Former RIAA VP Named 2nd In Command Of Copyright Office

from the revolving-door dept

We've talked in the past about how unfortunate it is that the US Copyright Office seems almost entirely beholden to the legacy copyright players, rather than to the stated purpose of copyright law. That is, instead of looking at how copyright can lead to the maximum benefit for the public ("promoting the progress of science") it seems to focus on what will make the big legacy players -- the RIAA and MPAA -- happy. Part of this, of course, is the somewhat continuous revolving door between industry and the Copyright Office. Just a few months ago we wrote about how the Copyright Office's General Counsel, David Carson, had jumped ship to go join the IFPI (the international version of the RIAA).

Last night the news came out that the US Copyright Office had now named Karyn Temple Claggett as the Associate Register of Copyright and Director of Policy & International Affairs. While Temple Claggett has actually been at the Copyright Office for a little while as Senior Counsel for Policy and International Affairs, not too long ago she was a hotshot litigator for... the RIAA. In fact, an old bio of hers, from when she was at the RIAA (as VP, Litigation and Legal Affairs), notes that she was instrumental in their ever-present legal campaign against pretty much any innovative technology that comes along:
While at the RIAA, Ms. Temple-Claggett has worked on some of the most high-profile copyright cases brought by copyright owners in recent years, including the Supreme Court Grokster litigation, as well as litigation against LimeWire, XM Satellite Radio and Usenet.com
I'm sure she's a fine person and a good litigator, but it's difficult to think that she'll be anything but a pure maximalist in favor of expanding copyrights and copyright enforcement, and against any innovation that challenges the status quo. It's hard not to be cynical when you see this kind of revolving door. And, of course, it's always entirely one-sided. Could you imagine the Copyright Office naming a top EFF litigator as second in command? Exactly the point. How is it possible to take the Copyright Office seriously as an advocate for what's best for the public, when the connections there are to industries who lean heavily on keeping out innovation and promoting an old business model through aggressive litigation and regulation?


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    silverscarcat (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:57am

    And this is why....

    I still trust Google over the U.S. Government, despite the fact that Google does a lot of evil things in the world.

     

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      Ninja (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 4:48am

      Re: And this is why....

      How they expect people to respect copyright when it's clear that it's being influenced only by big corporations with no concern for the public?

      As for Google, they do what every human being does, they play mostly good (so far) but every now and then, here and there they go evil ;)

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:14am

        Re: Re: And this is why....

        The RIAA isn't a corporation.

        It's difficult to come up with a group of people that have had their rights granted under copyright trampled more than musicians.

        I'd say appointing this person is the least the government can do.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:25am

          Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

          The least?? Why does the government have to do anything for any group?

          How about the entertainment industry start treating those that produce music, etc, honestly and fairly? Then the government doesn't need to step in an protect anyone from the dishonest practices of the entertainment industry at all..

          But, I do agree, musicians have been trampled on by the very industry that was supposed to protect them. That much is clear and easy to see.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:38am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

            I make my living in the recording industry. Within that I've seen plenty of slimy people that take advantage of others. Plenty. The thing is, that isn't any different than any other industry. We live in a world full of sharks and there are always nasty people trying to take advantage of someone else.

            However the vast majority of people that work in the industry and at labels are super cool and upstanding. You don't get to keep your job very long if you're not; there are waaaay too many other decent, hard working people ready to take your place at a moments notice. Everyone, it seems, wants to work in this business.

            And btw, you could add up every nefarious deed ever committed by every record label in history, and it still wouldn't come remotely close to equaling the amount of illegal downloads that have happened in the past 13 years.

            So trying to say piracy is ok because there have been some record labels that have pulled some shady shit just doesn't fly.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:52am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              Hang on:

              I appreciate your sentiment, but the RIAA, as the labels' trade organisation, employs known and convicted fraudsters. embezzlers and charlatans in order to keep as much money as possible. The labels knowingly use accounting tricks in order to avoid paying out to their artists as part of a contract.

