Parody: Affective Registers, Amateur Aesthetics and Intellectual Property

Esther Milne

Abstract


If contemporary media platforms transform and conflate the relations between professional and amateur creative workers, what might we say about the specificity of their vernacular? This article argues that parody is a key site for the articulation of amateur labour enabled by new patterns of networked production and consumption. Despite its utopian promise of free speech, however, the parodic form is tempered by economic and legal exigencies. Therefore, the essay particularly investigates legislative and policy frameworks that constrain parody discourse. Amendments in 2006 to the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth), for example, introduced parody and satire defences allowing greater scope for social critique. Yet recent US legislation preventing online impersonation (such as mock twitter accounts) raises crucial questions about the public domain.


Keywords


parody, new media, labour, copyright

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