Here’s a quick text on the face value of art that I put together for our Indiegogo campaign. What do you think? Is the analogy with the face value of fiat currencies sound, or does it need work?
What’s the relation between creative works and money? A bank note is generally valuable. Not because the paper it’s printed on is valuable (it’s not), nor because it’s unique. It’s valuable because it is backed by a government that guarantees your ability to pay taxes and other debts with its face value. If there’s some level of trust in the government and its central bank, people will generally that the value of a bank note or coin is its face value. Internationally, the reputation of a government and its people reflects the ability of a government to borrow money. When there’s a lack of trust in either direction, things tend to go from bad to worse.
Similarly, a work of art doesn’t have an intrinsic value in the digital world: the bits it’s composed of are not expensive, and every work can be easily replicated at the wink of an eye for practically no cost. Yet, a work of art has a face value, a value that’s separate from it’s physical form. It has a value to its’ creator because the work builds the creators reputation. It can lead to more people discovering the creators art, commissions, donations, grants, and other advantages.
That’s why attribution is important: it adds to the face value of a work of art and contributes to the global artistic reputation system. Thank you for your contribution to our activities encouraging attribution!