Hey, may be you are a writer too and you are asking. What impact can this act of releasing my novel with a creative commons have? You may think this is very little but am telling you it is a lot. This is just the beginning for me and it might be a start for you. Now imagine if we were 10 or 50. It would begin turning heads, Right?. Just look around you again and you might notice it began long time ago. Those numbers were passed long time ago and I pity anybody who tries to stand against it.

I know of two cultural structures that were put under test during the colonial period. The first one being, the iron smelting industry. These were guys who made iron implements like spears and all those iron equipments. These people were were highly specialised artists and the knowledge of the craft was guarded jealously and usually handed from father to son. The other, was the entertainers (musicians and story tellers), these did their craft in open view. In fact this was the way to go if they ever wanted to get something out of their crafts. They were paid after performances unless it was an arranged affair. Now, they all came under attack and one industry nearly disappeared of the face of Africa. No prizes for guessing on that one. Now somebody might say, the entertainers were not attacked but my dear there is more to the picture and it is even more complicated. The industry that fared relatively well is still under attack. Just listen to your radio, watch your TV, go on the net and you will understand what am trying to say when we are talking about African content.

Back to my point, the story teller or singer was paid during or after his presentation. He didn’t tell people not to repeat his stories/songs. It was due to this factor that they were liked. For the singer, the more people sang the songs, the more popular he got. Up coming musicians copied the songs, sung them and went on to be more creative by building on what was available. And now we have music genres whose roots come from real African music. I pity people who got shocked when they hear rock n roll. In Africa, we have music whose BPM is faster and whose sound is harsher than that of rock. All we lack is the amplifiers and head banging speakers. And that’s what has held us back. We have the individual ideas and little technology to catapult us forward. My view is, we pool the ideas together and when combined with the little technology we can access, we shall all forward. It’s better than sitting on our verandas and saying if I only had this and that.

I like this idea of e-slates and 100 dollar laptops being brought into Africa, It’s obvious in a few years a lot of focus is going to be put on Africa’s need to leap technological forward. The idea of chidlren having access to these digital gadgets is very necessary will but it will have to be realistic. These kids just like us need to read a lot to catch up. I hope some book of mine will be on the menu for these young minds. The idea of some child grazing his father’s cows while reading my book makes me smile.

I don’t know what artist would like to do his work and lock it in his room so that people can’t see it. The lock (room, computer system or whatever lock man has come up with) in this field is very disadvantageous.
As for me, I want to be that story teller in the middle of the village gathering, trying my best to get some attention. I want to be that singer whose song can have some extra life in the village. All I have is the story, all I have the song. My readers/listeners decide for themselves and that is the reason why.

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