First things first, just got an email to inform us p-grads that our results will be online on Monday 22! *stressss* I'm fairly sure I passed every module but I'd love one more distinction (I only have the one I got in Production and Design last semester). Not that it really matters but it's nice and would be a nice way to finish.
I'm definitely not going to get a distinction (that's above 70 here in the UK, weird) in my dissertation because 1) I've hardly been working on it, 2) it's not the most interesting subject in the world (at least, not to me but how much is natural interest and how much I'm biased by dread... I don't know) and 3) at the pace I'm going, I'll be pulling crazy all-nighters which means it'll be decent but riddled with typos.
It's ok. I just need a passing grade and then I out of Academia for a looooooooooong time. THANK GOD!
But speaking of the dissertation, I've been doing a bit of reading and I'm finding Lawrence Lessig's Free Culture really interesting. It's available for free online (under a Creative Commons licence of course :) ) and well worth a read. It's also very easy to follow rather than uber academic so never mind if your brain isn't wired for sesquipedalian prose, mine ain't either. It's been relatively easy finding good sources for pro-CC arguments but I can't seem to find the anti-CC arguments unless they are cited in pro-CC literature. Any help would be welcome...
One of the interesting things (to me anyway) that Lessig mentions is how Doujinshi culture works. Doujinshi are manga created by the average Japanese Joe, some of who have amazing artistic skills but nevermind that, that are sort of like fanfic but for manga. The rules are that your doujin cannot be a mere copy of a manga, it has to add something. Legally, it's copyright infringement but the reality is that the trade and sale of doujinshi is a huge market and there are very few cases where copyright holders sue. Part of the reason for this is that doujinshi helps manga's commercial success in Japan.
So, would derivatives such as fanfic help literature sell better?
My opinion is that for some genres such as Science-Fiction, Fantasy and Crime (Adult and YA versions of all), it probably would. This are genres that already have quite a lot of fanfic going so I'd say that shows there's community interest in getting involved and manipulating the lit. If you'd encourage that to go in certain directions, it could produce interesting results. I need to think more about this...
But I don't think it would help sell more memoirs or chick lit... I could be wrong of course but I just don't see it.
4 months ago