              I don't think most of the people working in the recording industry are evil inhuman monsters. I just think that, with fewer sociopathic tendencies at the top, they could make tons of money and have a gaggle of artists willing and ready to sign up with them.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:06pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                There are definitely still some shady players, but now (almost entirely due to the internet) that situation has gotten better; distribution isn't closed-end anymore, bogus behavior is known within seconds to everyone rather than being passed word-of-mouth to a few over a matter of years, and there is enlightenment about better situations and a support network to facilitate it.
                What I've seen is most of the old-school slimesters being nudged out the door. Which is a good thing :)

                 

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              silverscarcat (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:54am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              "And btw, you could add up every nefarious deed ever committed by every record label in history, and it still wouldn't come remotely close to equaling the amount of illegal downloads that have happened in the past 13 years."

              *Snort*

              BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

              Oh wait, you're serious...

              Let me laugh harder.

              BWAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

              Oh, that's a good one.

              Good joke, good joke.

              I mean, illegal downloads have shut down the music industry, radio stations and ruined the lives of every RIAA executive out there.

              And the RIAA would NEVER sue a bunch of printers that were linked together, grandmothers, children who aren't even in school, dead people, college students hundreds of thousands of dollars and ruin their lives, now would they?

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:00am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                Illegal downloading has put a huge dent in revenue for music labels. Budgets for bands making albums have been more than cut in half. This often means bands are making albums less often and don't have as much time in the studio to create.

                There's really no way to apply a positive spin to that reality.

                 

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                  MrWilson, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:14am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                  No, disconnecting single sales from albums, legal technologies and services like Pandora and YouTube, competition from other entertainment mediums, and a less robust economy with a smaller middle class with less discretionary budgets has put a huge dent in revenue for music labels.

                  If you feel that being a deckhand on the Titanic is still a good career choice even after the captain has run into an iceberg, there's not much to be done but wave as the ship goes down.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:12pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                    I have no problem with my career choice at all, as what I do makes me a decent living. But I wouldn't want to be a musician relying on touring to make a living; that life is gnarly. Unpleasant sleeping conditions, away from friends and loved ones all the time, no health insurance, horrible food and all for very little money.
                    At least with record royalties a musician can afford to be home and create more. So those are the people I'm bummed to see getting harmed.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:35pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                      They aren't being harmed, royalties using online distribution are orders of magnitude higher than legacy labels were offering and more people actually end up getting them when before the vast majority of musicians never even got signed much less got signed and got any money out of it. You're talking about a minuscule fraction of the musicians here.

                       

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                      PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:25pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                      "At least with record royalties a musician can afford to be home and create more. So those are the people I'm bummed to see getting harmed."

                      So, you support an economy where people only work once then get paid forever because you feel sorry for their conditions if they have to work for it? What conditions do you support for factory workers and farmers, who often only get minimum wage if that? If not the same, why do you think musicians deserve to be free from the pressure of unpleasant hard work?

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 2:57am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                        The result of a farmer's work is usually consumed in one sitting; at most a few.

                        Re: music, if you are fine with not listening forever, then I'll be ok with them not getting paid forever.

                        Deal?

                         

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                          PaulT (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 3:07am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                          "Re: music, if you are fine with not listening forever, then I'll be ok with them not getting paid forever."

                          So, now you're not only demanding that you get paid forever, but that you're paid per listen too? I wonder why you think you're so much better than the generations of people who came before you who created music without demanding such a pension.

                          "Deal?"

                          No. Art belongs to our culture, and that belongs to the public. If you're too greedy to accept the limited monopoly you have to monetise it before it returns to the public, that's not my problem. Copyright is meant as a limited incentive for you to continue to create and improve our culture, not an infinite pension plan for greedy assholes.

                           

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                          Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 3:47am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                          How about the farmer who develops a higher yielding strain? How about Roundup-ready seed?

                           

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                          MrWilson, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:04pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                          But that only works against the farmer example. What about construction workers and architects? Until their buildings are torn down, their efforts result in continued use, sometimes beyond the length of current copyright durations.

                          There are still Roman bridges being used in Turkey. Do the Turks need to make royalty payments to a Roman trust?

                          But still, it doesn't technically work on the farmer example either since part of the food that you consume is broken down and literally becomes a part of your body, so you continue to "use" it long after you've excreted the waste part.

                          You're also muddling the issue by conflating commercial use with private use.

                          Royalties are paid for commercial sales of works or for commercial uses or corporate licensing.

                          Consumers buy a copy of music and never pay another dime for it unless they buy a new copy (which shouldn't happen if, as the RIAA companies claim, they're buying a license for the song rather than the format it's in).

