Friday, November 6, 2015

Can Remixes Become The Original?

You don't need to look far in contemporary media to find examples of remixing. They can range all the way from someone taking a song and reimagining it, to someone chopping up a video and rearranging it to create something totally different, often hilarious. And although remixes are created off of the work of other people, I think the remixes themselves can have their own form of ownership.

A good example of this is the concept of music that uses samples from other songs. It happens a lot in EDM, but you'll often hear short soundbytes of other songs mixed in, and often times manipulated, to the song being played. I argue that it is the artistic style of the musician that drives them to incorporate a soundbyte in a certain fashion, to then also convey a different message to the audience listening to the song.

If someone writes a song using samples, is it their song? Or is it a collaborative ownership between every artist who's samples were used? Did those samples use samples? Especially in this age, so much of the music content has been reused and recycled from previous artists, that claiming that one piece of music is original is almost impossible. The big difference from then and now is the use of copyright laws to strike down users who infringe on those laws.

The use of these copyright laws, while mostly good, can badly affect both the artist and the listener, by limiting what they are able to write and use. If a particular riff sounds too similar to another riff, a lawsuit can form.

Even for non-musicians, particularly youtubers, it can be incredibly difficult to find music to use in monetized videos because so much music is blocked behind a copyright wall. If you use more than 30 seconds of a song, it's considered infringement, and your entire channel could be deleted, which, if that is your source of income, could be detrimental to your financial security. The fact is, a youtuber using a musician's song in a video will likely not affect the artist negatively, but the copyright law can absolutely destroy someone's career on the internet.

This all comes back to the question on who actually owns a remix? You could argue that an "original" song is actually a remixed version of another song, to some degree. You could argue that said song pulls influence from a previous artist.

In my opinion, it's no longer about who actually came up with the original idea, it's about who gets the copyright first.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

“Like” vs. “Favorite”: Why The Public’s Response to a Change in Decorum Matters

In the same way that it is entirely possible to ruin an entire presidential campaign with a single grunt, it also appears that it is entirely possible for a social media site to rip apart the hearts of millions of users with a single update. Twitter's most recent change to their website that has over 300 million users is the transition from "favorites" and "stars" of tweets and their replacement with "likes" and "hearts".


The Twitterverse is shocked. There is outrage, there is frustration, there is madness ensuing. People are going wild, for the sake of a seemingly minute aesthetic revision. However, there is a lot more there than expected, and a whole lot of it has to do with the violation of the expectations developed out of the site’s decorum. While normally reserved for a rhetor presenting for a live audience, decorum is established by the creators of the site based on their aesthetic and functional choices for its design. Decorum is defined as an agreeable ethos matching the audience’s expectations for a leader’s tone, appearance, or manners; in the new age of technology and social media, it can be applied to the expectations of the audience of users for the way that the site works, how it looks, and what they can do on it. This piece of Twitter is decorous because it persuades individuals to make use of it in specific lights and not others.

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Although there may not be a specific rhetor in the case of the Twitter “like”, its presentation is still significant, and this is where the problem has arisen on Twitter. The redefinition of one of the major tools--the “favorite”--that has been in existence since its 2006 launch date is currently violating the decorum of the site itself, and the way that the audience is behaving makes this picture perfect.

The intent of those majorly responsible for the change is clear, and even can arguably understandable: as Akarshan Kumar, a manager in the production of the site, notes, "We want to make Twitter easier and more rewarding to use, and we know that at times the star could be confusing, especially to newcomers... You might like a lot of things, but not everything can be your favorite... The heart is...  a universal symbol that resonates across languages, cultures, and time zones." However, one of the understandings of decorum and utilizing it is that it does not always match perfectly with the intent of the rhetor, but rather is dependent on the context and cues of the audience or, in this case, users. The expectation placed upon the “Favorite” function, and Twitter itself, is to allow users to denote interest in certain Tweets without necessarily sharing them with their own followers. According to user and writer Carly Newton, the perceived meaning of the button has changed: “The newest mode of engagement on Twitter is a bit less versatile, a bit less powerful, a bit more compressed.” The connotation of a “like” is very different from that of a “favorite”-- many users who utilize the star to bookmark serious articles and posts may now feel uncomfortable in thinking of “liking” them.

