2 days ago Tom Cully posted this status on his MySpace page:
"please do not take my pictures and videos and post them on to other websites, this is one reason i keep my privacy settings so high.” Mood: annoyed
A few of you wrote wondering what I thought about this. Thank you for your notes. I didn't answer right away, because I wanted to think about it. I don't have a MySpace page or any way to ASK Tom what he means. Only HE could really answer that.
I don't think he is referring to photos taken while he was in Libera or while he is now working for Libera as Assistant Sound Technician. He obviously knows those pictures are being taken by fans, and he smiles and poses for them. I think he doesn't want his PRIVATE pictures taken and posted (like the ones that only his friends can see), and he doesn't want his new song videos put up on YouTube by other people.
I've seen a few people who took his MySpace profile picture and made it their avatar. He may not like that. But I think his biggest concern is videos on YT that have the actual recordings of Tom's songs, pictures (these look very private) and videos. I'm not sure what this fan's motivation is for doing this. While they ARE really good advertisements for Tom, if the real Tom wants to post stuff on YouTube, he can do it himself. I wish he would. :)
Tom has the potential to be very successful in music, but he's still only 16. Now he has to deal with fans without the protective umbrella of Libera. And now that he's advertising himself on MySpace, it opens him up to fans more than ever. Someday he may even have the paparazzi chasing him. :) I like the way Ben Crawley handles himself. Stay warm and friendly with your fans, but keep your private stuff private. Only let your friends see your private pics, and know who your real friends are.
Tom took his songs down over a month ago saying that he's going to put out an LP in 3 months that we can buy. I hope that he is copywriting all of his songs. There ARE people who would like to steal his intellectual property and claim it as their own. And he shouldn't sign anything without a good lawyer. Think Paul McCartney. :)
As fans, we should just keep supporting him. He's very talented and learning all he can in school. And in return we'll get to hear his new music when he puts it out.
Update: On Dec. 5, 2010 Tom updated his MySpace status again saying, "one example of how pictures are being misused" and gives a link to a Korean blog. "Mood: angry" Well, now we know what he's talking about. Overly zealous fans have somehow gotten his private pictures (which look like pictures my friends and I put up on Facebook) and put them on a public blog. I'm very sorry about this. Hopefully these "fans" will see his message, remove his private pictures and be more careful next time about what they post.
As a fans we walk on a very fine line. I have gotten Libera pictures that I've chosen not to post. It's hard to explain. Let's just say that they were on tour but did not know their picture was being taken, so I chose not to post those. These pictures of Tom are a step beyond that. The Korean blog may not be the one that broke into his MySpace or FB (if he has one). They may have gotten them from somewhere else that also got them from somewhere else. It may be other kids at his school that are posting them. Who knows? But each of us must be careful not to spread them around and respect his privacy.
Update #2: On December 6 the Korean blog that Tom mentioned posted this message in English: "I feel deeply sorry Libera. I promise that I am going to close my blog and make an apology to all of you. Tom, One of these days I will apologise to you, Libera and all the fans of you."
I feel badly for this blogger. He/she is probably a big fan of Libera and just went too far in their enthusiasm. They may be just a kid, too. Now they know what is and is not acceptable. I'm all for learning from our mistakes and forgiving each other.