The Biggest 'Pirates' And 'Freeloaders' Of Them All? College Professors And Librarians

from the freetards dept

There's an interesting article over at Law.com highlighting just how many lawsuits there are in which college professors and librarians are fighting back against overly draconian copyright laws. Most of the cases they mention are ones we've discussed here, but it's a good article overall. It talks about the Georgia State fair use case, the UCLA case about streaming video, and the Authors Guild suit against the Hathitrust for trying to make books more accessible.

The really incredible thing in all of this is that copyright is supposed to be about the encouragement of learning. In fact, the first US federal copyright law was called "An Act for the Encouragement of Learning." But, the fact is that universities and librarians are constantly bumping up against the ridiculous and over-aggressive limits of copyright law in ways that prevent them from basic tasks that aid in education and learning.

Copyright system defenders love to paint critics of today's copyright laws as merely being a bunch of "freeloaders" and "pirates." That's a ridiculous assertion. The big problem of copyright law today is how it impacts everyday people doing everyday things. The fact that so many professors and librarians -- those who are at the forefront of the "encouragement of learning" -- are discovering that copyright law gets in their way more than it helps suggests a law that is completely out of touch with its intended purpose. This isn't about freeloaders and pirates. This is about some of the fundamental principles of education.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    icon
    Adam Gorman (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 5:08am

    Although I think copyright should be 99% abolished.

    The longer the professors are kept out, the more likely they will promote open source and public domain projects among their students and peers.

     

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

    •  
      icon
      fogbugzd (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 5:51am

      Re:

      I am a faculty member, and I do use alternative texts whenever possible. The quality of the offerings is slowly improving, but a lot of material is still lacking. In a few years it might be possible to do an entire Computer Science program using alternative textbook sources.

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Lord of the Files, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:51am

        Re: Re:

        That is really good to hear. It's a ray of light in what's starting to feel like a shroud of darkness slowly descending over all of humanity.

        The sharing of knowledge is paramount to our long term survival as a species. No one person or group should ever hold so much sway over the direction society will evolve that they effectively control the path humanity will take, especially when those in control are motivated entirely by profit and dedicated to enriching only themselves instead of everyone.

        It really is a path too, and one that can only fork in two basic directions at this point; enlightenment and darkness (the renaissance versus the dark ages is an apt comparison). One is right, the other evil. Which path do you think enrichment of ones self at the expense of your fellow man lies upon?

        We need to get everyone to wake up and realize we're all headed for a cliff in a car that has had it's brakes cut by unscrupulous individuals whom care only about themselves and their own well being, corrupt souls who will say and do anything they can to get their way. I was actually beginning to think we just might manage to avoid armed rebellion in the name of protecting our freedom and independence from the wolves and jackals whom are trying to devour it, but all of the news over the past six months has made me begin to doubt this is still possible. I sincerely hope so for everyones sake. I'm guessing it'll depend on how many more draconian proposals currently in the queue manage to pass into law over the next year or two.

        How bad does it have to get before everyone finally realizes they need to get off of their La-Z-Boy and take action I wonder? Since history repeats itself so damn often, I'd wager very. I weep for the future.

         

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

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:52am

        Re: Re:

        Why use textbook sources at all for compsci? I own computer books, but they are for the handy dandy quick reference sheets in the back. Normally what happens with them is i start reading, bump up against something I don't understand or is only quickly glossed over that i need to do, then run to the internet searching for alternate or more complex explanations. The amount of documentation available on the net of any other field vs computers is laughable. It also has the qualification of being pretty much 100% accurate, which no other area of study has.

        I learned Python back in the day straight off their website's tutorial. Perl, tutorials Wall gave out. I learned more C, with more interesting use cases, from internet tutorials than I ever learned from the book I was assigned in class. And now days in my job, my most important tool for anything I don't know is Google.

        I'd just give a list of websites and say, "there's your text, here's your assignment.". Then pass out function and command reference sheets, telling them they might wanna get those laminated because they'll be useful their entire lives.

         

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

        •  
          icon
          fogbugzd (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:20am

          Re: Re: Re:

          >>Why use textbook sources at all for compsci?

          You raise some good points, but it isn't that simple in most courses. On occasion I have skipped using a textbook and have substituted material I have prepared myself along with a bibliography of web sites and library references. But that does not work very often.

          I will break the situation down into lower level and upper level courses and highlight the "no textbook" problem in each category. Please understand that these are very broad categories and that I am over simplifying both.

          Lower level courses are often about specific languages or tools. These are things like Java, JavaScript, HTML, some flavor of SQL, or productivity software. There are abundant sources of online tutorials on all of these topics. Rarely is there a single, high-quality tutorial series that covers all of the topics we need to cover in a course. Most of them are task oriented and they rarely do the type of comprehensive coverage of a topic that we need to cover. You can try to stitch together several different tutorials to get a more comprehensive perspective on a topic, but every tutorial is written using different idiosyncrasies and with different assumptions about the user's background. People can get themselves productive using on-line tutorials and reference books, but it takes a lot of time and a willingness to try, fail, explore followed by more searching and experimenting. We don't have time for that in most courses.

          Another problem with going textbook-free in lower level courses is that students want textbooks. Students in lower level courses don't tend to regard the teacher as an expert, and they are often intolerant of the frustrations that come from ad-hoc resources. I'm tenured and have thick enough skin to plow through regardless of student attitudes, but lower level courses are often taught by young, inexperienced faculty. They often need the security of a textbook as much as the students do.

          Alternative sources for lower level courses have a couple of things going for them that encourage development. They have volume and relatively consistent content requirements. Most CS-1 Java textbooks are going to cover the same basic material, and there are a lot of people out there who can use it. You have a lot of faculty members willing to contribute things like test backs and end-of-chapter problems that are important to textbooks but a pain to prepare.

          Upper level courses are often more amenable to ad-hoc resources, but they often present their own problems. Upper level courses are more likely to be on broad concepts such as Compiler Theory, Operations Research, Operating System Design, or Security. Like lower division courses, it is often very desirable to have one central source of information that has some consistency throughout the course. However, historically upper division courses frequently reference other sources. The students have more maturity and technical experience, and they are much better at dealing with different perspectives and authors's various styles.

          There are some alternative upper level textbooks that are coming along nicely, but most lack comprehensiveness. My most recent experience was looking at Operating Systems textbooks. Most of the authors of the books only write chapters for content they cover in their courses. This leaves some big gaps for everyone else. There are some more comprehensive projects with contributions for multiple authors, but these are sorely lacking in cohesion. My hope for this type of textbook is that we will see some strong editors emerge who can put together a team of authors who will work toward producing unified and relatively comprehensive resources.

           

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

      •  
        identicon
        Cowardly Anonymous, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:58am

        Re: Re:

        It is possible to do an entire Computer Science program simply by teaching the students search techniques in their first year. The only text book reading I've done was to read the questions my professor's assigned, and I've a 3.4 GPA right now.

        For Computer Science, at least, everything you could ever need to know is freely accessible online and every student is guaranteed to have some access to the internet.

         

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

        •  
          icon
          E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:20am

          Re: Re: Re:

          teaching the students search techniques in their first year

          If at first Google doesn't provide an answer, rephrase your question. I love it.

           

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

  •  
    icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 5:45am

    Copyright had a whole bunch of noble ideas... and then people who were more concerned with money and control took it over.
    The fact they are harming society at such a base level as to interfere with education should cause some serious examination of what the hell happened and how to fix it.

