After 10 years the original mashup messageboard, Get Your Bootlegs On (GYBO) is to close, citing the SurfTheChannel case as a reason. Personally this is very upsetting to me – GYBO has been mentioned on this blog many times over the years as it’s how I first became part of the mashup (then bootlegs or bastard pop) community. It’s where I first talked to many of the people involved in mashups, made many friends and where I first posted my rather sorry first attempts in 2003. It’s where DJNoNo and Instamatic was born. Even 10 years later I still frequented the place, one of the few old hands to do so….it was picking up in recent weeks too.
But on a wider level there were a lot of firsts – the first mashup forum, the first mashup album (London Booted), I think the first mashup compilation album (I Created A Monster), the first crowdsourced continous mashup (Boot In 60 Second, *cough* and 72), and the first place that many now-well known mashup artists I think posted (or came to wider prominence) – from Go Home Productions to DJ Zebra to Loo & Placido to DJ Earworm to Thriftshop XL and many many more. The first mashup parties were already going as King of the Boots but pretty sure that GYBO and Boom Selection’s description about these wild parties helped them along with a Bastard namechange. And Adrian from A+D has written about how GYBO and the mashups therein inspired and helped Bootie early on and even now.
You might not know the GYBO name, but sure as fuck you know the people who came from it.
On a bigger global scale this shows the problem with cases like SurftheChannel or TVShack – going after those who link to copyrighted content, rather than those who host it has chilling effects on other sites and places – ones far more creative than the sites allowing you to download Expendables 2 or Breaking Bad or whatever. The precedent has been set – unless you are massive like Google and make any revenue – or even if you don’t – just linking to disputed content is seen as a potential jail term. Which might seme clear cut when you’ve got someone hosting the whole Star Wars series, but less so if it’s a mashup, remix or ‘transformative use’. Although a world away in creative qualities – it’s not the original track anymore and many artists appreciate that – in the UK and many other places law hasn’t been updated to include those who create parodies, those who create transformative works especially those not for profit, and even those who post a picture of their baby with the radio playing a Prince track.
So yes the law is a dumb ass, or more like a sledgehammer to crack a nut and this is why we can’t have nice things, because people are now scared of getting sued or imprisoned for just *linking* to content…the very idea of the internet is starting to unfurl under the might of Hollywood. Look at the farce that is Megaupload to see how crazy it’s become.
Anyway RIP GYBO and all that sailed in you. *Salutes* All the kittens and mongs on a mongboard will be missed.