Tomorrow Is National Book Burning Day; Thank Your Friendly Entertainment Industry Lobbyists

from the burn-baby-burn dept

January 1st of each year should be National Public Domain Day, when many different creative works enter the public domain, where they can be made useful. In years past, it was a regular occurrence as tons of creative works went into the public domain each year. Often this was by choice on the part of the copyright holder. That's because copyright used to have a renewal requirement, and the vast majority of copyright holders found little reason to renew their copyright. In 1958-59, only 7% of book copyright holders chose to renew their copyrights, meaning that 93% of books that could have been covered by copyright were allowed to enter the public domain. The small number that did have their copyrights renewed were (not surprisingly) the books that were still huge commercial successes, whose authors and publishers wished to retain their monopoly rights.

But a change happened in 1976 in the US, with the adoption of a new Copyright Act that not only took away the renewal setup, but also made very lengthy copyrights automatic on works. Add to that continued copyright extension at the urging of the entertainment industry lobbyists, and we haven't had an actual Public Domain Day in ages -- and many of us may never see another one in our lifetimes. Considering the incredible value that the public domain has on our culture, this is a huge culture killer.

James Boyle is noting that, assuming he would have renewed his copyright, tomorrow is the day that Ray Bradbury's Farenheit 451 would have gone into the public domain under the law as it was before 1976. But now it won't be. Instead of the "book burning" found in that book, we've created a different kind of book burning. Thanks to lawyers, lobbyists and politicians, we've locked up a massive number of works that should be available for all, and the vast majority of which are available for none.
Unlike Fahrenheit 451, the vast majority of the culture swept into this 20th century black hole, was not commercially available and, in most cases, the authors are unknown. The works are locked up -- with no benefit to anyone -- and no one has the key that would unlock them. We have cut ourselves off from our own culture, left it to molder -- and in the case of nitrate film, literally disintegrate -- with no benefit to anyone. The works may not be physically destroyed -- although many of them are; disappearing, disintegrating, or simply getting lost in the vastly long period of copyright to which we have relegated them. But for the vast majority of works and the vast majority of citizens who do not have access to one of our great libraries, they are gone as thoroughly as if we had piled up the culture of the 20th century and simply set fire to it; and all this right at the moment when we could have used the Internet vastly to expand the scope of cultural access. Bradbury's firemen at least set fire to their own culture out of deep ideological commitment, vile though it may have been. We have set fire to our cultural record for no reason; even if we had wanted retrospectively to enrich the tiny number of beneficiaries whose work keeps commercial value beyond 56 years, we could have done so without these effects. The ironies are almost too painful to contemplate.
And, of course, it's not just Bradbury's book that is still locked up. Among the many things that would have/should have gone into the public domain tomorrow are Marilyn Monroe's Playboy cover, JD Salinger's Nine Stories and Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel, Casino Royale. But, again, it's not these works that we should really be mourning. It's the other works that no one really has access to any more. What a shame.


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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Dec 31st, 2009 @ 7:55pm

    Not entirely sure what the shame is. You can still enjoy the books, you can still read them, you can see many of them as movies that have been made.

    What did I miss? Is it the ability to profit from others work by reselling public domain material? Is it the ability to write "extension" books or abuse the characters in a different manner?

    It isn't like the works are locked up and not available, it's not like the copies of those books and other works have all been recalled and destroyed.

    Me thinks this one is more about whining, and less about anything truly lost.

     

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    Mal, Dec 31st, 2009 @ 8:12pm

    Re:

    Problem is, that's not true with everything. Some works aren't available, or are very hard/expensive to get a hold of for one reason or another. Perhaps the copyright holder doesn't want to make it available for purchase, for one reason or another. Perhaps we don't know who the copyright holder is.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 31st, 2009 @ 8:16pm

    Re:

    So what about all of those classic Disney movies based on existing works that were in the public domain? Pinnochio, Peter Pan, Cinderella... I guess Walt Disney was just reselling public domain material.

    How about all those movies based on Shakespeare plays? Countless have been made. I guess they have all profited off of other's work as well.

    And anything based off of Greek, Roman, or other mythologies? Someone must have written them. So I guess people have been writing "extensions" and abusing those characters as well.

    I guess we should recall and destroy all of that, because obviously only completely new creations should be allowed. Anything that retells or expands existing works should be shunned and destroyed. Just think of those poor original creators great-great-great-(great-great-great...)-grandchildren.

     

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    Big Al, Dec 31st, 2009 @ 9:23pm

    Re:

    But of course in Anti-Mike's two-dimensional world, derivative works and/or re-imaginings are just theft from the original author. And of course, that no longer matters since any out-of-print or obscure books that could enrich the culture of current generations are just allowed to quietly disappear, locked up by the copyright maximalists. But what the heck, we still have the latest Hollywood blockbuster to go and see. Talk about bread and circuses...

     

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    OHHHH CANADA, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:16am

    1960 is free

    and so canada enters the public domain of the 60's

    ENJOY

     

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    The Anti-Anti-Mike, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:18am

    Anti-Mike, deluded as usual.

    "Not entirely sure what the shame is. You can still enjoy the books, you can still read them, you can see many of them as movies that have been made."

    Sadly, that is far from true for many works, especially older ones. As well, only someone who lacks experience and wisdom would truly believe that a movie is the same as having access to the original source material, such as a book for instance. Such a statement from you makes one wonder just how young you truly must be to honestly believe such a thing, if such belief really is honest and sincere of course.

    "What did I miss? Is it the ability to profit from others work by reselling public domain material? Is it the ability to write "extension" books or abuse the characters in a different manner?"

    Isn't that what the copyright maximalists have already been doing for many years now? Disney comes to mind for example and there have been countless others over the past century. Why is it alright for only a privileged few to benefit from older works but not everyone else? The only answer I can think of that makes any sense is the old axiom that knowledge is power. Those who can successfully set themselves up as the gatekeepers of knowledge and culture will be the ones in control of that power, the most common use historically being to rewrite history and destroy despised ideologies. Do you honestly believe this is something humanity as a race should be striving for?

    "It isn't like the works are locked up and not available, it's not like the copies of those books and other works have all been recalled and destroyed."

    History shows us that knowledge, wisdom, and culture, the very foundation of civilization, can very quickly be destroyed and quite possibly lost forever. Humanity has an amazing capacity for self-delusion. We spend the better part of our lives ignoring just how vulnerable we really are and how short life truly is. In order to cope, we convince ourselves that all the things we fear couldn't possibly happen. This is a huge mistake. Everything dies, that is unavoidable reality. There are no exceptions to this rule. It doesn't take a genius to figure out just how much knowledge and wisdom has already been lost to the ages. So while you may truly believe nothing has been lost or ever could be, it wouldn't change the fact that you would be wrong. The more we share with one another, the greater the chances are that our collective knowledge, wisdom, and culture will survive.

    "Me thinks this one is more about whining, and less about anything truly lost."

    If you could travel back in time and ask people from any of the many civilizations that have long since passed into history whether they believed their way of life could ever end some day (in some cases instantly), what do you think the overwhelming majority would tell you? Nobody ever walks in the rain believing they will be struck by lighting. The things furthest from our mind are often the very dangers we should be the most vigilant and least complacent against.

     

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    mike allen (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:30am

    the publishers

    publishers are the ones to blame here they take books out of print so you have no chance of getting them unless you bget a used copy.
    If today tou had "public domain day" Google would have them digitised for the world to read far better than publishers keeping them locked away.

    Same thing will happen with music.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:40am

    Anti-Mike, you are a moron.

    No, I take that back. You are so far beyond a moron, morons worship you as a fucking GOD!!!

    The Epic of Gilgamesh. The tales of Homer. The Irish Ulster cycles. The great myths of the Norse and the Greeks and the Romans. The Saga of Beowulf. The Arthurian legends. Shakespeare and Chaucer and such. These have survived for hundreds, and in some cases thousands, of years. Because they we out in the public. People told and retold these stories thousands of times, building upon the tales and adding to them, enriching them. As a result, these have remained with us, inflaming our imagination, to this day.

    Not any more. Now, works are locked down. Restricted. People are forbidden from retelling them, from enriching them as our ancestors did.

    Modern works are not going to have the durability that the tales and legends I mentioned today.

    2,000 years from now, those myths and legends will still be around. But, today's will not. The 20th and 21st centuries will be looked back as a creative wasteland. People will not remember Farenheit 451. Or Catcher in the Rye. Or Casino Royale. Or Harry Potter. They will be lost works, locked down and forgotten by copyright. The same ability to retell and build upon stories that, say the Arthurian legends possessed. The very thing that allowed those stories to endure has been forbidden by today's society.

    The modern myths like Mickey Mouse and Superman and Spider-Man will die. Be buried by copyright and restrictions.

    We have depriving future generations of incredible creativity and wonderful stories. We are creating a vacuum, a wasteland. And you are stupid enough to not only go along with it, but to support it.

    I weep.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:41am

    Anti-Mike, you are a moron.

    No, I take that back. You are so far beyond a moron, morons worship you as a fucking GOD!!!

    The Epic of Gilgamesh. The tales of Homer. The Irish Ulster cycles. The great myths of the Norse and the Greeks and the Romans. The Saga of Beowulf. The Arthurian legends. Shakespeare and Chaucer and such. These have survived for hundreds, and in some cases thousands, of years. Because they we out in the public. People told and retold these stories thousands of times, building upon the tales and adding to them, enriching them. As a result, these have remained with us, inflaming our imagination, to this day.

    Not any more. Now, works are locked down. Restricted. People are forbidden from retelling them, from enriching them as our ancestors did.

    Modern works are not going to have the durability that the tales and legends I mentioned today.

    2,000 years from now, those myths and legends will still be around. But, today's will not. The 20th and 21st centuries will be looked back as a creative wasteland. People will not remember Farenheit 451. Or Catcher in the Rye. Or Casino Royale. Or Harry Potter. They will be lost works, locked down and forgotten by copyright. The same ability to retell and build upon stories that, say the Arthurian legends possessed. The very thing that allowed those stories to endure has been forbidden by today's society.

    The modern myths like Mickey Mouse and Superman and Spider-Man will die. Be buried by copyright and restrictions.

    We have depriving future generations of incredible creativity and wonderful stories. We are creating a vacuum, a wasteland. And you are stupid enough to not only go along with it, but to support it.

    I weep.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 1:31am

    Re:

    Irritating, isn't he?

    You don't need to get so annoyed by him, though, because what he's doing is obvious.

    He's just disagreeing with Mike on any grounds he can. Even he can't agree with everything he's saying (he contradicts himself from time to time), in a vain attempt to sow dissent.

    People like him just exist, you know. They get off by bitching and arguing and annoying, as long as the internet hides who they are.

    I bet he also goes to Linux support forums and tells them how shit their work is (because he must be a devoted Windows user), and possibly on musicians' websites and tells them how much he hates their music.

    The only way to deal with such people is to ignore them. When they realise nobody is paying attention to them, they just go away.

     

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    Richard (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 2:48am

    Re:

    It isn't like the works are locked up and not available, it's not like the copies of those books and other works have all been recalled and destroyed.

    WRONG! Actually the copyright holders often do this.
    RCA used the master disks of all their old 78 rpm recordings as hardcore when they built a new building.

    The BBC taped over several early episodes of DR Who (including the classic "Tenth Planet" in which the Doctor regenerates for the first time). They are now desperate to find someone who ILLEGALLY taped that episode off air - but sadly video recorders were very rare in the 1960's.

    With copyright you are reliant on the rightsholder to maintain copies - if they don't for whatever reason then YOU don't have the right to do it for them - unless you are willing to break the law.

    Before you say "but you just keep the copies you already have safe" I would like to remind you that modern media are too fragile to last the ridiculously term of copyright. AS Mike pointed out old film stock decays quite easily, modern books are printed on acidic paper which won't last and no CD is more than about 30 years old - so we don't actually know if they will last to life+70 - and as for DRM'd stuff well......

    Nature knows that it makes sense to make new copies every 20-30 years - that is why we have children.

    The old US 28 year term was about right...

     

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    Yogi, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 3:18am

    Re:

    The thing is - culture is not really created by individuals, it is always a common effort.

    Refusing to recognize this, while abusing the very society and culture from which creativity is itself born and sustained, is the height of selfishness and , in this case stupidity.

    Surely, you do not wish to appear selfish and stupid?

    Unless you really are selfish and stupid, in which case none of this should be bothering you, just like it does not bother your employers.

     

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    Vincent Clement, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 6:17am

    Re:

    You missed the fact that Walt Disney took stories in the public domain and created movies out of them; many considered to be 'classics'. He promoted the progress of science and the useful arts. He set the foundation for what is the largest media and entertainment conglomerate in the world.

    But we don't need the public domain, right?

     

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    PaulT (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 6:47am

    Re:

    In short, orphaned works. Many books written at the same time as Bradbury's works are not commercially viable for release for one reason or another, or the copyrights involved are a maze that prevent them from being released.

    If the books were public domain, none of this would matter and even if no publisher would release them, they would be available from something like the Gutenberg Project. Because of copyrights, they're not available at all, and that's a crime for any work of art.

     

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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 7:47am

    Re: Re:

    Richard, exceptions make the point. Human error by the BBC (or stupidity by RCA) isn't something that you change all the rules to protect. Heck, they probably would have done the same thing anyway.

    With copyright you are reliant on the rightsholder to maintain copies

    Incorrect. You are as much of the process as anyone else. If you buy a book, keep it. Resell it to a used book seller. Give it away to someone who will read it. Pass it down from generation to generation. Treat it as the only copy left to mankind, and things are never lost.

    I have books that are more than 100 years old, passed down to me from my grandfather, who got the books originally from his father. For digital media, well, all I can say is every 10 years or so, pull it up, make a copy, and reset the clock. Modern books? I would say complain to the companies putting them out and push to get them on paper that lasts. I have plenty of even "pulp" paperbacks that are more than 30 years old. I just reached back and pulled out a random paperback from one of the shelves, Heechee Rendezvois from Frederick Pohl... my printing is from 1984 (26 years old).


    Nature knows that it makes sense to make new copies every 20-30 years - that is why we have children.


    This is the funniest line of all. a few hundred years ago, our life expectancy was about 50 years, and typically women would be pregnant long before their 18th birthday. A generation was maybe 20 years. Today, we have women having children when they are 40 and even up to 60 years old. A generation is 60 to 80 years, and our life expectancy is about 75 years or so. As even nature changes, so do the laws we live by.

    Based on the current use of material (even TV stations running 25 year old shows) I would say that 28 year copyright isn't anywhere near long enough, certainly not in a digital world where the material may last forever.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:01am

    Re: Re: Re:

    For digital media, well, all I can say is every 10 years or so, pull it up, make a copy, and reset the clock
    Which, according to copyright maximalists, is illegal even if all you are doing is making a backup for private use.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:27am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "I have plenty of even "pulp" paperbacks that are more than 30 years old. I just reached back and pulled out a random paperback from one of the shelves, Heechee Rendezvois from Frederick Pohl... my printing is from 1984 (26 years old)."

    Well done. But, if that book is no longer in print, it is by definition rare. However many books that were printed are as many as there will EVER be. Copies will be eaten by dogs, burned in fires, thrown away and rot. They will become very rare, and therefore expensive to buy. Eventually, nobody but a few book collectors will ever get to read Pohl's words.

    Is this really the fate you want for every book that's not commercially viable enough to justify a reprint?

    "Based on the current use of material (even TV stations running 25 year old shows) I would say that 28 year copyright isn't anywhere near long enough, certainly not in a digital world where the material may last forever."