     

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

    •  
      icon
      Machin Shin (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:21am

      Re:

      That sounds like the story of most government programs. Well fair was a great and noble idea... and then people started scamming the system. So was copyright, patents, unemployment, social security, ect.

      Most of these systems do not take into account the greed of some people. The idea is good but as with most ideas they simply do not work the same in the real world as they did in the planning room.

       

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

      •  
        icon
        Jay (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:22am

        Re: Re:

        Having read Paul Ryan's austerity plan and seen the devastation on Objectivism on America's values, I have to ostensibly disagree with you about the effectiveness of middle or low income plans.

         

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

    •  
      icon
      Zakida Paul (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:23am

      Re:

      Unfortunately, that is down to human nature. Once in a while and idea will come along that will seem noble and good but after a time man's inherent corruptibility and greed will take over. We really haven't changed much since the dawn of mankind.

       

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

    •  
      icon
      Richard (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:23am

      Re:

      Copyright had a whole bunch of noble ideas... and then people who were more concerned with money and control took it over.

      Er - no

      People who were concerned with money and control invented copyright - the "noble ideas" were never more than a front!

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:48am

        Re: Re:

        In fact, I'd go so far as to say that copyright is the pinnacle mercantilist mechanism for control. Sadly, technology had other ideas.

         

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

  •  
    identicon
    Yogi, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:00am

    Teribble

    This is awful. I can't believe we are entrusting the education of our children to a bunch of badly-dressed freeloaders and criminals.

    I hope the MPAA/RIAA open a school so I can send my children there to make sure that they are properly educated in the correct way to serve the copyright industry in the digital age.

    Any honest, God-fearing, law abiding, loyal American would do the same. Wouldn't you?

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:35am

    Hey Mike, if you really are in favor of copyright as you like to claim, then why do you take EVERY opportunity to complain about it? If you ever hope to be relevant at the bargaining table of the decision makers, you must stop being a recalcitrant. When you were in your early 20s it could be excused as the ignorance of youth coupled with masculine bravado. In your mid 30's it just looks like you're Peter Pan refusing to grow up and stubbornly opposing authority.

     

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

    •  
      identicon
      Another AC, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:51am

      Re:

      LOL oh man that was a funny comment.

      Translation: "You can come to the 'bargaining table of the decision makers' only if you agree with what they think"

      *whew*

       

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

    •  
      icon
      Richard (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:55am

      Re:

      He isn't in favour of copyright - at least not as it stands - he is in favour of an evidence based law in that area and is prepared to be convinced that some kind of copyright law is beneficial.

      You, on the other hand, are doing a really good job of convincing him that copyright is pure evil and deserves to be confined to the dustbin of history.

      If you ever hope to be relevant at the bargaining table of the decision makers, you must stop being a recalcitrant.

      History teaches that the "bargaining table of the decision makers" is a transient thing. Copyright cannot survive the technological change that is coming. Societies that insist on preserving it will simply be swept away by the advance of those that don't.

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:23am

        Re: Re:

        If you remove copyright you will lose commercial entertainment development. You wont see big budget or epic movies, like LOTR, The Hobbit, Avatar, Star Wars, Back to the Future, Titanic, etc... All the movies that people love will be gone. And for what? So some freeloading pirates who want to make a point? No thank you, I don't want to live in a world where YouTube-quality videos are all that is available.

         

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

        •  
          identicon
          Glen, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:34am

          Re: Re: Re:

          But now we are graced with Titanic 3D, Men in Black 3, Piranha 3DD, Madagascar 3, Iron Man3 and How to Train Your Dragon 2. At least Youtube has some original stuff.

           

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

        •  
          icon
          Richard (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:37am

          Re: Re: Re:

          ,i>If you remove copyright you will lose commercial entertainment development. You wont see big budget or epic movies, like LOTR, The Hobbit, Avatar, Star Wars, Back to the Future, Titanic, etc... All the movies that people love will be gone. And for what? So some freeloading pirates who want to make a point? No thank you, I don't want to live in a world where YouTube-quality videos are all that is available.

          I hate half of the things you mention anyway - and as for the others - well as a price for removing evil from the world it seems fair to me!

          Actually I don't believe you anyway. You are just repeating the same lie that copyright proponents have parroted for 300 years - it simply isn't true.

          Most of the stuff I love was created before or without copyright anyway - but I think you are being unduly pessimistic if you believe that great works cannot be crowdfunded.

          Look at the open source movement - look at the big stuff on Kickstarter, look at Chartres Cathedral.

          If people really "love" those big budget movies as you claim then someone will find a way of financing them without copyright - if not - well maybe they are just a triumph of marketing over good taste!

           

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

          •  
            icon
            Richard (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:39am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Note - first para of previous comment should be italic quote - small finger trouble...

             

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:02am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I hate to bring this up but... Things funded through Kickstarter are not free of copyright. Crowdsourcing does not negate copyright, it is only a way to fund the creation of the content. It does not tranfer ownership of the material nor does it place the material in the public domain.

            My complaint is that YOU do not have the right to dictate to other people how THEY should be releasing their content. If YOU want to create a movie and release it using a CC license then go for it. It's your money, your time, your effort. Just like it's the studios money, time and the effort of writers, directors, actors, set designers, costum designers, lighting, camera crews, composers, editors, CGI teams, etc... YOU don't get to dictate to other people that they have no right to protect THEIR work.

             

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

            •  
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:22am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              a) Crowdsource funding doesn't depend on copyrights to happen all the money comes in first, if nothing else it shows that people do finance projects that are not even ready, just like studios, but unlike studios have no interest in retaining the "exclusive rights" for anything.

              b) People absolutely have no right to dictate to anyone how something is distributed, we have found out that monopolies are bad and that is why nobody likes them, nobody should have the right to exclude others from doing anything except in very rare special instances, you cannot put something into the public space and claim ownership over the public space dude that is not going to happen ever no matter what tortuous logic you want apply to it or how many excuses you make it for it.

              c) Open source just proved that you don't need exclusive rights to succeed.

              If anything monopolists should never have a seat on the negotiations table they are the problem.

               

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

            •  
              icon
              John Fenderson (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:24am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              My complaint is that YOU do not have the right to dictate to other people how THEY should be releasing their content.


              If you are to be consistent, though, then you should be against copyright (as it exists now), as what it's doing is allowing large corporations to dictate terms for all sorts of things not directly related to their copyrighted materials on people who are not infringing.

              Surely, you can't think that it's wrong for me to dictate how you release your content and yet it's right for you to dictate to me what tools I can or can't have, what legal rights I can or cannot exercise, what speech I can or can not engage in, etc., when I'm not engaging in infringement. Current copyright law allows all of this, and companies are making use of that power.

               

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

            •  
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:44am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Just because things funded through Kickstarter are not free of copyright does not mean that they cannot be. It is an alternative method of financing. It does not mean that the product cannot be copyright free.

               

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

            •  
              icon
              E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:04am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              My complaint is that YOU do not have the right to dictate to other people how THEY should be releasing their content.

              Yet many content "creators" feel they have the right to decide what technologies get made and which ones can be adopted by the public. I think that is a bit of a contradiction there.

              That said, the markets do have the power and the right to dictate the way the markets shape. Sure, companies and people that are used to the old ways can rant and rave about these market shifts, they will not be able to stem the tide of market change. That is what we are seeing now. The market is shifting and the legacy content companies are struggling to swim their way back to the "safety" of the old way of doing things. Too bad they will die trying.

