The Insanity Of Music Licensing: In One Single Graphic

from the duct-tape-upon-duct-tape dept

The history of music licensing is a messy one, but the short version is that every time some new technology or technological shift has come along in the past century, someone in the industry has freaked out that it was going to mean the end of the world for them, and demanded that "something" must be done. What was often done was to add another layer of licensing, sometimes compulsory, sometimes blanket licenses, sometimes something else. Basically, every time the market shifted, copyright law was effectively patched with changes more or less duct taped on to existing law. Over time, this has just gotten messier and messier -- especially as some of these rights "overlapped." Is an internet stream of a music file a performance or a broadcast? If someone bought the file, do they still need to pay for a performance right? And that's just a few of the very initial questions.

One company that has launched a music service recently passed around a graphic illustration of the insanity involved in licensing music for any sort of online music service:
rights-loyalties-slide
What you see there is basically the result of a century or so of "bolting on" new licenses due to changes in the market, rather than any concerted effort to look at whether or not the underlying laws or licenses make sense. It's the result of massive regulatory capture, as industries unwilling to change just run to the gov't and demand to be compensated even as their old business models are going away. At what point do people say it's time to scrap this mess and start from scratch?


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  1.  
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    BearGriz72 (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 8:24am

    Ouch.

    That Map/Image Makes My Brain Hurt....
    The Stupidity Is Astounding!

     

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  2.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:20am

    Sorry...

    Graphic was tc;dr (too confusing, didn't read)....

     

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    Hephaestus (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:21am

    And that is why the creative commons will win out in the end. People will just stop trying to navigate that abortion of a system and choose the simpler way.

     

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  4.  
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    fogbugzd (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:21am

    Weak argument

    You can make almost any real world system look bad by drawing a chart of it. All it takes is going into enough detail to create a dizzying system of boxes, circles, and lines.

    I always hate it when I see otherwise intelligent people who have strong arguments on their side play on such cheap tricks in order to make a point. These types of tricks are typically the tools of people who don't actually have valid arguments to support them.

     

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  5.  
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    Topperfalkon (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:30am

    AGGH!

    That's such a crappy system. All you need is the artists (in whatever forms) some sort of trust or holding group (which labels were originally meant to be) and commercial customers and non-commercial costumers.

     

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  6.  
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    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:39am

    Abolish Copyright

    As I've said before, when you grok copyright you realise it's an alien parasite that's inserted itself into the core of the free market and now represents the greatest impediment to mankind's cultural progress.

    The only cure is to take off and nuke it from orbit.

    Abolish copyright.

    (The same applies to patent).

     

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  7.  
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    Ron Rezendes (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:42am

    Re: Weak argument gets weak reply

    I always hate when people see something clearly spelled out, or drawn out, and still go out of their way to defend the mess.

    I find that it's usually because they are either resistant to change or too damn stupid to understand the original problem.

     

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  8.  
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    darryl, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:44am

    Re: Weak argument

    Exactly,,

    and its not even accurate, and its clearly not the only way.

    As you said, you can make anything look bad if you try as hard as Mike.

    Mike, seems to think some equation will fix the problem..

    Or if you create a song in your garage you will somehow magically be able to mix, engineer, promote, insure, create a film clip, get air play, and have some one else take the risk of all that expense.. All that will happen magically, and to guy who created the song has to give up his career as a musician and become a music promoter, mixing engineer, film clip producer, and so on.

    But mike thinks all those jobs should be done for free, and then the music should be free, and no one should be paid, or rewarded for their efforts.

    And if they do happen to get successful its not because of hard work, telent, and some luck, its just "dumb luck' and some kind of bizzar lotto.

    Im not sorry at all that the real world works differently to how Mike thinks it should.

    It seems mikes utopia would be most peoples dark ages.

     

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  9.  
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    Ryan, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:46am

    Re: Weak argument

    I guess if you're a lazy idiot that takes a bunch of confusing shapes at face value, then such a tactic could mislead. In context, however, the graph is a nice visual representation of the system that is discussed verbally every day; the mere existence of this graph doesn't make those arguments any less viable and, in fact, depends on them for its legitimacy.

    Anyway, perhaps you could make us a "dizzying system of boxes, circle, and lines" to represent an otherwise basic "real world system"...say, buying a bag of chips from the grocery store? In a case such as that, debts are generally transferred at the point of sale between two consensual actors. But when you add in a litany of licenses and royalties, it becomes confusing for everybody and a lot of economic deadweight is lost in the overhead.

     

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    out_of_the_blue, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:46am

    Entrenched interests thrive on needless complexity.

    We're already long past people saying "it's time to scrap this mess and start from scratch", and not just in the music industry.

    I'll just formulate a law, perhaps not original: at some stage of complexity, social systems can't be restored to sense or justice, the system must break entirely (perhaps from larger causes).

     

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    Dark Helmet (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:47am

    Re: Re: Weak argument

    "But mike thinks all those jobs should be done for free, and then the music should be free, and no one should be paid, or rewarded for their efforts."

