31.12.10: Closing this blog, taking all my media offline and moving from Berlin…? Reason: JMStV

November 30, 2010

Be it a wicked plan to install some serious online censorship in Germany or simply corruption and incompetence, it now looks like the very controversial German Jugendmedienschutzstaatsvertrag (JMStV) may well be signed soon and could become binding law from January 1st, 2011 on. Blogs machen wegen neuen Jugendschutz-Regelungen dicht (www.heise.de)

The legal hoops for a small blog like mine with self produced media content (incl. links and “making available for free download” of my own feature film Vincent, 44 min., 16mm > 35mm blow-up, made in Austria in 1996/2003) seem too complicated, expensive and for sure too risky to take without legal advice, that I now seriously ponder about doing the following:

* remove my indiworks.wordpress.com blog
* remove my indiworks.blip.tv videoblog
* remove all my online videos from the Internet Archive (incl. Vincent and His Girl Friday – Between the lines edit (www.archive.org) as well as all my 3D shorts)

and

* move from Berlin/Germany to another EU country where I find political sanity and understanding of new media/online art/blogging etc.

If you happen to be a new media investor, blogger, artist, film maker etc. planning to move to Berlin/Germany (as I did in 1999) because you’ve heard of a vibrant, off-mainstream (online) art/media scene:

* you may want to think twice now and keep a close look at the events unfolding in the days and weeks to come and opt for another location than Berlin/Germany for your investments and business to be

* it may well be that we now only have 31 days left until a de facto censorship law will make it easy for (big media) lawyers to either get rid of your work or to force you into classifying your work with a (from) “18” (years on) label

I do hope that EU commissioner Neelie Kroes (and her staff), who recently held a vibrant speech for a copyright reform (europa.eu) will recognise these established media tactics for what they are: force indie content provider (self made, original works!) to shut down distribution of their e.g. Creative Commons licensed works using laws like the Jugendmedienschutzstaatsvertrag (JMStV) that is really only going to be there to help big media widen it’s existing monopoly-like position.

Not only copyright law needs to be reformed but Europe also needs to protect art and artist from hidden censorship like the German Jugendmedienschutzstaatsvertrag (JMStV).

In other words: even if you are trying very hard to abide to the already very restrictive copyright and “intellectual property” laws (e.g. doing remix works with Public Domain footage like myself) you may still get into expensive legal troubles or have to label your work with only for “18” in order to be on the safe side. I’d rather move to another country. Thank you very much Greens for betraying us (parlamentarische-zwaenge.de)! Yet another reason for only voting Pirate Party in all future elections!!!

So this in short is why I now soon may have to say:

Goodbye to Berlin

Meine Damen und Herren, Mesdames et Messieurs,

Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome

Im Cabaret, au Cabaret, to Cabaret

Update(s):

see also:

http://t3n.de/news/neuer-jmstv-286977/

http://www.schockwellenreiter.de/blog/2010/11/30/jmstv-und-weiter/

http://yuccatree.de/2010/11/jugendmedienschutz-staatsvertrag-bundeslander-beschliesen-juristisches-chaos-fur-blogger/

http://blog.pantoffelpunk.de/brechmittel/wieder-neue-wahlplakate-der-gruenen-geleakt

http://www.spiegel.de/netzwelt/netzpolitik/0,1518,732060,00.html

http://www.netzpolitik.org/2010/wider-das-grose-blogschliesen-wegen-des-jmstv/

http://www.netzpolitik.org/2010/jugendmedienschutz-wende-nach-dem-shitstor/

http://www.netzpolitik.org/2010/jmstv-in-berlin-parlamentarische-zwange-auch-bei-der-linken/

http://www.golem.de/1011/79772.html

http://ak-zensur.de/

and some first legal analysis (found via http://blog.fefe.de/):

http://blog.beck.de/2010/11/30/jugendmedienstaatsvertrag-und-altersfreigabe-im-internet

yet more…:

http://www.zeit.de/politik/deutschland/2010-11/gruene-nrw-internet-jugendschutz

http://www.testspiel.de/archives/2010/11/30/linksammlung-zum-jugendmedienschutz-staatvertrag-jmstv/ (more links, some listed here some not)

http://berlinnow.org/?p=737

http://www.robertbasic.de/2010/11/jmstv-novellierung-herkunft-und-gruende/

http://www.indiskretionehrensache.de/2010/11/deutschlands-parteien-unwahlbar-eine-wutrede/

http://itspublique.de/archives/8795

and don’t forget:

https://twitter.com/gruenenrw/status/9305356467445760:

Wir sind weiterhin gegen den #JMStV, die Fraktion hat sich aufgrund parlamentarischer Zwänge anders entschlossen.

some more links:

http://pressetext.at/news/101201003/internet-jugendschutz-geht-an-realitaet-vorbei/

http://diepresse.com/home/techscience/internet/614762/Jugendschutz_Deutschland-droht-die-InternetWueste

and not much more to say than that one…

http://www.fischfresse.de/2010/11/jugendschutz-medien-der-neue-jmstv-satire-jugendmedienschutz-staatsvertrag/

31.12.10: Closing this blog, taking all my media offline and moving from Berlin…? Reason: Jugendmedienschutzstaatsvertrag (JMStV)

 

Be it a wicked plan to install some serious online censorship in Germany or simply incompetence or corruption, it now looks like the controversial German Jugendmedienschutzstaatsvertrag (JMStV) may well be signed next Thursday and could become binding law from January 1st, 2011.