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Finally, users have noted the introduction of the idea of remix in the new update, and aren’t exactly pleased with it. Other social media sites, like Facebook and Instagram, have made use of the “like” since their early days, without a nod to its significance. While there are merits to utilizing remix in many contexts, to borrowing ideas and transforming them to have greater significance and power, the tweeting world does not seem to be accepting the change as having congruity, a necessary aspect of the art. The violation of the expectations out of the normal decorum of the site, and the influence of the language of the Internet, is limiting the capacity for success of the new “like” feature. The future is a mystery, and users will likely begin to become more comfortable with the change, out of obligation: if they want to continue tweeting the way they have known for so long, they must necessarily accept it. However, the present stage of explosive reactions is a clear depiction of the influence of decorum on the acceptance of a message by an audience. Now it’s up to the loyal users who are willing to help Twitter in their slight--but significant--redefinition of what they are.

Bowerman, Mary. "Twitter Makes 'heart' Icon the New 'like' Button." USA Today. 3 Nov. 2015. Web. 1 Nov. 2015.
Newton, Casey. "Twitter Officially Kills off Favorites and Replaces Them with Likes." The Verge. 3 Nov. 2015. Web. 1 Nov. 2015.
Howard, Alexander. "Why Twitter's New 'Like' Button Is A Big Deal." The Huffington Post 3 Nov. 2015, HuffPost Tech sec. Web. 1 Nov. 2015.

Anonymity in social media

                                              How Does Anonymity Effect Social Media?

               Recently, Twitter gave its users the ability to post polls through tweets, the results of which, are completely anonymous. This leaves us asking, does the anonymous nature of this polling system lead to different or even skewed results? Anonymity can have several positive and negative effects to polling. For example, voters can take solace in the fact that their responses will not be known, thus they are more inclined to be honest. The most glaring negative effect, though, is the anonymity gives voters, or anyone on social media, the sense that they can say anything, no matter how harmful it may be.
              There is a name for the side effects of anonymity over social media, its called The Online Disinhibition Effect, which is a loosening, or abandonment, of normal social restrictions or inhibitions that would have been present in normal face to face interaction. This is what gives anonymous users all of their power, they are not in any way limited by normal social constructs. The problem with this anonymity, is the lack of any meaningful consequences. The worst thing that can happen to an cyberbully is to have their account shut down, and who's to say they can't just make another one after? There are always positives though. Countless examples of social media users taking advantage of anonymity to do good can be found. For example, although it is a relatively small scenario, a student at my old high school started a completely anonymous compliments page in which he/she would post compliments, which were sent through an anonymous question site. These instances are few and far between though, as most anonymous interactions over social media have the tendency to be hurtful, or even dangerous. School lockdowns or evacuations are all just a few short sentences of threatening statements away.
               Although there are instances of anonymity being used in a positive way on social media, there are far too many negative examples to make the argument that it is a positive aspect in social media. Take the app Yik Yak for example, it is, in essence, a completely anonymous Twitter. It is extremely popular on college campuses and is usually used in a positive, or at least non-harmful way. But there are too many examples of the app  being misused in several ways. Take, for example the racist remarks, laid out in this article about the misuse of the app at American university.
There are far too many examples, just like this one, that make social media users despondent to the idea of anonymity.         

The Weekend Mindset

In class when we were learning about ethos, I became very interested when we were introduced to the Greek term phantasiai. The term refers to the mental pictures we use in our head. Though we may realize they are false, we still accept them and let them guide our judgement. This accounts for the body feeling we get before we think about the situation at hand, and provides an example of a pure experience of pathos.

