ACTA2

Hi everyone, I haven’t posted anything here for a really long time now and am coming back because I just wrote this post on Facebook and realized that it’s more of a blog thing really… OK, there we go.

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The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) was a proposed multinational treaty for the purpose of establishing international standards for intellectual property rights enforcement.

When first introduced in 2012 it met a lot of critisicm. As of yesterday, ‘ACTA2’ is a thing for of Europe’s Member States (and people are panicking) so I thought I’d share my opinion and a little bit of information. Please note, I’m not a lawyer. And I don’t think I know it all. It’s just my opinion.

You should always obtain someone’s agreement for sharing their works before you do so. Online piracy is not a standard, it’s theft. And how offended we are with ACTA2 shows how much used to it we got. And yeah, sure, I streamed movies before, I used books found online for writing my uni papers. Not saying I’m any better; I’m just not going to expect the law to protect that kind of behaviour.

Very important part of the document is this: ‘These rights shall not apply to private or non-commercial uses of press publications carried out by individual users’. So yeah, Internet will work like books or CDs: it’s OK to lend someone your book and talk about it with them. It’s OK to quote and show exerpts. It’s not OK to reprint half of the book for the purpose of your own book and make money off the sales without first purchasing the rights to do so.

Another important bit of the legislation: ‘Member States shall ensure that users in all Member States are able to rely on the following existing exceptions and limitations when uploading and making available content generated by users on online content sharing services:
a) quotation, criticism, review,
b) use for the purpose of caricature, parody or pastiche.’

Also, regarding spreading cultural/scientific heritage, ‘Periodicals which are published for scientific or academic purposes, such as scientific journals, shall not be considered as press publications for the purposes of this Directive.’ So you are still allowed to share scientific knowledge and use periodicals found online to write your thesis (example: yours truly these days, sad long days).

Another one: ‘Member States shall provide for an exception or limitation to the rights (…) in order to allow the digital use of works and other subject-matter for the sole purpose of illustration for teaching [here are lots of points about it’s extent… just read the document. And if you don’t have time or will to get uber bored, read what EU’s website says about the document HERE]’

So I think that this document makes a lot of sense and it rather reasonable. It should be read first, before panicking and supporting all the websites claiming it’s ‘the censorship directive’ because they’re also the same websites that copy over most of their content and then make money off the ads on their page.
I hear someone say it’ll stop memes from existing… nothing will stop the memes. Not even nuclear war. Also someone would have to first complain and ask for taking their meme down. Will you, Jenna, or do you want your silly cat pic with a description to go all over the globe?! ūüėČ

A valid argument is that text and data mining (crucial for modern research an AI development) will be confusing. ACTA allows for text and data mining to be a thing in some cases, but not others. Rightholders could opt out of having their data datamined by anyone who isn’t a research organization (is it this bad?).
There is no easy answer to this one and I’m not 100% how I feel about it. I think the real question we need to ask ourselves is: do we value artificial intelligence and its works more than human intelligence and its works?

I also heard someone saying that this will kill music and musicians’ online activity. That if you can’t use samples you’re not free. Really? Cause I feel like if you’re already not allowed to just take someone’s work. And sure, you can register and pay royalties… but have you heard about Geoff Barrow of Massive Attack? His Invada Records in based in the office building where we work and just the other day he posted on Twitter complaining about Lil Pump using his and Ben Salisbury’s track for ‘his deeply fucking sexist song [‘Racks on Racks’]. He said that they didn’t give clearance. I also love how he added, ‘As 2 fathers of daughters this shit needs to seriously fuck off.’ He also started his Tweet with ‘who is Lil Pump’ which made me very happy.

So the question is: do we value people’s freedom to take for free whatever they want and use for whatever they want more than we value copyright and creator’s rights to keep the message spreading only in the right context? Afterall if they want it to be available for all to use, they just have to state it and ‘is coooooool man’.

Coming back to the ‘protect musicians’ argument that’s used by some (including stopacta2.org) I believe that if you’re a musician, you either play standards and royalties for them are being played, or you create your own tracks. Sampling someone’s music and then adding a beat and some urban lyrics isn’t creating, it’s basically talking on top of someone else’s music. And if you’re making money off it or making it public, if you call it your own song, if you add to it a message that the original piece did not carry – that’s artistic abuse, not freedom. That’s abusing the rights of the musician; you know, the person who actually wrote and played music, who knows how to play an instrument (or, I guess, who knows how to use music harmony + a computer) and who doesn’t claim that if they’re song is 50% Amazing Grace it’s title should be ‘lick me nips’.