    Again, that's great for products that are currently commercially viable. What about the forgotten shows from that time - stuff that's of decent quality but never became hits? It took many years for two 80s movies by the underrated director Fred Dekker (Night Of The Creeps and The Monster Squad) to get a DVD release due to rights issues, and then only thanks to demand from a strong cult following. What about movies that never developed that cult following? Should we simply forget they were ever made?

    You're not only arguing for the deletion from history of every movie, TV show, song and book that's not reflective of the current popular fashion. You're also arguing for new works to be banned. Clash Of The Titans, There Will Be Blood, every production of Shakespeare's or Dickens' works, Moby's Play, Pride And Prejudice And Zombies, various episodes of The Simpsons based on Poe's or Homer's work, many adaptations of Sherlock Holmes including the new movie out now - none of these would exist in your world.

    That's not a world I want to live in, quite frankly.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:50am

    Re: Re:

    "Surely, you do not wish to appear selfish and stupid?"

    Intellectual property maximiss are selfish. What's your point? They wouldn't be intellectual property maximists if they weren't selfish.

     

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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 9:30am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    But you see, the choice of it is available or not comes back to the writer or the people he sold the rights to. It isn't for us to decide what they do with their works. In fact, I find it incredibly arrogant that anyone would think that they can dictate to an artist what they can and cannot do with their original work (master copy).

    There are plenty of artists who, at some time or another, destroy everything they have done to that point, slashing paintings, burning manuscripts, or trashing hard drives (the modern version). That is their prerogative as an artist.

    You're also arguing for new works to be banned. Clash Of The Titans, There Will Be Blood, every production of Shakespeare's or Dickens' works, Moby's Play, Pride And Prejudice And Zombies, various episodes of The Simpsons based on Poe's or Homer's work, many adaptations of Sherlock Holmes including the new movie out now - none of these would exist in your world.

    Not at all. I don't argue for copyright forever, just for a longer time than you consider acceptable. New technology is making most media viable for a much longer time. In theory, books published in an e-book format will be with us forever (unless someone loses all the bytes).

    You mention the Simpsons, which I think is a perfect example of why short copyright isn't exactly right. You said "The old US 28 year term was about right...", you understand that the Simpsons are going on year 20 now,right? There is some potential that they could end up running long enough that the original episodes in your world would be out of copyright, and further, the characters themselves could end up in the public domain, with hundreds or thousands of people turning out fake Simpsons cartoons (the technology isn't that difficult).

    The times are changing, in the same manner that the times changes from the 1700s. 28 years just doesn't cover it.

     

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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 9:32am

    Re: Re:

    All that would be required is for the author to have a "trigger" on his death, that says "on the day I die, I want all of my works not currently specifically under license to be moved to the public domain" and it could be done.

    Authors don't choose to do it. I wonder why?

     

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    PaulT (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 9:46am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "But you see, the choice of it is available or not comes back to the writer or the people he sold the rights to. It isn't for us to decide what they do with their works. In fact, I find it incredibly arrogant that anyone would think that they can dictate to an artist what they can and cannot do with their original work (master copy)."

    The artist in most of the cases I specified are dead, some so long that their bones are little more than dust. Nobody alive had anything to do with the creation of the work, and are not creating new works. Why should a lucky few hold on to pieces of our culture while the rest of it rots?

    "Not at all. I don't argue for copyright forever, just for a longer time than you consider acceptable. New technology is making most media viable for a much longer time. In theory, books published in an e-book format will be with us forever (unless someone loses all the bytes)."

    No, that's exactly what you're arguing. If the life of copyright is restricted to the physical life of the medium, then you're arguing for eternal copyright. Even so, eBooks won't be with us "forever", they will be with us just as long as a publisher is able to offer its DRM. Even then, this doesn't help books that don't have a publisher because the rights maze that has developed over the years prevents release.

    "There is some potential that they could end up running long enough that the original episodes in your world would be out of copyright, and further, the characters themselves could end up in the public domain, with hundreds or thousands of people turning out fake Simpsons cartoons (the technology isn't that difficult)."

    Bullshit. The Simpsons is still being produced, and copyright on the characters themselves is being maintained. it certainly is possible that episodes from the first series could be appropriated for other uses in a few years if the 28 year term was still in force. However, I'm sure that Fox and Groening still have trademarks and other non-copyright protections that would stop this happening. Even if not, the purpose of copyright would be to encourage new work. New Simpsons episodes are still being produced. Public domain would allow other animated series from the time that lacked the same longevity such as Family Dog and Duckman to be freely released, and allow contemporary shows to include their original music that's had to be deleted due to copyright.

     

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    Richard (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 9:46am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There is some potential that they could end up running long enough that the original episodes in your world would be out of copyright, and further, the characters themselves could end up in the public domain, with hundreds or thousands of people turning out fake Simpsons cartoons (the technology isn't that difficult).

    and why would that be a bad thing??????

    (Americans seem to keep their series going for faaaaaaaaaaar too long anyway good program makers know to stop while they're still good.)

     

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    PaulT (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 9:48am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Authors don't choose to do it. I wonder why?"

    Because they're not copyright lawyers and don't understand they have this option, or realise that it's necessary?

    Because the copyright rules have changed significantly after their deaths?

     

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    RD, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 10:20am

    The Idiot Speaks...

    "I have books that are more than 100 years old, passed down to me from my grandfather, who got the books originally from his father. For digital media, well, all I can say is every 10 years or so, pull it up, make a copy, and reset the clock. Modern books? I would say complain to the companies putting them out and push to get them on paper that lasts. I have plenty of even "pulp" paperbacks that are more than 30 years old. I just reached back and pulled out a random paperback from one of the shelves, Heechee Rendezvois from Frederick Pohl... my printing is from 1984 (26 years old)."

    But this is the ENTIRE problem you fucking idiot.

    You say "complain to the companies" as if they WILL do ANYTHING about it. The entire problem being discussed here is that these works get locked up by copyright and are either forgotten, not supported or offered for sale anymore. Its the LOSS of culture due to the RESTRICTION of copyright that is the issue, that you seem to be willfully and completely ignoring. There are several books I have had over the years that I can no longer get. Ditto TV shows, music, etc. The publishers DONT MAKE IT AVAILABLE, yet due to copyright, and the insane length of it, NO ONE ELSE can offer or make it available. That is a loss to everyone. Tying up works so that they disappear forever IS NOT WHAT COPYRIGHT WAS CREATED FOR. Do you get it yet?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 11:30am

    Re:

    Just get out. You're not even a very good troll; your whole bit is just "HURRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR N E TING MIEK SEZ IS RONG DURRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR". You're a waste of time, space, and bandwidth. Leave and don't come back.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 11:35am

    sharing is caring

    Truly great works will survive, copyright or not. Bittorrent and its bretheren will keep the copyright machine in check.

     

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    joe, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 11:52am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "I just reached back and pulled out a random paperback from one of the shelves, Heechee Rendezvois from Frederick Pohl... my printing is from 1984 (26 years old)."

    Look for it on Google (and spell it right). There are only around 6000 results! It is not for sale on Amazon. That book has been lost in time, because of copyright. The closest I got to seeing what it is, is on Google books (but it's snippet view, because of copyright).

    If it's released in the public domain, what are the chances I'll just be able to go online and read it? What are the chances there will be a surviving copy 500 years from now?

    "There are plenty of artists who, at some time or another, destroy everything they have done to that point, slashing paintings, burning manuscripts, or trashing hard drives (the modern version). That is their prerogative as an artist."

    Some of the greatest works were snatched from the hands of the artists right before they destroyed them. The artists can create, but is it really their prerogative to destroy? I think you should seriously rethink that position.

    Keep in mind -- as a result of living in an organised society, we have delegated the job of creating culture to a few individuals.

    "New technology is making most media viable for a much longer time."

    Why should the longevity of media be dictated by how it is stored? Culture has been turned into a business, but it is to the detriment of the common good. A balance needs to be struck between how long rights holders can exploit their work and at what point that work cannot belong to a single person. 28 years is a good number, and I support that it should be adhered to by everyone without a chance of revision.

    "There is some potential that they could end up running long enough that the original episodes in your world would be out of copyright, and further, the characters themselves could end up in the public domain, with hundreds or thousands of people turning out fake Simpsons cartoons (the technology isn't that difficult)."

    The old episodes would end up out of copyright, that is the footage, but not the characters or the Simpsons universe, as long as they are being actively exploited. To my knowledge, it costs about $200,000 to make an episode -- animation is difficult and expensive.

     

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  28.  
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    Marcus Carab (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 11:54am

    Re: Re: Re:

    But you have yet to explain why authors should be allowed such extensive and total ownership of content (that they have no natural control over, unless they keep it secret) in the first place.

    I know that's what you and others believe, so fine. Give me some sort of reasonable argument for why using copyright to treat creative works more and more like property is right, and why it makes any sense in terms of philosophy or economics or anything...

     

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  29.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:12pm

    Re: The Idiot Speaks...

    I went to Disney's website and I am trying to purchase a copy of Song of the South but it appears that I cannot.

    Why don't they want my money? Isn't that what corporations are supposed to do? Make money? I want to give them my money but they don't seem to want it. Disney did make Song of the South, right? Or did they? I can't remember.

     

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  30.  
    identicon
    joe, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:12pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Furthermore, there may be a class of works that can be shared by anyone (like public domain), but cannot be used for commercial purposes without a license (until the copyright expires).

    In other words, after 20 years all content automatically passes to a CC-like license and goes out of copyright after 30.

    That is, for me at least, the fairest solution.

     

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  31.  
    identicon
    Darren, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:22pm

    DraculaDotCom

    A great example of public domain work inspiring more creativity is Julie Hoverson's reworking Of Dracula over at 19 Nocturne Boulevard.

    She's updated the original way the story was told through letters to modern forms of communication like email and social networking sites.

    It's fun and really well done.

     

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  32.  
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    btr1701 (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:29pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    > There is some potential that they could end up running long
    > enough that the original episodes in your world would be out
    > of copyright, and further, the characters themselves could end
    > up in the public domain, with hundreds or thousands of people
    > turning out fake Simpsons cartoons

    Oh, the horror! Hell, if that happened, The Simpsons might actually be funny again.

     

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  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:41pm

    It's a good thing that The Great Gatsby was published in 1925 and the author, F. Scott Fitzgerald, died in 1940 with no apparent heirs, because otherwise Some Corporate Trust can't charge the public school system $500,000 a year in licensing fees.

    That's a good thing. It shows how well the copyright system works. What would happen if The Great Gatsby were to fall into the public domain?

    Anarchy. Cultural anarchy. It's so good that Some Corporate Trust can still make money off of Some Dead Artist.

     

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  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:42pm

    Re: Re: The Idiot Speaks...

    Wait, it's cool, I found a copy elsewhere. And it's free! How about them apples.

     

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  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 12:46pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    As an artist who gifts their work into the public domain, which I love so very much, I think it is asinine that other artists feel their own work was created in a cultural vacuum.

    Furthermore, why do corporations get to own creative work for centuries? That's dumb. A corporation has no incentive to ever let go of a creative work.

    Not yet. The future will not be very kind to the control freaks.

     

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  36.  
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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 1:16pm

    Re:

    *yawn*

    Everyone keeps hitting one example out of millions of works in the last 100 years.

    We cannot stop copyright holders from being greedy, nor can they pry their works out of hands and burn them.

    In the end, it's up to the artist (or whoever they have signed the right to), not any one of us. It's a generation diss thing again, respect the artists wishes even if they aren't what you want. Learn some respect.

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 1:21pm

    Re: Re:

    No. It's up to the public. Not corporations. Not artists. The public. Good luck in the future.

     

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  38.  
    identicon
    TDR, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 1:32pm

    Re: Re:

    And you have not addressed a single argument made thus far in this thread. Avoidance is not proving your point, rather the opposite. We know you're a shill, you know you're a shill. Just admit it and get it over with, TAM. You're not fooling anyone. Except maybe yourself.

     

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  39.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 1:55pm

    Re: Re:

    "Everyone keeps hitting one example out of millions of works in the last 100 years."

    One example's not enough for you (although I don't see any more thank one person mentioning Gatsby)? OK, let's try Dracula, Frankenstein, the Iliad, Dante's Inferno, Romeo & Juliet, Sense & Sensibility, Oliver Twist, The Divine Comedy, Journey To The Centre Of The Earth and Conan.

    The collected body of works based on just these titles alone since they fell into the public domain have enriched our society, culture and lives. A pity that you believe that this wasn't a good thing.

    "In the end, it's up to the artist (or whoever they have signed the right to), not any one of us."

    We're not arguing against the wishes of the artist. We're arguing against a system that changes the rules well after their deaths, in order to enrich descendants and corporations who had nothing to do with the creation of the art, at the expense of our culture. You have to be an idiot to think this is good.

     

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  40.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 1:56pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Of course, that should read:

    "I don't see any more than one person..."

     

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  41.  
    identicon
    Jerry in Detroit, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 2:19pm

    Restoring the balance

    There is a way to restore the balance that our current administration would love; After, say 10 years, levy a progressively increasing annual intellectual property tax. Mot importantly, the copyright would not expire so long as the itellectual property tax was paid.

    Profitable works would have no trouble paying the annual tax. The rest could be pay the tax either as a vanity or contribute the work to public domain.

    Our government would love this. Think of all the billions they could collect for adult orphans, Anthropogenic Sunspot Depletion or whatever.

     

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  42.  
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    NullOp, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 3:36pm

    Death

    Yep, this is basically another nail in America's coffin. We are rapidly becoming so profit oriented, greedy, we will eventually become unproductive all together.

     

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  43.  
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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 4:03pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Paul, where did I say that having works fall into the public domain is bad? It is only bad when it happens too quickly.

    Lifetime plus 70 years is probably too long. 28 years is much too short.

    We're arguing against a system that changes the rules well after their deaths, in order to enrich descendants and corporations who had nothing to do with the creation of the art, at the expense of our culture

    Sadly, in attempting to adjust the system to account for modern times, the length of copyright have been extended. It has happened a number of times since the original law was enacted. The durability of works produced in the last 50-80 years shows that the content still has value in it's original form, not tossed to the masses.

    The change of the length of copyright has happened before, and it may happen again. It keeps copyright in line with the usage of the products.

    Everyone rags on Disney, yet they can take out 70 year old content, digitally remaster it, and sell DVDs of the content in large numbers. It is still a valuable product. Why should they not have rights to it?

     

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  44.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 4:06pm

    Y'know what's fascinating here?

    1. Mike actually posts something defending the Public Domain, and reiterating the blatantly, self-evidently obvious fact that copy"right" was originally intended to only last for an extremely limited period of time. This shouldn't even BE controversial, except, of course, for the fact that silly little trolls like "The Anti-Mike" have been brainwashed into believing that copy"right" monopolies in perpetuity are some sort of fundamental right of human existence.

    Nope. The mere fact that the corporate media megaliths continue to BUY themselves ever-longer terms, necessarily means that ALL laws related to your precious monopoly privileges can be changed. The only type of "person" who really stands to benefit from the absurdly-long copy"right" terms currently on the books, are a few already-wealthy, multinational, corporate "persons" who can't even be satisfied with what they've ALREADY managed to buy, but just keep lobbying, and lobbying, and buying themselves ever more draconian, invasive bullshit.

    Fuck "Fair use". Fuck "first sale". Nope, the really important thing is making sure the "estates" of artists who've been dead for nearly a century can STILL squeeze revenue from any and all uses to which their (inherited) "property" is put.

