RiP!: A Remix Manifesto

I really enjoyed the documentary “RiP!: A Remix Manifesto.”  I thought it did a great job of both explaining and illustrating many of the contemporary issues of copyright issues and cultural change that we have been discussing in class.  Not only that, but it made critiques about certain media by remixing those media… it was like one very long project for Media Technology and Cultural Change.

I found the film entertaining because a lot of it had to do with the work of Girl Talk, who happens to be an artist who I enjoy very much.  It was entertaining to see him work, hear his thoughts on copyright law, and especially see his concerts.  At the point in the film where the recording of a Girl Talk performance is muted because “[Gaylor’s] point had already been made, so using the clip was no longer fair use,” i was genuinely disappointed, but the message was perfectly illustrated.

Another thing that I found interesting was the interactive way in which I watched the film.  As it would happen, I missed the screening of the film here at Midd, but luckily for me it was available online.  The way in which they showed the film online, however, was they played it as twelve separate chapters of the film.  At the end of each chapter the Brett Gaylor (the director), would appear and ask viewers at home to think of new ways to remix the chapter they had just seen.  Whether it be adding a remix of their own, or a different soundtrack, or anything, the idea is that the film about remixes is attempting to be remixed itself.  Online viewers can upload their remixed version to the website, and eventually Gaylor will be releasing a RiP! 2.0.  I just thought this form of viewer participation was very interesting.  It addressed one idea that I took away from the film, which was that if enough people get involved and make changes themselves, the lines of copyright and ownership become more and more blurred.

All and all, I really like the documentary.


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