Free Culture

Today I went to the Northeastern Free Culture Forum. It was the kickoff of the Free Culture group at Northeastern. Lawrence Lessig, Derek Slater (EFF), and Nelson Pavlosky (FC.o) were on the panel. Some very salient points were made. It was the first time I ever saw Larry Lessig present and his thoughts really struck home with me. I had never ran into the short and sweet of what the free culture movement hopes to bring forth. We really need to create an free software ecology out of everything that makes up culture. Lessig's speach was similar and style and substance to his 2002 OSCON speech though of course it gained refinement when the 4 years that have passed since then.

The main point I brought home from the meeting is that digital mashups are the "writing" of the 21st century. If the mashup is a picture, a song, a song put to video, or video itself. It is "writing." Currently most ninth graders in the US do the regular old way of "writing" mashup by taking classic literature and creating a mashup of it and turning it in for a grade.

We need to have the ability to do that with current media. DRM stops us from doing that. This is why DRM is bad. It stops people from using the media in ways that enhance society. Copyright people feel they need to stop any use of their media. We need to ask media companys how their continual control of culture enhances the public good. We have alot of work to do.