               

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

              •  
                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 11:23am

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

                Zachary, the public ALWAYS has the power to NOT BUY. That does NOT give them the ability to STEAL content. If the public is watching the movies illegally that just proves that the public WANTS big budget movies instead of YouTube videos. Obviously you are such a leftist that youre economic viewpoint borders on communism. Again I ask you WHAT DO YOU DO FOR A LIVING. It is relevant to your viewpoint.

                 

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

                •  
                  icon
                  silverscarcat (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 11:32am

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

                  Isn't it kind of funny that the movies that get downloaded illegally the most are the ones that make the most?

                   

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  hmmmm, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 11:33am

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

                  republican....figures...

                   

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

                •  
                  icon
                  E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 11:36am

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

                  Zachary, the public ALWAYS has the power to NOT BUY.

                  And that is what a large majority of them are doing. Not buying the stuff.

                  That does NOT give them the ability to STEAL content.

                  They don't need anything to give them the "ability" to steal. They have that "ability" from birth. I think what you meant to say is the "right" to steal. However, that doesn't make your comment any more correct as copyright infringement does not equal theft. Theft and copyright infringement are very different things. It would help you if you took the time to learn that distinction.

                  If the public is watching the movies illegally that just proves that the public WANTS big budget movies instead of YouTube videos.

                  I don't see how that prove what you say it does. For example (now this is just my experience) I have a Netflix subscription, watch Hulu and enjoy a number of shows found only on Youtube. Am I an outlier or part of a new generation of content consumers? You decide. There is room for both.

                  That said, the ideas proposed on Techdirt are not that people don't want big budget movies and shows. I don't see anyone contesting that fact. What we are saying is that the market has shifted, but the creators of those shows and movies have not shifted with the market. They are being left behind. People want to watch movies and shows online on any device, yet very few content creators will allow it. The fact that many consumers resort to copyright infringement to do that is not the problem. It is a symptom of the problem. The problem is that those consumers are underserved. The best way to fight such infringement is to actually serve your consumers.

                  Obviously you are such a leftist that youre economic viewpoint borders on communism.

                  Obviously, you are a judgmental and ignorant person. You don't know me, yet you feel comfortable claiming otherwise.

                  Again I ask you WHAT DO YOU DO FOR A LIVING. It is relevant to your viewpoint.

                  Again, I ask, how is that relavent? Until you can actually explain why my profession is relavent to the discussion at hand, I have no reason to tell you what it is. While you are busy explaining why my profession is relavent, perhaps you could tell me what you do for a living and how your profession is relavent to the discussion.

                   

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  tell me ac, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:14pm

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

                  why is it that despite the entertainment industry talking about how there sinking faster then the titanic they still post record numbers in sales each year? tell me why when called out on this they never respond? tell me why if it is in such dire straits there ceos are giving themselves pay raises and buying like crazy? tell me why some kid singing in a youtube video is burning millions of dollers in seconds? tell me why those "big budget movies" you love so much are still coming out even though said industry is burning?

                  tell me why despite all this the industry is still not damaged enough to hire million doller lawyers to go after people? how they have enough money to really buy branches of government. insert themselves into international agreements. have governments overseas pass laws for them. host partys that most people could only dream of. buy things most people could only dream of. and STILL be on its deathbed because some kid they never heard of posted a five second video of the hurt locker?

                   

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

                  •  
                    icon
                    That One Guy (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 3:44pm

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

                    Obviously because they're only making billions in profits, and anyone rational could plainly see that they deserve to be making trillions, at the very least!

                     

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

            •  
              icon
              Richard (profile), Apr 5th, 2012 @ 1:12pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Things funded through Kickstarter are not free of copyright.

              But they CAN be - and some of them are.

              The things I have supported (Diaspora, Musopen) are copyleft of public domain.

               

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

        •  
          icon
          Richard (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:42am

          Re: Re: Re:

          I don't want to live in a world where YouTube-quality videos are all that is available.

          Then its up to you to organise the crowdfunding up front.

          I didn't want to live in a world where there were no public domain performances of the great classical symphonies so I put my money where my mouth was and helped to fund the Musopen project - it seems to me that you are lazy and cheap - you want someone else to do all the work for you!

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:13am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            No, I'm not the one asking for hand outs. I'm not the one telling companies, I don't care if you spent $200 million dollars making Avatar, we don't think you should have copyright protections to keep people from copying it. I'm not the one downloading movies for free, I'm not the one downloading music for free. I'm not the one downloading cracked software so I don't have to pay a licensing fee. I'm the one that is paying for all of these things that other people just take.

            The reason I pay for these things is that I want the companies to be successful and to continue to make these things. When you don't pay for things you use the companies that make them make less of them.

            Mike likes to pretend that copyright is some evil thing. Instead of focusing on the ridiculous copyright extensions he instead broadens his critisism to the point that it appears he wants to do away with copyright altogether. He has claimed numerous times that he is in favor of short term copyright but he takes every opportunity to complain about all aspects of copyright.

            Mike is just like FoxNews and MSNBC. Far from fair and balanced his posts NEVER explain why copyright increases the amount of high quality content.

             

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

            •  
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:24am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              You are the one cheering a granted monopoly.
              Marvelous!

               

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

            •  
              icon
              John Fenderson (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:26am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              I'm not the one downloading movies for free, I'm not the one downloading music for free. I'm not the one downloading cracked software so I don't have to pay a licensing fee.


              Neither am I. So what?

              Instead of focusing on the ridiculous copyright extensions he instead broadens his critisism to the point that it appears he wants to do away with copyright altogether.


              Really? When did he say anything like that?

              It seems to me you just have a bad case of MikeHate.

               

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

              •  
                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:41am

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

                At what point has Mike EVER posted ANYTHING in support of copyright? Please enlighten us, though I feel sure that you will waste countless hours searching for something that does not exist.

                 

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

                •  
                  icon
                  E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:18am

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

                  Mike is always, ALWAYS, suggesting ways in which copyright could be more balanced. Every article that he writes about some new abusive law cooked up by the MPAA or the RIAA, he always includes a section on why such a law is 1) unnecessary 2) abusive to the public and 3) fails to meet the constitutional requirement that it promote the progress of science and useful arts.

                  Just because you don't agree with the conclusion doesn't mean that the truth is not true.

                   

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

                  •  
                    identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:10pm

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

                    Did you read my comment? I challenged you to find ONE post where Mike is supportive of copyright. Not tell me that he complains about it being imbalanced. Oh by the way what do you do for a living.

                     

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

                    •  
                      icon
                      E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:41pm

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

                      Why should I provide you further links when you are commenting on a story that provides exactly what you are asking for. In this very story, Mike points out that copyright that actually encourages learning is a good thing. Unfortunately, modern copyright does no such thing and is harming education.

                      How that is anti-copyright is beyond me.

                       

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

                    •  
                      icon
                      Niall (profile), Apr 5th, 2012 @ 7:33am

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

                      Mike *is* supportive of copyright in many posts. He just isn't supportive of a) how copyright is just now, and b) how copyright is regularly abused by the content crybabies. Just because he doesn't suck up to your maximalist position doesn't mean he doesn't share some of the same basic values as you, such as (hopefully) an artist being paid a fair wage for their work.

                       

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  wow, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 11:31am

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

                  this AC is the most dedicated troll i have ever seen.

                  lets see what he has to hide shall we?