    Think I'm exaggerating? The "Estate" of Margaret Mitchell attempted to have "the wind done Gone" suppressed. Thankfully, they were swatted down like the IP-troll VERMIN they were, and Y'know what? The book became a New York Times Best-seller.

    Why are any of you people actually bothering to "debate" this stupid little IP-fascist troll? He's either a corporate shill, or just too stupid to pull his head out of Jack Valenti's dead ass.

    Tell us, "Anti-Mike", was the VCR the equivalent of the Boston Strangler?

    Anybody who defends the current state of IP "law" is either an idiot, a troll, or a corporate tool.

    Simple as that, really.

     

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  45.  
    identicon
    Henry Emrich, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 4:15pm

    28 years is "too short?"

    Why?

    You *really* think major-label artists "deserve" to keep squeezing something they did two decades before? Nope. The biggest mistake when the Founding Fathers PERMITTED copy"right" in the first place, was allowing term-extensions, and renewals. If you haven't squeezed *something* out of it in the first seven years, you have absolutely no excuse continuing to monopolize it any further.

    Remember, "anti-Thought" (oops, I mean "anti-Mike), that the original *excuse* for copy"right" was as an INCENTIVE to further creativity --- NOT perpetual, passive income for already-wealthy corporate megaliths, and certainly not to provide FURTHER income for those corporate megaliths to spend on lobbying/buying even LONGER copy"right" terms

    Why does *anybody* waste the time "debating" this troll-thing, instead of treating It the way It deserves?

    I'm, frankly, sick and tired of the gentle, Kid-Gloves approach people take with trolls like this. It can't seem to do anything but reiterate corporate front-group soundbytes.

    Frankly, It (and It's troll-brethren which show up on other IP skeptic/copyright-reform/p2p-related) sites and forums) deserve to be treated like the vermin they are.

    Be gone, corporate shill....you have no power here.
    (or anywhere else, for that matter.) :)

     

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  46.  
    identicon
    Henry Emrich, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 4:27pm

    "Everyone rags on Disney, yet they can take out 70 year old content, digitally remaster it, and sell DVDs of the content in large numbers. It is still a valuable product. Why should they not have rights to it?"

    Um, because such "rights" are intended to expire?
    Because the "70 year old content" is very often DERIVATIVE from something that went before? The whole "Steamboat Willie" thing that brought "Mickey Mouse" to visibility, for example?

    Honestly, I new corporate trolls were stupid, but I *reallY* didn't know they were THAT stupid.

    Mike, why do you allow this corporate troll-thing to keep spamming every article?

    It never answers questions, just endless, relentless cheer-leading for the multinational corporate "persons" who seem so intent on securing their "right" to perpetual copyright on the installment plan JUST so they can keep monopolizing the content AND squeezing "clearance" fees from everybody else.

    Damn, but I *hate* trolls like this. It's only purpose is to paralyze any discussion that might otherwise happen, by way of endlessly reiterating corporate front-group talking points.

    If It's not "Sam I am", It sure sounds like him.

     

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  47.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 5:05pm

    Re: Re:

    "Learn some respect."

    A dangerous phrase to use on this site After all, one can show "respect" for the work of an artist by sharing it with the world while at the same time showing "disrespect" for the artist per se because the artist chooses to disseminate his/her work in a manner with which some disagree.

    I find this an interesting dichotomy. Respect the work but not the artist if the artist does not do as you wish.

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 5:08pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Limited rights. Not lasting centuries. It's counter-productive for the arts in the long run. The public domain is more important than Disney. The public domain is more important than Some Corporate Trust.

    The public domain is important because of the public. Copyright lasts too long. Copyright will be rendered obsolete in the near future. Good luck.

     

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  49.  
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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 5:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Marcus, isn't it natural? If I make dinner, I am not obliged to share it with anyone. If I want to, I can, but I don't have to. We even have laws that legally make that dinner "mine".

    I can open a restaurant, and I can sell copies of "dinner". I am not obliged to give dinner away for free, or give everyone the recipe for free, or even offer service to anyone. It's up to me, I am the creator.

    In the end, if I write a book, I can share it with whoever I choose, in whatever I want. We have laws for that, called copyright. It's amazing, isn't it? It's just like everything else in our lives.

     

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  50.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 6:02pm

    No, if you make dinner, you're not "obligated" to share it with anyone else. BUT (and here's where comparisons between PHYSICAL property and Intellectual "property" inevitably fail:

    1. You're not permitted to extort people for making the SAME meal you cooked. (Chicken soup recipe "clearance", would be seen as ludicrous.)

    2. You COULD open a restaurant and sell the food, yeah. But what YOU (and all other IP apologists) are defending is the presumed "right" to be paid to "permit" anybody else to open a competing restaurant. That's what the medieval guilds were about.

    You're an idiot, "anti-mike". Barring the initial error of the "Statute of Anne", the state-granted monopoly privileges of copyright and patent wouldn't exist. And before you try to make this an issue of "property", remember that it was historically permitted for some persons to own "other" persons (namely, Blacks.) It was also "legal" to attempt to prevent inter-racial sexual intercourse ("miscegenation").

    The fact that you don't give a shit about the Public Domain is pretty bad. The fact that you misunderstand limited-term monopoly privileges as "natural rights" is worse.
    But the fact that you are NOW resorting to clumsy metaphors about "cooking dinner" and "opening restaurants" is pretty telling in itself. You're an idiot, Anti-mike. Just accept it.

    You're also a corporate tool, just like the stupid teens paid by the RIAA SPECIFICALLY to download stuff from p2p networks as a propaganda move.

    Oh, and as for the supposed dichotomy between "showing respect for the work" via sharing it, and "showing respect for the arrist".....wrong. How about "artists" start showing some respect for the vast pool of Freely (as in gratis) accessible cultural content upon which THEY DEPEND, in order to create new art?

    How about Disney -- instead of frantically buying copyright extension when expiration time comes around -- actually admit that "Steamboat Willie" was indebted to "Steamboat Bill"?

    Perpetual monopoly on the installment plan is evil.

    The fact that you don't get that just proves you're either an idiot, or a shill. I can't decide which, but resorting to the "cooking dinner" metaphor strongly indicates "idiot".

    Quit trolling.

     

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  51.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 6:08pm

    Re:

    The Anti-Mike is a shill/troll or a shitroll. It's as plain as day.

     

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  52.  
    identicon
    Ah! HERE we see the REAL reason for IP apologetic, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 6:09pm

    "Sadly, in attempting to adjust the system to account for modern times, the length of copyright have been extended. It has happened a number of times since the original law was enacted. The durability of works produced in the last 50-80 years shows that the content still has value in it's original form, not tossed to the masses."

    Of course, Anti-Thought, the sole reason for the ever-accelerating cycle of copyright-term extension is SOLELY so that it can "adapt to modern times." Riiiiight.

    And, of course, the all-precious, Godlike "artists" (or rather, their corporate paymasters) really do DESERVE to "own" culture in perpetuity, because we wouldn't want cultural "product" to be "tossed to the masses."

    Fuck off, Anti-Mike. Judging by the fact that your corporate overlords feel they have to resort to jack-boot tactics to "enforce" their precious monopoly privileges, it sure seems like "The Masses" have spoken, and the answer -- in case you haven't been paying attention over the last decade or so --- is "Fuck you."

    Now toddle off, Y'hear....go on back to formulating bad justifications for worse laws.

    Dumbass.

     

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  53.  
    identicon
    Henry Emrich, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 6:20pm

    Anti-mike needs to read this:

    http://questioncopyright.org/redefining_property

    As horrifying as it may be to realize, prior to 1865, there actually WERE people -- organized groups of people -- who defended the institution of Race-based chattel slavery.

    The parallels between apologists for slavery, and IP-apologists are actually quite staggering:

    1. Both attempted to claim that the pernicious institution they were defending was somehow "natural".

    2. Both involved a lot of very-wealthy folks whose various "business-models" depended were imperiled.

    3. Both tried to make the issue about "property".

    But Y'know what? the pro-slavery arguments didn't hold water, and the entire notion of slavery as an issue of "property" would RIGHTLY be seen as morally abhorrent, nowadays.

    So no, Anti-thought, the runaway monopoly privileges you defend are NOT "natural", and it is ultimately VANISHINGLY unimportant if reforming/abolishing the pernicious bullshit you defend, results in a few "business-models" being destroyed. I'm pretty sure the folks involved in the "Middle Passage" were inconvenienced, too.

    Fuck off, Anti-mike. Your idiotic attempts to spam Techdirt are completely and utterly inept, and, frankly, will be met with nothing but the scorn and ridicule they so richly deserve.

    "A troll, a shill, or a shitroll" -- I love it! :)

     

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  54.  
    identicon
    john, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 6:44pm

    Re: Re:

    And even more sad IMHO is that much of the Beatles early studio work was recorded over because of the expense of tape....

     

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  55.  
    identicon
    Vincent Clement, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 7:36pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You don't need copyright laws to write a book, share it with whoever I choose, in whatever I want.

    You could write a book and before sharing it with, or selling it to, someone, have them agree to execute a contract that explicitly states that they are not allowed to share or sell it with anyone else. If the book is shared or sold, you sue the person in civil court.

     

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  56.  
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    Vincent Clement, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 7:40pm

    Re: Re:

    In the end, it's up to the artist (or whoever they have signed the right to), not any one of us.

    Wrong. It's us - aka society - who gave the artist (or whoever they signed the right to) a limited monopoly over a creative work. This is not some natural or god-given right. Copyright is a man-made privilege that was created in order to promote the progress of science and the useful arts.

    So, it is up to us.

     

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  57.  
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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 7:49pm

    Re: Anti-mike needs to read this:

    Henry, when you learn to hit "reply to comment" I can get back to you. In the meantime, I hope you don't have a dog, because you see about angry enough to kick it.

    Oh yeah, I don't "spam" techdirt. No links off, nothing.

    So again, you fail. Poor dog!

     

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  58.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:04pm

    The real agenda

    http://www.infowars.com/welcome-to-orwells-world-2010/

    In Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell described a superstate called Oceania, whose language of war inverted lies that “passed into history and became truth. ‘Who controls the past’, ran the Party slogan, ‘controls the future: who controls the present controls the past’.”

     

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  59.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:06pm

    Why would I hit "reply to comment"?

    1. From reading other Techdirt threads where Anti-Thought has dribbled it's drool, it's obvious that It never actually answers any of the points raised against It. Moreover, the fact that It would try to dodge answering any of the points I -- or anybody else -- raise by whining that I didn't "hit reply to comment" first, is actually pretty telling.

    Add yet another rhetorical device to Anti-Thought's arsenal of troll-tactics.

    For the record, no I don't have a dog (not that it's actually particularly relevant to the discussion). Nor would I kick it, if I did. Methinks "spamming" was the wrong word-choice. "Trolling?" "Reiterating idiotic RIAA propaganda?" I honestly don't know what to call what Anti-THought is doing (except to realize that whatever it's trying to do, It's failing miserably.

    So I reiterate again: why would I "hit reply to comment", when Anti-Mike never actually *says* anything? Reiterating tired, already-debunked Big-Media buzz-phrases, and offering half-witted analogies about "cooking dinner" doesn't count.

    Poor troll!

     

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  60.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:07pm

    Re: Re: Anti-mike needs to read this:

    The Wise One has spoken words in the hall,
    Needful for men to know,
    Unneedful for trolls to know:

    Hail to the speaker,
    Hail to the knower,
    Joy to him who has understood,
    Delight to those who have listened.

     

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  61.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:08pm

    Re: Anti-mike needs to read this:

    "A troll, a shill, or a shitroll" -- I love it! :)

    I second that emotion!

     

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  62.  
    identicon
    Henry Emrich, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:30pm

    Reasons I regard "Anti-Mike" (AKA "Anti-Thought) to be a troll/shill

    1. It's Handle.
    Anti-Thought's preferred moniker positions Itself explicitly as the "polar opposite" of Mike Masnick. This is obviously a not-so-subtle "dig" intended NOT merely to demonstrate Anti-Thought's antipathy to the copyright-skeptic position frequently expressed here on Techdirt, AND insult Masnick in the process.

    Interesting that Anti-Thought (staunch defender and apologist for the present sorry state of IP law AND the multinational corporate megaliths who BOUGHT the laws into their current form), STARTS by "copying" Masnick's name! Oh wait, my bad -- current IP law STILL contains a loophole related to parody and satire. :)

    2. The second reason Anti-Thought strikes me as either a troll, or a shill, is the fact that It so consistently manages to weasel out of actually giving meaningful and substantive responses. (See, for example, It's latest inane sputum about how It won't respond to my statements because I ostensibly haven't "learned" how to hit "reply to comment".)

    Anti-Thought obviously believes (I can't quite bring myself to say "thinks", because "thought" is so self-evidently beyond It's capacity), that It's jabbering is informative, valuable, or even entertaining.

    False on all three counts.

    I'm not "angry" here, folks -- I'm just really tired of this Thing's jabberings, and have personally come to the conclusion that the best way to counterbalance It's idiotic nonsense, is to simply subject it to the ridicule, scorn and contempt which It so richly deserves, for for which It so desperately begs (for example, with it's assertion that the notion of IP is somehow "natural", and has something to do with cooking dinner.) :)

    Anti-Thought can (and probably will) continue to pollute Techdirt with it's incoherent, IP apologetics, and I'll probably continue to treat it like the mindless, corporate shit-stain it so obviously is.

    But no, I'm not "angry"....not by a long shot. :)
    Personally, I think a brisk game of "troll-smashing" can be both amusing and enjoyable, from time to time.

     

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  63.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:33pm

    Re: Reasons I regard "Anti-Mike" (AKA "Anti-Thought) to be a troll/shill

    Agreed on all counts. Including the "Troll-smashing" Hail to the gods of Asgard, time for the festivities! :)

     

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  64.  
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    Tyanna, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:52pm

    Re:

    Wow...our resident troll has a profile now! I guess we are feeding him well...

     

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  65.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 8:59pm

    Re: Re: Reasons I regard "Anti-Mike" (AKA "Anti-Thought) to be a troll/shill

    Glad you agree! :)

    (See, Anti-Thought -- I DO know how to click "reply to comment" --- when it's an actual comment, as opposed to your fetid pools of cyber-drool.) :)

    Peace out, Y'all! :)

     

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  66.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 9:03pm

    Everyone rags on Disney, yet they can take out 70 year old content, digitally remaster it, and sell DVDs of the content in large numbers. It is still a valuable product. Why should they not have rights to it?


    Copyright is like going to the bathroom in a house that have only one and 10 people in.

    Everybody needs to use it so everyone knows that it should use it for a limited time and be quick about it so everyone can have access to it otherwise conflicts will arise.

    Disney is like the guy that doesn't care about others and monopolizes the bathroom and everybody else have to deal with it.

     

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  67.  
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    wvhillbilly, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 9:26pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:Anti-mike

    If your mentality were to be applied to law enforcement, we'd be sentencing people to life imprisonment with no hope of parole for jaywalking, illegal parking, spitting on the sidewalk and other trivial offenses, along with murderers, rapists and the like. One size fits all.

    This is the attitude of copyright maximalists. Under current law anything that is fixed in a tangible medium is automatically copyright for the life of the author PLUS ANOTHER 70 years. Your baby scribbles on a piece of paper. Copyright for the next 140 years or more, without anyone doing anything. Your great, great, great grandchildren will all die of old age before that piece of paper passes into the public domain.