This article helped me understand it a little bit better:

I could not help but think of the excited feeling everyone gets on the weekend. Every Monday, everyone is forced to get up early for work. On Mondays, a lot of people carry an almost negative attitude due to the fact that they have a whole week ahead of them until they reach another weekend to do as they please. On Wednesdays, the average person gets over what has become known as the "hump day" , thanks in part to the talking camels from the commercials. For a lot of people, plans are being formed for the weekend which helps them find the motivation to work for two more days. On Thursdays, some people's excitement for the weekend is so overpowering that it has been nicknamed "Thirsty Thursday". Though many of these people tend to be younger adults that decide to add a night to their weekend, Thursday nights serve as a celebration of a final day until the weekend. After a final day of work, where most people seem to be in rather pleasant moods, the general public reaches the weekend.

Think about the feeling you get once you have completed your final responsibilities on a Friday afternoon? What about the feeling you get when you wake up on Saturday morning? I definitely wake up on Saturdays and Sundays much more refreshed than any other day of the week. I feel like on the weekend everyone is just generally happier since they have time to do the things they love. This creates the weekend mindset that everyone has developed from creating memories doing the things that they love.

Everything I Know is a Remix

This week remix was one of our main topics.  It made me think of all the remixes I've read and watched.  And it surprised me that everything I thought of was made because of a previous invention, idea, book, or movie.  The idea stuck with me even when I didn't necessarily want it too.  I was watching my favorite movie the other night, The Great Gatsby.  And then I thought about the previous Great Gatsby movie from 1974 and The Great Gatsby book from 1925. It was never ending!  Then I went on to superhero movies.  The Spiderman movies, I don't even know how many there are.  Same with Batman, Hulk, Iron Man, and countless others.  They all have more than one movie or tv show and comic books about each of them.  Even listening to the radio or Pandora I noticed remixes in all their glory.  Elvis Presley for one didn't write any of his songs, except for co-writing "Love Me Tender".  We also heard about Led Zeppelin and their songs being remixes.
When we first talked about remixing and the whole process, I have to admit, I didn't like the idea of nothing being original.  I didn't like that everything I could think of was just a remix of something else.  But the more I think about it now, I am most certainly OK with remixes.  As I said, the newest Great Gatsby is my favorite movie and it wouldn't have been made had if the 70's version hadn't been created and the 70's version wouldn't be there if the book wasn't written.  I love superhero movies and they get better and better with every new addition but they would have nothing to build off of if it weren't for the previous superhero movies.  Elvis Presley was all I listened to as a kid and every song he sang (besides the one) was not created by him, just remixed.  Led Zeppelin, being my favorite band, is just a big remix group.  All of my favorite things are remixes of older things.  Not only does this make me appreciate and accept remixing but it has made me go out and trace the 'original' of my favorite movies and songs.

Remixing is Life

             "Remix means to create a new version of, by recombining and re-editing the elements of the original and often adding
material to it." This is the literal definition of "remix" from the dictionary. "Remix" also means to "mix something new." When we think of remix we think of songs. Songs are remixed all the time. If you go onto YouTube you can find just about any song remixed by someone else. Depending on how popular the song is, there are usually multiple remixes of that song. A remixed song would be considered an acoustic version, a spoof of the song, or that song mixed with different voices and melodies. For example, the song "Lights" by Ellie Goulding is a fairly popular song. Here is the original song:

            Now that you've heard the original, here is a remix (keep in mind I found over 30 remixes) to that song:
           "We’re living in this remix culture. This appropriation time where any grade-school kid has a copy of Photoshop and can download a picture of George Bush and manipulate his face how they want and send it to their friends…Every single Top 40 hit that comes on the radio, so many young kids are just grabbing it and doing a remix of it. The software is going to become more and more easy to use." —Gregg Gillis, the remix artist known as Girl Talk

             Song remixes are very known. But, have you realized anything else that has been remixed? Not only can songs be remixed, but movies and TV shows can be remixed. Ever seen the movie 'Red Dawn' that came out in 2012 starring Chris Hemsworth and Josh Peck? Well, that isn't the only Red Dawn there is... The original 'Red Dawn' came out in 1984 starring Patrick Swayze and C. Thomas Howell. This is a type of remix. The original Red Dawn was created and then 28 years later the same movie was created but with different actors/actresses and different scenes. Both movies follow the book mostly but everyone has their own idea of how the movie should play. The second 'Red Dawn' is to catch attention of the younger generations and to tell them a story that would interest them more than the "older" version.


