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The Work of Remix in the Age of Digital Reproduction - Essay Example

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Author : estark

Summary

This essay describes and compares American and Australian media policy in regards to musical remix culture with respect to the copyright issues. Walter Benjamin, an eminent German critic, argues that a work of art loses its originality and authenticity through the mechanical reproduction of art…

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The Work of Remix in the Age of Digital Reproduction

This "The Work of Remix in the Age of Digital Reproduction" contemporary American and Australian Law on musical creativity. Universal Music Australia Pty Ltd v Miyamoto is one of the rare cases in Australia with regard to the digital sampling. A number of recording companies sued five DJs for copyright infingement due to their remix CD. DJs defended themselves by stating that they did the CD in order to satisfy consumer demands. Since the DJs took entire songs to make a remix CD, the Court did not take “substantial part” into consideration and the judge found five DJs guilty for the infringement of copyright law. This case cannot be considered as a precedent for smaller amounts of digital sampling, since the entire songs were taken. American and US courts have been allowing very small portions of digital sampling for years, but a recent decision in Bridgeport Music Inc v Dimension Films Inc span the wheels of justice into the opposite direction. In Bridgeport case, two seconds of a rap song was copied for the movie called “I Got the Hook up” and repeated five times for the duration of seven seconds each. Although a District Court and Middle District Court held that the amount taken was de minimis, thus, it cannot be considered copyright infringement; the Court of Appeals overruled this decision by declaring “even where a small part of a sound recording is sampled, the part taken is something of value”. The decision clearly blocks further samplings and it makes it impossible for creative artists to experiment with sample music without a licence. ...
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