Micropayments to the artist as a young boy
January 8, 2001 4:53 PM   Subscribe

Micropayments to the artist as a young boy So, I've been thinking about this end of copyright thing as has Scott McCloud it seems. Coupled with Lance Glassdog's rant on the subject and something has been tickling my brainstem about it. Since when does being an artist equal being paid?
posted by fullerine (14 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Being an artist has always equaled being paid. If you want to dedicate yourself to your art full-time, which is every artist's dream, you have to support yourself somehow.
posted by kindall at 5:04 PM on January 8, 2001

I typed up some pointed commentary on this subject from audiovisual dance hooligans Coldcut some time ago. Definitely worth checking out, IMHO.
posted by JimmyTones at 5:59 PM on January 8, 2001

Being an artist has always equaled being paid.

I'm sure Emily Dickinson is spinning in her grave. Being an artist is about creating art.

That said, it's nice to get paid. I'll throw out a link that I've used in a couple of threads on the topic of music sharing, Jenny Toomey's the Machine, where you can find various interesting ideas on the topic of how artists can make a living at their work in the age of mechanical reproduction.
posted by snarkout at 6:01 PM on January 8, 2001

I'd like to see a discussion about micropayments here. Does anyone think they're a viable revenue model? Let's start with a couple of links, for background arguments.

The Case for Micropayments: Jakob Neilsen
The Case Against Micropayments: Clay Shirky (via peterme.com)

It's one of the few issues in which I don't have a solid opinion. Both arguments are persuasive.
posted by waxpancake at 6:14 PM on January 8, 2001

Being an artist doesn't equal getting paid.Being an artist doesn't mean that people should be able to steal your work either.Yes, I've flipflopped on this issue.I've learned the hard way that it's not much fun having your work stolen right out from under you.
posted by Mr. skullhead at 6:32 PM on January 8, 2001

Yeah, I misspoke when I said being an artist "equaled" being paid. But even artists have gotta eat, unless they learn how to survive on sunlight. Let's just say that money and art have always been entwined. Some artists didn't achieve fame until after their death, but some did, and some milked it for all it was worth. Some forms of art (e.g. the novel) were created more or less by commercial forces.
posted by kindall at 6:35 PM on January 8, 2001

Yeah, being an artist is about creating art. But on the other hand, creating art is about having the time and resources to create art. If your favorite writer/musician/actor/what-have-you had to work a full time job as well as making art, how much of their art do you think they'd be able to produce?
posted by webmutant at 7:39 PM on January 8, 2001

Surely it's up to the artist to decide whether they want to sell their work? I'd certainly be prepared to give something I'd done away if I thought it might change the world in a possitive way.
posted by davidgentle at 8:38 PM on January 8, 2001

As an artist, I've always found that my best work is sandwiched between other jobs and priorities. The few times I've had nothing but free time to focus on art, my output dropped rather than being boosted.

Of course, that's just me.

"generally my generation wouldn't be caught dead working for the man ... and generally I agree with them ... trouble is, you've gotta have yourself an alternate plan" -- Ani DiFranco
posted by jragon at 9:36 PM on January 8, 2001

I'd like to see some form of micropayments become available, but I strongly disagree with Scott that we ought to have it because if we don't force people to pay, Web content will always be considered subpar. That's taking away one of the big benefits of the Web in the first place.
posted by aaron at 10:18 PM on January 8, 2001

There's a story about Picasso, supposedly true, maybe apocryphal:

A wealthy woman knows a lawyer who knows a guy who knows Picasso. The woman has the lawyer pull some strings so she can visit the artist's studio.

After the meeting, the woman is upset and tells this to the lawyer: "All he wanted to do was sell me some paintings."

The lawyer, who knows the score, says, "Well, what did you expect him to talk to you about? His art?"
posted by bilco at 1:57 PM on January 9, 2001

A reported quotation:

"The myth of the starving artist was invented by bankers." — Picasso
posted by bilco at 2:02 PM on January 9, 2001

The Case Against Micropayments: Clay Shirky

great article, waxpancake, thanks for the link.
posted by lagado at 5:18 PM on January 9, 2001

In the way I understand it, I like the idea of micropayments. I would be perfectly willing to pay one cent to see a website I wanted to see, and I would be perfectly willing to pay one cent to view a web site I didn't want to see. Of course, I would end up paying quite a bit more to websites I like, because I would visit them often. (According to my history, for example, I would owe Metafilter $1.24, and it's been well worth it.)

The problem of implementation seems to be more of a barrier, but as I know relatively little about the successful implementation of e-commerce solutions, I'll have to assume a pleasant future of micro-payment based internet and less buzzwords.
posted by Lirp at 6:06 PM on January 9, 2001

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