    There are hundreds, maybe thousands of old films which were made using cellulose nitrate, which are rotting to dust in some vault somewhere to be lost forever because the copyright owners are dead or cannot be located, no one can get permission to copy them, and no one is willing to take the risk of the copyright owner popping up out of nowhere and suing them for copying them illegally. These are called, "orphaned works" and there are probably tens or hundreds of thousands of such works that stand to be lost forever under current law.

    Further, you overlook the fact that those who wanted continued protection for their works could easily renew the copyright for another 28 years under the old law, and if current law were to opt for a shorter term, allowance could be made for continued renewals for specific works as long as they needed protection. But to lock up every single work for four whole generations just to protect Disney's copyright on Mickey Mouse makes about as much sense as sentencing jaywalkers and illegal parkers to the same term reserved for serial murderers and cop killers.

    Further, as for eternal copyright, if congress is going to extend the term of copyright on every work in the universe every time the copyright on Mickey Mouse is about to expire, nothing will ever again enter the public domain, copyright for all practical purposes IS eternal and whole generations of culture will be forever lost.

    Is that really what you want?

     

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  68.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 1st, 2010 @ 9:31pm

    Anti-Thought, refuted yet again:

    http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/misinterpreting-copyright.html

    Important quote from the article (which completely de-fangs Anti-Thought's entire "argument":

    "The Supreme Court has repeatedly affirmed that promoting progress means benefit for the users of copyrighted works. For example, in Fox Film v. Doyal, the court said,

    The sole interest of the United States and the primary object in conferring the [copyright] monopoly lie in the general benefits derived by the public from the labors of authors. "

    The runaway monopoly privilege mis-named copy"right" is neither "natural", nor sacrosanct. Anti-Thought, and assorted other IP apologist trolls, keep trying (vainly) to misrepresent the rising tide of IP skepticism as some sort of "irresponsibility", or "lawlessness", but in fact, it's nothing of the kind.

    IP apologists (PARTICULARLY those involved in "artistic" pursuits like music, writing, film-making, etc.) tend to exhibit a rather extreme level of hubris, when they mistakenly claim that their particular creative work -- whatever it may be -- is NOT inextricably indebted to the very "Public Domain" which their frenzied quest for ever-longer and more draconian copyright terms is, for all intents and purposes, destroying.

    You're draining the cultural "ocean" upon which your very existence as creative artists depends, just to squeeze a few more decades/centuries of "clearance" bribes.

    It's bullshit, it's pernicious, and above all, it's ARROGANT.

     

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  69.  
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    wvhillbilly (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 10:01pm

    Re: sharing is caring

    No, the MPAA will find you out and sue your *** off, maybe confiscate your computer and do worse than that to you if they can.

    Greed knows no limits.

     

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  70.  
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    wvhillbilly (profile), Jan 1st, 2010 @ 11:06pm

    Re: Re: Anti-mike needs to read this:

    Hey, troll, go back under your bridge!

     

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  71.  
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    troll killer, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:30am

    reasons Anti-Mike never gets heard

    1: you contradict your self too often
    2: making HUGE long posts, people go oh sorry i dont want 5 year reading avenues
    3: using long big words when smaller more in touch with humanity ones will do
    4: you slant to industry thats out modded and a dinosaur means your just trying also to probably protect your own job

     

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  72.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:46am

    Anti-Mike = "Anti-Thought"

    Techdirt's own resident IP-fascist troll, "Anti-Mike", prides Itself on being dismissive and flippant towards It's intellectual and moral betters -- namely, Nina Paley.

    Over on the "it's not middlemen" thread, Anti-Mike offered the following bit of snarky non-sequitur:

    "In the end, this seems a common theme in your stuff. You foolishly did something, and then except the world to change for you."

    The problem with this, of course, is that the corporate media megaliths which Anti-Mike reflexively defends, have been doing exactly what It accuses Ms. Paley of doing, for DECADES:

    1. Every new technological innovation that Empowers "the Masses"? Corporate lobbyist front-groups portray it as the Devil incarnat. VCR = Boston Strangler. Home Taping is killing music. P2p "piracy" funds terrorism, blah blah blah.

    2. When this pattern of "crying wolf" and attempting to get Government to ban such empowering technologies results in nothing but the corporate lapdogs looking like the money-grubbing, technophobic, monopolist that they *really are*, anybody with even half a brain and/or the ability to track their pattern simply stops even giving them the benefit of the doubt, and assumes -- rightly -- that, whatever their latest cycle of lobbying/whining/lying, their REAL reason is nothing but the unmitigated, profligate greed-mongering at many corporations seem to excel.

    3. When, after decades of relentless misinformation about the nature, purpose, and LIMITS of copyright, and repeated attempts to destroy anything which kinda, sorta, maybe *might* lead to copyright EVEN BEING QUESTIONED, they've turned copyright itself into a pernicious joke which the vast majority of folks simply ignore, and a sizeable proportion of the population UTTERLY HATE....well, the money-grubbing vermin, and their lobbyist-lapdogs have NOBODY to blame but themselves.

    4. If, after ten years of watching "Intellectual Property" become one vast corporate culture-rape, Anti-Mike can't quite wrap it's tiny little mind around why It would be regarded as a vile little bug, worthy only of contempt and dismissal.....well, you get the idea.

    Of course, It could demonstrate itself as something other than a mindless troll by actually *DOING SOMETHING* to help restrain "Intellectual property" law WHICH IT HAS, IRONICALLY ENOUGH, ADMITTED IS "TOO PERVASIVE", instead of trolling around TRYING TO JUSTIFY THE STATUS QUO.

    Of course, It won't do anything of the kind, because It's obviously too busy wanking frenetically over the joyous prospect of perpetual copyright terms.

    What part of "you support evil, draconian bullshit" don't you understand, Anti-Thought?

     

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  73.  
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    edgebilliards (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 1:56am


    Oh yeah, I don't "spam" techdirt. No links off, nothing.


    you know, i really wish you would. we all embed links to relevant sources and opinions to give credence to our posts.

    it's really easy to knock out a few sentences conveying some halfway thought-through analogy and another to really explain your case. maybe linking off would prove that you're not just talking out of your ass.
    --------------

    but enough of Anti-Mike. i'm sure it's been brought up here before, but could someone explain why "life of the author" is even involved in the equation? plenty of creators sign rights to their works away (especially early works) to distribution and publishing houses. do they still retain some sort of de facto rights that tie them to the work, or is it just a way to make the law resemble something that is "protecting the artist?"

    -------------

    joe made a good point about the CC-like period. I know it's an unpopular position on techdirt, but "public domain," as vital as it is, is a big pill for creators and distributors to swallow. works can easily survive in a cc capacity- the works can be digitized, shared, sampled, and reshaped, and artists wouldn't have to see professional marketeers banking off of their work. (cue "but they don't have that right" fanfare.)


    Remember, "anti-Thought" (oops, I mean "anti-Mike), that the original *excuse* for copy"right" was as an INCENTIVE to further creativity...
    -Henry Emlich


    anger aside, copyright DOES further creativity. the musicians i know would gladly turn their work over to djs and other artists to be remixed and reworked, hell many would give it to their fans for free, but they are hesitant to see their future Great American Album be handed over to a big-money distribution house to rework the format, album art, track listing, etc and be cut off from all ties.

    (cue "a shorter copyright limit encourages innovation and creation" yodeling.)
    that doesn't preclude an artist from wanting some protection from the corporate copyright houses you all loathe.

     

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  74.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 3:21am

    This doesn't even make sense:

    "anger aside"

    Thanks for assuming (wrongly) that I am "angry", or that my response to Anti-Thought's persistent efforts at trolling are something they're not.

    But hey, let me humor you, and assume that they *were*.
    I'll ask you right up front: why in the FUCK shouldn't people be "angry" about the bullshit going on, in relation to IP "law"? How exactly can the constant whimpering for ever-longer copy"right" terms/more draconian sorts of "enforcement" NOT elicit some sort of anger?

    Quite frankly, if you're NOT "angry" over this bullshit, you're either NOT paying attention, or you actively SUPPORT what the corporate "entertainment industry" is trying to do.

    In either case, that's a fairly serious problem.


    "copyright DOES further creativity. the musicians i know would gladly turn their work over to djs and other artists to be remixed and reworked, hell many would give it to their fans for free, but they are hesitant to see their future Great American Album be handed over to a big-money distribution house to rework the format, album art, track listing, etc and be cut off from all ties.

    Several things wrong with that:

    1. If the "musicians you know" would be "happy" to permit remixes, etc., then by definition, they are going to like/enjoy/approve of SOME of the remixes more than others.

    Let's take this back a step: parody and satire. One of the big exceptions to current copyright law is where it explicitly permits parody/satire, EVEN WHEN such parodies utilize the "heart" of the composition. (Take, for example, "Slim Anus" -- the Insane Clown posse parody of Eminem's "The real slim Shady.).

    Under existing copyright law, "artists" have exactly ZERO control over parodies/satires of "their" content -- EVEN THOSE THEY MAY PERSONALLY LOATHE. Y'know what? That's the POINT. The exception is there specifically to prevent such parodies and satires from being suppressed, EVEN if the person being satirized DOESN'T LIKE IT.

    In any case, what does that have to do with the claim that copyright "encourages creativity"? At least from the point of view of parody/satire, it's the EXCEPTION to copyright that "encourages" creativity.

    Or are you -- just for another example -- going to try to say that "Weird Al" Yankovic isn't "creative"?

    As for your other claim, about the "potential Great American Album", it basically amounts to the claim that the "musicians you know" would simultaneously be glad to "permit" remixes and give "free" (gratis) copies of songs to DJS, but still want some kind of "control" over distribution. Why?
    Does anybody *really* think that the "celebrity lifestyle" implicit in your "Great American Album" nonsense is actually predicated on Copyright? The labels have been requiring artists to forfeit "creative control" (INCLUDING COPYRIGHT) FOR DECADES, as a REQUIREMENT for gaining access to the corporate Hype-Machine.

    Even under the current system, artists aren't permitted to exert their "artistic control" to get parodies and satires suppressed.

    So tell me again? How exactly does the monopoly privilege of copyright "incentivise creativity?"

    I personally don't believe that it does. Nor do many others. In fact, I'd go so far as to state that barring exceptions like the one related to parody and satire, copyright is more of an IMPEDIMENT to creativity.

    In any case, attempts to rescue copy"right" from the dustbin of history are pretty much futile at this point, because even granting the notion that copy"right" IS good, or even "necessary" for creativity, we've reached the point as a culture, where it has metastasized into something that really does damage the rest of the culture.

    But hey, thanks for the completely incoherent response to a question nobody asked.

     

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  75.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 3:37am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Paul, where did I say that having works fall into the public domain is bad? It is only bad when it happens too quickly."

    You seem to have been implying this since you very first post, where you talk about the public domain being about people only wanting to profit from others' work.

    "Everyone rags on Disney, yet they can take out 70 year old content, digitally remaster it, and sell DVDs of the content in large numbers. It is still a valuable product. Why should they not have rights to it?"

    Because changing the rules to benefit them actually harms others. Orphaned works that cannot be released because nobody can trace the real copyright owners. Films that rot in vaults because there's no commercial incentive to release them (and therefore no commercial incentive to restore them in good condition - proper print storage is expensive).

    Movies like London After Midnight and Edison's Frankenstein have been disappearing from our culture so that Disney can stop people from obtaining a copy of Snow White without going through their systems. That's wrong in my book.

    Remember, public domain would not mean that Disney could not profit from their work. It simply means that they would no longer retain an exclusive right to do so. Since they have all original materials, they could certainly produce a better package than others - they would maintain copyright on recently restored prints, and have additional materials exclusive to them. Meanwhile movies contemporary to Snow White would be able to be seen - often for the first time since their theatrical release - by the general public. Who knows, maybe somebody will be inspired by those public domain materials in the same way that Disney was inspired by the public domain stories he used, and our culture better off for it.

     

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  76.  
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    cc, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 4:22am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Dinner cannot be copied. It takes new resources for every new dinner you make, thus new costs. The recipe can be copied, but then you are actually heading into patents, not copyright.

    I hope you can see where a book differs from food. Food is a *thing*, but a book is information. Information, with current technology, can be copied infinitely many times at virtually no cost.

    A book is therefore a free, infinite and indestructible source of money for the rights holders and that is in itself unacceptable! They lose all incentive to create, as all they have to do for the rest of their lives is to bring in the lawyers.

     

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  77.  
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    cc, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 5:30am

    Hey Henry -- great posts (I lol'ed on a few occasions)! Congrats on a very thorough beating of Anti-Mike.

    To quickly answer edgebilliard's question about life-of-artist: it's because artists sign their lives away. No wait, I mean they sign the rights to their music away, but still get royalties (well, kind of!).

     

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  78.  
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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 7:06am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:Anti-mike

    The Mickey Mouse example is painful, mostly because Disney continues to use Mickey Mouse to this day. For me, there has to be an instances where a currently active character's works are protected for as long as that character continues to be used. There are new Mickey Mouse products coming out all the time.

    Disney is very careful with their products, they create scarcities by not allowing all of their products on the market at the same time, and they are very careful about digitally remastering their work and releasing it in the latest formats each time. The public pretty much lines up to buy the stuff to this very day.

    Disney is a very exceptional case because of how active they are with their content, with their characters, and with their entire suite of books, movies, and the like. Disney continues to work to build new theme parks, and the characters are an active part of the package.

    Disney isn't a stale piece of celluloid rotting on the shelves, it's an active collection of characters and productions, lovingly retouched and remastered to the latest standards on a regular basis.

    My feeling is that in the case of Disney, none of their products should be out of copyright, because they continue to work with them, and continue to tend their products well. Sadly, copyright law doesn't have any simple way to recognize the difference between moldy stuff ignored by a dead artist's heirs for 50 years, and disney's active use and reworking of their products. Until that gets fixed, there will always be a huge tension. In the end, Disney is doing a better job at preserving history than most others. Do you really want to discourage that?

     

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  79.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 7:45am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:Anti-mike

    Given the long string of profanity-laden comments directed towards you, I must express my apprreciation that you have not succumbed to responding in kind.

     

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  80.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 8:15am

    WHaaaaat?

    "My feeling is that in the case of Disney, none of their products should be out of copyright, because they continue to work with them, and continue to tend their products well."

    What? Seriously? So, since Disney is *still* making NEW stuff involving Mickey Mouse, none of the older stuff involving Mickey Mouse (or any of the other characters they've been using for nearly a century) should enter the Public Domain?

    Wow, talking about Big-Media's ultimate wet-dream! "So long as you're still *working with them* --- which presumably means creating *new* stuff that involves the characters, etc. -- there's no "threat" of expiration.

    Still doesn't address the "parody" issue. (Anybody else see the South Park episode involving the Jonas brothers and Mickey Mouse? Pretty sure even under the EXISTING system, Disney didn't have shit to say about that.)



    "Sadly, copyright law doesn't have any simple way to recognize the difference between moldy stuff ignored by a dead artist's heirs for 50 years, and disney's active use and reworking of their products."

    Which is exactly why copy"right" privileges were *supposed* to only last for a very strictly limited period of time.
    But hey, I love how you deliberately misunderstand the problem -- yet again. What has J.D. Salinger done over the last 50 years or so? I mean, yeah, he's become a total recluse who hasn't actually written anything since "Catcher in the Rye" -- EXCEPT to surface long enough to have some guy's book suppressed. But it's nice to see you haven't actually been paying attention.


    "Until that gets fixed, there will always be a huge tension. In the end, Disney is doing a better job at preserving history than most others. Do you really want to discourage that?"

