ISMIR 2003 Keynote Address
(Speaker) Anthony Seeger
(Title) "I Found It, How Can I Use It? - Dealing With the Ethical and Legal Constraints of Information Access"
It is easy to find music on the Internet today, but how it may be used is the source of considerable conflict, front-page news stories, and increasing scholarly reflection. One of the frustrations for libraries, archives, and patrons alike is the gulf between information about a holding and actual access to it. But users are not the only ones to be concerned about access. Local musicians feel everyone profits from their cultural heritage but they themselves; researchers find themselves held responsible for research recordings made decades earlier and largely forgotten; and some communities seek protection in existing legislation on trade secrets or by writing new legislation. Caught in the middle between angry users and angry producers, what are people who want improved access to musical collections to do? This paper proposes a number of things music librarians and other information professionals might consider in order to help users find what they can while at the same time educating them in the issues behind the frustrating restrictions.
Anthony Seeger is an anthropologist, ethnomusicologist, audiovisual archivist, and musician. In addition to teaching anthropology and ethnomusicology in Brazil and the United States, he served as Director of the Indiana Archives of Traditional Music (1982-1988), Curator and Director of Smithsonian Folkways Recordings (1988-2000), and teaches courses on archiving and the music industry in the Department of Ethnomusicology (2000-present). He has served as President of the Society for Ethnomusicology and the International Council for Traditional Music. He is the author of four books, among them Why Suya Sing (Cambridge Univ. Press 1987); Early Field Recordings: A Catalogue of the Cylinder Collections at the Indiana University Archives of Traditional Music (edited jointly with Louise M. Spear) Indiana University Press 1987; and Nature and Society in Central Brazil (Harvard 1981). He is currently writing a book on intellectual property and music based on his experience as a researcher, audiovisual archivist, and recording company executive.