Predictions

by Mike Masnick




Will Compulsory Licensing Change The Definition Of Music?

from the unintended-consequences dept

Over at LawMeme, they've been looking at some of the "unintended consequences" associated with any sort of "compulsory licensing" scheme to handle payments for digital music. The latest discussion points out that such a system could run into certain problems on the definition of music. The article starts out by mentioning such famous (or infamous, as the case may be) piece of "music" such as John Cage's famous 4 minutes and 33 seconds of silence called 4:33. Take that concept even further though, and you can turn any digitized file into an audio file. So, the writer wonders if shareware developers will suddenly take their software, turn it into an audio file, and start collecting their share of the compulsory licensing pot. Same with pornography providers. It certainly raises a lot of questions and points out the difficulty of trying to limit one type of data on the internet with some sort of artificial boundary.

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