Everything is a Remix of Existing Creations

Our day and age is gradually growing out of this craze of ownership, original work and intellectual property. It grows immensely more difficult to determine an original work of art from a remix as technology advances, and “professionally” produced music and art can be created from a personal computer at home. Remix is the process of taking something old or overlooked, and using it to be recreated and turned into something new and exciting.

The documentary RIP! A Remix Manifesto shows that this reuse of old materials or products focuses on the creativity used to remake these materials and products, not the actual products or materials that are actually being remade. Every culture in every society is building on the past, that’s what culture does.

Innovation occurs in all means throughout technology, medicine, clothing or other practices. Improvement is what humans have eternally been taught to do by the natural process and theory of evolution. The successful company known as Walt Disney that has made billions, started based on the natural instinct of improvement from the theory of evolution. Walt Disney took old themes and stories created in the public domain, improved them and recreated them for a new contemporary audience.

Everything is a Remix is a documentary that takes a look at different bands such as Led Zepplin that have built some of their songs off the chords and melodies of some other musical artists. Many other artists went on to then recreate, reuse and remix Led Zepplin’s melodies as well for their own songs. Therefore this just goes to show this trend of remixing products of the past into something new is prevalent, and it is going to continue to grow.

Music is not the only form of this, This documentary discusses “genre” movies, which then break in to sub genres based on films being built on other films from the past. This idea reiterates the point made from the Remix Manifesto documentary in which every culture naturally is building on the past. One film that I also discussed in my last blog in relation to the concept of fandoms is an example of this. Star Wars is a perfect example of these films being built upon scenes and concepts of other films.

“Creation requires influence, everything we make is a remix of existing creations, our lives, and the lives of others.”

This quote from the documentary shows that remix is occurring far more often than we think, each and everyday. Although remix is far more popular and democratic than intellectual property and ownership many corporations and companies are trying to enforce stricter punishments for using their work. These traditional companies from the past are trying entirely to control the future.

Although the idea of a language such as remix sounds like such a tremendous idea, the ownership that the private companies have over patents restrict this creative process from happening entirely. The people that want to prevent the idea of remix from spreading are people that are in favor of copyright. Due to this enforcement of copyright the future is becoming less free.

Copyright is being manipulated for profit of the private corporations at the expense of everyone else in the public. The freedom of the copy left also known as public is significantly decreasing as the ownership of copyright among the powerful people is growing. In order to be able to build free societies you must limit the control of the past.

The more power given to already powerful private copyright holder corporations, the more opportunities taken away from the public copy left people. With patents increasing all over the place it is not just the music and creativity that are being put in jeopardy. Powerful patents and copyright are threatening culture’s future as a whole. With patents in the medical field a cure for cancer could have already been developed and no one in the public would know or be able to have access to it to save peoples lives. Culture is threatened not only medically but economically as well.

“Nobody starts out original, we need copying to build a foundation of knowledge.”

Copying is how we are taught to learn and think as a society. In order to be successful you have to get a degree, to get a degree you have to sit in a classroom; everyone takes the same notes, studies the same concepts as well as takes the same exams. Institutions reinforce this, therefore these same institutions shouldn’t enforce copyright because copying, remixing and remaking, all come naturally to human beings, but are corporations really willing to let it go?

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