Twitter
The Walking Dead Lawsuit: Vertical Integration is Still Alive in the Entertainment Industry

The Walking Dead Lawsuit: Vertical Integration is Still Alive in the Entertainment Industry »

Another vertical integration lawsuit has risen to life. Frank Darabont, the writer-director-producer of the most watched show on all of television, The Walking Dead, is in court, facing off against American Movie Classics (AMC), the network that broadcasts the hit zombie apocalypse show. The Walking Dead lawsuit is the latest in a long line of “vertical integration” cases in Hollywood that arise when a TV show broadcaster also produces the show via an affiliated entity. The broadcaster pays a license fee to the production studio, which is then shared with talent. The license fees are supposed to be negotiated between broadcasters and producers to reflect the fair market value of a given series. - Read more...

Game Critics and Commercial Bribery: the Original #gamergate Controversy

Game Critics and Commercial Bribery: the Original #gamergate Controversy »

Griggs, Behind the Furor Over #Gamergate, CNN.com, , Oct. 19, 2014). The controversy and the hastag #gamergate started when game designer Zoe Quinn’s ex-boyfriend posted an article accusing her of sleeping with a Kotaku.com journalist for positive reviews. This was quickly picked up by many gamers who felt gaming critics lacked integrity either being bought off by publishers or simply rating games based off their own preferences. However, like many things on the internet, it wasn’t long before the movement was overtaken by trolls lashing out at women in the gaming industry in general. Specifically, they targeted women, like Anita Sarkeesian, who spoke out against the current default portrayal of women in videogames as stereotypes. The attacks have included everything from defamation to death threats. Brianna Wu, a female game developer, was forced to leave her home after receiving death threats that included her home address. (Beth Teitell & Callum Borchers, GamerGate anger at women all too real for gamemaker, BostonGlobe.com, Nov. 1, 2014). The Gamergate controversy has become synonymous with arguments about women’s place in videogames. - Read more...

Feminism, the First Amendment, and #Gamergate

Feminism, the First Amendment, and #Gamergate »

This past August, the Internet erupted when Anita Sarkeesian, a media critic, was threatened with mutilation, rape, and other physical harm in response to her video web series criticizing the sexist implications of the way in which women are portrayed in video games. See Julie Bort, After Exposing Sexism in the Video Game Industry, This Woman Received Rape Threats on Twitter, Businessinsider.com, Aug. 27, 2014. Similarly, in 2013 Carolyn Petit, a video game reviewer for GameSpot, came under attack after giving Grand Theft Auto V a "superb" score of 9/10. Despite the high score, Petit wrote, “GTA V has little room for women except to portray them as strippers, prostitutes, long-suffering wives, humorless girlfriends and goofy, new-age feminists we’re meant to laugh at.” Carolyn Petit, Grand Theft Auto V Review, Gamespot.com, Sept. 17, 2013. Gamers circulated a petition asking for her to be fired for her criticism. Sadly, it is not uncommon for critics to be attacked in real life in response to criticizing women’s portrayals in video games and suggesting those portrayals may have a negative effect on male game players. - Read more...

User Beware: the Legality of YouTube-to-MP3 Converters

User Beware: the Legality of YouTube-to-MP3 Converters »

With the proliferation of music on massively popular file-sharing websites such as YouTube and Soundcloud, musical artists face legitimate concerns in terms of protecting their copyrighted works. It is no secret that copyright holders in the music industry have aggressively engaged in an extended online anti-piracy campaign. While this campaign originally targeted file-sharing software distributors, most famously, Napster, it has continued to evolve with the technologies available. Now, more than ever, individuals may be at increased risk of litigation for infringing activity, and they might not even be aware their activity is illegal. - Read more...