' fair use of copyrighted material.
We discussed the victories and challenges in protecting fair use and extending DMCA exemptions across media arts disciplines, and got to know the community that is staunchly and successfully protecting creators' rights.
Learn about the panelists, watch the video of the conversation, or access a transcript right here.
Transmedia storytelling, a concept identified by Henry Jenkins, is storytelling by a number of decentralized authors who share assets and create content for distribution across multiple forms of media.
While Seattle's cable access station (TCI, Channel 29) recently has taken some heat for one program with some questionable content, the overwhelming volume of its high quality arts programming has gone unnoticed. Writing as an organizer of the Seattle Independent Film and Video Consortium (SIFVC), I find this lamentable, since the curators of these programs have taken creative steps to network their content with the community and leading media arts organizations in the city.
I've been thinking about the personal side of being a professional interdependent filmmaker. Not celluloid, or lenses, or digital media, but flesh and blood. I wonder where filmmakers go now for a sense of professional community? For validation of difficult and controversial work? For money? For emotional support? I've been wondering lately what happened to the animals we used to call "media arts centers" and what we even meant by that term. What happened to NAMAC and to Film in the Cities and to AFI? What happened to the NEA Media Arts Program?
There was once a myth about the permanence of magnetic media that has been proven to be just that: myth. Individuals and organizations that have produced work as recently as the 1990s are dealing with the need to preserve that work for the future. There is an even greater need to preserve works from earlier decades, as much of it was recorded on formats that are now extinct. Functional equipment to reproduce these tapes is difficult to locate and maintain. No true archival format exists. Migration to current magnetic formats is the best we can offer at present. New formats come and go, and media continues to degrade.
The older I get the more I tend to use creative visualization. I do things like project what will happen every day before I get out of bed; imagine the outcome of an event before it occurs; or develop an entire scenario by “directing” the process and giving it the ending I want. But there was no way I could visualize, project, or even come close to imagining my first year as executive director of a nonprofit arts cinema in the Deep South.
Saturday night I got home from a party. While I was scanning emails—deleting ads for Viagra, cheap airfare, and listserv nonsense—I saw the subject header, “NY Independent Media Center (IMC) Journalist Murdered by Paramilitaries.”
Once we agree (and most do agree) that myth isn’t a matter of fact or fiction, but rather a matter of belief, then we can come to understand the power of myth in both the narrative and documentary forms of media. The validity of a myth is established not by the number of people who claim to follow it, or the relative voracity of its lineage, but instead by the number of people who are willing to act based on what they believe.
It’s no coincidence that Battleground Minnesota found a home on Current TV. The documentary, a music-video-inspired take on the 2004 U.S. Senate election in Minnesota, shows a series of interviews with political stakeholders and pundits from both sides of the partisan divide. But what sets Battleground apart is the unique team that produced it.
In introducing the texts of Hidden Histories, I would like to embrace this utopian idea of pirate renegades creating intentional communities and controlling the conditions by which they live and extend it to those revolutionary moments in our own media arts histories as models of what Hakim Bey has called “temporary autonomous zones”— places and moments in which radical actions and creation occur outside of the constrictions of societal norms and cultural controls. These are zones in which pirate media renegades can create, invent, and incubate in the space of a generative moment.