    Right. Mike says that no one should get paid.

    ....honestly, do you even READ the articles? The whole point is finding new ways to get paid....

     

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    Dark Helmet (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:47am

    Re: Re: Weak argument

    "But mike thinks all those jobs should be done for free, and then the music should be free, and no one should be paid, or rewarded for their efforts."

    Right. Mike says that no one should get paid.

    ....honestly, do you even READ the articles? The whole point is finding new ways to get paid....

     

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  13.  
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    darryl, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:48am

    It would help if the diagram was correct.

    And not incorrect, as it is.

    If you going to post such things, make sure they are right please.

    At least then you have a chance of convincing more than your fan base.

     

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  14.  
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    Michael, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:52am

    Re: Re: Weak argument

    Pointing out that some other system is full of failings as well does not make much of an argument for the system you seem to like.

    What I think is most telling in this picture is:
    4 arrows go to the artists
    2 arrows go to the songwriters
    9 go to the record company

    Who makes out in the current system? Not the artists, and certainly not the consumers.

     

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    Steve R. (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:54am

    What is the Origin of the Licensing Rights?

     

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    Jim, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:58am

    Re: It would help if the diagram was correct.

    Could you perhaps educate us on what is incorrect about it please? I am genuinely curious.

     

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    RD, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:58am

    Re: Re: Weak argument

    "But mike thinks all those jobs should be done for free, and then the music should be free, and no one should be paid, or rewarded for their efforts."

    Wow, what a fucking idiot you are. I mean, seriously, you can assert that with a straight face as if it not only has ANY validity, but also as the CORE of your argument? All you do is expose your ignorance and bias, and veer right up to "corporate shill." Mike never said any such thing. Mike's site never says any such thing. Others will point this out to you, and give reasoned arguments about it, but they are far too easy on you. You deserve to be roundly slapped down, shouted down, and otherwise put the fuck in your place about this. Lying scum like you who have to misrepresent the other side's viewpoints in such a blatant manner dont deserve the courtesy of being heard. Sorry, fuck you and fuck your argument.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:59am

    It is complicated therefore it should be eliminated? Computer language is complicated. Chinese is complicated. And so on....

     

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  19.  
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    nonanonymous, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:01am

    Re: Re: Weak argument

    and its not even accurate, and its clearly not the only way.

    As is typical of your rants, you provide no proof of your statements. Like the one above. Bad troll, no cookie for you.

     

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  20.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:01am

    Re: Re: Weak argument gets weak reply

    "I find that it's usually because they are either resistant to change or too damn stupid to understand the original problem."

    The whole resistant to change piece is why its never going to be simplified until after they fail financially. To much turf (organizations) being defended by to many people.

     

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  21.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:06am

    Re: Re: Weak argument

    "promote" and "get air play" are the same thing. Its the only thing holding back the unkempt barbarian masses at this point.

    "It seems mikes utopia would be most peoples dark ages."

    let me rephrase that for you...

    It seems mikes utopia would be the Label Execs version of the dark ages.

    Thats much better

     

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  22.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:07am

    Re: AGGH!

    Agreed

     

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  23.  
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    Steve R. (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:08am

    Re: What is the Origin of the Licensing Rights?

    Sorry about that. Hit the return key by accident.

    A fundamental problem that I have with all these so-called licenses is: By what right can the copyright holder create (assert) ever more licensing rights? If you buy the music one should implicitly have a right to make an MP3 recording, if you have a radio then everyone in reasonable proximity should have a right to listen to the music.

    This has gotten to be absurd. As another commenter pointed out on another post, if you privately listen to music on an MP3 file with earphones while at the barber shop you are OK, but if the barber plays music that you can both here, it becomes a performance violation. Given the absurd trend of the copyright holders to become ever more extreme in aggrandizing their so-called rights, we will eventually need licenses for each ear.

     

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  24.  
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    darryl, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:09am

    If you have to ask, you need to find out for yourself. Start by looking at it.

    Gee, I was hoping that some of you 'experts' would be able to spot the obvious flaw(s) in that diagram.

    And see at a glance that it is incorrect, and misleading.

    and RD, im glad you got that off your chest, feel better ?

    Its nice to see your first and last resort is the good old personal attack.

    But as for the errors in the diagram, I will keep you in suspense and see if any of you 'experts' can see what is wrong with it.

     

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  25.  
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    darryl, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:15am

    Find what is correct, its easier.. less of them..

    It might (is) much easier for you if you try to find things in that diagram that are correct, not incorrect.

    Its going be an easier job, the person who made that diagram does not have a clue, and it shows..

    But Mike appears to buy it...

     

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  26.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:18am

    Re: Re: Weak argument

    and its not even accurate, and its clearly not the only way.


    Which parts are inaccurate? As a model, nothing is going to be 100% accurate, but it's pretty damn close.

    And I'm curious by what you mean "clearly not the only way." The company that used this chart to secure the licenses it needed sure felt it was the only way. What other options are there.