 

The legal hoops a small blog like mine with self produced media content (incl. links and making availabel for free download of my own feature film Vincent, 44 min., 16mm > 35mm blow-up, made in 1996/2003) seem to comlicated, expensive and for sure risky to take without legal advice, that I now seriously ponder about doing the following:

 

* remove my indiworks.wordpress.com blog

* remove indiworks.blip.tv

* remove all my online videos from the Internet Archive (incl. Vincent and His Girl Friday – Beetween the lines edit as well as all my 3D shorts)

* move from Berlin/Germany to another EU country where I find political sanity and understanding of new media/online art/blogging etc.

 

If you happen to be a new media investor, blooger, artist, film maker etc. planning to move to Berlin/Germany (as I did in 1999) because you’ve heard of a vibrant, off-maistream (online) art/media scene:

 

* you may want to think twice now and keep a close look at the events unfolding in the days and weeks to come

 

* it may well be that we now only have 31 days left until a semi-corporate-fascist supported law will make it easy for (big media) lawyers to either get rid of your work or to force you into classifying your work with a (from) “18” (years on) label

 

I do hope that EU commisoner Croes, who recently held a vibrant speech for a copyright reform http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleasesAction.do?reference=SPEECH/10/619&format=HTML&aged=0&language=EN&guiLanguage=en will recongnise the established media tactics for what they are: force indie content provider (self made, original works!) to shut down distribution of their e.g. Creative Commons licensed works because of laws like the Jugendmedienschutzstaatsvertrag (JMStV) that is really only going to be there to help big media widen it’s monopoly like position.

 

In oder words: even if you are trying very hard to abide to the currently already very restrictive copyright and “intelectual property” laws (e.g. doing remix works with Public Domain footage like myself) you may still get into expensive legal troubles or have to label your work with only for “18” to be on the safe side.

 

Good-by to Berlin

 

Corporate Fascism is about to start in 31 days.

Meine Damen und Herren,

Wilkommen, Bienvenue…

Au Cabaret, au cabaret, au cabaret…

 

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CC licensed documentary: “Patent Absurdity – how software patents broke the system” (2010, 29 min.)

May 21, 2010

Watch online or download

About the movie (patentabsurdity.com)

CC licence: by-nd/3.0

(if you need it: VLC)


WebM (Google’s open video codec VP8) is here!

May 19, 2010

Maybe we now can make all of this about fair competition that serves the consumers/users/artists/filmmakers instead of a few wealthy companies/institutions…?

WebM an open media project (www.webmproject.org)

Introducing WebM, an open web media project (webmproject.blogspot.com)

“The WebM project is dedicated to developing a high-quality, open video format for the web that is freely available to everyone.”

(Update 1)

An introduction to the WebM project:

Google Frees VP8 Codec for HTML5: the WebM project (openvideoalliance.org)

The WebM Project : about : WebM Supporters (www.webmproject.org)

(Update 2)

The announcement/discussion on the web:

BREAKING: Google Opens VP8 Codec, Enables it on YouTube (www.osnews.com)

Microsoft: Internet Explorer 9 To Support VP8 (www.osnews.com)

Google, Mozilla, And Opera Take On H.264 With The WebM Project, A New Royalty-Free Video Codec (techcrunch.com)

Google tries freeing Web video with WebM (news.cnet.com)

Microsoft planning to support VP8 in Internet Explorer 9 – with a catch (www.neowin.net)

Google launches open WebM web video format based on VP8 (update: hardware partners and Microsoft statement) (www.engadget.com)

Theora Founder: WebM Project is ‘Wonderful’ (newteevee.com)

The first in-depth technical analysis of VP8 (x264dev.multimedia.cx) – [Wikitech-l] VP8 freed!(lists.wikimedia.org)

Software and Hardware Companies Jump on Google’s WebM Train (mashable.com)

Google launches open WebM web video format based on VP8 (update: hardware partners and Microsoft statement)


And the message is… (hint: Free Culture)

May 18, 2010

TorrentFreak reports that The [Swedish] Pirate Party Becomes The Pirate Bay’s New Host (that is after the Pirate Bay supposedly “sank” in recent days).