                   

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

                •  
                  icon
                  John Fenderson (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 3:36pm

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

                  At what point has Mike EVER posted ANYTHING in support of copyright?


                  Actually, Mike has said many times that he supports copyright as long as it actually produces the results it's supposed to.

                  However, even if he never uttered a word in support of copyright, that says nothing about whether he advocates the abolition of copyright or not.

                   

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2012 @ 6:57am

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

                  "At what point has Mike EVER posted ANYTHING in support of copyright? Please enlighten us, though I feel sure that you will waste countless hours searching for something that does not exist."

                  You've been on this site long enough to make that kind of assumption, and you still haven't registeered....come on

                  Sign up my friend, you wont regret it, and dont forget to put details like your name, occupation and work address.....you wont forget now, will ya?

                   

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

            •  
              icon
              silverscarcat (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:34am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Mike is just like FoxNews and MSNBC. Far from fair and balanced his posts NEVER explain why copyright increases the amount of high quality content."

              Since WHEN?!

              Let me tell you something...

              There's a video game series called "Super Robot Wars" over in Japan.

              With the exception of the Original Generations games...

              NO ONE outside of Japan will EVER see those games in English.

              Why?

              Copyright, THAT'S why!

              Those are some of the FUNNEST games ever, but they're only available in Japan, because of copyright issues.

              You wanna know something? If not for copyright, many series that took YEARS to get into the game series would have been there MUCH sooner!

              But, here's something, you wanna know something?

              Those games? Those Super Robot Wars games? They take the basic plot of every series that they're using and run through it... While IMPROVING the plot by eliminating weaknesses and fixing character flaws that the series had.

              Example?

              Gundam Seed Destiny and Shinn Asuka. The series was considered horrible by fans and Shinn Asuka was hated by the fanbase.

              Here comes Super Robot Wars, suddenly, the plot holes in Destiny were fixed up, certain characters that were insane in the series were given REASONS to be what they were, and Shinn Asuka, who was a giant jackass in canon, was turned into a fairly likeable character in the games.

              Copyright doesn't improve stuff, being able to mess around with established things improves it.

               

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

            •  
              icon
              E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:07am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              I think if the choice came down to "keep copyright as it is and where it seems to be going" and "abolish copyright altogether" than the latter is the better choice.

              However, those are not the only choices available nor does Mike ever say it is. There is a way to rewrite copyright in a balanced fashion that reduces the abuses on both sides of the debate. That is what Mike is advocating for. A balanced copyright. Such a version of copyright cannot be made if the beneficiaries of copyright law (the public) are blocked for the table.

               

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

            •  
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:10am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              But the protections are already in place! Sue the bastards!

              Mike is just like FoxNews and MSNBC. Far from fair and balanced his posts NEVER explain why copyright increases the amount of high quality content.


              Neither do you!!!

               

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

            •  
              icon
              Richard (profile), Apr 5th, 2012 @ 7:54am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              The reason I pay for these things is that I want the companies to be successful and to continue to make these things.

              Put the money in upfront to make the content you want - then we can do away with the costs of policing copyright and get on with our lives.

               

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

            •  
              icon
              Richard (profile), Apr 5th, 2012 @ 1:17pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              I'm not the one downloading movies for free, I'm not the one downloading music for free. I'm not the one downloading cracked software so I don't have to pay a licensing fee.

              I'm not doing any of those things either

              I'm the one that is paying for all of these things that other people just take.

              Then you get a say in what is created in return for your payment - just like I do when I put money in up front or contribute to open source projects.

              The people who don't pay get no say!

              Be happy with that and stop asking for oppressive laws that require a police state or crippled technology to work.

               

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

        •  
          identicon
          MrWilson, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:59am

          Re: Re: Re:

          You're way off. If you remove copyright, more content will be produced. Imagine all the fan projects that would get produced (and not necessarily low quality productions since we've already seen "amateur" work from filmmakers with good production value on minimal budgets). Studios would still make big budget movies because they're still profitable even with piracy. Crappy theater recordings can't compete with the actual theater experience (of a pub theater). The theater experience could be more enjoyable because less money for tickets would go to the studios so theaters wouldn't have to charge as much for tickets and concessions, so theater attendence would be up. You can't pirate physical objects effectively yet, so merchandizing deals would still be lucrative.

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:23am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Imagine all the crap no one wants to see that is already created. You want endless iterations of derived works? NO THANKS!

            WTF makes you think that ending copyright would lead to lower theater prices? Are you serious with that argument? You're cheap we get that. If you're someone who knows the quality of "crappy theater recordings" that's because you are a pirate.

            Tickets for 3D movies in my home town are $5.75 per person. If your local theater is charging more it's not the studios fault.

            If you create the content you should be able to offer it to the public and dictate price. If people aren't willing to pay the price they are NOT entitled to STEAL it. The people have the option to refuse to pay the price, but that means they cannot view or listen to the content. Piracy BREAKS the supply and demand curve.

             

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

            •  
              icon
              silverscarcat (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:38am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Wow, your panties are bunched up too tightly man. Go to the bathroom and fix them.

              "If people aren't willing to pay the price they are NOT entitled to STEAL it. The people have the option to refuse to pay the price, but that means they cannot view or listen to the content. Piracy BREAKS the supply and demand curve."

              Ah, but you see, here's something...

              It's called "Free Market". You know what that means?

              It means, if someone wants something enough, and the Market, as it sits, does not deliver it, people will find a way to get it.

              If it means piracy, guess what? Piracy becomes the market and the "legitimate" stuff will no longer be the market.

              You forget one thing, AC...

              PEOPLE determine the market, NOT the other way around.

               

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

              •  
                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:14pm

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

                Do you understand the the Free Market doesn't mean things are FREE? The free market refers to a system in which the market is to buy and sell is not pressured by laws, or illegal activities. Piracy interferes with the free market just as laws that artificially make prices higher or lower interfere with the free market.

                As I said in my post people ALWAYS have the right to refuse to buy but people DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO STEAL.

                 

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

                •  
                  icon
                  silverscarcat (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:29pm

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

                  Who's stealing?

                  And you don't seem to understand the Free Market, at all.

                  If people want something bad enough, on a Free Market, they WILL get it. By hook or by crook.

                  And if it means illegally downloading stuff, then they will.

                  Why?

                  If the providers fail to provide, then people will go and get it from someone who will provide.

                  It's the black hand of the Free Market. It exists, if you don't recognize it, then you fail economics.

                   

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

                •  
                  icon
                  E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:39pm

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

                  In a free market, we would be able to jailbreak our video game consoles and smart phones. In a free market we would be able to format shift our DVDs to use on our smartphones. In a free market we would be free to read our eBooks on as many devices we own as we wanted.

                  Large content creators like those represented by the RIAA and MPAA don't want a free market. They want complete control over the entertainment market.

                   

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  MrWilson, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 5:30pm

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

                  Do corporations have the right to fix prices? Do corporations have the right to collude to keep competitors out of the market? Because that's the system you're defending. Piracy is a market force that indicates that the suppliers (rather than content creators since that's a term for the actual artists, not the publishers) are not meeting consumer demands.

                  You can compete with piracy, but the entertainment industry chooses not to. You can hit your head against a giant rock because you refuse to walk around the rock, but the rock isn't going to move before you suffer a concussion and pass out. Claiming that it's stealing or screaming that it's wrong won't stop the fact that the entertainment industry is the biggest cause of piracy in the entertainment industry.

                   

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

                •  
                  icon
                  JMT (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 5:35pm

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

                  "Do you understand the the Free Market doesn't mean things are FREE?"

