Paying For Teh Frees. How’s That Working Out?

Five years and several Wiki restores ago I wrote a sketch of an article called “How To Get Paid For Copyleft Art“. My opinion at the time was that cultural projects (or artistic careers) could be structured to make money using copyleft, but I was very wary of recommending any particular services for digital media.

Crosbie Fitch has been working on this sort of thing for a while. And recently some other projects that support different ways of funding projects have started gaining in popularity.

Kickstarter is best known in free culture and free software circles for funding Diaspora, but there are lots of other projects on there (I contributed towards the Mondo 2000 History Project for example). It’s an escrow or street performer protocol system where people promise to create or do something if contributors promise the right amount of funding.

Flattr is a micropayments service that allows you to add a donation button to blogs and other social media. I’ve started seeing this on blogs I read. There’s a flattr plugin for Android apps that might be a good way of getting funding from users of published free software.

VoDo is a peer-to-peer movie sharing
network (using Bittorrent) that allows you to sponsor the creators of
the work shared over the network.

And even good old PayPal buttons are increasingly being used to accept contributions in exchange for downloads. I just paid for a download of the “Jolly Roger” comic in this way.

These systems all offer ways of getting money in
exchange for artistic labour that are sorely needed. But they are all proprietary systems run by for-profit companies, so the
revolution will be monetized.

Free Agriculture

The specific mechanism Michaels goes on to propose is a “General Public
License for Plant Germplasm (GPLPG)” that is explicitly modeled on the
GPL developed by the FOSS movement for software.

(Via mp)

Freedom Porn

Some time ago I mentioned Sharing is Sexy, a Free Culture porn project. The site seems to be offline unfortunately ( has a cache). But now there’s a new Free Culture Porn site, :

Introducing,, the world’s first ever free-as-in-freedom porn site, comprised of entirely free cultural works
in free formats, both Ogg Theora and WebM. Freedom Porn (FP) is a
participatory resource for ethical smut, promoting our favorite ideals,
and running on donations. From the about page:

The mission of Freedom Porn is to
empower and engage individuals to create and share ethical porn as a
means of advancing sex-positivism and sexual freedom.

We advocate safer sex and consensual sex, and feminism is inseparable
from our mission. We also fight for freedom of speech, privacy,
and free culture.

Sounds good. I’m glad that the project has a specifically feminist element and that it’s using free video formats. That last sentence shouldn’t read as strangely as it does.

A GUI For draw-something

I’ve written a Gtk+ user interface for draw-something to help evaluate its output.

You’ll need the git repository for draw something, and cl-gtk2 installed:

(asdf:oos ‘asdf:load-op :asdf-install)
(asdf-install:install :cl-gtk2-gtk)
(asdf-install:install :cl-gtk2-cairo)

git clone

Then you can run the gtk.lisp script in src:

cd draw-something/src
sbcl –load gtk.lisp

And once you select “New Drawing” you can view the different stages of its development. Which is very useful. I must add a File menu so people can use this to save images as well.

draw-something gui 1

draw-something gui 2
From The Archives

This is probably the genesis of The Cybernetic Artworld

Wonder if I can find the code in my archives…

Organization, Man

This blog is over seven years old. Some of the best writing on it, posts that I refer people to and that I refer to myself even now, dates back five years or more. A blog isn’t the best format for organizing that kind of material. I think I’m going to format it up as a philosophy section, and possibly some kind of (e-)book.