Monopolies of Culture and Knowledge

I was on a panel about copyright at Media Democracy Day in Vancouver on November 6. I was fortunate to share the panel with Hart Snider, who makes wonderful remix films, and the tireless
Martha Rans, who provides a legal support clinic for artists. The moderator was Meera Nair, an expert on fair dealing in Canadian copyright law.

The Georgia Straight blog has posted an article I wrote based on my panel remarks. I spoke about public discourse and the potential of malformed copyright laws to secure monopolies of culture and monopolies of knowledge. I am increasingly concerned that cultural participation, which has the potential to help us develop as active citizens and form relationships with other people, is instead used against us. The more we participate in culture, the more we invest our emotions and ourselves in it. When that participation is captured, part of us is also.