    And I'll ask again (VERY gently, so as not to be accused of "anger" again): how exactly would a significantly shorter copyright-term PROHIBIT Disney from continuing to do so?

    1. They'd still have access to the *original* material (You know...the stuff they periodically, DELIBERATELY throw back "in the vaults" for a decade or so, just so they can periodically bring it back out for "limited edition" re-issues). Nothing to stop them from continuing to do such reissues -- EVEN on stuff that had "fallen" into the public domain.

    2. Disney stuff is very frequently parodied (remember the "family guy" episode partially done in the style of "classic"-era Disney?), but you don't see the "authorized" stuff losing value as a result. Copyright law still "permits" such parody/satire, primarily because Big Media hasn't been able to get the law changed.
    (Not that Anti-Thought would mind, but *I* personally think that legally empowering "rights-holders" to have even MORE stuff forcibly suppressed via copyright law would be a bad step.)

    3. Have you ever bought any "content" at a used bookstore, or record store? You can thank exceptions to existing copyright-law, yet again, if you have. (Good example of that is likely the copy of "Heechee Rendezvous" It keeps using as "evidence" that the Public Domain is unnecessary.)
    I *really* doubt that Anti-Thought purchased it 26 years ago, from an "authorized" location.

    Anti-Thought isn't really here to "discuss" this stuff, and It obviously has no understanding of the issues. Otherwise, It couldn't seriously advocate that copy"right" monopolies last IN PERPETUITY, so long as a corporation happens to still be producing NEW "content" which in some fashion references it's OLDER content.

    (Although, I *can* see how a corporate shill would love something like that: Disney wouldn't even have to bother buying themselves extensions every few decades.)

    Nice try, Anti-Thought. You almost, sorta sounded like you said something there.

     

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  81.  
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    Marcus Carab (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 8:43am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Ummm wow... if you think that is a useful analogy, you have even less to contribute to this debate than I thought.

    I mean, the major flaw is even sitting right on the surface: you can't copyright recipes. Doesn't that kind of blow your whole silly restaurant analogy out of the water? Yes: things that are scarce and exclusive (food) can be controlled and sold, but things that are infinite (ideas: recipes) cannot. I can open a restaurant next door to yours that copies all your popular dishes and there's not a damn thing you can do to stop me.

    And I don't think you understand the concept of "natural" either. "Natural" doesn't mean "we have laws for that", it means things we could naturally still exert ownership over even if there were no laws. If I make a dinner, I can defend it as my property even if I live in a state of total anarchy - but I can't defend a book or a song as my property unless I live in a society where others have agreed to treat it as property (except of course by never publishing or sharing it in any way - keeping it to myself, like I do with the dinner)

    But honestly I don't know why I'm bothering with this... you just put forward the most simplistic, childish and easily debunked argument for copyright (one that is usually only put forth by beginners when they are first gaining an understanding of the subject). If you really believe you are playing some sort of important role in making us all think and defend our stances, you are going to have to kick it up a notch.

     

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  82.  
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    Marcus Carab (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 8:54am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Of course, your analogy fails in another way too, now that I think about it.

    I can open a restaurant, and I can sell copies of "dinner". I am not obliged to give dinner away for free, or give everyone the recipe for free, or even offer service to anyone. It's up to me, I am the creator.

    Okay, let's start there. If I go to your restaurant, enjoy a meal, and attempt to replicate it at home for my dinner the next night, am I infringing? After all, it would be infringement for me to print my own copy of your book at home (even if I re-wrote it from memory and it wasn't quite perfect).

    Now, let's say there is a technological breakthrough, and ingredients are no longer needed to make food. All it takes is a negligible amount of energy to create any meal. Would we need laws to stop people from using this new technology to make food at home? If I tell my replicator "ossobucco with basil please" will it say "ossobuco can only be combined with basil by John's Restaurant"?

    Moreover, do you think people would still come to your restaurant if you didn't significantly lower prices once this technology was invented?

     

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  83.  
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    senshikaze (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 9:02am

    Re: Re:

    that's not completely true.

    a loyal opposition is useful. Anti-mike, while making many stupid remarks has made some fairly good ones. I wouldn't say today is his best day, but there are days that I completely disagree with the Real Mike, too. Today he seems to be pushing for infinite copyrights (even though he says he doesn't) which, to anyone with a small amount of common sense, is stupid.
    Copyright shouldn't last a century. copyright probably shouldn't last the life of a normal human being.

    But all in all, anti-mike has the right to make a point that is opposite of what we all believe and agree with. The great thing about this day and age, is that everyone has a right to have an opinion. Even though that opinion may be annoying.

     

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  84.  
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    Marcus Carab (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 9:12am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I agree to a point, but honestly I would prefer some opposition that is more intelligent and less argumentative. Anti-Mike doesn't seem interested in discussion or in reaching any new conclusions or ideas about things, which is why I think debate is valuable... I see people here concede points to A-M, but I have never ever seen him concede anything (even when it really seems like he should, and could easily without it weakening his position) - he also loves to attach personal attacks and snide little victory phrases ("this story fails the stink test") to everything.

    I feel like the pro-copyright side deserves a more mature and rational defender on this site, because not only does Anti-Mike fail to persuade anyone with his ideas, he fails to even make a very good impression as a person.

     

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    BearGriz72 (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 9:27am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:Anti-mike

    "Sadly, copyright law doesn't have any simple way to recognize the difference between moldy stuff ignored by a dead artist's heirs for 50 years, and Disney's active use and reworking of their products."
    You just made our point. It USED to have a way to deal with this kind of situation. The copyright had to be renewed. If the content was still in commercial use the rights holder could renew the copyright and all would be well but big corporations did not want to be bothered with the renewal process (or god forbid some minor employee forgot to file the paperwork) so they polished the knob of the lawmaking process (Can we please lose all Lobbyists, talk about a drain on society) and created the automatic copyright kludge we are dealing with today. If you think copyright should run longer what would have been the problem with allowing additional Extensions? I do not think you would see nearly as may problems with that.

     

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  86.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 9:45am

    Anti-Thought deserves everything It gets

    Of course "everybody has the right to have an opinion". And? Nobody has said anything about Anti-Thought not being permitted to "have an opinion".

    The Nazi party was "allowed to have an opinion" about the (supposed) threat of "world Jewry". The anti-Obama crowd are totally free to have "an opinion" about Obama's supposed Kenyan birth-certificate.

    That's not the issue, and you know it:

    1. Please do us all a favor, and provide some evidence for Anti-Mike's supposed "good points". I've never seen any of them. All *I've* ever seen It do is post the equivalent of "NO! You're WRong!" over and over, with absolutely no supporting evidence whatsoever.
    Oh wait, there *is* something else It does: routinely defend the absolute WORST aspects of the existing IP "law", while advocating stuff that is even WORSE. It doesn't give a shit about the Public domain, by It's own admission, and cites the fact that It supposedly has a 26-year-old copy of a book whose title It Can't even manage to SPELL, as "evidence" to support the claim that the public domain is irrelevant.

    Then it advocates that copyright monopolies NEVER expire, so long as the "owners" is "still using them". In other words, it even Out-maximalizes the "maximalists".

    Really, I'm tempted to think that Anti-Thought is a sockpuppet -- a very well-crafted parody of the stupidest possible corporate IP shill, but at the same time, I really can't see a free-culture advocate/copyright skeptic as being able to come up with the drivel it advocates.

    But nobody ever said It didn't have a "right" to it's "opinion". By the same token, those of us who wish to do so, have a "right" to regard It as a troll, or simply, abysmally stupid, when it advocates a scenario that is even WORSE than the current state of affairs.

    A lot of folks keep saying stuff like "just ignore him, and he'll go away", but I really don't think that's true. The only way to deal with Anti-Thought, is to get It to where It has to admit it's REAL agenda. Anti-Thought started the comment-thread with the claim that the public domain is irrelevant, defended copyright by way ofa COOKING metaphor, and then ended up actually advocating that copyright monopolies be essentially "open-ended" (thus, essentially anhialating the Public Domain entirely.)

    Way to go, Anti-thought: you've successfully "outed" yourself as a maximalist, FAR more overtly than I -- or anybody else -- could ever have done.

    Way to go! :)

     

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  87.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 11:00am

    Re: Reasons I regard "Anti-Mike" (AKA "Anti-Thought) to be a troll/shill

    "staunch defender and apologist for the present sorry state of IP law AND the multinational corporate megaliths who BOUGHT the laws into their current form"

    Bought is the wrong word. they STOLE the laws. Bought implies legitimacy and a fair trade, that they gave the public something of equal value in return. They stole the laws without giving anything in return.

     

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  88.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 11:09am

    Re: Re: Reasons I regard "Anti-Mike" (AKA "Anti-Thought) to be a troll/shill

    Bought also implies a willful exchange between the corporations that lobbied for these laws and the public. There was no willful exchange, the evil rich people STOLE the laws in place against the will of the people. If people had to vote for these laws I'm sure the general public would vote the current laws out of existence.

     

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  89.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 11:22am

    Re: Anti-Thought deserves everything It gets

    "Really, I'm tempted to think that Anti-Thought is a sockpuppet -- a very well-crafted parody of the stupidest possible corporate IP shill

    But the ridiculous laws currently in place suggest that there really are people that want the laws in place that anti Mike Promotes. Or else how did the ridiculous laws in place get to be if no one wants them them and if no one tried to get them in place?

     

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  90.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 11:40am

    Re: Anti-Thought, refuted yet again:

    Next time you are tempted to recite a quote from an article that references a decision by the Supreme Court, you should resist the temptation until such time as you have actually read the case.

    Had you done so you would have very quickly discovered that the court was presented an issue pertaining to a state tax levy by the State of Georgia on royalties received by a copyright holder. In this case the court articulated that merely because the income creating property was a federally granted copyright, a state tax was not precluded.

     

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  91.  
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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 11:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Marcus, start selling Big Macs and Quarter Pounders, and let me know how that works out for you, okay?

     

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  92.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:09pm

    Re: Re: Anti-Thought deserves everything It gets

    I'd have to agree.

    Anit-Thought or Anti-Mike is a Perfect example of Orwell 1984 Prole.

    And I think Fox has #1 24/7 ratings because they actually discussing the facts that the executive branch is circumventing congress on things like copyright, FCC, DHS & the Climate change act. Our Bill of rights is going up in smoke but apparently were too distracted to notice the smoke on the water.

    Wake up Because Anti-Thought is doublespeak for ignorant dumb ass.

     

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  93.  
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    wvhillbilly (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:20pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:Anti-mike

    My point is, that by making special concessions to special interests and forcing a one-size-fits-all regime tailored to that special interest on everyone congress is doing enormous damage to the public interest. Why not have an initial term of 28 years with the option of one renewal at a nominal fee for a second 28 years, then as one reader suggested, graduated fee increases for successive renewals. That way those companies who have active content they want to continue to protect could do so, while other content which has become stale or obsolete or orphaned or whose owners or authors no longer want or need to protect would be allowed to enter the public domain. Then others would be free to use them, rewrite, expand, update, prepare derivative works from, preserve for future generations,etc. without fear of getting sued. This is how culture is preserved and how it evolves, not by locking everything away for four or more generations by which time it has been long forgotten and of no use to anyone.

    Would this sort of arrangement (short term and optional extensions) be acceptable to you?

     

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    RD, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:22pm

    FOX is not a bastion of truth

    Just a couple points:

    "And I think Fox has #1 24/7 ratings because they actually discussing the facts that the executive branch is circumventing congress on things like copyright (Republicans), FCC (both parties guilty here), DHS (FULLY a republican mandated agency) & the Climate change act (Demos for sure)."

    And I personally (my OPINION) consider Fox news to be the worst sort of muckraking and yellow journalism ever to air. Worse than Anti-Mike's idiocy by FAR.

     

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  95.  
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    Ben, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:23pm

    Re: Copyright

    I can get almost anything I want, nobody cares about one countries monopolistic laws, the whole world is NOT on board with US policy.

     

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  96.  
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    RD, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:26pm

    To bad

    "My feeling is that in the case of Disney, none of their products should be out of copyright, because they continue to work with them, and continue to tend their products well."

    Well, too fucking bad. Your "feeling" isnt supported by anyone here, the Law, the founding fathers, or even the CONSTITUTION itself. It VERY clearly says RIGHT IN THE CONSTITUTION "to secure for a limited time." The idea that, as long as you keep making something, it will FOREVER be under your copyright was never, ever, NOT EVER, not even once, the intention of copyright law. This idea was so abbhorent that Jefferson was reluctant to even include copyrights and patents, he really wanted it all left out. So its just too bad what you "Feel" about it as nothing ANYWHERE (except of course your corporate masters paying you to shill for them) supports this idea.

     

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  97.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    What do hamburgers have to do with the public domain?

    Nothing.

     

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  98.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    The Anti-Mike is not a person. The Anti-Mike is the opposite of a person. Plain as day.

     

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    Chris in Utah (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 12:34pm

    Re: FOX is not a bastion of truth

    IMO lacks punch when you really have only the paradigm of who's responsible, they prop eac-hother up and any argument made who did what for what reason becomes a the oratory equivalent of crapping out my mouth.

    Remember the left and right wing. Wait you don't look at the Eagle head? Shoot the bird man and you have libertarianism.

    Get back to what this country was founded on and let people govern themselves with state rights. The only issue the fed should have is enacting laws such as allowing inner-state commerce for such things... oh I dont know? Health insurance... MAYBE. /sarcasm

     

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  100.  
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    BearGriz72 (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 1:28pm

    Re: Re: Anti-mike needs to read this:

    Did he read the aforementioned (well thought out and quite interesting actually) article?
    The Answer is obviously NO.

    TAM you dont even bother to consider contradicting viewpoints and form intelligent objections.
    It just shows that you have no intelligent opinions just regurgitated propaganda.

    Grow up or go home please.

     

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  101.  
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    BearGriz72 (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 1:35pm

    Re: Reasons I regard "Anti-Mike" (AKA "Anti-Thought) to be a troll/shill

    Let the Whack-A-Troll Game Commence!

     

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    Henry Emrich, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 2:02pm

    Stupidity is obviously contageous:

    1. The point I was making with the supreme-court decision, was that, IN that decision (and irrespective of the minutae of the particular case to which it was being applied), they state WHY a monopoly privilege such as copy"right" was permitted in the first place.

    If you think you can obfuscate the issue by nitpicking distractions, then you're simply another troll. Now, either refute the claim that copy"right" is actually a PRIVILEGE, predicated on a vibrant Public Domain, or kindly be a good little troll and STFU.

    2. Fox "news?" My ass.

    3. "Nobody cares about one country's draconian laws": absolutely correct. The movement to question, rethink -- or even REFUTE -- the necessity and purpose of copyright is global. This is what IP apologists don't get: they can't wrap their tiny little minds around the notion that THEIR side brought all this on:

    A. Bribing their way into (oops, I mean "lobbying for") term extensions -- ever-longer terms, with ever-shorter intervals where they're NOT whining about it. Plus, thanks to the "Eldred" decision, they've cleared the way to keep extending terms INDEFINITELY, just so they retain the legal fiction that the term on the books is "limited" at any given time. Copyright "Bargain?" Don't make me laugh.

    So we *KNOW* what the real agenda is, Anti-Thought, because we SEE IT IN ACTION. (Although, I really do love your latest little fit of inconsistency: "75 years is too long, 28 years is way too short", remember?

    Except, of course, for Disney (and, presumably, any other corporation that is still "using" the content, in which case it "shouldn't" EVER enter the public domain.

