Simon Vansintjan on Mirlo

Simon Vansintjan introduces Mirlo, an open-source platform for musicians emphasizing direct artist support and community engagement.

Listen at :studio_microphone:


I appreciated hearing about this project. I feel aligned in many respects about the use of FLO software and the value of cooperative businesses and the challenges of getting started without investment funding…

That said, my personal view is that the language of β€œbuy” and β€œown” and the premise about proprietary music is no better than it is in the world of software. Everyone listening to music on the internet is getting a copy of some music already, and the issues that arise with controlling how people use their copies are many. For one thing, it brings up issues about software freedom to do things to limit the way people access and use music files. Many assumptions about creative freedom are also baked into the idea of buying music.

Suffice to say, I urge Mirlo and anyone else involved in this space to at least be more explicit about the assumptions, to acknowledge that a business is built on these premises. We should not accept proprietary music as an unquestioned obvious premise. And if we can, we should find ways to economically support creative work that are not in conflict with free/libre/open creative freedoms. We need direct artist support and community engagement indeed, and we ought to build that in ways that do not incentivize musicians reserving-all-rights. We need funding mechanisms that work just as well when people embrace freedoms and sharing.