photo credit: Automania

I’ve heard that everything in Texas is BIG- obviously this includes their spiderwebs. Thousands of different spiders have built a 200-yard web in a Texas state park. There is an analogy here, weaving its way around in my head, that I haven’t quite fleshed out yet. It seems that despite their capitalistic, I mean cannibalistic nature, these spiders are working together. Most likely, their motivation is a steady food supply. It’s basic survival right? On the other hand, this collaborative arachnoid effort could indicate an understanding that sometimes eludes us Homo sapiens. Individual survival is not necessarily at odds with community prosperity.

I’m going to make a little jump (stay with me) to a recent study on fair use. This study suggests that fair use industries “generate substantial revenue, employ millions of workers, and, in 2006, represented one-sixth of total U.S. GDP.” Assuming that this research is reliable, I see a parallel between the spiders’ web and the issue of copyright. Is it reasonable to say that copyright protects the individual (or group of individuals) while fair use supports the community? If so, where is our 200-yard web, our collaborative effort? Creative Commons has an idea- here’s one of their videos to explain it.