Too soon? The Ethics and Etiquette of Copyright


Copyright has always been a sticking point for everybody. From the days of Shakespeare right up to the modern world of mass-distributed digital and online multimedia, issues of ownership and sharing have dogged the creative arts and led to friction and intrigue. Naturally this has all only got more complicated with the advent of internet, social media and the mass-production and distribution of multimedia. But are we actually any further on?

The Ethics and Etiquette of Copyright

One big question the multimedia industries are having to consider anew is the extent to which they can, and should, police information sharing for infringements of copyright. The opening up of the internet to millions of private users has made it simply impossible to prevent the reproduction of media on a mass scale. Consequently this activity, at least on a modest scale, tends to raise eyebrows but is generally ignored. After all, it is hardly reasonable to think that millions upon millions of users could be simultaneously arrested and/or have court cases brought against them.

The question becomes rather more serious when private users start to reproduce and distribute media on a mass scale. This presents a financial risk to the copyright holders and, if not kept under some sort of control, has the potential to seriously undermine the industry. While Hollywood musicians and filmmakers can hardly complain about the odd DVD copy when their films have enjoyed success and brought in solid revenues, the small-scale studios who rarely cover costs simply cannot afford to lose revenue.

The quandary of what an acceptable level of copyright infringement should be really gets to the heart of the issue. This is because, far from being a legal issue, in pragmatic terms copyright really is as much about ethics and etiquette as it is about rules. The industries may be unable to force people not to copy DVD or CD media, but they could yet manage to persuade them. Unfortunately the culture of the industry is in disarray, with one set of standards for consumers, another for the industry and often hard feelings between the two groups. This, even if it were sustainable (which it isn’t) would be an inadequate state of affairs.

A different way to approach the issue might be to consider the question of timescale. Antiquated works of literature and art eventually lose their copyright and become ‘public’. For almost all of the Western World, the lifetime of a copyright before a work enters the public domain is seventy years after the death of the author; to copy DVD and CD media, the United Kingdom has a lifespan of fifty years while the United States sets it at ninety-five years. But considering the vast profits that are made by the work of, for example, The Beatles, is this soon enough?

In one sense these questions of copyright ethics are likely to simply idle on unresolved. In another sense, though, a resolution will necessarily be found through some international body or agreement – and ultimately, this will need to be based on the equilibrium between what producers and consumers will accept. A middle ground will sooner or later be found. The alternative is a continuous discord between the producers and consumers of media and that, whichever way one looks at it, is in no one’s best interest.

Martin Johnson is director of the UK’s leading DVD/Blu-ray/CD duplication company providing exceptional quality at the lowest UK prices. He offers next day delivery anywhere in the UK and will complete your job quickly with the greatest care. You can connect with him on Google+.

Digital Management Solutions


Digital content and data is everywhere, from our social media usage to business websites and online banking to name but a few areas. When you take a moment to reflect on it you quickly realize that digital content encompasses pretty much everything we do today. More crucially, it needs managing going forward, and this is where digital management solutions (DAM) are imperative for any business, organization or individual.

The digital landscape has no boundaries. It includes text, video, audio and image files. They are all digital assets. The multimedia solution comes in the form of Digital asset management, which is able to successfully manage large archives of documents, images and videos.

DAM systems continue to be developed, reflecting the enormous impact the digital world has on our everyday lives. They involve Digital Management Solutionsthe complex management of both the decisions and the tasks that involve the storage, cataloging, retrieval and distribution of the digital assets previously mentioned.

At present we use a number of different platforms to go online. A good DAM system will mean all digital files will be accessible on any device, while simultaneously being stored securely and quickly. This is a crucial point, as it’s estimated that communications and marketing staff spend up to 10% of their time on administration work involving file management. Some calculate that a good DAM system could result in a saving of up to 70% of that time. This points to a pretty good return on investment.

Types of DAM vary from businesses wanting to manage their brand in a marketing and sales context, to library asset management systems, with concentrate on both the storage and retrieval of large amounts of media assets.

In order to successfully find an adequate digital management solution it’s necessary for many to leave their current system and migrate to another. This is because some systems might not allow you to pull together unrelated files throughout an organisation into a centralized archive which chosen and approved personnel can access. Costs are reduced because effectively you have the tools in place for staff to work more efficiently.

This has a knock on effect on customer service, as it decreases the turnaround time and delivery of digital media your clients. Most systems are able to successfully integrate with your desktop, providing a network file server share compatible with popular tools like Windows and MacOS X. This means little disruption to business. DAM is also something that can be used to monetize assets, so you can sell your brand.

Achieving brand loyalty and market differentiation are cornerstones of any marketing strategy, and DAM can help to strengthen that by controlling and measuring the market. Whether you need an asset for marketing literature, a PowerPoint presentation, or a social media post, the asset can quickly be converted to the correct format without having to think about it.

Before opting for this kind of system it is vital to choose the right DAM for you, this involves some research, but the combination of time saving, revenue driving and monetizing qualities means it’s a important consideration of any business going forward.

For more specific information about digital assets management please visit the page


Martin Jonson is director of the UK’s Digital Downloading company providing exceptional quality at the lowest UK prices. He will complete your job quickly with the greatest care. You can connect with him on Google+.