             Not only can you remix songs and movies, you can also remix people. Ever watched an episode of Saturday Night Live? SNL makes fun of REAL people every viewing. The show is literally a spoof of famous politicians, actors/actresses, etc. They "remix" people all the time! For example, in a single episode SNL mocks Obama at his attempt to sell Obamacare.  As you can see, that is not Obama. That is a remixed version of Obama. You can tell its Obama by the background and podium. Plus, it sort of looks like Obama.

           In this generation you can remix just about everything. Everything that is old is new again. Remixing is an important element in the broad domain of digital rhetoric. Essentially, this element allows the users to be inspired from an idea, and through using different formats are able to create a completely new idea based on the new authors interpretation. Remixes are all over the world today. You can remix a song, a movie, a person, a video, a speech, an image, and even language. Didn't realize all the remixes 'till now, huh?



Breaking the Decorum of Black Friday

A few weeks ago in my Intro to AdPR class, my professor offered an extra credit assignment to the class. She told us to dress up for our class before Halloween as a public relations or advertising concept. Initially I did not really understand what she wanted. How was I supposed to dress up as media dependency theory or as a cognitive ad strategy? Dr. Larsen left the project up to much interpretation which led to people showing up to class on October 29th dressed in some pretty random ways. My personal favorites were a guy who covered himself in plastic wrap and said he was the advertising ethics term "transparency" and another guy who showed up as "PR nightmare" Bo Pelini. I did not participate in the costume contest, however I did give a lot of consideration to what I would have worn. I was scrolling through BuzzFeed early last week when I noticed an article about a store that is choosing to close all of its locations on Black Friday. After our discussion in class today, I now know that the article caught my eye because the company is breaking the decorum of retail stores. 
REI is a sporting good and outerwear retailer that stands to make a ton of money on Black Friday through winter coat and ski equipment sales. However, last week REI announced their #optoutside campaign in which they are closing all of their locations on Black Friday and paying their employees to go outside. With their hashtag campaign, they are also encouraging consumers to ignore the insane consumerism of Black Friday and share the memories they make exploring the outdoors. REI has only 143 locations in the United States, but they clearly have a faithful following of customers since they have been around since 1938. I personally had never heard of REI until I saw the BuzzFeed article, but that goes to show the power of diatribe as a marketing tool. By rejecting the decorum of pushing discounts on Black Friday and rebelling against the awful greed associated with the day, REI has blown up on social media and likely has gained several new customers. The hashtag #optoutside was trending nationwide on Twitter last week and sparked a debate about the values of Black Friday. REI has made the best marketing move in their history, simply by breaking decorum. Their breach of decorum also happens to make a comment on the strange tradition of expressing extreme greed on the day after Thanksgiving. The morality of Black Friday has been in question a lot in recent years, but REI is gaining so much attention online because they were brave enough to be the first company to take action against Black Friday. The entire style of REI's marketing campaign is brilliant. The website design, company aesthetic, and rebellious affect of the campaign all speak to the younger generation that wants to go explore the world and share all of their experiences online. I would not be surprised if other companies follow REI's example of boycotting Black Friday in the coming years. Breaking the decorum of retail has proved to be REI's smartest PR move ever.

3-D Printing: Friend or Foe To Those Who Oppose Copyright Laws?

At first glance, the answer seems extremely simple; 3-D printing is obviously a friend. How could 3-D printing possibly step in the way of the anti-copyright or those who want to see a change in the status quo? The answer is complex and there are multiple threats that I see 3-D printing creating.

