Tuesday, May 30, 2006


Just to declare my allegiances before I start - I don't know Nick Gutta personally, nor have I had much contact with him online, but I've been reading his blog for a few years now, so I suppose I could be called a fan. Im also fairly neutral on the whole dubstep debate, and know nothing about the politics of the scene - I just enjoy the odd bit of music that comes out of it. So despite being a (pseudo) MP3 blogger myself, I've also been a small part of a few scenes down through the years, so I like to think of myself (deludedly no doubt) as a relatively objective commentator.

Now it would be very easy for me to emulate the positions of Patternloader and Loki recognising Guttas enthusiastic promotion of dubstep and pledging their support - or even many of the contributors to the original thread on the Dubstep forum - who acknowledged that putting up CD quality tracks without permission was a mistake, but generally thought that this is a matter to be handled privately by the parties involved and not one to be broadcast on the internet by self-appointed moral arbiters of the scene.

But this oh-too cosy consensus just isnt for me!

Y'see, something happened inside my cold plastic soul when I was reading through the initial thread and its follow ups... at first I was disgusted by the absolutist stance of the 'anti'-Guttas, which seemed to be a textbook example of the negative aspects of sceneism, as well as being unfair, unwise, and (as someone mentioned on one of the threads) a 'classic case of internet bullshit' , but then, as the days went by, that disgust turned to admiration, respect, inspiration, and, dare I say it - epiphany!

Why the dramatic turnabout you ask? Well, the sight of all these anonymous souljahs of the scene fretting over the 'precedent' set by Gutta's actions and the 'lost income' suffered by the artists involved, not to mention the respect for copyright exemplified by the 'he didn't ask the labels or artists - end of story' stance made me question my preconceptions. After thinking about it for a while, it became obvious to me that those involved weren't just riding the high horse of moral indignation or shit-stirring for the sake of it, but that their words were motivated by something more admirable - a deep and compassionate concern for the intellectual property rights of artists and labels, even at the cost of alienating a man who's probably done more than anyone else to promote their sound.

What can you do but salute such high minded sentiments? I've chosen to honour these fine upstanding members of the dubstep forum by using my own knowledge to further protect the rights of the jungle, reggae and dancehall artists whose work have provided me with so much pleasure over the years.

So how was I to go about pursuing this newly found quest of mine? Well - first stop was obviously myspace - a known hotbed of illegal sampling and casual copyright infringement, and lo and behold, to my horror I found what seemed to be an unauthorised bit of audio on the first page I went to. It would seem that the track 'Honour Kill' featured on this myspace page contains a sample from Amazon II's classic jungle anthem 'Beat Booyaa' originally released on Aphrodite Recordings in 1994.

Now - you might say that sampling is a different story to putting up tracks for downloads - but in reply I'd remind you that there is no room for debate on this issue, that if you don't ask the artist or labels permission when you sample and redistribute their intellectual property, then that's it - end of story - there are no extenuating circumstances or excuses.

Anything else would be pure hypocrisy.


Blogger GTTRBRKZ said...

Food 4 thought ;-)

7:17 PM  
Blogger grievous angel said...


9:24 AM  

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