    See his proposal? OPEN-ENDED copyright monopolies for anything being "used" in any fashion whatsoever, and AT LEAST 28 years of monopoly for stuff that's NOT being used. (Gee, looks suspiciously like the tactic of periodically reissuing "remastered" versions of "classic" films every few decades, or the "Box Set"-type killing the labels made off the Beatles material....but nah, couldn't be.) :)

    So come on up, IP apologists: please pray tell, prove to us that copy"right" was intended to be what the corporate interests have turned it into. Hell, while you're at it, feel free to explain how patent (copyright's bastard sibling) "shouldn't" ever expire, either.
    (Bonus if you can do it WITHOUT noticing the inevitable resemblance to medieval crafting guilds.)

    The only thing that really makes me happy about reading Anti-Thought's fumbling little stabs at IP apologetics is the knowledge that he's probably the best "they" can do. Their position is pretty much indefensible, so their reduced to clunky metaphors about "cooking dinner" and "restoring the balance" by way of draconian bullshit.

    Nope. Not gonna stand for it. I've debated corporate sock-puppets like Anti-Thought before, and, by now, there's pretty much no way for them to recover ANYTHING even resembling respectability, and they know it.If the best It can do is some nonsense about Hamburgers, "cooking dinner", and how I supposedly kick a dog that I don't even OWN, we have absolutely nothing to worry about -- just so long as we make sure to both refute their half-witted nonsense, AND treat them like the sad little frauds they really are.

    Because Y'know what? If we even BEGIN to given them the benefit of the doubt, then their corporate paymsters win, YET AGAIN.

    So tell us again, Anti-thought: please explain how open-ended copyright terms don't violate the "copyright bargain" (assuming, of course, you even admit that it exists.)

    Last point: I can get a hamburger at pretty much any fast-food joint, lunch-wagon, or restaurant I go to. It's called "market competition", and, considering how often corporate sock-puppets like you tend to use it to justify corporate oligarchy, you should at *least* know the word.

    Peace out, Y'all :)

     

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  103.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 2:10pm

    Whoa -- even it's DEFENDERS are mind-numbingly dumb!

    "Had you done so you would have very quickly discovered that the court was presented an issue pertaining to a state tax levy by the State of Georgia on royalties received by a copyright holder. In this case the court articulated that merely because the income creating property was a federally granted copyright, a state tax was not precluded."

    Gee....."Federally GRANTED copyright".
    Granted on what grounds? That such a monopoly privilege (and yes, I'm going to keep correcting you on that until you acknowledge it) be allowed to expire in a timely fashion.

    Further, such PRIVILEGE is already riddled with exceptions (fair use, first sale) SPECIFICALLY to MINIMIZE the harm those who PERMITTED copyright in the first place KNEW resulted from granting such monopolies.

    "Marcus, start selling Big Macs and Quarter Pounders, and let me know how that works out for you, okay?"

    I guess Anti-Thought wants you to get busted for violating a TRADEMARK, or something. Can anybody else determine any other kind of POINT, to that?

    (So far, I've figured out that Anti-Thought is quite fond of clumsy cooking-related metaphors, and REALLY REALLY concerned about whether I kick my imaginary dog.)

    Hooray for copyright maximalists. :)

     

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    Henry Emrich, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 2:41pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:Anti-mike

    "y point is, that by making special concessions to special interests and forcing a one-size-fits-all regime tailored to that special interest on everyone congress is doing enormous damage to the public interest. Why not have an initial term of 28 years with the option of one renewal at a nominal fee for a second 28 years, then as one reader suggested, graduated fee increases for successive renewals. That way those companies who have active content they want to continue to protect could do so, while other content which has become stale or obsolete or orphaned or whose owners or authors no longer want or need to protect would be allowed to enter the public domain."


    Why?

    1. If they (or more exactly, their corporate/ideological forbears couldn't be satisfied with the initial 7 year monopoly privilege -- or the 14 years --- or 56 years -- or, indeed, with ANY sort of meaningfully-"limited" terms, what makes you think they *deserve* 28 years, and won't just break THEIR side of the "copyright bargain" again?

    IF things like copyright and patent are "necessary" (and really, that's a pretty big "if"), then they need to be very strictly limited in scope and duration -- EVEN (or especially), if that means that a few corporate megaliths won't have quite so much money to pour into lobbying their way out of their side of the bargain. IF that means 7 years, no renewals whatsoever, mandatory copyright registration, and AUTOMATIC revocation if they make ANY attempt to get the term extended, then so be it.

    Or how about, what with all the rhetoric about how copyright terms need to be "harmonized"....let's "harmonize" them to patent terms. What are they, twenty years?

    The primary reason your unlikely to find "our" side amenable to something like you proposed, is that it's blatantly obvious that *their* side won't abide by it.

    (As already noted, their resident sockpuppet here can't even bring Itself to admit that their *is* such a concept as "the copyright bargain".)

    But hey, maybe It has a point: maybe It's ability to pull a 26-year-old paperback book (that it probably bought USED, thanks to one of copyright's infamous "loopholes") off of It's shelves negates the importance, or even the validity, of the Public Domain.

    (Or maybe it has something to do with cooking hamburgers. Methinks Anti-Mike wants to be a fry-cook when It grows up?) :)

    Put bluntly, they are going to *have* to accept some form of fairly-serious reform of existing laws, because any attempt to either enforce the existing laws on any kind of grand scale OR steal themselves newer, more draconian laws, is doomed from the beginning.

    Pity they didn't learn that back during the "home taping is killing music" fiasco. Their loss, I say.

     

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  105.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 2:46pm

    Re: Whoa -- even it's DEFENDERS are mind-numbingly dumb!

    Intellectual property (or privilege) maximists. Copyright is a subset of intellectual property and so are patents. The problem is intellectual property in general, not just copyright.

     

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  106.  
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    Marcus Carab (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 2:56pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Yes, I'm sure I'd have some serious trademark issues if I did that.

    I really thought you had a better understanding of this stuff...

     

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  107.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 3:11pm

    Re: Re: Whoa -- even it's DEFENDERS are mind-numbingly dumb!

    "Intellectual property (or privilege) maximists. Copyright is a subset of intellectual property and so are patents. The problem is intellectual property in general, not just copyright."

    Exactly! The first step, is to recognize a limited-term monopoly privilege for what it is, and stop trying to turn it into something else. Stop trying to turn it into (as another troll over on another board put it) "The Sacred Right To Property".
    If they'd just admit the importance of the Public Domain, by ACTUALLY ALLOWING stuff to "fall" into it on schedule, it wouldn't be so bad.

    As a side-note, has anybody else ever wondered about the "Framing" implicit in describing entry into the public domain as a "fall?" Of course, when Anti-Thought describes the Public Domain as "thrown to the Masses", it's pretty clear that the monopolists and their apologists operate from some kind of Nietzche-esque worldview, where they consider themselves "Supermen" of some kind.

    Hence, their frantic desire to monopolize and control every element of culture in perpetuity, while disguising it as the "Sacred Right of Property".

    You're not an Ubermensch, Anti-Thought.
    Elitism sucks ass.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 4:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    If a person's livelihood is based on not understanding . . .

     

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  109.  
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    Ed Burgueno, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 4:46pm

    time to read = buy it

    Each person has a limited window of time to read/be entertained. It isn't difficult to see that having an auto renewal on copyright guarantees when people do choose to read they must pay for it. As long as people are spending the system works. If we ever get to a point where there is a wealth of entertainment/books available for free our system crashes.

     

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  110.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 5:24pm

    "Each person has a limited window of time to read/be entertained. It isn't difficult to see that having an auto renewal on copyright guarantees when people do choose to read they must pay for it. As long as people are spending the system works. If we ever get to a point where there is a wealth of entertainment/books available for free our system crashes"

    Oh, you mean the explosion of blogs, Youtube and other video-sites, and -- probably the most overtly "subversive" but overlooked aspect of Net-culture, "Fan-fic?"

    http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/lifestyle/article-23704887-how-fanfic-took-over-the-web. do

    Like I was saying: if the corporate media megaliths won't "give" us back the Public Domain, We (everybody who isn't one of their cronies) will simply CREATE ONE, by way of mass civil disobedience. Basically, under current scribbles masquerading as IP "law", every fanfic author or Remix/mashup creator is subversive, by definition.

     

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  111.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 6:17pm

    Re: time to read = buy it

    I seriously have no idea how to respond to something like this. Culture is free. It always has been and it will always be free. A tiny portion of culture has a government-enforced monopoly attached to it, for the time being, but that tiny portion doesn't define the whole of culture.

    The nickel-and-diming of artistic human expression continues. Joy.

     

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    pr, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 8:00pm

    Here's an amusing case, from the standard bearer of copyright maximalists, Disney. They're remaking "Alice in Wonderland". Amusing, of course, that they made AiW in 1951, a mere 53 years after the death of the author. They wouldn't have been able to do that under current copyright law. This time they're creating a derivative story based on the same characters. OR do they own them now? They seem to think they own Winnie the Pooh.

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1014759/

     

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  113.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 8:12pm

    Re: time to read = buy it

    "If we ever get to a point where there is a wealth of entertainment/books available for free our system crashes."

    You mean the system whereby the evil rich people exploit the public because the evil rich people have no regard for morality? On the other hand, the system of optimizing public welfare works perfectly fine.

     

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    Henry Emrich, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 8:17pm

    Re:

    Whoa! Aren't they one of the companies pressing for longer terms? Somehow, this doesn't actually surprise me that much.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 8:49pm

    Re: time to read = buy it

    "As long as people are spending the system works."

    This is not how economics works. The purpose of having money and allowing people to spend it is to increase aggregate output. Spending money is not the intended end of an economy, increased aggregate output is. Putting artificial restrictions on the free market in a way designed to make people spend money reduces aggregate output which defeats the purpose of having a monetary economy. If the free market makes something free then it SHOULD be free because making it free is exactly what would optimize aggregate output which is the purpose of an economy to begin with.

    However I think the system that you are referring to is the one whereby evil rich people exploit the public. and that system SHOULD crash. Just because you have no regard for morality doesn't mean the government should allow you to get rich off of the hard work of others. The fact that you have less regard for morality than others and you won't let a thing like morality get in the way of becoming rich doesn't make you better than them and it doesn't make you any more deserving.

     

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  116.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 8:57pm

    Re: time to read = buy it

    but at least you admit the purpose of intellectual property and what you intend it to do. You don't intend it to "promote the progress" you intend it to unfairly reduce the "wealth of entertainment/books available" in your favor. This is the intended purpose of going after Justin T.V., and other services that freely offer free content. It's not because there is the potential for someone to use it to infringe on intellectual property, you intend to restrict these services to reduce the "wealth of entertainment/books available" because such services compete with the ability of evil intellectual property maximists to exploit both the artists/musicians and the public. It has nothing to do with reducing piracy and everything to do with restricting competition.

     

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    TW Burger (profile), Jan 2nd, 2010 @ 11:46pm

    History and Culture Can Not be Left to the Copyright Holder

    I'm watching a Monty Python documentary while I read this article and the responses. Terry Gilliam said he found out that the BBC was about to record over all of the Monty Python's Flying Circus old episodes because the tapes cost 90 Pounds each and they needed them for "football matches and horse shows". So, to save the show, literally, he bought all of the tapes. Twenty years later, when Python became in demand again, the BBC had to come begging him for the master tapes.

    Ted Turner has saved much of the old nitrate films by buying all of those old classics and remastering them for his successful TCM network. I's good that he could
    see the value of old works. However, his efforts are restricted to Hollywood, what have we lost from the 1920's school of French surrealism? We did lose part of Fritz Lang's brilliant 1927 'Metropolis' but, because the copyright expired in 1953 there was an effort to find and reconstruct the film and it was announced they has found most of the original and Turner is going to show it in 2010 (hopefully) with the original score.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metropolis_(film)#Restorations_and_re-releases

    If the copyright was still in play this would all not be possible and the mother of all science fiction movies would have been lost forever. I believe 'Avatar' will be gone in 83 years. A DVD only lasts a few to a maximum of about 20 years (about 40 minutes on the dash of a car on a hot day). Don't argue with my estimates. I have been using using CD's since the 1980's and some of my earlier music and computer data is not recoverable. DVD technology is even less robust. Don't look for Blueray to be any better.

    Johnnie Carson once complained that NBC had destroyed much of the original Tonight Show recordings. He said it wasn't all brilliant television, but it was part of American culture.

    Recently, NASA erased the moon landing recordings:

    "An exhaustive, three-year search for some tapes that contained the original footage of the Apollo 11 moonwalk has concluded that they were probably destroyed during a period when NASA was erasing old magnetic tapes and reusing them to record satellite data."

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=106637066

    I am certain that this mindless corporate and government behavior is repeated often everywhere in the world. They are carrying out the actions of the firemen in F 451 every day.

    I can understand corporations and individuals wanting to maximize profits from a creative investment but without the public or (as in Gilliam's case) private involvement I can see much of our collective past being lost.

    Perhaps the best solution is to enact a global law that requires all copyrighted works to be kept by the holders in a fail safe archive and if they refuse to pay for the storage the work goes public.

    I only write technical material and may never get around to typing out the novel or two I have in mind, but this article has convinced me to call my lawyer next week and make sure my will clearly states that anything I wrote becomes public domain upon my death. Otherwise, my death may be the final word of me.

     

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    TW Burger (profile), Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 12:10am

    Re: Re:

    No, we can stop copyright holders from being greedy, it's called the law. The right of he individual (and in this case the corporation, mostly) has to be limited for the common good.

    Off the topic: This is a public forum and you are allowed to speak your mind but you're being dismissive and obtuse. Try to be constructive and persuasive instead.

     

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    cc, Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 2:33am

    Re: Re: time to read = buy it

    We are but a tiny fraction of the people that will ever be alive. Current, modern culture is not free. Free is the culture that is too old to describe our current thoughts and aspirations, and an individual's access to that culture is limited (severely!) by their economic situation.

    I am sure beyond *any* doubt that an internet pirate is more cultured than someone with similar economic conditions who accesses culture only by their means.

    That is the sad truth of it: people need today's culture, but are forced to pay a ridiculous toll to get it. You may be well off, but a significant percentage of the population are not. If access to modern culture is denied to them, we begin to see a rift forming -- you know, social classes defined by their education and what have you.

    So, a government enforcing this monopoly is a government working against its people. Or, simply working for the upper classes who can both afford and have come to control culture.

     

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  120.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 2:39am

    Re: Re: time to read = buy it

    That is a distinct possibility, but is in my view unlikely.

    If culture is made free 28 years late, then that culture is severely dated (any book, song or film from the 1960s is considered pretty old now).

    The things that usually catch on have a "viral" respect to them, and old things don't get a second chance. Modern culture will always be separate from that of 28 years ago.

     

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  121.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 2:47am

    Re: Re: time to read = buy it

    That's, of course, assuming that the government have a regard for morality.

    As things stand, some (yes, rich and powerful few) are lobbying (=bribing) the government, and the government is doing anything they want. Morality? Nope. Just good old personal gain.

     

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  122.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 2:52am

    Re: Re: time to read = buy it

    But we shouldn't forget that the entertainment industries won't even entertain the possibility that old material can compete with new material, so old material must be held back.

     

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  123.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 2:53am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "No, we can stop copyright holders from being greedy, it's called the law."

    they are not just being greedy, they are being SELFISH.

     

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  124.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 3:01am

    Re: Re:

    and what's amazing is that Disney is Jewish Company but Israel itself has among the worlds most lenient intellectual property laws and they're one of the worlds most innovative nations as a result. Intellectual property is good for other nations so long as a small subset of the population benefits from it but don't let that subset itself be hindered by a thing like intellectual property.