In the light of the recent aggressive attacks against filesharers this is an interesting turning point in this real life drama/story about (our) culture…

As I previously said it’s a bit silly to help your ideological/cultural “enemy” push the warez, but seen as political activism my sympathy is with the pirates:

Hollywood needs to understand the message behind all of this instead of trying to put that genie back into a bottle that never was right in the first place.

Hollywood, Lawrence Lessig’s Free Culture book is a very good starting point to learn more about your fans/customer’s world and needs…!

Update 1: This is related, seems like a good time for a (new) discussion about copyright…! Why I Steal Movies… Even Ones I’m In – Peter Serafinowicz – Gizmodo (14.05.10)

Update 2: And this is the official announcement on the Pirate Bay blog (in lolcat):

PLZ LEARN: TPB CANT BE SHUT DOWN
LOL!
AS U MITE HAS READ OR NOTICD, PEEPS ONCE AGAIN R TRYIN 2 SHUT US DOWN. DIS WILL NOT SUCCED, LOL. OURS RLY NICE WEBHOST WUZ THREATEND WIF RLY HUGE FINE, SO WE DECIDD 2 MOOV TEH SIET SO DAT THEY DIDNT GOT INTO TROUBLE, LOL. TEH DECISHUN 2 MOOV WUZ TAKEN BY US, TEH PIRATE BAY, LOL.
TEH PIRATE BAY IZ AN UNSINKABLE SHIP. IT WILL SAIL TEH INTERWEBS 4 AS LONG AS WE WANTS IT 2. REMEMBR DAT, K THX.
TPB, ONLY IN IT 4 TEH LULZ SINCE 2003


H.264 List of Shame: all the patent holders

May 18, 2010

The following organizations hold one or more patents in the H.264/AVC patent pool:

(Source: Wikipedia MPEG LA)

Apple Inc.
DAEWOO
Dolby Laboratories Licensing Corporation
Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute
France Télécom, société anonyme
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung e.V.
Fujitsu Limited
Hitachi, Ltd.
Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V.
LG Electronics Inc.
Microsoft Corporation
Mitsubishi Electric Corporation
NTT docomo
Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation
Panasonic Corporation
Robert Bosch GmbH GmbH
Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
Scientific-Atlanta Vancouver Company
Sedna Patent Services, LLC
Sharp Corporation
Siemens AG
Sony Corporation
Ericsson
The Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York
Toshiba Corporation
Victor Company of Japan, Limited

Further reading

Why Our Civilization’s Video Art and Culture is Threatened by the MPEG-LA

No, you can’t do that with H.264


Is H.264 a legal minefield for video pros?

Why this list…?

It’s a reminder for myself when it comes to spending money or investing in equipement. And yes, I like to share this list with everyone who cares about free artistic expression and who thinks that the moving image is too important and precious and should not be controlled by anyone and surely not by corporations or patent pools. (Software) patents are the cancer of this economy: they encourage greed, create monopolies, discourage innovation and as we are now seeing with the H.264 licensing fiasco they can seriously harm your video business, specially smaller ones.


Save free web video incl. my own movie “Vincent”: vote with your browsers (dump all your Apple/MS browsers!)

May 16, 2010

If the MPEG-LA, the patent pool behind H.264 and MPEG-2, has it their way I am an endangered species: “Vincent“, being 44 min. long would not qualify for the MPEG-LA’s “free” offer, latest after 2015 and there is no way that I (or someone else) will be paying protection money to a fucking patent pool for “Vincent”.

My work would simply not be available online any more (thanks to software patents no alternative). Welcome to the age of Corporate Fascism. It’s standing at your and my front door. But you can still act now:

* vote with your browser: since Apple and Microsoft – both H.264 patent holders – are pushing for H.264 as the future web standard for video: simply dump your Apple/MS browsers now and use Firefox, Chrome or Opera. If not: you might be paying for the rest of your life with more ads (yes, H.264 is “free” for the end user…).

* let others know what is at stake here: those people would like to/are about to establish a MONOPOLY ON THE MOVING IMAGE (lock-in via video codec) – a pretty scary systemic change:

Why Our Civilization’s Video Art and Culture is Threatened by the MPEG-LA

And for all my younger – and not so young – readers: if this was a Harry Potter movie Dumbledore would say:

“Dark times lay ahead, Harry. Soon we’ll all have to choose between what is right — and what is easy.”


H.264 may You find the grace to give me my daily fix of decoding today

May 10, 2010

Hail to our new Overlord,

The One and only,

Owner of all legal moving pictures compression algorithms of this world,

Great conqueror of Theora, Dirac and all the other “open source” algorithms,

Master of all moving pictures distribution channels that legally exist:

May You find the grace to give me my daily fix of de/en-coding today.

Hail to MPEG LA!

Hail! Hail! Hail!


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