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Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Back To The Mashup Board

In connection with this article on mashup culture, Art and Marketing All Mashed Up, the Washington Post is encouraging readers/users to create and submit a clever video mashup. Great idea, clueless execution. Specifically, per the applicable Terms and Conditions:

  • Forget about parody; permissible mashable material includes only "footage of [the User], or a friend or associate." Material that is "derogatory" or "generally offensive" (try narrowing/defining those, if you dare) is also verboten.
  • You make it, you don't own it: "User agrees to grant and assign all right, title and interest in the Recording to WPNI."
  • And, just in case there's some risk the Post hasn't managed to affirmatively limit: "User agrees to indemnify WPNI, its parents, affiliates and agencies and respective officers, employees, managers, agents, successors or assignees, from any and all claims, damages, causes of action or injuries that result from, or are related to, WPNI's publication or use of the Recording, including any claims, damages or causes of action that arise due to the content within the Recording."

Terrific, I'll get right on that. (Or perhaps I'll just write the Post into my estate plan, it'd be more straightforward.) Apparently there was a Q&A about the project, but whatever it is or was, it's behind the Post's registration wall. And no one has posted to Post Remix, "The Post's Official Mashup Center," since May.

[Update:] Professor Lessig has dubbed this sort of strategy "A Sharecropper Vision of Creativity." I'm also able to access the Q&A now (dunno why, I was getting the login screen before), and nothing there touched on these issues.

[Update:] Wonkette read the fine print too, and writes: "You know what that means. We'll have our own contest. With only videos that are offensive, threatening, defamatory, or libelous."

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Technoratishperes: article; mashup project; terms and conditions

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