...the authors of this article might have come up with an interesting piece about the large numbers of attempts to discover, develop and tweak incentive systems on the Web. It is a work in progress, or at least flux. This is befitting the accelerated pace of technological change we are undergoing.
Why is anyone surprised that, after more than a century of selling a populace on "the new", we now find we have to constantly make the experience and the rewards seem new. Of course, I have no more basis for what I say than do the authors of the Newsweek post...but at least I'm restricting my comments to a Comment Section.
Nina originally expected to license and distribute her film through channels that were "normal" for independent filmmakers. It turned out that, while there were no copyright problems with Annette Hanshaw's recordings, there were (unexpectedly, to Nina) problems with "sync" rights for the songs. This led to a protracted, expensive period during which lawyers negotiated an expensive settlement (which, however, was less expensive than would have been the case without their efforts). Nina paid the numerous rights-holders. At that point she was free to go ahead as she had originally intended and release the film through "normal" channels. By then, however, she had learned a lot about the state of copyright law in this country (and others) and had come to some negative conclusions about the effects of the system on artistic creation. She did a lot of thinking and a lot of research and decided to take the bold step of copylefting her film. Since then, she has garnered more money from the film than anyone had predicted would be the case had she released it through regular channels.
So, yes, Nina made the film without copyleft in mind. It can be said that she arrived at the decision to copyleft it by accident, after a great deal of adversity. How does that in any way count as an argument about what she says above? She has learned a lot through her experience and now believes she can help artists avoid the problems she encountered. What's wrong with that?
Penicillin's discovery was an accident. Is it therefore any less valuable a discovery?