    Or if you create a song in your garage you will somehow magically be able to mix, engineer, promote, insure, create a film clip, get air play, and have some one else take the risk of all that expense.. All that will happen magically, and to guy who created the song has to give up his career as a musician and become a music promoter, mixing engineer, film clip producer, and so on.

    I've said no such thing. In fact I've argued the exact opposite.

    But mike thinks all those jobs should be done for free, and then the music should be free, and no one should be paid, or rewarded for their efforts.

    You don't even read this site, do you? I spend most of my time pointing out the exact opposite.

    Darryl, the other day you posted a ton of accusations against me, saying I've never run a business, never raised money etc. I responded pointing out that every one of your assumptions was wrong. I'll note that you haven't responded to that comment, but instead are continuing to post stuff that is 100% wrong. Why is that, I wonder?

    But, no, I don't think all jobs should be done for free. I've never said anything like that. I also think people should be paid and rewarded for their efforts, which is why I spend so much time helping content creators understand how best to do so.

    And if they do happen to get successful its not because of hard work, telent, and some luck, its just "dumb luck' and some kind of bizzar lotto.

    I said no such thing. In fact, I argued that talent and hard work were major components, but that there is an element of luck as well. To take my statements and pretend that I said it's entirely dumb luck is wrong and makes you look like a fool.

    Im not sorry at all that the real world works differently to how Mike thinks it should.


    Darryl, the world may work differently than the total strawman you think I've claimed, but trust me, it very much works the way I describe.

     

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  27.  
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    Jim, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:23am

    Re: If you have to ask, you need to find out for yourself. Start by looking at it.

    I never claimed to be an expert... which is why I look for people who are claiming to be to explain things.

    Your tone makes me think you don't really have any valid argument here though, all you can do is allude to some problem and hope we all spin our wheels on it.

    You clearly think you know what's going on yet don't want to help explain what's wrong with the above. I'm not sure how that helps your cause, whatever it may be. Why not present some clear information that can help people who are still trying to figure out how this all works instead of just lobbing insults? Is this somehow supposed to make me believe that something is wrong with the information provided? Should I blindly trust some random commenter? Take a minute to think about what you're doing and maybe try to offer something constructive to this conversation.

     

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  28.  
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    Michael, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:29am

    Re:

    The point here is that it's unnecessarily complicated. If you were to sit down and design a system to further society by encouraging artists to produce more work, is the current system what you would come up with? Would you design a system with so many middle-men? If so, why?

    I really hope someone will take this chart and explain why each piece is really necessary.

     

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  29.  
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    Michael, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:31am

    Re: Find what is correct, its easier.. less of them..

    Did you see the source? This is what they went through to set up their service.

    Please select 2 pieces on the diagram that are incorrect and explain what is wrong with them. That could actually help your argument.

     

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  30.  
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    Nastybutler77 (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:49am

    Re: Find what is correct, its easier.. less of them..

    You're a joke. And not a funny one, unless one finds humor in ignorance.

    Also, learn to use the "reply to this" link. Makes your lunacy that much easier to follow.

     

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  31.  
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    Sal, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 11:00am

    Re: Find what is correct, its easier.. less of them..

    It might (is) much easier for you if you try to find things in darryl's argument that are valid, not invalid.

    Its going to be an easier job, the person who wrote that comment does not have a clue, and it shows..

    But darryl seems to insist it...

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 11:09am

    Re: Re: Weak argument

    People like darryl are good examples of why we should abolish copyrights and patents.

     

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  33.  
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    Jay (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 11:20am

    Re: Abolish Copyright

    It may be great if there was a limit on the copyright. 5 years then move on.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 11:31am

    Re: Re: Re: Weak argument

    I do not know if it is accurate or not, but I have to admit it does present a rather complicated process.

    In all candor, though, at first I thought it might be the process followed by persons itemizing deductions, or even trying to register their car(s) and get a driver's license in California.

     

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  35.  
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    Jeremy7600 (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 11:36am

    Re: Find what is correct, its easier.. less of them..

    I know whats wrong!!!

    The RIAA isn't getting a cut in this diagram!!!

    It shoulda hit me like a freight train when I first saw it.

    Then I realized this wasn't a diagram made by a US based business.

    Shit, back to the uh... drawing board?

    Darryl (or Larry, or the other Darryl) would you please point out the errors to us plebes?

    kthxbi

     

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  36.  
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    Comboman (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 11:39am

    Re: Re: Re: Weak argument

    Mike:

    Perhaps what is confusing to some is that this is the British music licensing system (BPI instead of RIAA, PRS instead of ASCAP), though I suspect the American system is just as byzantine (perhaps more so).

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 11:42am

    Re: Re: It would help if the diagram was correct.

    Why would you seek education from a known moron?

     

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  38.  
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    Auditrix (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 12:16pm

    Re:

    Did you read this (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rick-carnes/professional-songwriters_b_680276.html) opinion piece from Rick Carnes about CC licenses?

    You will probably disagree with most of what he has to say, but it is hard to dispute the fact that CC licenses basically have the effect of transferring money from creators to corporate interests. This is why, as an artist advocate, I can not support CC licenses.