Back to notslamming shitty rappers.
I haven’t finished reading the document yet (spent a lot of my working day today on it tho!) and there may be some dark surprises… but I wanted to share this post when I still remember what I was thinking as I was reading the directive.

Please let me know what you think about it. Are there any disturbing points that the directive makes that you’d like to share and discuss?

PS ah, the irony of this post ūüėČ

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ACTA2

Made in Bristol – watch me on TV!

On the 11th of July I was a guest of Made in Bristol TV. I was invited to be on the Crunch show so as to promote my next day’s gig¬†at No. 1 Harbourside.

If you missed it, not to worry, you can watch it here:

NINA ANN on TV

Sorry for my French accent ūüėÄ Hope you enjoy ‘the Montpellier Song’ in live version (at the end of the episode).

Besos x

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Made in Bristol – watch me on TV!

What’s going on in my music department

Hey hey, good news, I’m being super musically active recently!

As¬†my last post mentions, I’ve been busking since I got fired and you know what? It feels amazing! The sun, the smiles, people dancing to my music, saying it’s different from anything else, thanking me for changing their days… Yesterday a family came up to me and the mom said on behalf of her son that he loved me.¬†As much I don’t like kids I had to give him a hug!

Last Wednesday I also recorded one of my last year’s tunes; I called it the Montpellier Song¬†because that’s where I finished its composition. Have a listen!

the Montpellier Song

The song was recorded by Olga Czerkwiani and Ben Harvey at DBS studios for Olga’s movie, hence the ending.

I will be talking about the recordings on the Bradley Stoke Radio¬†on Monday 12th of June, at 8:20 pm. The Jelli Records Music Show hosted by Steve Parkhouse will let me play a few songs live, we’ll also have a chat about what’s going on in my music department.¬†You can listen to us online here:¬†BSR FM

On the 1st of July I’ll be playing a set at the Mount Fest. Check out the details here: Mount Fest 2017

Zdjńôcie uŇľytkownika Stitched Boards.

And finally an ad/a chance for you, if you’ve got a bit of spare time.
If you’d be interested in getting me some gigs around your area of England, I’d be very happy to come, play and share some $ with you. For details (or with details) please contact me at nina.saw9 [at] gmail.com

 

My gigs:

1/07 – Mount Fest, Gloucester

12/07 – No. 1 Harbourside, Bristol

15/07 – Bristol Independent Fair, Memorial Stadium, BS

27/07 – co-hosting open mic at the Rope Walk, BS

2/08 – The Greenhouse, BS

8/08 – The Canteen, BS

11/08 – Baloon Fiesta, BS

19/08 – Cider Festival, the Crossed Arms, BS

30/09 – TBA

for more details go to my website: NINA ANN

 

 

 

 

What’s going on in my music department

Quick update from Bristol

Hey all,

it’s nice to be back. Let’s get straight to the point.

I moved to Bristol in October… well, really in December, as before I stayed in Hanham at Mark’s place and haven’t actually worked in Bristol until the last week of November.

That is when I got a job at this super hipster bakery that tries to be a restaurant as well called Pinkmans. It seemed like a place that’d be very on time with what’s going on in the world of coffee so although I’ve got a better position offered somewhere else, I decided to take on Pinkmans – as I really loved my coffee stuff.

I became a regular visitor of a few open mics in town, trying to find musicians interested in forming a band.

Then it turned out that Pinkies¬†don’t actually care about the quality of their coffee and serve their beverages in cups smelling like a dirty dishwasher so I figured out I need to save money asap to get a battery-powered amplifier and get far away from there.

That’s when trouble at my flat begun but there’ll be a separate post for it cause it’s a long and interesting story, beautiful and disgusting depending on its moments. Anyway, I won, as always, and moved on. I still hang out at the flat all the time.

And then, after I bought my amp and asked Steven, the owner of Pinkmans to go part-time, I’ve got fired through an email, while on my holidays, with not a day notice for¬†some bullshit about being sick/willing to go home early after I asked them for one day sick (first since three months) after working the whole day in fever and not being able to talk.

