Why Creative Commons Hasn't Caught On In Serbia: They're Happier Without Copyright At All
from the freedom-is-a-nice-thing dept
This is from a few weeks ago, but I’m just getting around to it, though I found it quite fascinating. Rick Falkvinge, in discussing a recent trip to Serbia for the Share Conference, points out that Serbian content creators haven’t really embraced Creative Commons, not because they prefer the full limits of copyright, but because many don’t seem to like copyright at all:
He gave the story of what had happened when then-Yugoslavia was under an international embargo in 1990-1995.
Yugoslavia was allowed to import food, medicine, all the basic necessities of life, but not luxury items. Copies of digitized works counted as luxury items that weren’t allowed. Importing copies of bitpatterns was not permitted, stupidly enough. It turns out, therefore, that this was not a problem. The people living there could make do themselves, copying themselves. It showed on a country-wide scale just how unnecessary the copyright monopoly is — not just to academics studying the situation, but to the very people, too.
The result was that it was seen as a step backwards to start using Creative Commons in Serbia. It was perceived as unnecessarily restrictive and, well, unnecessary. Later, the copyright industry has been aggressive in Serbia just like everywhere else, but they have a serious uphill battle for hearts and minds.
I’d love to learn more about what happened in Serbia during that time and what happened in the aftermath as well, because I think it would be quite educational and useful in understanding some of the debates on these issues. Does anyone have any pointers to publications or people who can share more info?