The provocative title of her TEDxMaastricht talk gives some indication of where graphic artist Nina Paley is coming from. She says she has decided to remove herself from the “permission culture” of copyright altogether and simply uses any art she feels suits the current piece she is working on. This seems to me to be extremely empowering and liberating on a personal and artistic level, however I don’t see the concept of simply not recognising copyright standing up in court, which is presumably where she is going to end up having to defend her actions, if she hasn’t already. I think her point is that the more people that ignore copyright altogether, the less power it is going to ultimately have over us. However those most interested in copyright are usually not artists, but lawyers and businesspeople for whom it is a way of making money, and they are not likely to stop respecting it any time soon.
She makes the very good point that those most defensive of their own copyright are those who most insistently force their symbols into the public consciousness (reminding me of the great Sean Tejaratchi rant popularised by Banksy, “Advertising Shits In Your Head“).