So if you’re planning on getting your chai latte from Pinkmans (note it’s not actually real chai tea latte, it’s¬†just milk with spices), be aware that your money goes to such person. And that the stuff gets paid minimum for working 10 hours with 20 minutes break. In athmosphere in which general manager doesn’t speak to one of the employees (not even hi) for almost two months long. Where KP with a degree got fired for ‘lack of interest’ and where multiple people are getting fired through an email without earlier notice about the reasons. You’d support the place that exploits amazing amazing people – because the team that I had chance to work with was absolutely amazing. The girls on the counter, my colleagues on the bar and the beautiful bakers and kitchen staff…

If you’re vegan, don’t buy H&M, hate Nestle or work for Amnesty International or just care about hungry children in Africa – don’t be selective about changing the reality¬†that surrounds you. Don’t support Pinkmans.

*****

Getting fired was the best thing that happened to me – ever since I’ve been busking/getting gigs for the summertime. Earning way more money, wasting no time and not having to eat/drink from smelly dishes.

I’ve been meeting so many people and my perspective has changed a lot.

Not being opressed on every day and put in a situation where someone judges all of my actions while not having any competitions in the field (coffee) and burning their milk every time, I’ve relaxed my muscles, my throat, my soul. New songs are being composed, new opportunities are coming my way, I get a lot of sunshine, have time for vocal practice and finally get to see my friends. I’m also playing my first-ever-in-the-UK festival! … but that’s material for another post, a pure musical update with no bullshit low-class evil in it ūüėČ

Here’s me (and my third eye, hence the enlightment!)¬†with a friend that I made while busking:

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Quick update from Bristol

Austin-Lubbock pt 2 – The most American night of all

Where were we? Ah, I arrived to Lubbock, the city of Buddy Holly.

 

I was staying with Tyler’s friend, Schmoo; and Ben, and Socorro and… guys, I think there was somebody else in the house, or am I making that up?

There they were: Socorro, the king of the comedy; Ben, an expressive Texan millenial in the heart of gay community of Lubbock; Schmoo, a gentleman hard rocker dressed in red, white and blue jeans.

We went out with a few guys to this pub, I’ve got a free diet coke.
One of our companions was Josh, a very handsome cowboy with an absolute gay appearance. His perfect blond ponytail under a cowboy hat, his elegant vest and very shiny -clean boots; he used to say all those words, like ‘howdy’, ‘y’all’, ‘ain’t’ or ‘ma’am’, with his smooth voice. And he played the banjo. He was delicate and dramatic. Very¬†Southern and very gay. Beautiful connection that I adored.
Me and Schmoo went out on a bicycle ride.

At some point I lost Schmoo and had my not best moment of feeling dizzy in the street, so I sat down on the kerb and rested. A homeless guy came up to me:

‘Y’all feelin’ alright?’

‘Yeah, I’m just dizzy’ I said, ‘I’ll be OK in a second.’

‘Do you want some food? I can bring you food. Maybe you’ll feel better when ya eat somethin’.’

He offered me a blanket (dude, we’re in Lubbock in August, it’s rather hot!), something to drink (that’s when I realized that I’ve taken out the glass of diet coke; I’ve got a beverage for free and then I stole the glass… ehh, not proud of that one)… He really wanted to take care of me. But as my head settled down and Schmoo appeared, we continued the ride.

We stopped at a 7 eleven, had a great laugh, did shopping and … there is was, a magazine with a fat letters printed on its cover shouting¬†something about Elvis not being dead.

‘Do you see it too?’ I asked, ‘Isn’t it 2014?’

We laughed like crazy.

Schmoo had a dog named Alpheba. I noticed how amazing vowels and their pronaunciation were. He explained a bit to me;

‘If an “E” is followed by a consonant that is followed by a vowel, then you pronaunce it “e” as in “Egypt”. If an “E” is followed by a consonant that is followed by a consonant, then you pronaunce is “eh”, as in “Elvis”; if it wasn’t like that you’d say “Eelvise”‘

We could see all the stars that night, even though the lights were strong, we were in the city. At some point of the evening, Ben said ‘I really think that there is more sky in Texas than anywhere else in America’.

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There was a reason for me to take the above picture, yet I want you to figure it out yourself.
I know you can’t see too much but that is why I chose this copy!

Early in the morning we went to eat breakfast burritos – that amazing amazing Texan thing that pretends to be inspired with Mexican cuisine, but really is stuffed tortilla flats with whatever the fuck you can think of when you think ‘breakfast’ + hot sauce.

