DAILY NEWS: Debating Napster and Indies; Winstar Deal
by Eugene Hernandez/indieWIRE
>> Considering the Impact on Indies As Napster Debate Continues
(indieWIRE/ 8.1.00) -- While Metallica has led the music industry in its high-profile mission to stop the Napster website, bands like Radiohead have spoken out against the campaign, urging that the recording industry embrace digital
opportunities. The debate recently heated up as the popular music
trading site was ordered to shutdown and then given a brief reprieve
while the courts consider an appeal. For the indie film community -- and
independent artists of every stripe -- the battle over online music hits
close to home as people consider the impact that sites like Napster can
have on getting their work out there, with our without their permission.
Today, indieWIRE gives our readers a chance to consider and discuss the
impact of Napster with a letter from Rising Tide Studios' Jason Calacanis
(reprinted from a Silicon Alley Reporter editorial) and a response from
Brian Clark of GMD Studios and indieWIRE.
"If the music industry's goal is indeed to stop piracy, there is a very
simple solution: provide music digitally over the Net at a reasonable
rate," commented Calacanis. Continuing he added, "Napster is simply the
inevitable evolution of our existing habits and technology."
Calling Calacanis' comments "short-sighted," Clark offered, "The key
concern is forcing business models upon the creators of intellectual
property." Continuing, Clark later added, "It's a hard position to be
in as an independent, but Napster was standing on weak ground all along
by making decisions for their artists rather than seeking their
permission." [Eugene Hernandez]
READ THE COMPLETE LETTERS @ indieWIRE.com:
>> BRIEFLY: Winstar Acquires Cannes Winner "Yi Yi"
Winstar has announced that it acquired the North American rights to
Edward Yang's Cannes Film Festival award winner, "Yi Yi." The film won the Best Director award at this year's festival. The movie will
open in October, according to Winstar, after film festival screenings.
"We were immediately struck by the subtle power of 'Yi Yi' and we
believe this film has both the emotional and dramatic impact that
will appeal to American audiences," commented Winstar Sr. VP Krysanne
Katsoolis in a prepared statement. "Winstar's acquisition of 'Yi Yi'
represents the company's continuing commitment to bringing unique
foreign films of substance and quality to the U.S."