If you have a moment, please go to: http://www.law.duke.edu/cspd/contest/finalists/
where you can see (and vote for) the finalists in the Duke Center for the
Study of the Public Domain moving image competition. The competition was an international one for the best 2 minute video or animation about the ways that intellectual property affects art– specifically documentary film or music. The videos range from the account of a documentarian trying to cover army recruiters in the North Carolina Piedmont, to a Polish animator’s science fiction vision of music’s apocalyptic future, from a college student’s efforts to make a Public Service Announcement about the Civil Rights movement, to a dissection of the law behind “Super Size Me.” You can vote for your favorite entry at the site. The winners — both Judges’ Selections and “the People’s Choice” — will be announced on January 15th. The competition is part of the Arts Project, which is supported by a generous grant from the Rockefeller Foundation.
From Italy comes the best of bad Christmas music — and it’s free! Senor Tonto has recorded the wonderful song “Hooray for Santy Claus” (from the American Christmas classic “Santa Claus Conquers the Martians” which was also released as a comic book, a Dell Classic). The song is downloadable in mp3 format in two versions. One with a delightful vocal and one instrumental so that you can sing it at Christmas karaoke parties. Yes, there is a lyric sheet and even a 50s style pinup cover suitable for printing and enclosing with a CD gift. If you are thinking of buying the movie on video, be sure to read the Amazon reviews.
For those of you in a more religious and less humorous mood, Roger McGuinn offers “The First Noel” also free but of a distinctly different quality and taste. Roger writes:
One of my fondest childhood memories is of standing around the piano with my mother and father at my grandparents’ house in Chicago. My grandfather and grandmother sat at the keyboard. Every Christmas we would go through the small book of carols. The tree in the next room was decorated with lots of nineteenth century ornaments, and tin toys from Germany were abundantly scattered around the blanket of white material made to look like snow. This is one of the prettiest carols I remember from that time. An English Carol from before 1823.