Copyright in a Digital Age

Can you imagine back in the day – like way back in the pre-Gutenberg days – how tough it would have been to plagiarise or break copyright? Man, you’d be up all night with your quill pen and candles, slaving away making a pirated version of Beowulf for the black markets. Tough stuff. Kids these days . . . they have it easy with everything.

After three false starts Canada is looking at tabling some updated copyright legislation. It hasn’t been successful in updating its laws since 1997 . . . whoa! that’s 920 Internet years. Take a look at this solid CBC article on the proposed changes and let us know what you think. As journalists and communicators and writers, what are the copyright issues that come up most for you? Do tell!

AKA

Okay, so the internets are in an uproar about Google Plus’s real name policy. Okay, maybe not uproar. Maybe a Twitter.

What do you guys think? I’m of the mind that there are heaps and heaps of ways to move about pseudonymously online . . . set up a blog and post what ever the heck you want under any old name, that I’m not too stressed about Google being a big bully to serious activists. I also find it really curious that Facebook is escaping heat in all of this. Check out this article on the Guardian about how Facebook shut down a Chinese blogger page for using a nickname that even his friends use. But I want to hear what you think about this . . . drop a comment, yo!

Technoslave

Yeah, technoslave. I’m sure no one here would ever identify as such. Just like no one here would ever wish there was a sarcasm font.

Here’s what a piece on Adbusters had to say about our voluntary-yet-near-indentured servitude to our technology . . .

As people fall further into their personal gadgets, scientists and psychologists are now beginning to classify technology dependency as a major health problem, putting it in the same categories as alcoholism, gambling and drug addiction.

What do you all think about that? Adbusters tends to be a little melodramatic and sometimes thin on the supporting facts, but . . . .

Don’t fear the internet.

I’m definitely not afraid of the internet, but maybe a little afraid of programming. Okay, maybe not so much programming as programmers . . . I do count one of their kind among my exboyfriends. The thought of looking at code gives me little flashbacks. *shudder*. Right. Focus. So, I finally caved and have started teaching myself a bit of HTML and CSS because I was not a million percent happy with my WordPress theme on my new personal website. Sigh.

Finding this tutorial in the process made it a little bit happier. It’s okay if you go watch it and wish you were that cool.

Thug English

The state of the English language is always a great conversation to have – is Twitter wrecking it? What about that Oxford comma? To neologize or not to neologize? (Though I caution that in some circles it’s best to pour gas on this fire before the wine starts to flow . . . things can get pretty heated).

Here’s an interesting read on the low-brow origins and imprints of English. It’s good prep work for your next nerdy dinner party.

World Press Photo

Do you guys get to work with photojournalists or photography much in your professional lives? I bet if you spend some time on the World Press Photo website your hearts will pine a little for the resources that must be behind some of these shots. Take a look at some of the winners and let us know in a comment below which were your faves.