    BTW, I have nothing against Israel or Jews, I'm Christian and believe Jews are God's chosen people.

     

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  125.  
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    Marcel de Jong (profile), Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 7:52am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Ok, I'll start a fast-food restaurannt, and I'll take a piece of bread, slice it in half, and put lettuce, tomato, onions, flame-grilled beef patty and cheese in between the two halves. And then sell it as a Whopping Big Burger.
    I don't think they can do anything to stop me.

     

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  126.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 1:49pm

    In summary

    Man you people are a bit long winded.

    Cattle die, kindred die,
    Every man is mortal:
    But I know one thing that never dies,
    The glory of the great dead

     

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  127.  
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    TW Burger (profile), Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 2:38pm

    Re: Selfish

    Yes, probably.

     

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  128.  
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    TW Burger (profile), Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 2:53pm

    Re: In summary

    The Hávamál (of which this is a verse) is from a time of passing down history through an oral tradition and it was profession to be a story teller and memorize history. Very important text was carved in stone and lasted for millennia. In this case you know of this passage from the Elder Edda a 12th century compilation of Icelandic poems. If it was copyrighted I doubt that it would have been known to you.

     

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  129.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 3:27pm

    The REAL point every is missing:

    1. "laws" are only enforceable, to the extent that they can be enforced. (Tautological, yes -- also true.)
    What I mean by this, is that if ENOUGH people not merely RESENT a given "law", but actively rebel against it -- AND understand why they are doing so -- then no attempt to jack-boot that "law" back into force again, CAN succeed.

    So the corporate megaliths and their various lick-spittles don't give a shit about the public domain? Who gives a shit? Smack them out of the way, by VIOLATING "copyright" as often, and as gleefully as possible. Because Y'know what? *THEY* (the monopolists) violated THEIR side of the "Copyright Bargain" the millisecond they started lobbying for term extension.

    Those the (corporate) media deride as "pirates" are actually the biggest benefactors to world culture out there, right now, in that they actively keep cultural "product" in circulation that would otherwise have been seen as "not commercially valuable".
    But more importantly, they keep alive the notion that culture itself is -- or at least, SHOULD be -- bigger than mere "commerce".

    So really, the only rational choice is: if they (the Power-Elite) won't "permit" us a vibrant and flourishing "Public Domain" -- then we (everybody else) will FORCE them to do so.

    And there's absolutely nothing they can do to stop it:

    Every new "law" just pisses people off worse, and fuels the creation of ever more robust P2p technology.

    We've been laughing at their ludicrous pro-monopoly propaganda since back in the "Home Taping is killing music" era.

    Every new attempt at DRM is cracked relatively quickly. (Okay, Ilok is an exception, but the mere fact corporations using it want you to BUY an Ilok hardware-dongle to even be able to use their supposedly "Free" demo versions seriously hampers those corporations from actually getting very far commercially, AND makes them look ludicrous, to book.)

    There is very literally nothing -- no possible response or justification the pro-monopoly faction can offer -- that even sounds halfway credible: they're greedy little shits who will do anything and everything they can, just to "keep squeezing the nickel 'till the Buffalo shits."

    That's all it is, and all it ever was.

    But they've already lost: the combination of tech-savvy "pirates" and several decades of their OWN corporate propaganda efforts making them look like greedy corporate pond-slime too care of that.

    That's one of the reasons I'm having a happy new year -- because I know that no matter *what* they do, they've already lost. AND, more importantly, THEY know it, too.

     

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  130.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 7:26pm

    Merely out of curiosity, has there ever been an instance where the existence of a copyrighted work has prevented you from performing your job or providing for your family? E.g., have you ever done something and then received a Cease and Desist communication? Have you ever been sued for copyright infringement? Etc.

    Your comments are made with such passion I am left wondering if perhaps you have some personal experience that is undisclosed.

     

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  131.  
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    Henry Emrich, Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 11:12pm

    "Straw man", anyone?

    1. Are you referring specifically to *me*, or to other commenters? Or are you simply using "you" in a generalized sense to denote the entire virtual online "crowd"?

    It would really help to understand that.

    2. The assumption that the existing state of intellectual property has supposedly "never prevented anyone from providing for their family" is.....wow, what orifice did you pull *that* one out of, exactly? (Just out of curiousity).

    Hmm, really expensive pharmaceuticals where one corporation has exclusive monopoly "protection" over it, instead of the vaunted "market competition" about which we lie to ourselves, how about that. It's a little off the "putlic domain" topic, but it *is* the sort of runaway IP "law" that effects quite a lot of folks. Why do you think so many new medications and procedures are so expensive?
    Maybe the "captive market" provided by the existing version of IP law (patent 'protection") has something to do with it. Hell, considering the nearly instantaneous -- and PRECIPITOUS -- decrease in prices when "generic" versions of medications are finally allowed, there might even be something to that, I dunno.

    http://levine.sscnet.ucla.edu/general/intellectual/against.htm

    Now, I'm pretty good at detecing "subtexts", here, and the basic subtext of your last question was neither innocent, nor "just out of curiosity". If you are trying to make the claim that IP law has never killed -- or even harmed anyone (prevented them from "providing for their family"), then I suppose people in third world nations who are prevented from access to affordable anti-AIDS medication would count, no?

    But as for the other stuff -- how about every media-related startup that gets sued into oblivion by way of "cease and desist" bullshit, hmm? Not just talking about Bittorent sites, either. Check the rates on indemnifying yourself, if you try to be an Internet broadcaster, sometime.

    But hey, go right ahead: consider the OTHER stuff (books, music, the shared cultural heritage of the last century) a mere "frill", which makes the perpetual monopoly bullshit just fine. As for the "passionate" aspect -- anyone who is not *really* annoyed by what these corporations are doing, hasn't been paying attention.

    But thanks for the idiocy. Real nice to see you couldn't even be bothered to invent a "handle" for yourself.

    "Just out of curiosity", which of the media megacorps do you work for?

    Or is that you, "Anti-Mike", to chicken-shit to actually post under your previous handle?

     

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  132.  
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    TW Burger (profile), Jan 3rd, 2010 @ 11:27pm

    Re: Copyright and Profit

    I suppose I have been prevented from performing my job (research) in some way, but I can generally afford to get access to anything. I and other children past and present have and are being denied education by publishers demanding ridiculous sums from the public school system for text books.

    It's not this that is of concern here, it is the loss of knowledge or, more importantly, the ideas that are being lost. Nazi Germany's first efforts were to remove any ideas other than their own simplistic lies. Chairman Mao ordered all the intellectuals into the countryside to dig and farm or be imprisoned and executed. We now are losing ideas to due to indifference to anything but profit. I personally really like to have money and am not about to support a call for a sort of "copy anything you want" utopia. But seeing the cultural record disintegrate is hard to take. I've been witnessing this for decades. A loss of ideas is a loss of freedoms.

     

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  133.  
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    Clark W Griswold, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 2:30am

    Considering that the USPTO owns this...

    A worthwhile idea would be to apply a statutory rate for commercial fair use, as well as derivative art works.

    To further prevent over-use of the Federal Court System, (a-la East Texas) a neutral third party should perhaps be in charge of several copyright functions as it pertains to Copyright and Patents. Oftentimes, frivolous lawsuits are filed which do not incent commerce (remember, Dept of Commerce oversees USPTO) outside of the legal system, and in the process of highly visible lawsuits, can have the ability to remove value from the products available in the marketplace. In many ways, this can work against ideals and goals of commercialization.

    Therefore, perhaps overall enforcement and determination of what constitutes a "derivative work", along with royalty disbursement should be a process wholly owned by the USPTO, and not by third party copyright holder/assignees interests whose lawsuits are often on the basis of wealth redistribution.

    The reasoning behind this is simple: The USPTO currently determines what constitutes "new art" and inventions in it's current review process, and thusly would have the subject matter, and domain-level knowledge and practical application necessary to make such determinations.

    Simply put, the USPTO would be able to best determine if something is new, or qualifies as a derivative work, outside of the more capital-intensive legal system, and therefore, it may be in the best interest for the USPTO to make such determinations rather than the court system which oftentimes lacks application of this domain knowledge.

     

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  134.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 5:29am

    Re:

    Are you talking to anybody in particular?

     

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  135.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 5:49am

    Re: time to read = buy it

    "It isn't difficult to see that having an auto renewal on copyright guarantees when people do choose to read they must pay for it. As long as people are spending the system works."

    Really?

    OK, here's my $20 for a DVD of the Lon Chaney classic London After Midnight. Ah, but you can't take that because MGM managed to get hold of all the prints and lost them in a warehouse fire. I don't believe that the system "works" if it allows the only copies of a film to be lost forever. If they weren't so obsessed with "protecting" their copyright, I could be watching a free public domain copy right now.

    How about a copy of The Last Starfighter on DVD? Nope, still can't take my money because it's region locked and they haven't bothered releasing it in my region. Copyright holders tend to enforce regional "protections" even if they lose money in the meantime. Even this would be public domain soon and wouldn't matter, if it weren't for the "protections" of copyright.

    What about a recording to the concert I went to last week? Still no sale - the concert promoters didn't bother making a recording, and they actively blocked me from making my own. That concert, even if it turns out to be the best the band ever played and ever will play, is now lost except in the vague memories of the people lucky enough to be there.

    What about a classic episode of Doctor Who? Nope, still no sale as the BBC taped over those episodes to save some cash. Bravo, copyright owners.

    How about a copy of The Beatles' back catalogue on MP3? Again no sale. If the copyright laws hadn't been changed, those would now be public domain, but now we have to rip CDs (which the music industry would love to make illegal) to get them at all. That's inconvenient, but what about the Beatles' contemporaries whose sales were destroyed by their success, and are not currently available? Oh, we're not allowed to hear them as they're not "commercially viable" enough for release, but they're not allowed into public domain either.

    How about a new copy of Virgin, the debut novel by James Patterson? Not technically possible, as that book's out of print. Sure, you can pick up a second hand copy, but that's now the domain of book collectors, and Patterson will never see another penny unless it's reprinted. It was published in 1980, so would now be public domain under the 30 year rule, but now nobody involved with its creation profits from it and it's read by very few people.

    Doesn't sound like it works particularly well to me.

    "If we ever get to a point where there is a wealth of entertainment/books available for free our system crashes."

    www.archive.org
    www.youtube.com/movies
    www.gutenberg.org
    www.creativecommons.org
    ww w.baen.com/library

    (and, of course, www.thepiratebay.org)

    ... and so on...

    * looks around for the system crashing *

    Nope, it's still intact.

     

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  136.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 7:49am

    Re: "Straw man", anyone?

    I would have thought that the word "you" was sufficient for determining to whom my question was directed.

    BTW, profanity in a response does nothing to move a discussion forward.

    Also BTW, I do not work for any "megacorp". I did at one time work as legal counsel within the aerospace industry, dealing almost exclusively with government contracts (domestic and international) involving extremely complex military and space systems. Such systems were of the type where merely "good enough" was nowhere even remotely "good enough" to meet system specs. Ever try to design and manufacture complex electronic and optical components capable of sustaining countermeasure attacks and withstanding instantaneous forces (acceleration and decceleration) in the order of about 10,000Gs, or capable of a frontal intercept on an incoming missile such as a SCUD that is traveling at multiple MACH?

     

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  137.  
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    Matthew, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 8:12am

    "Right" Length of Copyright

    You say that the content still has value in its original form after 28 years, which is probably true. It isn't necessary, however, for a work to be drained of value before it moves into the public domain. Your language, "tossed to the masses," suggests that you have a "pearls before swine" attitude regarding cultural works. The language of the Constitution, however, suggests that the purpose of copyright is exactly that: to put works into the hands of the public. Whether the creator has squeezed every drop of value out of the work or not is, in the opinion of some (myself among them), irrelevant. The "deal" was supposed to be that we let the copyright holder enjoy the value of the work exclusively for some time and then give it to the public. There shouldn't be a question of "taking" anything from the rights holder. Supposedly, they agreed to "give" their work to the public after a limited time. There are many people in this community who believe that 28 years is a sufficient copyright length to provide the "right" balance of value to the creator and value to the public.

     

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    Henry Emrich (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 9:31am

    "You" were wrong:

    Lemme see if I can explain this. "In response to 'anonymous'" wouldn't really be very useful, because there are several folks posting as "anonymous coward". If it's directed at a specific person --- and they've chosen either to use a "handle" or their own name, then direct it at them.

    So no, using "you" wasn't anywhere near sufficient to cover it.

    As for your other nitpicking, please do us a favor, and define "profanity": is it the infamous "7 'dirty' words you can't say on TV" as so aptly -- and hillariously -- skewered by George Carlin? Or is it just whatever *you* personally happen to *want* to consider "profane"?

    (Strictly speaking -- if we want to play these types of linguistic-category games, the infamous word 'fuck' doesn't strictly speaking, qualify as 'profanity', in that it doesn't involve an oath against a diety, whereas "god-damn" would.

    So please, please, precious anonymous comment troll, feel free to stipulate what you consider "profanity" to be, so I (and others) can make sure to totally disregard it.

    The other stuff where you claim to have participated in aerospace contracts etc.? Pretty sure a significant proportion of the aerospace industry is dominated by government contractors, no? Of course, that assumes that any of your claims are actually *true*, which is highly debatable, given the fact that you're STILL posting anonymously, and haven't even bothered to create a handle.

    Shit (oops, there I go again!), every 12-year-old has an internet "Handle" nowadays.

    But hey, nice to see your "response" didn't actually refute any of my examples.

    (Hint: it's REALLY hard to sustain any kind of 'conversation' with large numbers of people posting NOT just "anonymously", but under the same default "anonymous" handle. Why don't people *get* this, I wonder.

    To respond to PaulT: why do you deride a "copy whatever you want" situation as "utopia"? Haven't you been paying attention this last decade? People have been "copying whatever they want" in droves, and it *really* hasn't turned out bad at all, except of course, for those organizations dedicated to expanding the monopoly privilege of copyright to absurd lengths.

    You like money? How about this: drastically-shorter copyright terms would allow people to "legally" bring a lot of "out of print" stuff back into widespread availability. Might not get you super-wealthy like Steven King, but it's just one of the new possibilities for which the technology already exists (Print-on-demand, etc.)

    Y'ever heard of "Project Gutenberg?" And besides, EVEN in the "copy whatever you want utopia" that you deride (IE: even with the situation as it exists NOW), it *is* possible to "compete with free". Again -- and realize that this is probably just how I am -- I have my doubts as to whether you're actually paying attention, or a dismissive statement like that wouldn't even be possible.

    Last point (for anybody who thinks some of us might be too "passionate" about these issues): the primary reason Lessig lost on the Eldred decision was -- as he put it -- because he couldn't get them to understand that the issue was important. Unless people understand that the issue of runaway corporate power IS important (on many fronts, btw -- not just the copyright or file-sharing thing), those corporations, and their lobbying front-groups, *will* continue to rape the surrounding culture, with impunity.

    L8r, y'all. :)

     

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  139.  
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    Henry Emrich (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 9:39am

    Another good example of why the "Public Domain" is important and useful

    http://www.sacred-texts.com/

    Now notice a few things:

    1. This site gives access to a vast repository of content which has "fallen" into the infamous public domain. Obviously, one of the "masses" has taken it upon him or herself to put the effort into making this stuff available. PLUS, he sells CD's (for those who don't want to bother with downloading). Wouldn't be that hard to implement a Print-on-Demand type of derivative (through, say, Cafepress.com, or Lulu.com, or something).