First- a blatant copy is not a remix. Remixing has become more and more accepted, and understood in the internet age. While 3-D printing is extremely creative- the outputs and products of it's existence might not be. When it becomes possible to download a file of something, then print an identical copy of an object some while argue that creation will stagnate. Remember the old anti-piracy ads saying "You Wouldn't Download a Car"? Well, to be completely honest I probably would. I'm no saint- I have definitely pirated music and movies before (I still miss you, LimeWire- You really helped me on my middle school budget). 3-D printing could allow for those around the world to access certain objects they may not normally be able to get their hands on. The government has yet to regulate 3-D printing, it is still at a stage where it does not threaten production of goods, and the economy. And actually, at a large scale 3-D printing is relatively expensive to get into so the manufacturing industry is extremely interested. So perhaps I'm wrong, this new tech won't get regulated and it will help America get back in the game of mass manufacturing.

Or... it could get regulated. Take a look at this. This is a 3-D printed gun that is easy to put together. The file is free and easy to access, and requires little to no knowledge of firearms to assemble.
This is what is beginning to scare the government. Some have suggested if 3-D printing does see regulations, it would be in the form of the strong plastics needed to produce the parts necessary to assemble a gun.

A company named Defense Distributed has published open-source versions of the handgun shown above, as well as a printable AR-15 lower receiver. My younger brother, being the young, wild, free and slightly crazy libertarian he is sent me a video recently. Defense Distributed has developed something in the vein of 3-D printing, called the "Ghost Gunner" you insert what is called an "80-percent lower receiver" and it mills it out- creating a completely anonymous lower receiver that anyone can make. The rest of the gun could be bought by a seven year old on eBay... legally.

Here is a video by Defense Distributed mocking the government, and showing the new invention in action.

I am extremely excited for 3-D printing. I think we are potentially on the brink of a new, modern industrial era. I would just hate to see 3-D printing shoot itself in the head.


A remix is produced when separate elements are put together to form a new piece of media that has a new meaning. Remixes are important because it shows the access of technology that our generation has to pick certain pieces of media apart and add or cut things and then reform it to make something new. Something fun about a remix is that it allows us to use our collective Fair Use rights. Fair Use is the portion of copyright law constantly under threat by corporate content creators like Warner Brothers and MGM. They don’t want us to have access to their content because it threatens a system of licensing fees that are a significant source of income for them. Granted we are, we can reuse copyright content without permission for purposes of comment, critique, homage and media literacy education. This makes is way easier for people such as teachers to teach students about such things without breaking any laws. Kirby Ferguson said that "Everything is a remix". I completely agree with this because no matter what you come up with someone before you has probably come up with the same idea weather they have published it or not. 

This video shows the new creativity and how people build on unauthorized uses of copyrighted material. In our generation many are asking where should we draw the line between infringement and fair use. The video is a perfect example of how people today are taking media and remixing it and giving it a new meaning.

Remixing: The Modern Way

The concept that stood out the most to me was remixing because I can see it in day to day life. Remixing consists of altering an existing work. There are a lot of original songs and movies in todays age that are remade into something relatively the same but not quite the original.

Movies that were popular when I was younger are now becoming popular by being remade from the original version to a more technologically enhanced version. My favorite movie when I was little was the musical movie "Annie." When I would watch it over and over there was a Caucasian girl that played the role of Annie. Annie lived in an orphanage and was luckily chosen to go with Mr. Warbucks, a wealthy business man, over the Christmas holiday. In the 2014 version of "Annie" there is an African American girl who lives with her foster mom and is taken in by Will Stacks, a wealthy business man, who is running for Mayor.

During 2014, racism once again emerged in America. Thus, Annie was remade with a strong African American lead role. Annie, remade, also had many technological advances. No longer was she living in an orphanage. Annie was now living in a foster home that was much more modern than the orphanage pictured in 1999. The 2014 Annie involved cellular phones, social media, flat screen TVs, and many modern cars. The 1999 version of Annie did not have any of that except some cars but, they were the old-time classic cars not many people could afford. Annie in 2014 did just as well if not better then it did in 1999.

A lot of music nowadays is also remixed from the original version. Robert Hazard sang the original song, "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" in 1979 ( Cyndi Lauper then remixed it to her own version in 1983 ( and in 2008 Miley Cyrus took it upon herself to remix it once more( Each time this song was redone it was altered just a little by the artist. The song kept the same lyrics but each time the style became more modern. The quality r of the song became more enhanced and adjusted to the era the song was being produced in.

