An open letter,
My name is Will Buckley and I am the founder of FarePlay, an advocacy group supporting the rights of individuals to control the digital distribution and sale of their Intellectual Property.
What started as a simple way to share music and video with friends has morphed into illegal downloading, a billion dollar-a-year international criminal enterprise, responsible for eliminating hundreds of thousands of jobs, eradicating the earning power of artists and diminishing our once vibrant diversity of arts in American Culture.
Equally as disturbing, I’ve found a creative community that has failed to engage the problem out of fear of recrimination from a small band of illegal file-sharing proponents.
The challenge is clear. We need to enroll and empower the creative community in this battle and we need to do it from a place of understanding and enlightenment; starting with a conversation grounded in personal stories about working class people who deserve to get paid for their work, just like everyone else.
The message isn’t about stealing or shop lifting, it is a message about broken dreams and survival. It is about connecting with friends and fans through social media and letting them know about the value of their support.
It is a message that will both enlighten some and deflect any push back from those who are committed to push forward an agenda that legitimizes bad behavior.
It is a message that can be supported by “superstars”, but must emanate from emerging, middle class artists to be successful.
When you don’t pay for something, someone doesn’t get paid. People can’t work for free........forever.
Free is an elitist concept. In order for free to work, someone else has to pay.
- FarePlay - Pro-artist digital rights advocacy