Dialogue, never arrogance

hello everybody,
first of all, many thanks for everything you’ve done over the last few days .
there were so many visits to our site, so very many that, as the graphic shows, they went through the roof of the page :) and collapsed 2 servers. over 110,000 visits in 24 hours.

castellano: diálogo siempre, prepotencia nunca

català: diàleg sempre, prepotència mai

what this shows yet again is that civil society is alert and ready to defend itself: it is not prepared to allow arrogance to jeopardise its future in the digital age.

meanwhile, as we’ve been showing over the years, we repeat that we are open to enter into dialogue with absolutely any agent who is willing to sit down with all the parties (absolutely all the parties) for a serious discussion on how to construct a digital age that benefits everybody, artists, citizens, entrepreneurs…

in our two and a half years of life, we have always invited all active agents to all the citizen activities we have been involved in. this includes the sgae, the spanish minster of culture sinde, all the royalty collection societies, all the political parties, all the ministries, everybody.

the politics of confrontation, of refusing dialogue and rejecting the evidence, can never benefit society.

royalty collection societies must be at the service of artists and society in general, because they exist in order to protect an extremely valuable asset: culture.

it is obvious that royalty collection societies need to be be reformed – to enable simple things like allowing their members to use free licences so they can benefit from internet diffusion – and become more transparent, fairer and in compliance with the law when it comes to sharing out of profits.

we are not the only ones saying this, it is also being said by important institutions such as national competition commission , among many others.

we systematise and share knowledge, and help to generate practical proposals that can keep the process moving forward. one example of this was providing the conditions that made it possible to draft the charter for innovation, creativity and access to knowledge , a tool that has been adopted by governments, political parties and institutions, including several european union committees and other organisations around the world. the section of the charter on royalty collection entities does not contain attacks, or blinkered attitudes, or degrading references, only proposals for reforms that would benefit their members. and we sent it to the sgae by email, not official fax ;)

if the sgae truly wants to tackle problems and manages to come up with another form of communication, other than treating people like dirt or sending official faxes setting out demands to be carried out within seven days, they will always find us open to talking about a solution to the problems of all parties: the sgae needs help to change its way of operating and to improve its image, civil society and artists need democratic royalty collection organisations that have adapted to the digital age, and we need to understand how trademarks fit together with culture.

but if the sgae prefers to continue to use arrogance – unilateral impositions – as its only form of expression, we will also be ready for this.

as for the name exgae, a lot of things could be said about it, but nobody can deny that it’s a great name :-) and where will it all end, if the institutions that are supposed to promote culture and creativity don’t have a sense of humour or the ability to listen to what is on the horizon?

perhaps the dreams of the sgae are full of people crushed by millions of lawsuits that the sgae itself can pay with spare change without batting an eyelid. our dreams aren’t.

i mean, what can we say, other things turn us on. so, as the artists that we are, we aren’t losing a minute before getting back to preparing the 3rd year of the oxcars, the greatest free culture event of all time, which is just around the corner (oh! we’re getting nervous!!!!) and the forum for access to culture and knowledge, which, in its 2nd year, will set up a debate between all the agents who are currently working on the “sustainability of the digital age for citizens and artists” (from pirate bay to the cultural industries). naturally, like every year, the sgae (and all the other agents involved in spain, from royalty collection and other cultural organisations, to ministers and political parties, as well as civil society, obviously) are invited to participate. the sgae doesn’t usually reply, or turn up. actually, it does turn up: it always infiltrates some of its “inspectors” among the audience (there were five last year). but who knows, perhaps this year they will answer, there’s always a first time.

let’s get to it!

hugs to all of you, and see you in a few days,

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