[click image to play video in Windows Media Player; 31 meg, 0:12:09]
My piece takes a critical look at Hurricane Katrina and the U.S. government’s response following the disaster. In the introduction to the piece, I draw upon historic images of New Orleans and use lively jazz music to create a vivid picture of the richness of the city prior to the hurricane. The mood of the piece takes a quick turn as the hurricane approaches the city, leaving death, destruction, and despair in its wake. As the piece continues, I use images, music, and video clips from the mainstream media to construct a timeline of events following the disaster. I conclude that the hurricane exposed large gaps in government policy, adding to American’s heightened distrust in government and pointing to a need for ideological revisions to public policy. This piece is a thoughtful example of how still pictures, video, and music can combine to deliver a message in a way much more rhetorically powerful than any one type of media alone.
When I show my piece to friends, colleagues, and family, they are apt to ask, “Where did you find all those beautiful pictures?” or “Where did you get those video clips?” The reply to this question comes with a bit of hesitation and a half-smile: “The Internet.”
I am protected by Fair Use as a student who created this piece for a class assignment. The lines, however, get a bit blurry when my piece is published. At what point am I no longer protected under Fair Use, given the fact that many of the images, songs, and video are copyright protected?
If the journal my piece is published in is academic, does that give my piece continued protection when published as an original work? Further, if I do not directly profit monetarily from my piece being published, and the journal I am published in is online and free-of-charge, it seems as though no direct profit is to be made by any of the parties. Although I hold true to the power and potential or the fair and open use of multiple media, I still have doubts about how my work is interpreted under the law when published.