Monday, January 05, 2009

Salvation in a Newsletter

In the spirit of full disclosure I need to clarify that following is an extract of material from / Massive Black's website posted here by one our CCG members. - J.Gilpin, CCG Coordinator.
In an effort to give back and to begin to take on bigger challenges as a community, ConceptArt.Org has been quietly working to solve the pending Orphan Bill (see for more information on what we are up against and what we desperately created a solution for).

The new viewer is here:

This summer we helped send thousands of emails to the members of the US House and Senate to stop this bill. What did we get in return? Canned email form letters thanking us for sharing our views. The bill drafts went the House and Senate anyway. The artists, professionals, and creative organizations who were trying to protect artist rights were ignored by the US government completely. Realizing that even a hundred thousand signatures wont stop the copyright bill, at least that is how it looks from here, I got to thinking what we have to do to solve the problems right here at home.

Artists having to pay to be in searchable registries is potential problem number one. I believe this will be left to the private companies based on my research into who is supporting this horrible bill and what businesses are opening preparing for it. I went in and checked the domain registry to search to see if people were buying the domains (,, etc..etc...) and every one I searched was gone. This was the red flag that began the real push to solve this assault on artist rights. The corporate sharks are already preparing to feed it seems.

Since the business world reads the laws and tries to capitalize on the loopholes, it is obvious to me that this would happen. Money is already flowing that direction. My guess is the art registries will launch as soon as the law passes or shortly thereafter, unless some miracle happens. Smart buggers but not smart enough. Imagine the photographers who take five hundred images a day or more...ugh. Artists cannot pay for this least those I know who produce quantities of work...and none should have to.

Anyway, that problem is now solved in low tech fashion here: ConceptArt.Org has created a search system for locating art and artists, essentially cutting off the paid registry industry before they can even get off the ground. Click the images and find the original thread. Click the artist name and contact them directly. This also keeps these readying companies from acting as middlemen, between the searcher and the artist who they wish to hire. There is no room for that in our business.

I designed and we rebuilt all our databases and set up servers to handle up to 200 terabytes of secure storage. This service is entirely free and is a gift to the community from ConceptArt.Org. It is also nice as you can now browse through the images on the site very quickly. What used to take a week to view, now takes hours. Released in this viewer are five hundred thousand images. More will be added shortly. When you post on the forums your images go in the copyright search registry we created. It is all automated for you. Just keep doing as you do and at least your work can be found. The watermark will be site wide, and contains the appropriate information.

You can search best of (five star threads) for fun...or from each forum if you click the "forums images" text tab...there are a ton of ways to look for stuff. key wording is in progress. That is the final piece of the basic search tool.

The idea is to simply kick the entire start up registry industry in the nuts before it can even learn to stand up by taking action ourselves.

Anyway...just some vision for where this heads is deeper than this but it should at least help some, i hope. I spoke at length with Brad Holland and others involved in putting up the fight for artists rights and we have solved two of the biggest issues.

1. That artists could have to pay for their works to be registered and protected in the US, and there is evidence supporting this.
2. That these companies would then act as middle men between prospective clients searching the databases by requiring the company or person searching to pay them for your information.

Obviously, these problems must not happen.

There are other problems being solved, as related to this bill and this is just a first step in the best defense is a good offense mentality when it comes to artist rights. If we sit around and wait for someone to provide these solutions it is going to cost us dearly. Instead, we are taking action.

Happy New Year too!

Jason Manley
Founding Director

1 comment:

  1. I am still in opposition to any kind of forced registration or weakening of the legal protection that current copyright law provides creators. The database by Massive Black should only be considered an option for those that want to be "client - friendly" (easy to find and contact for those that would like to use the image) and not a requirement to have their work protected from copyright infringement.