Remixing is used in day to day life, especially for producers and artists. It is a concept that I believe will always stick around. It keeps the original purpose of things but alters them to make them more modern with technological advances.

Are you anonymous?

How easy is it for you to be anonymous? How easy is it for someone to figure out who you are?

This week I wrote an opinion article based off a news article about Yik Yak. She talked with UNLPD who said that it's easy for them to figure out where posts are coming from. I had no idea that it wasn't difficult to figure out who wrote what.

First of all, anonymity is really dangerous because people hide behind the Internet to say mean things to other people or express their racist, sexist, or homophobic opinions. If they have to hide, they probably shouldn't be saying those things in the first place.

Anther problem with anonymity is catfishing. Sometimes people are scared to show who they really are so they pretend to be someone else. This has become an even larger problem because it's really easy to make a fake profile. Just make up a name, find a picture of a random person that you want to pretend to be, add some friends, and bam you have remade yourself.

If you look up on Google "fake profile pictures" thousands of fake pictures come up. Of course they're real people but their pictures are used as generic fake pictures. That also kind of sucks for the person who is actually in the picture because they have to live with the fact that someone is trying to be them.

Being anonymous comes for a price. You can be someone new, or just get out your dumb opinions. But if someone finds out who you really are, you're screwed.

Parody. Popular. Powerful.
Many people enjoy music. People enjoy for many different reasons some for the beat, some for words, and some for simply overall pleasure to the ears. I find parodies very interesting because of how and why they are made. Weird Al’s “White and Nerdy” is a very good example of a parody that has made it. In fact Weird Al is an artist that only does remixed parodies of already produced songs. Parodies usually are made to make fun of the situation. In this case I don’t think that Al was making fun of the situation just switching context to how white people are seen as not excepted in black communities. This is attempting to shed some light on the stereo type that the original song addressed. Chamillionaire’s “Ridin” was released in 2005 and the cache line was “try and catch me riding dirty” where the audience is the police. This song could be an anthem for today’s movement of #blacklivesmatter but since the song has had such a popular parody this cannot be the song to save the current issue.  For mere views on YouTube this is the case with Al’s version reaching 100 million and Chamillionaire’s version reaching only just over 80 million views. A rare case where the parody has surpassed the original.  Usually parodies don’t see as much light because simply they are parodies. Something not as popular. Weird Al though started his music career when intern
et hit sensations was not the way to see success. He did all his work through remixing and playing live and selling CDs to earn his keep. There were also not a lot of people doing what he was doing at his time so he had his niche marketing that he was addressing.
                There is a lot of social leveling that goes on here when the original song gets played. Most people think “oh it’s that Weird Al song!” not “hay its chamillionaire”.  Thus the Weird Al song has more familiarity and thus his message cuts through and surpasses the other message which is to shed light on the stereotype of officers pulling over and or questioning black people’s reasoning being what they are doing. A good topic to shed light on and is now in the news. White and Nerdy sadly sheds light on how nerdy white people can be and how okay and almost proud they are when they are called nerds. There is no real point to this song other than pure pleasure. To the original there was some meaning behind and a push for social change but since there was social leveling occurring this song was undermined and pushed aside.  

                Society needs to be careful of what we choose to make into parodies because the what if questions could start such as… What if the issue was addressed sooner? What if this current issue was not an issue today because it was fixed earlier? What if the riots and all the other bad things that have happened recently didn’t ever occur because Al didn’t make his version of the song? Parodies are popular and are also powerful.

