Is it worth it?

January 30, 2008

penny
Next week i’m talking at a seminar discussing ‘the value of creativity’:

Economies of Value: A Seminar interrogating the roles, levels and definitions of value in media arts practice and partnerships.

SPACE, 129-131 Mare Street, Hackney, London E8 3RH

Tuesday 5 February
2008 10.30 am – 5 pm

Distributed South invites you to join us in a seminar which will examine issues of value and its measurement, paying particular reference to Media Arts sector and partnership working. We will focus on resource exchange and the value of research conducted by artists and organisations, through the development of work, residencies and placements.

Contributions from key economists in the field of cultural and creative management will enable us to look at systems that are being modelled to measure value in networks and groups. Alongside these systems, projects designed to focus on measuring value and exchange through social networking and information/resource exchange will demonstrate new methods of measurement

Economies of Value will be of interest to those working in the media, media arts, ICT and business people looking at new models of working.Like all events related to Distributed South it aims to move and inform policy in the media arts sector to drive forward new approaches to working and developing the field.

Some years ago we put the entire Bourbonese Qualk back catalogue online for anyone to download for free and do what they like with it. This wasn’t a Radiohead style marketing exercise but a statement of value – something is worth much more if it is free. Music has always been ‘free’ until it became fixed as a commodity i.e. when the gramophone was invented which triggered the notion of ownership, control and IP. Releasing records for us wasn’t a commercial exercise but a way of distributing our ideas and we’re sold as cheaply as possible (Crass’s ‘steal this record’ analogue equivalent of mp3 downloads).
Someone sent me a link to a discussion about the Radiohead campaign that mentioned our ‘give-away’ (making me feel worthy and smug):
“…as a follow-up example, bourbonese qualk put their entire catalog online for free a while back. i was ecstatic, since their stuff was very hard to find anyway. i DL’d all of it, and got hold of them to see what i could do in return. they asked for a donation to Médecins Sans Frontières rather than any payment to them. a few minutes later, MSF had $50 from me.”
Help yourself from here: http://www.bourbonesequalk.net/
…or all the albums from this single torrent file: http://www.mininova.org/get/763559