                  Nobody here claimed it was. You must be confused.

                   

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

            •  
              identicon
              varagix, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:06am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Imagine all the crap no one wants to see that is already created. You want endless iterations of derived works? NO THANKS!"

              As opposed to the endless iterations of derived works that happen to have multi-million dollar budgets?

              "If you create the content you should be able to offer it to the public and dictate price. If people aren't willing to pay the price they are NOT entitled to STEAL it. The people have the option to refuse to pay the price, but that means they cannot view or listen to the content. Piracy BREAKS the supply and demand curve."

              True, but piracy isn't the only issue involved. We're getting copyright industries dictating things that have nothing to do with piracy, like how we use the things we buy, often going so far as to say we don't actually own those things so much as lease them.

              Piracy is just a symptom of a bigger problem: who actually owns and controls the content? The consumers or the copyright industries? I suspect that if things go far enough, the 'cost' of the industry-produced content will far outweigh anyone's desire for it.

               

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

            •  
              identicon
              MrWilson, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 11:06am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              You forget that consumers determine what is popular, even when it comes to big budget movies. Yes, there would be a lot of crap out there, but the cream would still rise to the top. But what would also happen is that studios would have to actually compete more for the customer's attention and the competition would force them to create better products or die off. The actual artists and content creators, rather than large corporations, would be recognized for their abilities to create content that sells well rather than for their ability to generate more virtual property for the companies.

              Ending copyright would mean studios would have more competition and more independent movies would get into mainstream theaters, which means studios couldn't ask for as big of a share of theater ticket revenues. The theaters would say, "we've got this great indy film that just wants to get shown on our screens and you big studios want a giant slice of the pie for your overhyped CGI mess of a movie - you're gonna have to negotiate better than that!"

              Seeing what crappy theater cam recordings doesn't make you a pirate. I've seen friends watching them and they're terrible quality, so why would I bother pirating them when I've got a $5 a ticket local pub theater that has first run movies? But that's a nice assumption you've got going there. I'm sure I'm probably also a socialist and a terrorist in your eyes since I don't believe in supporting corporate greed, the subversion of democratic processes by corporate lobbyists, or the subversion of the free market by anti-competitive, price-fixing, colluding trade organizations.

              If you create the content, you should be able to offer it to the public. The artists who create the works definitely should have that ability, especially without the necessity of having their works locked up in the greed vaults of giant corporations that don't share revenues with the actual content creators.

              I disagree about dictating price. Market forces (such as consumer demand) dictate prices. Price-fixing is anti-competitive, anti-consumer, and wouldn't work under a system without copyright. We're not talking about stealing, so don't bother getting into that semantic argument. There is no piracy if there is no copyright, but people would still pay to see content. The artists would get a bigger chunk of the market because they'd be able to leverage their abilities rather than corporations leveraging their massive catalogs and copyrights.

              So tell me, why are you anti-artist?

               

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

            •  
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2012 @ 7:04am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "If you create the content you should be able to offer it to the public and dictate price. If people aren't willing to pay the price they are NOT entitled to STEAL it."

              If people financially CANT, sensibly or by povertty, CANT pay for media, then your right, only the RICH deserve it

               

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

        •  
          icon
          E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:12am

          Re: Re: Re:

          So I guess we have a completely stagnant fashion industry then? Oh. That's right, there is a ton of commercial work happening in the fashion industry despite the lack of copyright.

          To think people will stop making video games, movies, TV shows, music and books without copyright is completely naive.

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:24am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Zachary, what do you do for a living. I think it's a very relevant question and I would appreciate an honest answer.

             

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

            •  
              icon
              E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:46am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Why do you consider it relavent? I think that is a more important question.

               

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

              •  
                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:16pm

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

                Because I think your answer would give us insight into why your belief system is the way it is. Are you unemployed or a student?

                 

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

                •  
                  icon
                  E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:37pm

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

                  That sounds an awfully lot like "Because I said so." to me. Perhaps you can elaborate.

                   

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

                  •  
                    identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2012 @ 7:09am

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

                    E. Zachary Knight, i think you should answer his question.......right after he's blessed us with the same answer first, seems fair considering its he's question

                     

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  mischab1, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 1:24pm

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

                  why your belief system is the way it is.


                  That sounds like you are looking for a reason to discount what he says. If that isn't the case, then you can start the sharing by answering the question yourself.

                   

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

            •  
              identicon
              Another AC, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:28am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              FFS Just google his name already.

              http://ezknight.net/

              http://gamasutra.com/blogs/author/EZacharyKnight/593003/

              It's not Rocket Surgery.

               

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

              •  
                icon
                silverscarcat (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:33am

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

                But, Google is a weird and unknown ability to him.

                 

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

              •  
                icon
                E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:33am

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

                There is a saying, "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you won't have to look at him on Saturdays and Sundays." Thanks for spoiling the fun. ;)

                 

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  Another AC, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:52am

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

                  Your welcome :S

                  "Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life."

                  ~ Terry Pratchett

                   

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

            •  
              icon
              JMT (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:27pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Zachary, what do you do for a living. I think it's a very relevant question and I would appreciate an honest answer."

              You first please. Given your support for a government-granted monopoly right during a discussion on the harm it's causing, I think your answer is more relevant than Zach's.

               

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

        •  
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:10am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Facts please.
          All I see is babble.

           

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

        •  
          icon
          John Fenderson (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:18am

          Re: Re: Re:

          If you remove copyright you will lose commercial entertainment development.


          No, you won't. The nature of it will surely change, but it will absolutely continue to exist.

          And for what? So some freeloading pirates who want to make a point?


          Not at all. From my point of view, the argument against copyright (as it exists right now) has nothing to do with whether or not piracy is to be tolerated. It's about how copyright (as it exists now) does a great deal of harm to individuals and society, and that this harm needs to be mitigated.

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:34am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Without copyright there would be no piracy. My point is that it's the pirates who are fighting to end copyright because then their actions would no longer be considered illegal.

            What harm does it do to individuals who don't steal content? What harm does it do to society? If a work is released under copyright is society not better off than if the work had never been released at all? What company or individual is going to invest millions of dollars into making important cultural works if that work will be freely available and unprotected?

            And crowdsourcing is a ridiculous concept to me, people are paying for something before it is even created. With the studio funded content creation business model at least the content exists before you pay for it. You can read reviews from other people before you pay for a movie ticket. With crowdsourcing you are paying up front for something no one has seen - it could turn out to be complete crap and you would have already paid for it.

             

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

            •  
              icon
              E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:50am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Ha. studio funding is better than crowd funding? Seriously? With studio funding, there is a very high risk on the studio side that what you are producing will not be able to find a market and make money. With crowd funding that risk is minimized as the market determines if it wants the product before it is even made.

              On either side, the risk to the consumer that the product will suck is pretty much the same. However, with crowd funding, the consumer gets to choose who gets to make the products they want, which minimizes that risk as the consumer gets to choose the best producer, or the one they think is best.

               

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

              •  
                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:26pm

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

                The point is there IS NO PRODUCT when the customers pay for it. Lets say you invest in a crowd funded movie project. The project SOUNDS really interesting so you invest your $10 or whatever amount you choose. Eight months later the project is complete but it is complete crap. You had no way to know whether it would be crap when you spent money on it, because it didn't exist. With studio content, you don't pay anything until the project is complete. You have the opportunity to read reviews from reviewers, your friends, random strangers, etc... With crowdsourcing you are investing in an UNKNOWN, not an unknown person but an UNKNOWN project. You have no way of knowing whether the finished project will even be worth the investment you already made.