The boy serving us had fake eyelashes and lipstick. He was so pretty, I think Ben had a crash on him or maybe the other way round? It doesn’t matter now, the thing I was trying to say is: he was a sweetheart.

There was some story to the place, something about activity of the owner and the people they hire… But I’m not gonna lie, I don’t really remember. I should have written down more things.

That is also why I’m going to stop my story right here. I do not remember the next part. Something about taking pictures of houses, tricycling, Schmoo’s band’s rehearsal, banjo playing, more of that Texas, I’ve never gone to Buddy Holly’s museum in the end. It didn’t matter, I had my ‘most American’ night.

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Ben and Schmoo leaving me on a gas station on a road to New Mexico.

Austin-Lubbock pt 2 – The most American night of all

Just a small self-advertisement

Hey everybody,

today’s post a little bit different. I know I’ve got a story to finish but recently I’ve been putting all my creativity into music and may need another moment before I sit down to write.

For today – back to the music. I’m just starting and therefore need to promote it anywhere I can.

I am now offering to compose music for you.*

Have you got a poem that you’d like to sing out to people? Do you want to tell something the person you love? Have you got a musician friend who’s better with the lyrics than the music? Or maybe it’s just an artist’s block and you just need a little kick?

Please, send it to your friends and family, post on your Facebook, twitter or blog… I would really love it, if you helped me make it roll.

You can find the offer here:

https://www.fiverr.com/ninasaw/compose-music-to-your-lyrics?funnel=89766dce-aa78-4547-871f-7e4f424017ab

 

*Commercial use costs extra but then you never know if it doesn’t make a #1 ūüėČ

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Just a small self-advertisement

Austin – Lubbock pt.1 – How the Universe saved me

As a break from my 2016 hitch stories, I’ll tell you about the most cliche-American thing that has ever happened to me (and about the Universe taking care of me everywhere I go).

Before that though, I’d like to mention something¬†that probably a lot of bloggers struggle with – the fact that a blog is very very very public (unless you want to secure it with a password, but then it all depends on your target for readers, I want a wide range of strangers to read my¬†crazy amazing stories and therefore can not block them with a secret code). Fact: people I do and don’t know can read this. Fact: there’s my mom and potential employers among them; ergo = some stories will never be published.

Like this one. I was very close to deciding not to share it. I just thought that’s such a shame, I love this story, I love it so much – I’ll just skip parts. Oh, also I think these two stories are really one – it’s quite a long one though, so I’ll just cut it into pieces: How the Universe saved me and The most American nigh of all.

I was hitching from Austin to Lubbock. Tyler gave me a ride to Lampasas, dropped me there on a gas station and left me feeling happy about not committing to others and free flowing.Seriously, I was celebrating having these feelings and I guess that is why I was enjoying myself so much on that tour.

Here’s Tyler feeling zajebiscie:

The first car that stopped for me offered me sex for money. I said thank you and they went away. Same happened with the second car. The third one wasn’t even a car, just some cowboy coming out of the bushes and trying to convince me to just give him a blowjob, really nothing else. Oh great, that sounds so much better than the other two offers! [joke; really: joke.]

I looked at the road, said to myself:¬†if I don’t stop anybody during that wave of cars, I’ll go to the toilet and right after¬†a pickup truck stopped by¬†me. The guy inside seemed weird, not scary though; as in: he was a little bit off, yet I did not feel the threat of him hurting me in any way. We chatted for two minutes and I asked if I could send his place to my mom [to Josh], as I still got a weird vibe from him. He wasn’t too happy, he agreed though. I took my time, waiting for him to react, making sure I press ‘send’ before I get into the car. I was hesitating for a little bit too long, so I decided to just shut the phone and step into¬†the vehicle¬†quickly.

‘Wait’ he says, ‘there’s a police car behind us’.

And indeed there was.

The cop came to us, and started asking questions about the situation. He was very obviously checking, if I wasn’t a prostitute and I didn’t take that as an insult, more as him knowing his area (‘mind you the three cowboys). In the end he asked us to present our documents, he took them away and wasn’t coming for a while.

Me and the weird guy in a cowboy hut (somebody told me in Mississippi: never trust a guy in a hut and yet I ignored – not forgot – it, as it was damn hot and I wanted to get to Lubbock sooner than later) started chatting, my feeling about him was not changing and really, just for a moment, I didn’t even care about it. I started panicking about my passport, my visa, something was taking that cop a long time, something wasn’t right.