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:35pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                            Round-up ready corn seed will continue to proliferate beyond the initial crop by virtue of the act of growing it. Buildings and bridges are static. The architects drawing are typically licensed for the single structure. Build another with proper authorization, you've got a problem. Not to state the obvious, but probably necessary for you, IP law doesn't cover the pounding of nails.

                             

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                              MrWilson, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 4:52pm

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                              "Round-up ready corn seed will continue to proliferate beyond the initial crop by virtue of the act of growing it."

                              I'm not sure why you're bringing this up. You brought up round-up ready corn.

                              "Buildings and bridges are static."

                              But they are used continuously after the initial work by their creators, whether it's the architect or the construction workers. This was stated in direct response to the earlier AC who claims to work in the recording industry who said, "Re: music, if you are fine with not listening forever, then I'll be ok with them not getting paid forever." Using continued use as an excuse for perpetual payment for singular instances of work would apply just as much to architecture and construction work as it would to recording music. Therefore, it's not a valid argument that musicians get some special perpetual right to make money from singular instances of work when other (arguably creative) works aren't considered to warrant perpetual payments.

                              "Not to state the obvious, but probably necessary for you, IP law doesn't cover the pounding of nails."

                              Not to state the obvious, but probably necessary for you, IP law doesn't exist. There's copyright law. There's trademark law. There's patent law. There's no such thing as IP law. But all of that is irrelevant to your point because even things that copyright law does apply to don't always generate a perpetual payment to their creators.

                               

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                          btr1701 (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 2:13pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                          > Re: music, if you are fine with not
                          > listening forever, then I'll be ok with
                          > them not getting paid forever.

                          Why should a musician get paid every time someone listens to their song?

                          An electrician doesn't get paid every time someone uses the wiring in the house he installed.

                          An architect doesn't get paid every time someone sells a house he designed.

                          An accountant doesn't get paid every time someone looks at a spreadsheet he put together.

                          Everyone else in society gets paid once for their work. Why should artists be any different?

                           

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                  silverscarcat (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:27am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                  While album sales are down, and that's true...

                  Hasn't itunes been selling more than 1 billion songs a year the last couple of years?

                  Last I checked, they sell songs at 99 cents a song, so, 1 billion x .99 = 990 million dollars.

                  And iTunes sends more of that to the artists than the RIAA ever did.

                  Plus, it probably didn't help that the RIAA got hammered with price fixing by the DoJ around 1998.

                   

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                    Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:35am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                    Spotify and Itunes are the two biggest revenue streams to the record labels.

                    Makes me wonder what goes on with all that money.

                     

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                      PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:20pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                      While they may be big money, neither are as big as they were in 1998 when they were reselling albums to people who already had them on vinyl, charging up to £4 (in the UK, which equates to $6 in the US by exchange rates) for CD singles and selling albums at a premium. People usually only buy singles through iTunes and Spotify is radio rates not purchase rates, so they are still "losing" money even if more music is being consumed. Therein lies the problem - they want that next yacht but they can't afford it like they could in the 90s...

                       

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                      Alana (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:01am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                      Cue Duck Tales intro clip.

                       

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                  Mr. Applegate, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:33am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                  Cite Please, I want to see this reality you are speaking of.

                  The REAL reason revenue is down is because the Music Industry depended for YEARS on the sale of the ALBUM. Ten or twelve songs placed together on an LP, then tape, and CD that could be sold together. They would put one or two decent songs on an album and people bought the entire album. The digital age made it easy to buy (or pirate) singles.

                  So the real reason the Music Industry is hurting is because they used to be able to make money on 100% of an album, and now they are only making money on 20% (the 20% that is decent music). People no longer buy the other 80% (the 80% that was just filler on an album).

                  "Piracy" as you call it has been around for ever. Growing up I used to tape songs off the radio, or off a friends LP. If I really liked the music I went out and bought a copy, if I didn't well it just set there on tape. So you really can't blame piracy for the music industries problems. They survived the age of bootlegged mix tapes and rampant "Piracy" (Music Sharing) just fine all through the 60's, 70's and 80's.