                 

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:29pm

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

                  Isn't that the premise of investment and venture capital? That's exactly what the big production companies are doing. You've just cut them out of the chain and let the consumers do it for them.

                   

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

                •  
                  icon
                  E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:45pm

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

                  Have you not visited Kickstarter? Most successful Kickstarters come from people who have creating things in the past that show off what they can do. Others have enough created for what they want money for to show off what they are doing. I have yet to see anything from an unknown with nothing to show get successfully funded.

                   

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

                •  
                  icon
                  E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:50pm

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

                  Have you ever been to Kickstarter? I know of no project being successfully funded without the creator having some way of verifying their ability to the public. Whether that is previous work in a related field that shows they are capable of creating what they are asking money for, or enough work done on the current project to show that they can actually do what they are saying the can. People are not stupid and don't just blindly throw their money around. They make intelligent decisions on what to invest in.

                   

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2012 @ 7:22am

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

                  "With studio content, you don't pay anything until the project is complete. You have the opportunity to read reviews from reviewers, your friends, random strangers, etc."

                  And do you think the companies your so fond of defending, sing praises on that ability, would that not cost them PROFIT, the same PROFIT, thats lost to 'piracy'

                  You accept this ability now, wait until they've twisted it into a bad thing, which it is, to the THEM, NOT, to us, excluding yourself ofcourse, as you've reapeatdly shown you support corporations above all else

                  Many a times in the past i have saved money by reading reviews or other peoples opinions on something, will that be the next thing to be seen as illegal however unlikely it seems, NOW.

                   

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

            •  
              icon
              silverscarcat (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:02am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "What company or individual is going to invest millions of dollars into making important cultural works if that work will be freely available and unprotected?"

              Why should something be worth millions of dollars in the first place?

               

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

              •  
                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 12:28pm

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

                I personally like action movies with lots of special effects. I have seen amature special effects and I am not impressed. I have even watched some YouTube clips which were supposed to have great special effects, but they weren't very good at all. I also like good actors, nice original music scores. These are all things that cost money.

                 

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

                •  
                  identicon
                  lol, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:27pm

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

                  come on AC. answer the questions. you seemed so eager earlier. got cold feet? they pay you more to be silent with things like this?

                   

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

            •  
              identicon
              MrWilson, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 11:20am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              So it's okay for studios to invest in a movie that hasn't been made yet, but not for regular people to do the same?

              Maybe people would do it for the same reason that the studio execs would. Maybe a well-known director who has a great screenplay pitches it to the people instead of the studio and the fans of his previous work remember how much they liked his last project and they like the sound of this proposed project and they're willing to take a chance. Only the risk is mitigated by the limited amount that each person has to invest. If the crowd-sourced project sucks, everyone only lost whatever they chose to put in, which could be as little as $5.

               

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

            •  
              icon
              John Fenderson (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 3:30pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              My point is that it's the pirates who are fighting to end copyright because then their actions would no longer be considered illegal.


              I don't pirate, but I am absolutely in favor of rethinking copyright. This isn't just an issue that pirates care about (and, really, pirates don't care about it much -- copyright law doesn't impact them much either way, since they ignore it anyhow.)


              What harm does it do to individuals who don't steal content? What harm does it do to society?


              As it currently exists, the list of harms are lengthy and can be found here and in many other places. They include, but are not limited to, the elimination of useful services and equipment, financial and personal hardships as a result of wrongful copyright infringement claims, the loss of the legal use of copyrighted materials (backups, fair use, etc.) due to DMCA anti-circumvention rules, and so forth.

              The current incarnation of copyright is causing a great deal of loss, both monetary, emotional, and in terms of holding back development of useful technologies.

              If a work is released under copyright is society not better off than if the work had never been released at all?


              That's a false false choice. But, even if it wasn't, the answer is often yes, society would be better off without the work, but with greater freedom.

              What company or individual is going to invest millions of dollars into making important cultural works if that work will be freely available and unprotected?


              If you're talking "important cultural works," then I would say just about as many as there ever have been. If you're talking "big-budget action movie" then there may be fewer of them. But I guarantee they will exist.

              Lack of copyright does not prevent creators from making money on their creations.

              But, I reiterate, I (like most of the commenters and posters I see here) am not in advocating the abolition fo copyright. I advocate stopping the overreach and abuse of copyright. However, if the choice really is between copyright as it is now or no copyright at all (and I don't believe it is), then society would be better off without copyright at all. If that means fewer multi-million-dollar movies, then that's certainly a loss, but the lesser of two losses.

               

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

            •  
              icon
              JMT (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:03pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "What harm does it do to individuals who don't steal content? What harm does it do to society?"

              Seriously?! Read the damn article!

              "If a work is released under copyright is society not better off than if the work had never been released at all"

              Your question is based on the entirely false premise that nobody would release work without copyright.

               

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

        •  
          icon
          silverscarcat (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:26am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Yes, because copyright is the reason that Star Wars exists, Am I right?

          I mean, it's not like Lucas admitted he stole from the Lord of the Rings books or something and just changed some stuff around.

          Oh, wait...

          You know what? Who gives a fuck about copyright anymore?

          If copyright were to disappear tomorrow, at least TeamFourStar could start getting paid to do DragonBall Abridged.

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:36am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I don't know what that even is. It sounds like some crappy anime junk. No worse yet, it sounds like a crappy derivative product of some crappy anime junk.

             

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

            •  
              icon
              silverscarcat (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:40am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              You, AC, are quite the moron, aren't you?

              As I read your posts, all I can do is laugh at you, because you make no sense at all.

              You think Anime is crap? Well, good for you, do you want a biscuit or something?

               

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

            •  
              icon
              Kaden (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:54am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "I don't know what it is, but I know I don't like it."

              You really think that's a solid, credibility building stance to take?

               

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

        •  
          icon
          Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:50am

          Re: Re: Re:

          You wont see big budget or epic movies, like LOTR, The Hobbit, Avatar, Star Wars, Back to the Future, Titanic, etc... All the movies that people love will be gone.
          That's a very very large ASSUMPTION based on no evidence, is almost certainly partly if not mostly untrue and yet again you use the equation "high budget=good film", which is patently untrue. So even on the vanishingly small possibility that such films do vanish when copyright is removed... so what?

           

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

    •  
      icon
      E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:14am

      Re:

      One can still complain about the abuses made possible by modern copyright while still supporting an evidence based solution. Only idiots speak in absolutes.

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:37am

        Re: Re:

        Hey Zachary, did you see my other post where I asked you what you do for a living?

         

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

        •  
          icon
          E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:51am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Yes I did, and my response is the same. Why does it matter?

           

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

        •  
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2012 @ 7:35am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Hey, Anonymous Coward, did you see the few posts asking you to answer it first?

          and preferably your home address

           

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

        •  
          icon
          Niall (profile), Apr 5th, 2012 @ 7:40am

          Re: Re: Re:

          What's your hard-on for his job? It really isn't relavant to his opinion, and it's a straw man to try and diss it if he happens to be one you have a prejudice against.

          Forget it, you're going to diss his opinion no matter what. This is just you avoiding actually answering people's questions.

           

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

    •  
      icon
      Arthur (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 4:22pm

      In favor of copyright

      "Hey Mike, if you really are in favor of copyright as you like to claim, then..."