Network media & Anonymity

Networked media has come a long ways in our generation, and the advancement of this device is arguably one of the best things to happen to our world, but it also tends to be one of the worst. Network media can be described as anything digital media mainly used in computer networks, such as the internet. The internet can defined as the global system of interconnected computer networks that use the Internet protocol suite to link billions of devices worldwide. Day in and day out, we wake up and face the world, and every direction we look in, we are faced with this media. Whether it is Google, Facebook, the news, or an action as simple as shooting a text to your best friend – it all involves network media in one way or another. The whole concept of network media involves anonymity, which basically means acting anonymous. The internet is a great example of this, and it embodies everything about anonymity. Take this email screenshot for example:

 This is a classic example of trolling. This is something that David would not do in person, nor do if he knew Jane personaly. He is acting under anonymous conditions, because there is really no way to trace who someone. He intentionally acts like a smart ass, to irritate the bank lady. This concept can be taken further, to describe anonymity & network media on other platforms. For example, you open Facebook. Your local news station just posted something news worthy for once, and you open the comments and notice trolls everywhere. These trolls, acting under anonymity, are firing away at random people also in the comment thread, just to get replies and attention. Because they are talking behind a computer, acting under anonymity, they feel powerful and almighty. Internet trolls are a great example of this concept, and you can find many more examples here
At the end of the day, network media is everywhere you. It definitely makes life ten times simpler, but at the same time it can really grind your gears. 

Remix: Chuck Berry and The Beach Boys

In January of 1958 Chuck Berry released a song titled 'Sweet Little Sixteen'. The song 'Sweet Little Sixteen' went on to be one of his biggest hits. Then, in 1963 another song was released by The Beach Boys titled 'Surfin' U.S.A' which is almost a direct copy of Chuck Berry's 'Sweet Little Sixteen' disregarding the lyrics. After 'Surfin U.S.A' was released, which received air play and became one of their biggest hits, the copyright of the song was given to partially back to Chuck Berry and was credited to both Wilson and Berry.

This directly relates to our class discussion we had on Tuesday regarding remix. These two song examples are a very good example of remix. Personally I think artists using other artists songs and creating something new and different is great. This allows music and artists to continue to create new songs and learn from each other. However,  I think that the artist of the original song should always share the rights for the new remixed version and receive profits from it.

But at what point does a song lose its authenticity and simply become a copy of another artists song? Does simply changing the words like Brian Wilson did to Chuck Berry's 'Sweet Little Sixteen' make it original? Or did he simply steal it?

Creation Requires Influence

Creativity - the ability to transcend tradition ideas, rules, patterns, relationships, or the like, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, interpretations, etc.; originality, progressiveness, or imagination

In a world of remixing, copying, and stealing, it is generally known by now that there are no new ideas. Even the definition of the word “creativity” highlights the fact that it stems from building off of ideas already set in place. All ideas and creations in the world have been influenced by an idea or creation that precedes it, basically making the new creation an interpretation of the old. 

In the “Everything is a Remix” video we watched in class, it mentioned that creation requires influence. A question that every inventor, entrepreneur, or the like should be asked is: What influenced your creation/ idea? 

Let’s take a look at the Apple iPhone, which was released in June 2007. Its “revolutionary design” is nothing but a copy of an early design drawn up by Sony designers for a similar device. A 2006 Businessweek article with Sony product designers was circulated internally at Apple headquarters, influencing the early design of the iPhone. 

Comparing the initial design of the Sony-style to the first-generation iPhone, the two devices appear to be similar, despite the minor differences. 

So while Steve Jobs has been credited with the “revolutionary” and “innovative” design of the early smart phone, the praise should be given to Sony and their designers for influencing Jobs and his team. 

Another device that has been influenced by the ideas of its predecessors is the portable-media player, also known as an mp3 player. The original portable-media player was the Sony Walkman, a portable cassette tape player, which debuted in 1979 (1980 in the U.S.). Later came the portable-CD player (also developed by Sony, named the "Discman") and afterwards the digital media player, like the iPod. The gradual innovation and expansion of the ideas put in place before shows how ideas are influenced by things that precede them.

 The innovation of the portable-media player is a good example of the “Basic Elements of Creativity”, which are copy, transform, and combine. The portable-CD player copied the idea of the Walkman (the ability to conveniently listen to music and other audio files), transformed things like the design and mechanics of the device (larger design to be able to fit a CD, a disk reader), and combined it to create the new product. 

Nothing in our world is truly original. All creations are influenced by the ideas before them and in turn influence new creations.