Creativity, creation, communities of interest, and culture itself are at the heart of what social media is equipped to enable. We view this area as a system of technologies, but even further down the stack, so to speak, is the simple realization that we have rediscovered our inherent right to be creative and to participate in the creative experience.
Somewhere in the early 1900s in America, creative culture shifted from being strongly participatory (people got together to sing songs, reading off their most recent subscription of sheet music) to being a consumer experience (people gathered around the radio to hear bands perform). This gave rise to new opportunities for more people to hear better performers, but it also shifted our attention away from the two-way experience of people creating their own culture (at least in part).
Larry Lessig delivered an important talk about creativity and the law at the March 2007 TED Talks event. He highlighted how the advent of broadcasting technology led to the creation of ASCAP, which sold music licenses to radio networks. Between 1931 and 1938, ASCAP raised licensing fees to broadcasters 448 percent. These concepts, these constructs, were set in place more than 70 years ago, and in that time, legal protection and safeguarding of the business of creativity has ratcheted up again and again, until copyright in America is a broken experience, to say the least.
Lessig goes ...