      As usual, the troll uses false logic to "make his point". This particular one is the false assumption "if you are in favor of copyright AS IT EXISTS TODAY, then ...".

      Ah, to live in such a simple-minded world, eh? You don't have to read or think, just spew out the words.

       

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:35am

    You're not suggesting that entertainment and education are the same thing?

     

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

    •  
      identicon
      Lord Binky, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:18am

      Re:

      I'm pretty sure by definition entertainment and education are mutually exclusive. Any attempts to combine the two result in an hideous abomination that is neither of the two. I wonder if there are schoolhouse rock clips to prove this on youtube....

       

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

    •  
      identicon
      Cowardly Anonymous, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:07am

      Re:

      Not the same thing, simply based on the same fundamentals. Both are a sharing of an idea, with entertainment focused more on being interesting while education is focused more on being useful. If you find an idea both useful and entertaining, then you can combine the two into edutainment*.



      *Which is apparently a real word...

       

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

  •  
    icon
    Overcast (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 6:44am

    I wonder where government domains rank on this list.

    The real interesting statistic I would love to see is where people that work for and run organizations like the RIAA rank...

    Just because they come out claiming to be all for copyright, etc - I wonder in their private lives if they practice what they preach.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:23am

    You know Mike, you would probably do better if you actually read the 1790 copyright declaration, rather than just cherry picking the title.

    http://www.copyright.gov/history/1790act.pdf

    Clearly, the internet of the government was to grant an exclusive licence for at least 14 and up to 28 years, even at this point.

    "An Act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of maps, Charts, And books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned"

    What is key here is that the encouragement of learning is as a result of having secured the copies for the times therein mentioned, essentially saying that learning is encouraged when copyright is respected.

    Damn, it sucks for you when it turns out you have been ignoring most of the act for so long.

     

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

    •  
      icon
      E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:04am

      Re:

      Or we could look at the Constitutional clause granting Congress the right to grant copyrights and patents:

      To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.

      This clause raises two very distinct and pertinent questions that Copyright maximilists gloss over or ignore completely:

      1) Is progress in science and useful arts being promoted under current copyright and patent law?

      2) Are current copyright and patent lengths a "limited" time?

      I would argue that our current copyright and patent laws fail both of those questions. We have pointed out numerous times on this site that tose two sections of law fail those two questions.

      What does it matter what the 1790 version of copyright law says? The 1790 version of copyright has no zero nothing to do with current copyright law.

      As for your strange and misguided reading of the title of that law, I am sorry to say that you are really really confused. How is learning encouraged when teachers and professors are blocked from using copyrighted works completely? How is learning encouraged when copyright law forces educational materials behind burdensome paywalls? How is current copyright law encouraging learning at all?

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:03am

        Re: Re:

        1) Certainly you progress science and the useful arts by encouraging investments of time and effort in the fields. Making it possible for the best and brightest minds to dedicate their time to these things, rather than having to take "normal" jobs to pay their bills is to everyone's advantage. Look up "opportunity cost" for an understanding.

        2) "limited" time is relative in all fields. In patent, less than 20 years seems a reasonable limit in most cases, it allows time to take an patent from "idea" or "basic working model" to actual use, or to be licensed to others for actual use.

        For copyrights, I think that the current copyright lengths are not out of line, especially considering the lifetime of the content created. We still watch 40 year old TV shows (M*A*S*H anyone?), and we enjoy 50 and 60 year old movies. Securing the rights to those things for the period of time means that out culture isn't so quick to swallow them up and make them less relevant, as they get ripped apart and re-used piecemeal.

        "What does it matter what the 1790 version of copyright law says? The 1790 version of copyright has no zero nothing to do with current copyright law."

        Talk to Mike about it. He's the one quoting from it to try to justify his positions. If it's not relevant to look at 1790's law, then TELL HIM ABOUT IT. Call him out for cherry picking facts to create his "truth". Don't blame me for addressing his points.

         

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

        •  
          icon
          Leigh Beadon (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:20am

          Re: Re: Re:

          We still watch 40 year old TV shows (M*A*S*H anyone?), and we enjoy 50 and 60 year old movies. Securing the rights to those things for the period of time means that out culture isn't so quick to swallow them up and make them less relevant, as they get ripped apart and re-used piecemeal.

          Wait... preventing people from consuming and reusing old content makes it more relevant? Cultural interaction with a work swallows it up? That's the opposite of reality.

           

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

        •  
          identicon
          Cowardly Anonymous, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:28am

          Re: Re: Re:

          1) Just as certainly as copyright and patents as they are implemented Today can by huge deterrents to those who would be involved in these pursuits. Because they can not build on what has recently gone before, they must play catchup, which functions as a high barrier to entry. Look up "barrier to entry," for an understanding.

          2) Limited time in the Software industry is at most a few years. Clearly we need to reconsider the timeline for patents for this industry, and probably many others.

          For copyright, it is not about whether people still watch these shows, but whether the monies so secured are promoting enough new work to be worth the societal costs of locking down the content. Remember, the whole point of these laws are to provide the public with these innovations, through stimulating the creation of the work.

          Denying the public from swallowing the work up is the cost of copyright, which should be minimized as much as possible without removing the incentive.


          The trade-off:
          (-)Public gives up, for a limited time, the right to copy a work, thus driving more revenue towards those who innovate.
          (+)In exchange, it is expected that the additional revenue will lead to more and more advanced innovation.

          What the public is saying currently is that the arrangement isn't working out; that the additional innovation we have seen isn't enough to justify the high time cost of denial of access to that innovation. We have decided that the agreement has been abused and are withdrawing from it. We will no longer forfeit our natural right to create in the instance of copying.

           

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

        •  
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:31am

          Re: Re: Re:

          1) You don't need a granted monopoly to do that.

          2) Surely limited was to mean less then the life expectancy of the holder.

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2012 @ 7:58am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Theoretically if a new business model company, i dont know, lets say, MegaFakeName comes along and is giving the rights and options to own copyrighted material that would normally be owned by the status quo

            Would it be illegal if MegaFakeName only used the copyright as a guideline, and decided instead to share all to everyone in a business model that would actually benefit from it.

            Or would that create some kind of paradox, that none of us would dare risk?

             

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

    •  
      icon
      Richard (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:14am

      Re:

      Actually the title of the act was itself copied from the statute of Anne. Under today's aggressive and expanded copyright the copyright act would have been an infringing derivative work.

       

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

    •  
      identicon
      Cowardly Anonymous, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:13am

      Re:

      Method =/= intent.

      The key here is that learning is being harmed, rather than encouraged, by the method being practiced.

      What is key here is that the encouragement of learning is as a result of having secured the copies for the times therein mentioned, essentially saying that learning is encouraged when copyright is respected.


      Yes, that is their hypothesis, the thing that is attempted/tested by the law. They make the claim that it will do what they intend it to do, and Mike is simply pointing out that the resultant evidence shows it hasn't.

       

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

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:28am

      Re:

      What it really says though is that they were trying to find a way to encourage something and that one mechanism to do that was through a granted monopoly.

      Open source today proved that you don't need all those powers to encourage anything.

       

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

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:29am

      Re:

      Further useful arts was at the time a term used for sciences, that is why music was not copyrightable at the time, see there it was not scientific use of the arts and thus not useful.

       

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

  •  
    identicon
    bob, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:28am

    Yet look at tuition prices....