Finally the policeman comes back, gives the guy his driver’s license back and when I want to reach for my papers, he asks me to step out of the vehicle. My heart’s beating even faster.¬†I follow the cop¬†to his car, he’s in front of me, very serious and silent. For a few seconds there I am¬†panicking about getting deported.¬†Once we’re by the car, he turns around, looks at me and asks:

‘What makes you trust that man?’

‘I don’t trust him’ I answer straight away, ‘I can’t trust him, I have just met him. And he’s weird but I don’t think he would hurt me’.

The policemen looks at me (now I see: his face says WORRIED),¬†‘I don’t want to tell you to do or not to do anything, but I have a piece of information I have to share with you and you will decide whether you want to go with that men or not’.

I agree, relieved it’s not about my documents.

‘That guy has spent 5 years in jail’ starts the cop and my mouth opens immediately, ‘for sexual harassment’ he continues, my jaw goes lower, ‘on a 6 years old boy’ he finishes – my chin goes even lower.

‘Fuck! I knew he was weird!’ I say in theatrical yelling sort of whisper, ‘but it’s very hot, I’m very late and I need to keep on going…’ I see in the guy’s eyes he won’t just leave me there, so I play it cool, ‘I guess I’m outside of his age or gender preference’ I joke. The cop doesn’t smile. ‘…I guess I will not go with him though, I’m a chick, I need to play it safe’.

The policemen offers to get my things, tell the guy off and then help me with my travel.¬†After he brings my backpack and the guitar, we hit the road. He calls somebody and tells them I’m with him, going to Lubbock. He can only take me to the end of the county, as he’s on shift here, so he needs somebody else to take me further away. We talk a bit, he turns out to be actually a laid back dude.

He brought me to another policeman, who turned out to be his dad. Another great ride, he was so sweet. Then he got me another police car for another county. The last cop dropped me off on a gas station, insisted on me accepting some lunch money and gave me a Lampasas police pen which disappeared very soon. Aaargh, that would be such a cool souvenir!

That day the universe fell on my head to save me.
I was so close to making my first mistake about whom to get into a car with.
You may say  I have made that mistake, I was already in the vehicle. Yes, and no. I took his plates, I was watching his every move, I knew he had an off vibe and I had my hand on the knife for all the time that I was in his car.
Also maybe I wasn’t wrong – maybe he would not hurt me. He didn’t seem as if he’d wanted to. Again: I might have just not be in his type – a girl, and such an old one… Come on, it is a little bit funny!

Anyway. Thank you, Universe.

From there I’ve got a direct ride to Lubbock, where I was staying with Tyler’s friend Schmoo). My last lift was a guy whose name I’ve already forgotten (it’s not my most popular story), he was going to visit his son in College in Colorado. He told me about a 19 years old boy called¬†Jacob Lavaro, a friend of his son’s. Lavaro¬†used to bake hash brownies for him and his friends until one April day that the cops got him and now they’re pressing charges against him for the entire weight of brownies (400 instead of just weed’s worth. He was facing 10 years to lifetime in jail. Apparently a nice guy, good student, polite kid with a lot of friends. Not a dealer, just a user; facing mandatory minimum of 10 years for really just getting stoned with buddies; by eating cake. That’s the least gangsta use of drugs¬†anybody has ever heard of and yet they were treating him like a criminal.

I followed the story. Attorney Mark Brunner said ‘As prosecutors¬†we are bound by what the law is, not what the law should be or could be.’ and the law says that adulterants and diluents count as the drug mixture; luckily Brunner changed his mind about that later on¬†and dropped the charges for a first-degree felony; Lavaro was being¬†charged with two lesser felonies: marijuana buds + hash oil (the latest much more serious in Texas).

In the end it wasn’t that bad. In October Jacob¬†pleaded guilty to second-degree felony in exchange for 7 years of probation.

How can one get into so much trouble for something which is a fully legal business in other parts of the same country? Alaska, Oregon, Colorado, Washington, D.C. Look at Texas! Houston and Dallas decriminalized possession of weed.

Oh, have I just fit in a third story here? Yes, I have. If you’ve made it that far, you deserve a prize. Even if you just scrolled it and read these words here – the prize’s yours.¬†Watch this:

 

 

Austin – Lubbock pt.1 – How the Universe saved me