                  The problem is, as with most large companies, they failed to innovate and keep up with the times. Instead of seeing the new reality and embracing it they have fought it every step of the way. Of course now there is probably less than 1 in 10 songs that are worth listening to. So quality went down, ability to buy only high quality went up and they are crying because they can't keep selling 80-90% crap!

                  Had the Music Industry embraced the digital age, and increased the number of hits produced per artist the sales would have gone through the roof, but even when that is the obvious problem they still like to pretend the problem is those dirty rotten pirates. Problem is they were around for more than 40 years and it wasn't a problem until it became really easy to not buy an album and only buy singles. I could hop on online and buy a song today for $1 30 years ago I was pay $15 for 10 songs (even though I only really wanted 1) Perhaps it's time to face the truth. They produce CRAP and people don't buy it anymore.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:36pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                    Selling songs individually, except for a very brief period, has been around forever. I have quite a collection of 45s myself.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:42pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                      You haven't addressed the point being made: that recording industry revenues are down due to the collapse of the album. This absolutely had a negative effect on revenue regardless of the fact that selling songs individually is not a new thing.

                       

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                      Mr. Applegate, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:13pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                      And what percentage of the Music Industries Revenues came for Single Sales; Album Sales; Specialty Sales?

                      Here let me help you out. I cite:
                      http://www.businessinsider.com/these-charts-explain-the-real-death-of-the-music-industry-2011 -2

                      There are plenty of charts there, many sourced from the RIAA, that show pretty convincingly that the death of the album is what is hurting the Music Industry.

                       

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                      PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:16pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                      Many album tracks were not available as 45s. Now they are available as MP3s. Your point, while partially valid, is incorrect. Except for the times when labels try to restrict their singles to "album only" tracks, of course, but that just makes them more attractive to pirate because nobody wants to pay $15 for 2 decent songs...

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 3:11am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                        Are you seriously suggesting the halving of record label revenue is primarily because album tracks that are not singles are now available on itunes?

                         

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                          PaulT (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 3:33am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                          Not completely, but it's certainly one of the major factors to consider (others being competition from other entertainment media, people no longer having to re-purchase content to get the new medium as that had to for going from vinyl or tape to CD, the global recession making frivolous purchases less desirable - and the music industry is 100% frivolous - among many other examples).

                          Most albums consist of good tracks people want combined with filler. Very few albums consist of 100% great songs, even the best have some duds. People don't like buying a $15 CD and finding out there's only a few tracks they want to listen to. They never have, but unless the "good" songs were released a singles, the only legal way to get them in the past was to get the album. Now, people can get only the tracks they wish and pay accordingly. Thus, instead of paying $15 for the full album they pay $5 for the 5 tracks they want. If enough people do this, that causes a drop in the overall revenue being received. Data shows that while people do buy albums through iTunes, etc, a large proportion are single track purchases, not album purchases, and so this contributes to a drop in record label revenue since the 90s.

                          Why is this a difficult concept to understand? Is it perhaps because it's a logical point that involves recognising a fundamental sea change in the market, rather than something that you can reject by whining about "piracy"?

                           

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                          Mr. Applegate, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 4:13am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                          I don't want to speak for Paul T., but I certainly am suggesting just that! Look at my post above, I provided a link to a Business Insider article that shows exactly that.

                          When digital music came of age and people started buying songs via iTunes et al and it became cheaper to buy the songs you liked rather than an entire album. This obviously cut revenue for the labels.

                          Another reason for loss of revenue for labels is, that the internet created an avenue for those 'struggling artists' that could not get a label to publish their work to publish it themselves or through non-traditional sources which bypass the old guard labels. This increased competition and meant that people didn't have to choose only from among what the labels had to offer (The labels were the driving force behind what we heard for years, they said yes or no based on a 10 second clip of an artists audition tape).

                          What you can't do is blame piracy? Why? Because before it was called piracy, back in the 60's and well into the 90's there was music sharing. People would tape music off the radio or off of a friends 45 or LP. They would create custom mixes of the songs they liked on cassette or 8tracks, or even reel to reel tape. You could find bootleged mix tapes for sale in any city. Eventually, this grew up to be copying of tracks off CD's etc and finally (comparatively recently) it became file sharing. Bootlegging was never a huge problem for the music industry until other things changed.