    See? Here's a clear example of where the monopoly privilege of copyright doesn't even come into play. The "public Domain" about which Anti-Thought didn't even *give* a crap (is that to "profane" for anybody, hmmm?) has LITERALLY made the above site possible.

    (BTW, did anybody ever notice that older versions of the KJV -- King Jame's bible -- use the word "piss" quite frequently? Just sayin'.) :)

    L8r, y'all :)

     

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    Marcus Carab (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 9:54am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    And if they could, it would be entirely over you choice a name designed to cause confusion with another product. Give it a brand new name and you're completely in the clear.

     

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  141.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 10:12am

    Re: "You" were wrong:

    Actually, Lessig did not lose anything. He was disappointed with the decision, but the individual who "lost", so-to-speak, was his client.

    The Supreme Court is not comprised of a bunch of fools incapable of understanding what you deem important. What the Supreme Court did is defer to the action taken by Congress based upon longstanding precedent. If you want to assign blame, then direct at Congress.

    Profanity is in the eye of the beholder. Perhaps I can put this another way. If you are employed by a company, I would be surprised if communications you have with its CEO/President are presented with the same choice of words that permeate your comments. If you are married, I rather doubt that the first time you met your future In-Laws you talked with them in a like manner. If your are a churchgoer, I rather doubt you speak in public to the Minister after a sermon by telling him/her in the presence of others that he/she really pulled one out of his/her orifice.

    This is an article about copyrights. Why you conflate it with patents is not at all clear.

    Again, you rail against copyright law in the strongest of terms. Hence, I have to wonder what it may be about your personal experiences that give rise to such a strong, negative reaction.

     

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  142.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 10:27am

    Re: Re: "You" were wrong:

    It's about the public domain actually.

     

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    Almost Anonymous (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 10:35am

    Re: Re: The Idiot Speaks...

    Good luck finding a copy of "The Black Cauldron" either...

     

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    nasch (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 11:00am

    Re: Reasons I regard "Anti-Mike" (AKA "Anti-Thought) to be a troll/shill

    I'm just really tired of this Thing's jabberings, and have personally come to the conclusion that the best way to counterbalance It's idiotic nonsense, is to simply subject it to the ridicule, scorn and contempt which It so richly deserves, for for which It so desperately begs.

    Why give it what it wants? I know it's a ridiculous fantasy, but my dream is that everyone will commit (call it a New Year's resolution) to never, ever reply to this thing, until it changes its ways. Make sure every one of its posts is a dead end. Either it will go away, start making sense, or just be ignored. Any of those outcomes are great.

    But I know ignoring a troll will never happen.

     

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  145.  
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    jjmsan (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 2:10pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You have seen the Burger King commercial advertising the fact they are selling fake McDonald's sausage biscuits haven't you?

     

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  146.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 3:19pm

    Re: Re: "Straw man", anyone?

    "I would have thought that the word "you" was sufficient for determining to whom my question was directed."

    That's because you're either a retard or maybe English is not your primary language. In ENGLISH you can be either singular or plural. In Spanish (and many other languages) you use different words to decipher the two.

     

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  147.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 3:21pm

    Re: Re: "Straw man", anyone?

    "BTW, profanity in a response does nothing to move a discussion forward."

    While I agree, notice how you still do not address any of the points he's making and instead you focus on something irrelevant.

     

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  148.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 3:25pm

    Re: Re: "You" were wrong:

    "Hence, I have to wonder what it may be about your personal experiences that give rise to such a strong, negative reaction"

    Perhaps it's the fact that the overwhelming majority of the laws laws in this nation, including copyright laws, are only designed to benefit the top 1 percent.

     

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  149.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 3:35pm

    Re:

    "Merely out of curiosity, has there ever been an instance where the existence of a copyrighted work has prevented you from performing your job or providing for your family?"

    So if I broke into your house and stole $100 then, by your logic, it's perfectly OK because those $100 and the money to pay for a new door or window will not prevent you from providing for your family. As a result, crooks that break into your house and steal $100 from you should not be stopped and when such an injustice happens to you you should not resist. In fact, you should not ever try to resist such injustices or any single injustice that doesn't single handedly rob you out of your house and home. If there is an unjust law as long as that law doesn't, by itself, rob you out of a house and home you shouldn't resist. I just don't see how you can try and defend such an indefensible position.

    Yes, we should be APPALLED at unjust laws, even if one of those laws don't single handedly rob us out of a house and home. and current intellectual property laws are very unjust and they should absolutely be resisted.

     

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    Overcast (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 3:38pm

    It's all about control, control, control.

     

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  151.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 3:43pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "The durability of works produced in the last 50-80 years shows that the content still has value in it's original form, not tossed to the masses."

    The purpose of intellectual property should not be to monopolize a product until it no longer has value.

     

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    Henry Emrich (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 7:30pm

    Wow.....

    1. Glad you admitted that "profanity is in the eye of the beholder". Now, kindly blow me. (joke).

    2. Your CEO example? Yet more presumptuous arrogance on your part. You're not the boss of me (anybody else remember the theme-song to "Malcolm in the Middle" -- BTW, even that small and oblique "quotation" of song lyrics is only "legal" due to the fair-use exception that "permits" quotation for specific reasons.

    2. When exactly did I say the Supreme court were "fools"? Look at history. Examine the fundamental differences between, say, the "Dredd Scott" decision (blacks as 3/5ths of a White person) vs. "Brown V. board of education" -- total demolition of "Seperate but equal" leading to at least the tacit understanding that Blacks are "legally" EQUIVALENT to whites, or any other race, for that matter.

    What does that have to do with copyright, the public domain, patents, or anything else? Glad "You" asked:

    Government *HAD* to do something like "brown V. Board of education". It *had* to strike down laws against "miscegenation" (remember, just a few decades ago, Barrack Obama's mere existence as a "biracial" person would have violated numerous State laws.)
    Sociopolitical systems (governments) can only accomplish a limited amount through "jackbooting" -- coercion, force, etc. And once a significant proportion of the populace *refuse* to placidly obey a given "law", that law is DE FACTO repealed. Oh, they can try and fight a running-battle, expend resources on it, and, above all, propagandize in the (vain) hope that the citizenry (or should we say, "subjects") stop rebelling -- but ultimately, they *have* to change whatever scribbles happen to be on the books at any given time, to make them more harmonious with what people ACTUALLY DO.

    There's really no issue of "passion" involved (except for the fact that corporate lobbyists buying their clients out of THEIR side of the "copyright bargain" is profoundly repugnant -- or should be -- to anyone NOT affiliated with such corporations.

    Really, how do you not get this?

    Above all, I urge you strongly, to realize that (and here comes that "eye of the beholder" thing again), so long as you choose to lurk behind the default anonymous "handle" -- instead of at least giving us all something with which to dialog --- *I* for one don't give two liquidy shits WHAT you claim about yourself, or what kind of inane psychoanalytical games you try to play on any of us.

    I've never been date-raped, but I see date-rape as a problem. Nobody ever dropped Rufinol into my drink at a bar, but I can see how that's problematic.

    I've never been in an "inter-racial" relationship, but I can see how attempting to have laws against "miscegenation" is an affont to human dignity.

    Read up on the history of copyright (and patents). Stop trying to read some sort of petty "personal" vendetta into this, as if we're all just "out to get the heroic corporations" or some bullshit.

    Above all, wake the HELL up, and stop whining about how I -- or anybody else -- used what YOU happen to (mis)construe as "profanity", as if that's some sort of substantive answer to the points I raised. I'm not going to play Scarlett O'Hara ("Oh Fiddle-De-Dee!") just to assuage the delicate sensibilities of some TROLL who's self-evidently too chickenshit to even come up with a handle.

    Can't really speak for anybody else on that score.

    But yeah, if you really want to know, I'll tell you my deep dark secret: when I was ten a copyright lawyer killed a kitten and ate it while I was forced to watch.

    Any more stupid questions? :)

    (Trust me, folks -- I'm actually a nice person, when not dealing with Net-Trolls.) :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  153.  
    icon
    Henry Emrich (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 8:46pm

    Music-label suicide -- YEAH

    http://torrentfreak.com/record-label-stops-signing-artists-because-of-piracy-100104/

    Now, let's keep something in mind here:

    1. Screwing the artists has been standard procedure EVEN on the vast majority of "indie" labels for decades. They've also been bitching about how *all* of their bad sales figures etc. is due to some form of disruptive technology, and/or the evil subversive scumbags who use it: "home taping is killing music". "The VCR is just like the Boston Strangler". ad infinitum.

    So their "solution" to this? A real-life version of the "MOOP' thing from South park. Y'know what? Dunno about you all, but -- even assuming that they are ABSOLUTELY RIGHT that p2p "piracy" is killing what passes for a "music industrry", I'm STILL all for it -- ESPECIALLY when sanctimonious twits like Bono and Lily Allen advocate a digital police-state, and whiny has-beens like Lars Ulrich put themselves out their as the "public face" of corporate lick-spittlism.

    2. Now read the comments. I dare *any* apologist for the corporate recording "industry", it's cronies in government, or the existing "75-years-past-death" IP bullshit to ignore the amount of complete and utter indifference or OUTRIGHT JUBILATION coming from news like this. We DON'T HAVE TO KILL THEM OFF -- they'll commit suicide on their own.

    No self-respecting "indipendent" record label would actually be part of one of the major-label front groups, and we know that. But what is *most* glaringly amazing about decisions like this, is that whatever vanishingly-small shred of usefulness or value musicians *did* get from a label that reacts like this, is utterly and completely GONE.

    And yet again, I'll say it: These so-called "indie" poseurs have ONLY themselves to blame, because they didn't bother to break ranks when the media megacorps and their lobbyist cronies in government started doing oppressive shit, and now because the combination of disruptive technology and the fact that the labels were a complete screwjob have converged into MASSIVE, GLOBAL-SCALE CONTEMPT -- if not outright hatred -- the best "solution" they can come up with is some variant of "I'm taking my toys and going home!"

    Oh, boo hoo. The last genuinely "independent" music scene was the punk rock labels and 'zines thrown together on a shoestring by people who were *really* about the music, and connecting with their fans. Maybe the solution is to acknowledge a monopoly privilege for what it always was, stop raping the public domain/apologizing for organizations that do, actually *use* the new disruptive technologies instead of trying (fruitlessly) to have them banned -- EVEN (or especially) if that means that producing/distributing stuff isn't nearly so "expensive".

    Good riddance, I say.

     

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  154.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 9:13pm

    Re: Wow.....

    "Read up on the history of copyright (and patents)."

    I have, many, many times. Your comments suggest to me that in your case this is not something you have done to any significant degree.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  155.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 9:59pm

    Re: Re: Wow.....

    and your comments suggest you're just an idiot. You think that proclaiming that you understand copyright and merely claiming that others don't without any substantiation whatsoever is enough to convince others that you're right. It doesn't work that way.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  156.  
    identicon
    Bettawrekonize, Jan 4th, 2010 @ 10:03pm

    Re: Re:

    Or imagine that I go to the store and they scammed me out of $10 and they did the same to many many other customers and made millions in the process. Now this $10 may not have robbed anyone out of a house and home but does that mean that we should ignore the issue and not be outraged? Absolutely not. Or what if the bank scammed each customer out of a few dollars but it never drove anyone out of a house and home and the bank made millions in the process. Would you find that acceptable? By your logic we should just ignore the issue and not be outraged. No, we absolutely SHOULD be outraged. It's not acceptable. and our unjust intellectual property laws are, likewise, unacceptable.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  157.  
    icon
    Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 4th, 2010 @ 10:57pm

    Re: Re: "You" were wrong:

    The Supreme Court is not comprised of a bunch of fools incapable of understanding what you deem important. What the Supreme Court did is defer to the action taken by Congress based upon longstanding precedent. If you want to assign blame, then direct at Congress.

    For a detailed and rather brilliant takedown of the Supreme Court's poor reasoning in Eldred, you should look at what David Lange and Jefferson Powell had to say about it. The Supreme Court may be good at determining what's important, but reading their analysis you realize how incredibly confused Justice Ginsburg was on this particular case. The court makes mistakes. Eldred was a big one.

    It does not mean they are "fools," but merely human.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  158.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2010 @ 8:28am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "The change of the length of copyright has happened before, and it may happen again. It keeps copyright in line with the usage of the products.

    Everyone rags on Disney, yet they can take out 70 year old content, digitally remaster it, and sell DVDs of the content in large numbers. It is still a valuable product. Why should they not have rights to it?"

    First of all the Disney that owns it today is probably, by and large, not the same people that owned it many years ago. The people who own it today should not be able to exclusively benefit from the works of others, they should have to make their own works. That is, the people who own it today do not deserve what they own, they did absolutely nothing to deserve what they own. Why not just take the copyright away from Disney and give it to some random person instead, perhaps that random person can then make a movie out of it and digitally remaster it. That is, modern day Disney does not deserve the copyright any more than I do and as far as digitally re mastering it, why not just give me the copyright and allow me to digitally remaster it.

    Secondly, even if Disney does not own the copyright of the works no one is stopping them from digitally remastering it. The only difference is that with them owning the copyright they get to be the only ones who can digitally remaster it which means that

    A: It won't be digitally remastered unless and until Disney wants to digitally remaster it. If I want to digitally remaster it and sell it or give away my work I can't and neither can someone else. This could slow down the process of it ever getting digitally remastered.

    B: It may never get digitally remastered until it enters the public domain if Disney chooses it not to. and by your logic, as long as it has value it should never enter the public domain and if someone digitally remasters it after it does enter the public domain then clearly they do value it and so as long as someone would digitally remaster it upon it entering the public domain then it should never enter the public domain.

    C: If someone does want a digitally remastered copy and Disney does eventually digitally remaster it people everyone must pay monopoly prices on that digital remaster. They shouldn't have to.

    D: It prevents others from working with the product and improving it and doing all sorts of new and innovative things with it. So it only hinders the progress.

    Thirdly, the purpose of copyright is to promote the progress. A 28 year copyright is way too long because the future sums of money obtained 28 years from now do not have the present value to justify further investment into the product now. The length of intellectual property (both patents and copyright) should not last more than about seven years, after which future amounts obtained do not create very much present value in a product to justify further investment.

    Also, we as a society should not give into silly ultimatums. Even if Disney refuses to digitally remaster a work or do anything with it unless they receive a longer copyright that is no excuse for us as a society to give into their every demand. Imagine if you refused to work unless your boss gave you a raise. Chances are you will lose your job. Why should we as a society be more foolish than your boss in this respect?

     

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  159.  
    identicon
    Townsend Harris, Jan 6th, 2010 @ 9:33am

    Should I be pessimistic about the future?

    For now, there's good news in my hometown, Brooklyn, New York: every bit of culture mentioned in the article is available for consumption -- for free -- to anyone who troubles himself to go to the Public Library. And there's no card required if we want to consume that culture on premises. The Library pays to acquire these materials, but for us users, maybe it's like free beer.

    There's less good news in my weekend hometown up in rural Connecticut: the public library's small, and some of the culture mentioned can only be ordered via inter-library loan, then waiting for a week. I won't stumble on some of those books while browsing the shelves. Otherwise, it's the same deal as Brooklyn, though the library's poorer and the free beer's less convenient.

    I'm unsure how all this plays out in the future, but I'm listening to Mike Masnick.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  160.  
    identicon
    Maroussia, Apr 26th, 2010 @ 10:07pm

    Peter Pan Tickets

    It will be great to watch Peter Pan, i have bought tickets from
    http://ticketfront.com/event/Peter_Pan-tickets looking forward to it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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