The clueless-ness of big content owners is just amazing…
Fox shuts down Buffy Hallowe’en musical despite Whedon’s protests:
Cory Doctorow: Fox has shuit down a plan to perform a fan version of the Buffy musical episode, Once More with Feeling, even though creator Joss Whedon has asked them not to. Jason Schultz has written a great analysis of this here.Is this the kind of copyright policy we want? Those are tougher questions. Just as artists are an engine for creativity in our culture, so are fans. An artist on their own can make a work of art, but only fans can make it mean something in our society. Fans take art and translate it into culture. They invest in it, obsess over it, share it, and spread it to others. They turn it from an isolated item into a means of communication. (For more on this, see danah’s posts here and here where she breaks it down more eloquently).But where is the recognition of this reality in copyright? Well, before the digital age, it was often in the idea that copyright was a public right and fandom was a private series of acts. Copyright would control public distribution of works and fans would collect them and share them and discuss them in private. More importantly, they would do so without making “copies” of them; instead, they would trade physical goods and have verbal conversations. Some would make costumes or their own art based on the subject matter, but those were generally kept private or only exhibited at limited forums like Comic Cons.
Do the marketing departments of Fox, Disney, etc, have any say over the actions of their attack-lawyers? Do these organizations even have marketing departments any more? I remember taking marketing classes way back in college but I must have missed the day where we were taught that attacking one’s best customers is an effective sales driver.