CopyCamp - let's strenghten the position of the author
On the 1st of October 2013, the II International CopyCamp conference was held in Warsaw, in Muranów cinema. The event was devoted to the subject of copyright in Poland and abroad and had strong representation in both guests of the conference and its participants. 43 presentations on various aspects of copyright given by lawyers, artists, medievists, sociologists, philosophers, economists, cultural managers, representatives of business, etc. proved that the subject of copyright is interesting and crucial for all of us.
Speakers talked about economy and language. We could learn about experiences of artists regarding their relations with receipients of their output and industries benefiting from intellectual monopolies.
Our special guest, prof. Eben Moglen, head of the Software Freedom Law Center, reminded us that we should say „no” to unjustice. Nowadays, when all human knowledge and its cultural creation can be available to anyone by means of technological development, there exist regulations disallowing it. According to prof. Moglen, it is high time these rules should be changed.
Cédric Manara, an academic teacher and a member of Google’s law departament, indicated that today in Europe many new web services cannot be launched due to copyright restrictions. This is why they are created outside Europe but they gain users within its borders.
Krzysztof Lewandowski, president of the Association of Authors ZAiKS said that legal regulations concerning free software cannot be applied to culture. He maintained that computer programmes are purchased due to their functionalities and cultural goods – because of their author.
Jarosław Lipszyc, president of the Modern Poland Foundation talked about real beneficiaries of the system of exclusive rights. He presented data published by the WTO which state that only two countries gain from selling rights to intangible goods: the United States and Japan. He underlined that the current copyright system is not beneficial to authors and that it is a must to strenghten the position of authors – 36 million authors.
The conference public was particularly interested by artists’ speeches: Paula Bialska (a member of the collective Paula & Karol) talked about the role of fans in promoting and supporting her artistic creation in the internet; Marysia Lewandowska spoke about the need of sharing and differences between the public and the private (also using the example of contemporary political movements such as Occupy); Nadia Plesner told a story of her struggle with a company owning a trademark Louis Vuitton which tried to censor her work.
A very interesing and strong point was a speech given by Konrad Gliściński, PhD candidate at the Jagiellonian University. Gliściński underlines that copyright has never served as a means to defend the interests of authors but always helped intermediaries in the circulation of works.
What was worth paying attention to were presentations devoted to the results of research (some of them at the initial stage) related with copyright reported by prof. Barbara Fatyga, Bodó Balázs, Michał Danielewicz or Michał Krawczyk.
A historical perspective was drawn by Rafał Wójcik who shed light on the problem of authorship in the Middle Ages.
The conference was attended by over 300 people.
The recordongs will be released shortly.