Copyright and Musicians at the Digital Margins

Phillips, Tom and Street, John (2015) Copyright and Musicians at the Digital Margins. Media, Culture & Society, 37 (3). pp. 342-358. ISSN 0163-4437

[img] Microsoft Word (Copyright and Musicians at the Digital Margins (Final 031214)) - Accepted Version
Download (112kB)


While there is research into consumer attitudes to copyright and downloading, and the music industry has made clear its own views in evidence to the Hargreaves Review and other forums, relatively little is known about musicians’ attitudes to copyright. This article reports on those musicians who are negotiating the new terrain created by digitization and its accompanying business models. Are their attitudes to copyright simply determined by their financial self-interest and a sense of ownership of their music, or do they see copyright as a restriction of their creative freedom? Using the results of a questionnaire and semi-structured interviews with UK musicians, we show how a variety of factors – including generic conventions, knowledge and experience, and wider social values – contribute to attitudes to copyright. Although knowledge of, and interest in, copyright can be driven by financial self-interest, other considerations are in play. These findings have, as we explain, implications both for copyright policy and for an understanding of creative practice in a digital economy. If the assumption is that copyright is designed to serve the interests and facilitate the creativity of musicians, this view is not always shared by the intended beneficiaries.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: copyright,cultural labour,digitization,musicians,piracy,sampling
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Politics, Philosophy, Language and Communication Studies
University of East Anglia > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Research Groups > Political, Social and International Studies
Faculty of Arts and Humanities
University of East Anglia > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Research Groups > Film, Television and Media
Depositing User: Pure Connector
Date Deposited: 09 Feb 2015 10:50
Last Modified: 06 May 2022 01:37
DOI: 10.1177/0163443714567018

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item