    I always find it hilarious to hear tenured professors with huge salaries prattling on and on about how we're all supposed to share and share and share. Student debt is now more than $1 trillion dollars and all of their so-called "sharing" is funded by their insanely inflated tuition. It's easy to insist upon sharing when you're funded by the debt you pile on the shoulders of your students.

    Sheesh. If they really wanted to encourage learning, they would put their lectures on YouTube and issue degrees for free. I know that some are putting their lectures on YouTube but I have a feeling this will end pretty quickly if kids start taking advantage of this and skipping tuition payments.

     

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

    •  
      icon
      E. Zachary Knight (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:11am

      Re: Yet look at tuition prices....

      Udacity seems to be doing quite well. The two professors running also want to keep it up even though it is completely free. While the schools they work for might not like the idea, they don't care.

       

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

    •  
      icon
      Richard (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:21am

      Re: Yet look at tuition prices....

      I always find it hilarious to hear tenured professors with huge salaries prattling on and on about how we're all supposed to share and share and share. Student debt is now more than $1 trillion dollars and all of their so-called "sharing" is funded by their insanely inflated tuition. It's easy to insist upon sharing when you're funded by the debt you pile on the shoulders of your students.

      I usually find your comments hilarious for some reason.

      Professors are professors because they love their subject - not because they approve of the short sighted mechanisms used to fund tertiary education in the US. The things you complain of are the work of politicians.

       

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

    •  
      icon
      Dionaea (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:30am

      Re: Yet look at tuition prices....

      Tuition prices where exactly? Here in the Netherlands the tuition fees have always been pretty decent and yet my university & the associated University library are stuck paying huge amounts to get access to LARGELY GOVERNMENT FUNDED research articles. Academic publishers get lots of their content for free and then make the producers of that free content pay for the content others produced for free. The amount of tuition fees have little to nothing to do with the troubles in the academic world. Congrats on having your head stuck up your ass.

      Just because the american system is fucked up doesn't make it right to rip off all universities worldwide.

       

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

    •  
      identicon
      Cowardly Anonymous, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:36am

      Re: Yet look at tuition prices....

      Tuition prices are so high because so many can skip them (scholarships), and because the other associated costs of running a university are so high (much of which is due to copyrighted journals). Professors don't make all that much compared to those who go out into the industry, for which they require less education. That salary can't really come down too far before all the Professors snap up consultant work.

       

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

    •  
      icon
      silverscarcat (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:46am

      Re: Yet look at tuition prices....

      Yes, because tuition doesn't also pay for books, dorm room, parking pass, meal ticket, electricity that the college uses, internet access, computer lab, IT center, various supplies, janitorial labor, the food and shops that the college makes contracts with, not to mention all the other laborers that work on college.

      Nope, it all goes to the professors.

      Try again, bob.

       

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 7:29am

    Curious why state universities (instructors and libraries alike) are even involved in a fair use contest with publishers. It was many years ago established that state governments enjoy sovereign immunity under the 11th Amendment of the US Constitution, and that an action under copyright law against them can only be maintained if the states clearly and explicitly waive their immunity from suit. In the case of states that have not waived immunity the most financial compensation that can be secured is either reasonable and entire compensation if the state's constitution so requires, or a private bill enacted by its legislature.

    The same holds true with respect to patents.

     

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

  •  
    icon
    Rcs (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 8:29am

    Evolve or Die

    Every organism faces this basic truth. Laws are created to protect people from having to deal with this basic law of nature. Law imposes man-made order on a dynamic system. The system is always changing, the laws stay in place for much longer.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 9:20am

    Another reason for Republicans to blame science and education for everything evil in this world.

     

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

  •  
    icon
    Mega1987 (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:45am

    So... basically, they're saying that our teachers, professors and librarians are the biggest pirates and freeloaders of them all?

    Did those guys ever think how much blood, sweat and effort to teach us everything they have learn from their own teachers? To provide us with better understanding of our world today?

    Hell! They're the reason why they have reached their positions. If it's wasn't from the knowledge they taught us, we might as well be living in the nearest cave, growling, screeching, moaning and not making any sense to each other.

    And not to mention, how in the world those students who requires a thesis to pass a course made thru them in the first place?

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Dr. Pfeffer PHD, Apr 4th, 2012 @ 10:52am

    Coment Deleted

    Due to violation of copyright on term "fuŠk-off"

     

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

  •  
    icon
    TtfnJohn (profile), Apr 4th, 2012 @ 2:11pm

    "Far from fair and balanced his posts NEVER explain why copyright increases the amount of high quality content."

    Unlike FOX or MSNBC Mike has never claimed Techdirt is a news outlet. Techdirt is commentary and analysis not news. In the world of journalism those are entirely different things.

    At that, it's not as much that Mike or other authors on Techdirt are opposed to copyright as a concept it's that Mike is opposed to the insane lengths of copyright as it stands today and the IP extremists, and the lengths they'll go to, that has become the issue around copyright.

    Copyright, remember, was developed and introduced in a world of dead tree books and ink. A world that is rapidly vanishing. It was never intended to enrich publishers, movie and recording studios at the expense of creators which is where we're at now.

    So how about you coming up with an alternative for the digital age?

    Despite your mistaken assertions that without copyright all creativity would stop you haven't yet explained how such towering works as Shakespeare's and "The Canterbury Tales" came to be written and/or performed in a world without copyright. (And those are just two of a solar system worth of examples.)

    Copyright does not, in and of itself increase the amount of high quality content. If it did then Hollywood would be churning out high quality 75% of the time instead of 10% if we're all lucky. And don't bother with the argument that they have to appeal to the masses. So did Shakespeare. So did Homer and so did every writer and musician prior to the introduction of copyright. But create they did and not just themselves but many others. That's the part people like you always seem to miss.

    So movies, recordings, television and other acts of creation, not to mention software, photography, design and just about any other creative act you can think of would continue to be made because that's what human's do.

    As you cite LoTR as one of your expensive examples of what copyright can accomplish as an act of creation there are two things wrong with that.
    1) For most of the Trilogy's existence, and The Hobbit, American publishers didn't recognize English or anyone else's copyrights so Tolkien wasn't paid so much as a penny of royalties on the best sellers. I guess they were all pirates.
    2) LoTR, unlike a great many films, had a built in audience who were not about to accept junk but give them (and me) quality they'd be all over it. And we were. Done even three quarters right it was guaranteed a mass audience and it got one. And the profits as well. So, like Titanic, it's a bad example.

    It gets increasingly hard to listen the all the stale, old and untrue arguments that are tossed out in defense of the current copyright regime which has nothing at all to do with education and less to do with actually paying the artists that actually create for the gatekeepers.

    Of course, then, when I'm looking for a belly laugh along comes bob, powered by the green envy monster, so thanks for that bob. I can see a long and profitable career in front of you as a low level exec in one of the *AA's or in the lower echelon of parts of the Republican Party insisting that evolution didn't happen and using yourself as Exhibit A.

     

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

  •  
    icon
    DanZee (profile), Apr 5th, 2012 @ 7:37am

    It's interesting this is happening because college professors were doing the exact same thing in the 1970s and 1980s. At that time, they were photocopying chapters out of textbooks, magazine and newspapers with no regard for copyright, assembling their own course materials, and sending students to nearby copy shops to "buy" their copyright infringed textbooks.

    The college textbook publishers found out about this and the practice was stopped. Some publishers did license their material for reprints, but most didn't, and instead kept pushing the cost of textbooks higher. It's just strange that colleges are doing almost the same thing again.

     

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


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This