The artists are revolting, and you can take my meaning however you choose. Popstar legend Prince has threatened to sue YouTube, eBay, and The Pirate Bay for illegally trafficking in his videos. His Purpleness is complaining that YouTube has no problem filtering out porn but seems unable to stop the flood of Prince videos available on the site. (I think the solution is simple: Prince should only do porn.)
Prince's handlers -- presumably the ones who OK'd his name change to that unpronounceable symbol in the mid-1990s -- are touting this as yet another brilliant innovation by the Minneapolis-born artist formerly known to his parents as Rogers Nelson. I dunno. It's been 23 years since Purple Rain and the man is now a Vegas lounge act. I think at this point in his career he'd want the attention more than the cash. (Then again, I just advised him to go into the adult video biz, so what do I know?)
Following in Prince's small yet deftly choreographed footsteps, the Village People are also threatening to sue the viral video site after YouTubers posted videos featuring Adolph Hitler goose-stepping his way to "YMCA." Apparently the former leader of the Third Reich is not a gay icon. (Let's see... Cowboy, Cop, Construction Worker, Indian Chief, Sailor, Leather Queen -- damn, we forgot the Nazi!) The fact the songwriters are Jewish only adds to the furor, if not the Fuehrer.
Sure, artists have the right to protect their work, and nobody sane wants to be associated with mass murdering madmen. But the notion that someone is watching YouTube instead of dropping $20 on a Prince disc is a bit absurd. And done well, video mashups can breathe new life into old and/or stale content. To quote the Princester himself:
Honey I know, I know, I know times are changing
It's time we all reach out 4 something new
That means u 2