Oxford Union Debate - This House believes that "the free music mentality is a threat to the future of music."

This was a debate held at the Oxford Union on Thursday 24th October 2002. For the speakers, see the debate page.

Final vote was:
Ayes - 72
Noes - 256

Since it seems that many of you coming to this page are doing so without background, you might be better off starting with one of these pages which link here: NTK | Slashdot | The Register

Other, related articles include: Wired on Hilary and the debate | PolitechBot Article & RIAA reply

Some of you may also be interested to note that since her job with the RIAA in the summer of 2004, Hilary Rosen's views have changed. For example, according to this wired article she wrote, she is now in favour of the creative commons licenses, which allow and promote sharing and reuse of work.

Under the watchful eye of Dave Green from NTK, several of us met up in the Lamb & Flag before the debate, and trooped in together. Impressively, we had about as many members as non, so getting everyone in wasn't nearly as tough as we'd expected it to be. Since we arrived about 8pm, we sat through a rather confusing debate, where it seemed that neither the (very quiet) chair or the speakers quite knew which side they were arguing for... Then, about 8:40 the speakers for the main debate wandered in.

The proposition had Nick Pacheco (Christchurch College), Hilary Rosen (RIAA), Chris Wright (Chrysalis) and Jay Berman (IFPI). The opposition had Will Harris (Keble College), Nick King (Nielsen Entertainment), Doug D'Arcy (Chrysalis) and Ronnie Gurr (various). (A few union members also spoke for both sides during the floor debate.)

I won't endeavour to recount the entire debate, just some of my thoughts on it and what I thought were some of the highlights. The Union made a video recording of the entire thing, which may or may not eventually get put online (you could try asking the Union President, David Watson about it, I suspect the more requests they get the more like it is to get online). Dave Green also made a tape recording of the event, that will probably make it online before the end of time.... keep pestering him and he might just get round to posting it!

So, some of the more memorable bits included:

Oh, and a few other things that currently escape me. I might write them here later...

Links of some possible relevance

Last modified: Wednesday, 27-Oct-2004 14:00:00 BST
Big thanks to Dom for spelling corrections during the /. attack
Abuse / comments / thoughts to writings@gagravarr.org

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.