    However, I do support efforts to make it easier for music customers to do business with licensors, and I think we are moving in that direction in the shift to streaming and the success of music libraries, which puts pressure on traditional copyright holders to provide better service to music users.

     

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  39.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 12:19pm

    Anyone that thinks that patents or copyrights are about promoting the progress or helping the artist or that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are about spreading democracy, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I'd like to sell you.

     

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  40.  
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    Auditrix (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 12:20pm

    Chart above is a little misleading

    Even though I tweeted this chart to my followers last week, it is a little misleading, and was deliberately created to look complicated by a company who missed its deadline to license rights. The main problem is that it incorporates more items than necessary. (For example, a manager's commission doesn't belong on a music rights and royalties chart because it is of no concern to a music licensee.)

     

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  41.  
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    mrharrysan (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 12:49pm

    Re: Re:

    He obviously doesn't really know what a CC license really is. His generalized assumptions are not based in fact. That said, another legacy player who feels entitled to the status quo in a disrupted marketplace.

     

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  42.  
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    What a minute..., Aug 16th, 2010 @ 12:55pm

    Is this the map for music royalties or our map for military 'success' (does anyone know what that means yet) in afghanistan?

     

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  43.  
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    RD, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 12:57pm

    Re: Re: Re: Weak argument

    "People like darryl are good examples of why we should abolish copyrights and patents."

    People like darryl are good examples of why we should abort (some) fetuses.

     

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  44.  
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    RD, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 1:04pm

    Re: Chart above is a little misleading

    "Even though I tweeted this chart to my followers last week, it is a little misleading, and was deliberately created to look complicated by a company who missed its deadline to license rights. The main problem is that it incorporates more items than necessary. (For example, a manager's commission doesn't belong on a music rights and royalties chart because it is of no concern to a music licensee.)"

    Yes, but, isnt that rather the point? I mean, sure its over-complicated, but so also is what it represents. Even if you "corrected" it to be more accurate, would that REALLY improve the point? I dont think so, I think it would STILL look insanely complicated and ridiculous. I think the point of it is being missed in a rush to scrutinize that chart to the Nth degree. The point is more about how absurd it is to even begin to understand and follow the byzantine labyrinth that copyright/licensing has become. Remember that great Colbert AT&T bit from about 3 years ago, the one with the "and then they became this, and then they became that." Its like that. That wasnt 100% "Accurate" either but it got the real point across: the complexity of it was absurd on its face.

     

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  45.  
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    Jim, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 1:05pm

    Re: Re: Re: It would help if the diagram was correct.

    Didn't realize I was dealing with a 'known moron'.

    Too bad the anonymous ID badge thing couldn't be extended so someone could be marked as a 'known moron' across the board. Would be easier for a reader like myself to filter out the nonsense.

    For the record, I'm still interesting in hearing how the diagram is wrong if it is in fact wrong. I have a feeling it's pretty darn accurate though so since the only 'evidence' I can get against it are weak arguments with no actual content.

     

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  46.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 1:33pm

    Re: Chart above is a little misleading

    This appears to be directed to UK law, and not to US law.

    Frankly, at the very least the bottom, left-hand quadrant of the chart is in significant need of "repair". Manager? Completely irrelevant. Session musicians? Not in the US. BPI? It's an industry association in the UK. It is not part of the licensing process. Funders? Irrelevant.

     

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  47.  
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    vivaelamor (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 1:56pm

    Re: Re:

    "You will probably disagree with most of what he has to say, but it is hard to dispute the fact that CC licenses basically have the effect of transferring money from creators to corporate interests."

    Come on, that article is a load of ad hominem hooey. Zero evidence is provided to support the assertion that money made by sites such as Flickr is done so at the expense of content creators. By that logic Techdirt is exploiting us because we comment here.

     

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  48.  
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    Auditrix (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 2:10pm

    Re: Re: Chart above is a little misleading

    I agree: The above chart is a summary of UK rights and that the chart needs "repairs." Britain's answer to the RIAA, BPI, does not issue or obtain licenses, so I agree it is irrelevant for purposed of this flowchart.

    However, payments to the AFM for sessions musicians are made by record companies in the US as well as UK. Still, this is a very minor point because union payments are of no concern to a music service licensee and should not be included in a licensing flowchart.

     

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    nasch (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 2:13pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: It would help if the diagram was correct.

    You don't have to worry about badges in this case, darryl seems to always post under the same name. And it's always the same quality.

     

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  50.  
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    Auditrix (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 2:16pm

    Re:

    This is not a map for music royalties.

     

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  51.  
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    vivaelamor (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 2:21pm

    Re: Chart above is a little misleading

    "a manager's commission doesn't belong on a music rights and royalties chart because it is of no concern to a music licensee"

    One of the issues of the system would seem to be how the record companies have more control over an artist's fees than their own manager.

