Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

Japanese Society for Rights of Authors, Composers and Publishers (JASRAC) just won a case against the karaoke bars and is now going after clubs.

asahi.com
CHANGING ITS TUNE: It's closing time

"I thought it was a new kind of fraud," said Naoki Kasugai, who runs Daytrip, a nightclub that offers live music in Nagoya. He received a letter from JASRAC in summer 2003 along with an invoice for a monthly charge of 28,350 yen in copyright fees, covering the entire time his bar has been open since 1997. It totaled a whopping 2.32 million yen.

Kasugai was shocked and puzzled. He had never heard from JASRAC before. He figured someone was trying to con him.

But after receiving a second invoice from JASRAC, he called to find out what was going on.

A JASRAC official came by in person to explain: "The bands you hire have likely played covers of songs by other composers. We want you to pay the copyright fees on those songs."

"How many cover songs does this account for?" asked Kasugai.

"We don't know how many copyrighted songs were played here," the official replied. "So we are not charging for each of them. Instead, we are charging on a monthly basis."

[...]

But JASRAC is ready to rock and roll, even resorting to court battles.

"Lawsuits in themselves are an effective way to spread our message," a JASRAC official says.

Lawsuits as a communication form seems like a common practice in this industry these days...

I'm sorry I'm a bit late in picking this up, but blogger and journalist Kevin Sites is all over the news for the video he took of a US Marine shooting what appeared to be an unarmed prisoner in Falluja. There is a post on his blog that you must read about his position and the circumstances around his taking and releasing the video. There is article on the front page of today's IHT about this as well, but I can't seem to find it online.

via Xeni @ Boing Boing

I just watched this the video that Jon Husband points to in comments on this blog of David Weinberger at the Library of Congress.

For an interesting take on this subject, involving a sizeable audience of (I'm assuming) senior librarian types at the USA Library of Congress, watch David Weinberger trace knowledge from Plato and Aristotle through Descartes to the clash between official objectivity and personal subjectivity, moving deftly to the power and believability of human voice on ... of all things ... blogs (especially those with comments capability, which I think must be well in the majority ;-)
More formats on David's blog. Classic Weinberger. Excellent stuff. Even the bonus seeing Derrick de Kerkhove make the introduction. ;-)

Echo123
I don't know if this already old news but have you ever called echo123 on Skype? (It's on their support page.) It's a test account that talks to you and plays back a message you record. The woman on the Echo Test Service has a cool Estonian accent. So for all of you lonely Estonian guys out there... I THINK her name is Heidi, but I'm checking now.

UPDATE: Her name is Kerli.

Funny anti-blog anti-Wikipedia article by a librarian Greg Hill who manages to mangle the spelling of Dan Gillmor and Dave Barry's name while trying to argue that "librarians abhor using reference sources that don't have established credibility editorial rigor..." ;-)

I don't usually like to link to stupid articles, but this one's too ironic to just ignore.

via Dan Gillmor

Dan Gillmor
UPDATE: Trudy Schuett posted an extraordinary exchange of e-mails with the Alaska librarian, who has the nerve to say he knows of "no typos or mis-statements in that column, unless they are those of the sources I cite, and every point in my column stemmed from multiple sources. As a rule, there's not enough space in a 700-word column to list multiple sources, but I can readily produce them."

No, he can't. He can't possibly produce a citation that explains misspelling my name and Dave Barry's. He might alibi getting the name of my book wrong, because he quotes an early working title that I used in blog postings here. But even there, a tiny amount of due diligence would have produced the correct title.

I worship librarians as a rule, but I'm going to make an exception in this case.

Truely unbelievable.