Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Total Recut

Total Recut is a website focusing on video remixes, with many embedded YouTube videos it offers as good examples of various forms. The music video category is, to my eye, woefully populated, given the incredible wealth of fanvids out there. There's a contest for creating a What is Remix Culture? video running now; the deadline has been extended. Unfortunately, the guidelines discourage using more than a short music clip, even though that's not all that fair use will allow under appropriate circumstances. But the site is worth exploring.

I find the disclaimer particularly interesting:
None of the audio/visual content is hosted on this site. All media is embedded from other sites such as Google Video, YouTube, DailyMotion etc. Therefore; this site has no control over the copyright issues of the streaming media.
I'm all about fair use, and I think that a good-faith belief in the fair use status of the works should excuse any contributory infringement claim. But ultimately, the risk-reducing strategy of embedding YouTube videos puts the burden on YouTube and the other commercial sites of defending fair use rights. And, as non-evil as Google may be, its interests are not the same as those of its users. We need noncommercial sites to host remix videos, and we will need them more as filtering reaches more and more of YouTube and the like.

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