     

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  52.  
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    Auditrix (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 2:26pm

    Re:

    Also read Chris Castle, Esq.'s critiques of the CC license. Here is his latest blog post on the matter of CC license flaws:

    http://www.musictechpolicy.com/2010/08/creative-commons-corporation-because-it.html

     

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  53.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 2:44pm

    Re: Re: Re: Chart above is a little misleading

    I was looking at the "chart" in terms of copyright law, and not in terms of contract law.

    I am not within the music industry, but those I know who perform session work generally do so on a work for hire basis, which, of course, is truly a matter of contract law versus copyright law.

    I might also quibble regarding some of the performance right societies since these are not a mandate of law, but more in the nature of licensing reps serving as intermediaries between artists who sign up and end users.

    The point I am trying to make is that much of the chart is less related to copyright law than it is to contract law. The former generally is directed to rights per se, and not to how those rights are licensed and exploited (though we do have some statutory involvement such as compulsory licenses in very limited instances).

     

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

  54.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 2:56pm

    Re: Re:

    Perhaps the most important point (no...make that THE most important point) is that commercial licenses generally do incorporate representations and indemnities that are conspicuously absent from the CC regime. While this is understandable given that $$$ are generally not being exchanged, it leaves behind a real hornet's nest should a work be used and then it is later discovered that the "seeder" had no authority to do so.

    CC is a laudable attempt to "pre-negotiate" licenses, but as a general rule it is folly to license works when the legal rights associated with such works have not been identified beforehand and treated accordingly.

     

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  55.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 3:07pm

    Re: Re:

    You only say that because you didn't even bother to glance at it. It clearly says the flow of rights and royalties just below it says Working in music.

     

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  56.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 3:09pm

    Re: Re: Re: Chart above is a little misleading

    "I agree: The above chart is a summary of UK rights and that the chart needs "repairs.""

    The problem is that the chart is an oversimplification of the process because to depict the entire process, with all the repairs, would over clutter the chart and make it much larger.

     

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  57.  
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    Auditrix (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 3:20pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Just because the graphic *says* it depicts the flow of rights and royalties, doesn't mean that it *does* portray music royalty flows... a real music royalty chart would be much simpler. The graphic has a lot of items that have nothing to do with music royalties.

     

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  58.  
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    drew (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 3:27pm

    Trust me

    It may not be completely accurate, but as someone trying to negotiate even bits of it, it's a complete fucking nightmare.

     

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  59.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 3:30pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "The graphic has a lot of items that have nothing to do with music royalties."

    Like what exactly? It appears most everything on there has something to do with music royalties, unless you have a very narrow definition of what constitutions something that has something to do with music royalties. But I'm not interested in your personal definitions.

     

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  60.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 3:35pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Anywho, that's an interesting dataflow diagram. These diagrams tend to be overly detailed, they can make something as simple as taking a shower look like a complicated mess if you reduce everything to down its irreducible processes.

    It would be interesting to see an Entity Relationship Diagram (ERD) as well, maybe someone can make one.

     

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  61.  
    identicon
    RD, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 4:22pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "... a real music royalty chart would be much simpler"

    That much is true. It would have 2 arrows: one with 100% of gross revenue going to the labels, and another with 1/4 of 1% (if that) going to the artist/band/composer/writer/creators. All other arrows and charts are meaningless, because this is the only chart that truly exists, or that the labels give two sh*ts about. As long at 99%+ of the revenue goes (and stays) with them, you can make any chart of any other flow and they wont care.

     

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  62.  
    icon
    Nick Coghlan (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 5:52pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Not only that, but those of us with the Insider tag have clearly paid them for the privilege of commenting here!

     

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  63.  
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    bmcraec (profile), Aug 16th, 2010 @ 6:40pm

    That's nothing! Look at the Telcos of the world!

    This relationship is quite confusing, but it's really simple compared to the inter-relations of the all the telecommunications companies across the globe. A large poster was created in the late '90s that makes this web look very, very straightforward. Unfortunately, my Google-fu is not sufficient for the task of recovering this mythical image.

     

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  64.  
    identicon
    Ven, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 8:05pm

    Re: Re: Weak argument

    Buying a bag of chips with a debit card is certainly a complex process, I know because I write payment card processing software for a living. But there is good reasons for some of that complexity and some really bad reasons for some of that complexity.
    The comparison of music licenses to buying a bag of chips is a bit false though. What is the ramification of letting a friend share that bag of chips? What about if you share it with everyone in your place of work? What about the same for music? Is it ok to play a CD for a friend? For everyone in your place of work?
    I know what's legal with a bag of chips, I'm not so sure at what point I need to pay some one to play a CD for others to listen to.
    In the payment card industry we work really hard to make it easy for the average person to use our cards, you have plastic, you swipe it in a machine, you sign a slip, your done. All the weird complexity created by consumer protection laws, PCI security compliance, auditing requirements, and a few decades of bone head corporate decisions piling up against each other are almost always hidden from the common user. All you really need to know about is you, the bank that has your money (or line of credit) and the merchant you want to pay.
    The music industry on the other hand is working to make sure the common user needs to be aware of half the boxes on that image to avoid doing the wrong thing. If you bought a song and played it in a bar, or auto shop, or hair salon do you need to pay PRS? Why should a mechanic or a stylist need to know who PRS is?

