In 1948 the United Nations published the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Of the many vital and life-affirming rights enumerated in this document, one particular section caught my eye recently.
(2) Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author.
This statement is relevant today as work-a-day musicians/creators try to find a way forward in the age of Google. It's reminiscent of Article I, Section 8 of the US Constitution, which states:
[Congress shall have the power...] To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.
What's particularly interesting to me is that the UN document not only specifically mentions the protection of "artistic production(s)" but also, by virtue of the fact that it's mentioned within the context of this document, counts that protection as a human right. The wording further specifies what is to be protected, namely the "moral and material interests." The material interest part seems pretty clear. That's the money. But I'm really intrigued by the moral interest.
I wonder what they meant by that?