Electronic Frontier Foundation celebrates 20 years with new animation from Nina Paley.

Happy 20th Birthday, Electronic Frontier Foundation! In celebration of 20 years of the EFF, Nina Paley created this short animation (sound by Greg Sextro):

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Nina Paley is artist-in-residence here at Question Copyright, and we’re including this video in the Minute Memes series she’s doing. Copyright + Internet = Surveillance. We think your computer should work for you. So does the EFF. But not every government agrees — around the world, the copyright monopoly lobby wants Internet service providers to monitor their customers, filtering content and kicking people who share culture off the Internet. They’re pushing for so-called “three strikes” laws that would require ISPs to cut off the Internet connection of anyone who shares illegally three times.

Who do you want your computer to work for? The entertainment industry, or you and your friends?

Happy birthday, EFF, and keep up the good work!

17 Comments on "Electronic Frontier Foundation celebrates 20 years with new animation from Nina Paley."

  1. Completely useless video which shows you are running out of ideas Nina.

    Take off the blinkers and get with the real world.

  2. Are you kidding?  I loved it.  And “three-strikes” laws are the real world, until we do something about it.

  3. I liked this.  It makes the point very clear.  To support something that is outdated like Copyright, one has to basically watch your computer and do internet survelliance.  I think the film actually makes the point quite clear.


    Elton J. Robb

  4. It is not just the Copyright monopoly that wants Internet service providers to monitor their customers. There are far worse ‘crimes’ committed on the Internet, and it is thanks to the ‘Surveillance’ of customers that many of these crimes have been solved or even thwarted before the crimes were actually committed. The Copyright monopoly pressure for the Internet service providers represents nothing more than enforcing a store security guard in the real world.

    As a prime example, if you had any idea of how many terrorist activities had been stopped, or how many terrorists had been brought to justice by ‘Internet Surveillance’ you would not even consider condoning the message in this video.

  5. As a prime example, if you had any idea of how many terrorist activities had been stopped, or how many terrorists had been brought to justice by ‘Internet Surveillance’ you would not even consider condoning the message in this video.

    “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

    — Benjamin Franklin

  6. How very appropriate to include a quote from the great man Benjamin Franklin.

    A man who amassed wealth from printing and publishing, a man who used that wealth to start the first subscription Library, a man who used his wealth and influence to eventually become one of the founding fathers, and all possible because of that initial wealth from printing and publishing.

    Luckily for Benjamin Franklin (also America), Copyright was in place to ensure his success in the printing and publishing business.

  7. What license (if any) is the video available under?

    Most excellent short!!!

  8. Lonnie E. Holder, by any chance?


    You attack the use of the Benjamin Franklin quote with a genetic fallacy and compound it by forgetting a key quote from another founding father, Thomas Jefferson:

    If nature has made any one thing less susceptible than all others of exclusive property, it is the action of the thinking power called an idea, which an individual may exclusively possess as long as he keeps it to himself; but the moment it is divulged, it forces itself into the possession of every one, and the receiver cannot dispossess himself of it. Its peculiar character, too, is that no one possesses the less, because every other possesses the whole of it. He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me.

    That ideas should freely spread from one to another over the globe, for the moral and mutual instruction of man, and improvement of his condition, seems to have been peculiarly and benevolently designed by nature, when she made them, like fire, expansible over all space, without lessening their density in any point, and like the air in which we breathe, move, and have our physical being, incapable of confinement or exclusive appropriation. Inventions then cannot, in nature, be a subject of property.

  9. How the hell do you facebook this thing? I was able to find it at http://www.archive.org as .ogv and .flv video. None of the pages there or the .flv links are recognized by Facebook as being video, though, nor can you paste a big object tag in your status and have it work.

    I also can’t find any copy at Youtube. It’s easy to facebook anything Youtube hosts that has embedding enabled.

  10. Well that is a very scary movie that is too close to reality…

    I think the movie is great and are really pointing out problems that we have in London, UK and everywhere else in Europe etc.

  11. The solution to that is simple: evidentiary rules.  That is, let data acquired by surveillance be used for terrorism trials, but not for copyright enforcement.

    I’m not saying there aren’t still civil liberties concerns with that.  But if you’re claiming that overzealous copyright policing is a necessary outgrowth of anti-terrorism efforts, that’s just not true.  Evidentiary rules are the typical solution in cases like this.  It’s similar to how hospitals cannot be subpoenaed for patient information in order to enforce non-security-related immigration policy — we realized there was an overriding concern in not discouraging people from seeking medical care when they really need it (especially given that some diseases are communicable!) and we wisely chose not to let immigration enforcement trump this more important concern.

    We could do the same thing with culture.  If terrorism is the issue, then fine, have a debate about what surveillance is necessary to prevent terrorism.  But it has nothing to do with enforcing copyright restrictions, and the way to keep the two separate is to not let anti-terrorism evidence be used for copyright enforcement.