     

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  65.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:27pm

    Re: It would help if the diagram was correct.

    I agree there are missing links in there that would make the graphic more complex and insane, but the original article says it is incomplete and that they left out a lot of things, the whole point was to note that even this incomplete set of rules is just ridiculously complex.

     

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  66.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:32pm

    Re: Re: It would help if the diagram was correct.

    There are some things missing in there, the "film & TV producers" have more links as they need to pay royalties for music, art and other stuff(Nina can tell you all about it), the internet is not represent in it because people don't know how to represent it apparently and don't have a consensus of what the internet is and therefore how should be dealt with and other smaller details that is not a complete picture of the mess copyright really is, if I were the other side I would try to argue that this graphic is not that complex, because the true one would be horrendous.

     

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  67.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 9:47pm

    Re: Re: Re: Chart above is a little misleading

    The inaccuracies seems to point to the extreme complex eco-system in place for licensing anything.

    It makes it difficult for anyone trying to stay on the straight and narrow to do so.

    And it is not even a flow chart of the entire thing, is just the attempt of one company to try and do so, if even companies with money to pay for experts can get it wrong, I don't see this things working on the public sphere ever.

     

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  68.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:06pm

    Lets see, anyone wanting to use music from the industry needs to understand the whole process of licensing apparently and need to be aware of the numerous collecting agencies, labels, middleman(managers) and a myriad of other things to F. simply use music.

    No wonder people just ignore that nonsense and just pirate everything.

     

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  69.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 16th, 2010 @ 10:11pm

    I feel that copyright is burdening children with obligation to become mini lawyers at age 5.

    I fear that some day people will be able to implant rules inside the brain of people and some jerks will try to force that on to everyone.

     

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  70.  
    identicon
    Bengie, Aug 17th, 2010 @ 7:03am

    Re:

    "It is complicated therefore it should be eliminated? Computer language is complicated. Chinese is complicated. And so on...."

    Computer languages are based on logic and are easy.

    But comparing a language to a business model is like comparing the work ethic of a computer to a human.... but the computer doesn't ask for bathroom breaks and neither should you!

    comparing apples and beef there.

     

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  71.  
    icon
    Hephaestus (profile), Aug 17th, 2010 @ 7:46am

    Re: Re:

    Cedar

    I read that article a couple days back. It was pointed out to me as an extension of the ASCAP marketing campaign to remove the growing competition of the Creative Commons, and the legal headaches and losses the EFF has caused the record labels. The number of articles like this has gone way up since the ASCAPs letter to it members. So it seems to be a concerted effort.

    You, like the recording industry, haven't learned that the rules have changed. The internet is not a TV, it is interactive. Propaganda and marketing campaigns are no longer one sided and often have very negative consequences. The streisand effect is something you should be worried about anytime you say or do something negative.

    Going after a belief system does not work. Think of going after the EFF and the CC, as blasphemy against freedom and the legal guardians here on the net. Realize that the longer this campaign to discredit the EFF and CC runs, the faster the record labels and collection agencies will fail. Without exception, every single thing the labels and RIAA have done has backfired and accelerated the rate of infringement, the decrease in profits, and the ill will directed at the labels and RIAA. Recently there was an article here about how people in positions of power act like they are brain damaged. Perhaps that explains why the same mistake has been made over and over by the labels, ASCAP, and RIAA.


    David

     

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  72.  
    identicon
    darryl, Aug 17th, 2010 @ 9:09am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Weak argument _ Thanks RD, you are a nice 'something'...

    "People like darryl are good examples of why we should abolish copyrights and patents."

    People like darryl are good examples of why we should abort (some) fetuses.


    That might be true RD, but at least Im not you !!

    I guantee that you would not have the balls to say that to my face..

    Sometimes I get sick of 14 year old, hero's hiding behind a keyboard.. wimp.

    As for the diagram, ill say just one thing that is wrong, and most is.

    Managers, and artists, that diagram shows managers only communicating with artists, and no one else.
    (apart from composers and performers in two seperate groups).

    "Funding", is a one way street ? the funders just hand out money and are never asked to do so ?

    Thats only because I looked at the bottom left first, but it never gets any better, its a comple lie.. really no other way around it, its not at all accurate.

    And ofcourse Mike tries to confuse licensing and copyright, and they are not the same, licenses are under contract law, and copyright is not.

    You also forget that its not compulsory, you do not have to do that, you have shown that there are alternatives, and people allready have that choice.

    So what is your problem ? you dont like people having choice ?

    I tend to like having a choice.. I sorry you dont..

    Im sorry the system does not work the way you want it too, mabey in Russia or china or north Korea you might have better luck.. Dont know if they are hiring bitter, angry 14 year olds thought..

    I myself like choice, and I know no one is forced to get a record contract, in fact most work very hard to gain one.

    You dont see it that way though, which is sad, to say the least.

     

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  73.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 17th, 2010 @ 9:32am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Weak argument _ Thanks RD, you are a nice 'something'...

    Licenses only exist through copyright - as a means to restore liberty (right to copy) suspended by copyright.

    Licenses are nothing to do with contract law.

    A license may be provided in an exchange (per contract), but that doesn't mean the license is itself a contract.

     

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  74.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 17th, 2010 @ 10:59am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Weak argument _ Thanks RD, you are a nice 'something'...

    The point being made here eludes me entirely...

     

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

  75.  
    identicon
    darryl, Aug 17th, 2010 @ 5:36pm

    License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Licenses only exist through copyright - as a means to restore liberty (right to copy) suspended by copyright.

    Sorry,, again, if I have to explain this stuff to you guys, whats the points.

    Can someone else please explain to this person that licenses and copyright are two different entities !

    What copyright do I get the liberty of because I own a drivers license ?

    A lisense is a privilage or agreement between two parties, or groups, its a part of contract law, you have a contract to work within the license.

    Nothing to do with copyright, sure you can license copyright material from the rightfull owner, if you both meet an agreement. but that again is a contract, not copyright.

    Please, be at least a little bit informed before you post.

    Sometimes I wonder why I even waste my time..

     

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

  76.  
    icon
    Jay (profile), Aug 17th, 2010 @ 6:08pm

    New flow chart

    Ok...

    So...

    Someone has to make a new chart because people can't agree on whether it's accurate or not.

    Let's do a job on the US music scene. If it's as simple as people say it is, it shouldn't have taken 10+ hours to make sure everyone is paid something. Effectively speaking, it seems more that people are shooting the forest for the trees.

     

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  77.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Aug 17th, 2010 @ 6:46pm

    Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Sometimes I wonder why I even waste my time..

    You're not alone.

     

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  78.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 17th, 2010 @ 9:23pm

    Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Is this a comment in support of the original commenter?

    If yes, then it is important to realize the rationale underlying Mr. Fitch's comments.

    If no, then you to not understand Mr. Fitch's rationale.

    Mr. Fitch has a unique view of the role served by the US Constitution, and understanding that view is critical to understanding his comments. For example, do you appreciate the distinction Mr. Fitch draws between unpublished and published works?

     

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  79.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 18th, 2010 @ 12:14am

    Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    We were discussing copyright and licenses in the context of intellectual work.

    Even so, a driving license restores the liberty someone would have (had the state not suspended it) to drive a vehicle on certain land (public highways).

    A (copyright) license is not a privilege, it restores liberty suspended (by copyright).

    A license is not an agreement - others do not need to agree to have their liberty restored by the party privileged by copyright.

    If you don't hold copyright over an intellectual work there is nothing about it you have to license. So, no, a copyright license is not independent of copyright.

     

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

  80.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 18th, 2010 @ 12:16am

    Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    My argument concerning the constitutionality of copyright has nothing to do with copyright and its licensing.

     

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  81.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 18th, 2010 @ 9:28am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Of course it does. You have stated you support copyright residing in an individual pre-disclosure/dissemination/publication as a natural right.

    You then have gone on to state that what the constitutional provision and laws enacted in response thereto constitute an abridgement of one's liberty, and are in your view unconstitutional given the purpose underlying the US Constitution.

    Even under your view one cannot separate copyright and licensing and treat them as separate and distinct issues.

     

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  82.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 18th, 2010 @ 9:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Irrespective of your inaccurate summation of my views concerning natural rights, I can agree with you that one cannot separate copyright and licensing and treat them as separate and distinct issues.

     

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

  83.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 18th, 2010 @ 10:37am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    My comment was intended to be merely top level because your prior comments here and elsewhere are much more nuanced.

    Since I certainly do not want to offer a summary that does not accurately reflect your views, perhaps you might be able to modify what I said.

     

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

  84.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 18th, 2010 @ 11:15am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Here's a précis (not that I want to resume discussion here):

    Individuals have a natural right to exclude others from their private space and material/intellectual works therein, which includes the right to exclude others from making/removing/communicating copies thereof, etc.

    The Constitution is therefore correct in recognising an individual's exclusive right to their intellectual work.

    However, Congress is corrupt in its apparent inference that the recognition of such a natural right empowers it to grant monopolies in literary works, etc. Thus copyright (a blatant copy of the Statute of Anne) enacted subsequent to the Constitution is an unconstitutional privilege - an instrument of injustice.

    However, none of the above has relevance to the copyright/licensing issue. Copyright licensing is about restoring the liberty suspended by copyright.

     

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  85.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Aug 18th, 2010 @ 1:25pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Individuals have a natural right to exclude others from their private space and material/intellectual works therein, which includes the right to exclude others from making/removing/communicating copies thereof, etc.

    The Constitution is therefore correct in recognising an individual's exclusive right to their intellectual work.


    Why is such a natural right guaranteed by the Constitution only for limited times?

     

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  86.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 18th, 2010 @ 1:57pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    The exclusive right isn't guaranteed by the Constitution, but recognised by it. It empowers Congress to secure it.

    It should be secured for as long as the individual could expect to defend it, i.e. limited by mortal lifespan. This may be beyond their actual lifetime in the event of unnatural death.

     

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

  87.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Aug 18th, 2010 @ 2:09pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    However, the Constitution only says limited times, so you would agree that if Congress were to protect that right for, say, five years only, that would be Constitutionally valid?

     

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

  88.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 18th, 2010 @ 2:17pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Sure.

     

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  89.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 18th, 2010 @ 5:58pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Something seems amiss. Are you "sure" you really meant to say "sure", or is there a nuance that has gone unstated?

     

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  90.  
    identicon
    pwaak, Aug 18th, 2010 @ 8:16pm

    Re: Weak argument

    If you read the chart, you will find it really does illustrate the exact problem he writes about. Do digital mechanical rights really have to be distinct from mechanical mechanical rights? For that matter, why are mechanical rights actually needed when it could be handled as a subcontracted service instead? As far as I can tell, the rights market is a lot like the stock market, full of options on future potential and other properties that only represent an agreement to agree and no actual product or service.

    And before you complain that I don't understand investment on future profit, has it occurred to you that select types of transactions are artificially overvalued? I think the comparison to the stock market is quite accurate.

     

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  91.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 18th, 2010 @ 11:52pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: License and copyright the same !!!! NO. they are not..

    Congress is empowered to secure the right.

    The period over which that right is secured is naturally limited. It would be unnatural for someone to be able to exclude others from their work for a period in excess of their natural lifespan. The Constitution leaves this issue to be resolved by Congress.

    Congress isn't required to secure the right at all. Thus there is no need to specify a minimum period.

     

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  92.  
    identicon
    RHyNO, Aug 19th, 2010 @ 2:21am

    Don't write about what you don't understand.

    Writing music and creating it is difficult and expensive. Since the decline of the industry to copyright infringement we are seeing more and more talented people turn their back on both the art and the industry. If you abolish copyright and work off creative commons brilliant art and talent will completely disapear as people who create the art will not be able to make a living and turn their talents elsewhere. This system is arguably very complex, but it does create revenue streams for artists that at the end of the day need to make a living. The reason that so many of you can't understand this is that you do not have backgrounds in copyright law, perhaps we should just abolish the internet as I don't understand that and it drags money from many revenue streams and puts it in pockets of people who are dramatically undeserving. Original thought took man from the caves, it must always be rewarded fairly.

     

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  93.  
    icon
    Crosbie Fitch (profile), Aug 19th, 2010 @ 3:05am

    Re: Don't write about what you don't understand.

    Did Shakespeare have a background in copyright law?

    Why do you think a monopoly for the enrichment of the press (and stability of the crown) incentivised creativity? Certainly, the consequently wealthy press effectively usurped patronage to become the author's primary market, but that doesn't mean that without monopoly no-one would have been inclined to monetarily incentivise the creativity they sought.

    All that's happening today is that the monopoly is being undone by nature. It cannot be rescued by argument.

    We're here to discuss how to do business without a monopoly. And yes some of us are saying that given the monopoly is ineffective (let alone unethical) it should be abolished to prevent sociopathic abuse.

     

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  94.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Aug 19th, 2010 @ 8:34am

    Re: Don't write about what you don't understand.

    It's like a mashup of all the flawed pro-copyright reasoning!

     

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

  95.  
    icon
    Jay (profile), Aug 19th, 2010 @ 11:38pm

    History trumps copyright any day

    Talent and art haven't shriveled up. They never will. They just lead elsewhere.

    It's like if someone so much as draws Mickey Mouse, it suddenly is killing the industry.

    Never mind it asks for money from easels, paints, or Adobe.

    The other stuff in the middle is just drivel not worth bothering about. I'm fairly sure Artists not copyright holders could flourish if the law wasn't against them. But obviously, I'm wrong when 9 out of 4 lines means the other industries can have the cake and eat it too.
    Funny how you say original thought...

    The first man painted where the bison went. The second one copied it into another cave to learn how to eat.

    I guess copying did reward him fairly.

     

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  96.  
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    Suja (profile), Jan 5th, 2012 @ 11:22pm

    WTF was that i tried to follow and got horribly lost

    whoever came up with that system needs to be shot, for causing unnecessary difficulty to things which should be simple & hurt my brain/eyes simultaneously

     

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

  97.  
    identicon
    Richard, Feb 18th, 2012 @ 8:24pm

    Obtaining permission when a work involves multiple rights

    Trying to obtain permission when multiple rights apply to a work may be difficult even in circumstances outside of music. In one case, mentioned back in 1993, chairman Trip Hawkins of Electronic Arts asked about whether it would be possible to take some film footage from a media company and to put together a library of material that could be freely reused by multimedia software developers. The company executive that Hawkins talked to said that "Well, you couldn't use a single frame of any film that was ever shot by a director who was a member of the Directors Guild of America."

    Source: Multimedia: Making It Work by Tay Vaughan (Osborne McGraw-Hill, 1993), page 126.

     

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


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