                          The music industry has no one to blame for their fall, except themselves! They failed to innovate and keep up with the times. They failed to give the people what they asked for and they failed to offer music that fell outside what there little cash cow slide rule said would sell. They even limited the quality of the transmission of HD and Satellite radio to try to prevent people from recording from there.

                          They are still doing it today. They could solve their problems very quickly by doing the following:

                          1. Remove DRM from all products. DRM only punishes your paying customers.

                          2. Provide lossless digital copies for sale on-line at current prices. Having a reliable source for known good lossless copies of music will make piracy less attractive.

                          3. Provide a service that will track the sale of music, allow it to be re-downloaded as needed in any format desired. Again, prevents people from having to resort to 'piracy' to get what they already paid for in a desired format.

                          4. Allow people to transfer ownership (license) to another party. After all in the era of LPs, tapes and CD's I could transfer my copy to others, why not now?

                          5. DUMP the album ideology and produce a wider range of music from more artists. Very few people buy songs as an album, it nearly dead, let it die.

                          6. Stop beating up, (suing condemning...) the very fans that you want to become your customers. Generally if you treat your customers badly they won't come back for more.

                          Will they do it? No! Why, because it means they concede that they have lost the death grip they had on the industry for years. It concedes that it is the customer who has control and not the industry.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 5:33am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                            OK. Now if that were to happen, what kind of enforcement of copyright law would you support?

                             

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                              Mr. Applegate, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:26am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                              Here is one possible solution:

                              They could 'watermark' downloads and test to see if they are published on bit torrent... Then they could go after the person who currently owns the file if they published it or anyone else that publishes the copy. It really isn't that hard to watermark an electronic file these days and it can be fairly hard to remove the watermark (and less obvious than current DRM which is a breeze to remove). (Each person who buys a copy would have an ID watermarked into 'thier copy'). Technically, this is still a form of DRM except it doesn't impose restrictions on the person that downloads the music as far as format or device or location, none of which should matter to the industry anyway. Watermarks are actually harder to remove than current DRM and they don't get in the way of the end user (you know their customer).

                              The Entertainment Industry doesn't like this because that still allows Fair Use (such as me giving a copy to my son or brother) that they might not get paid for. However, it allows them to track who originally 'owned' music and whether the owner published, or allowed the music to be published. Existing laws could then be used for enforcement.

                              It really isn't that hard and it is painfully obvious that the current methods do nothing but discourage people from buying music (or movies). You can listen but only on 5 devices, or only ... It is also obvious that those in power have no idea how to grow a business. They are literally screaming at their customers and preventing them from doing things that have been technically possible (in one form or another) and widely done for more than 40 years. That will keep them coming back for more. Only the masochists will come back for more under their current plan.

                               

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                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:55am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                OK. What if you lend that unique property to a friend who then distributes it globally. Where does the liability rest? If with the original owner, how does he prove that his friend was the one who did wrong?

                                If the liability does not rest with the owner, then against whom is there any recourse for the rights holder?

                                 

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                                  Mr. Applegate, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:04am

                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                  Well I am not an attorney, but it would seem to me the rights holder could go after anyone PUBLISHING (in your example the person you lent it to) a watermarked copy, which, at least as I understand it, [gasp] was the original intent of copyright in the first place, to prevent SALE of things under copyright without the copyright owners consent. Copyright is not a license to control what happens to a copy once sold.

                                  The watermark gives them a starting point (the purchaser or current registered owner), which might help find compromised computers or??? It also makes it easier to track where the big holes are, vs where the tiny pin holes are.

                                  Right of First Sale, still in place.

                                  Fair Use, still in place.

                                  Ability to track, and prosecute illegal publication, still in place.

                                  Ability to transform a copy I purchase into a format for any of my devices, in place. (This is important because that is what is the slayer of piracy, because then I don't have to torrent a ipod copy of my CD / DVD or by 10 copies of the same movie or music)

                                  All of this along with reasonable prices (also key) will make it more trouble than it is worth to pirate. Sure I may give a copy to my brother, who cares as long as he doesn't then provide a copy to the world for free.

                                  Look I don't pretend to have all the answers, but as almost everyone agrees the current system is hopelessly broken. The view that increasing the inconvenience to your customers, or expecting them to pay extra for multiple formats... All the stuff the entertainment industry is doing today is self destructive. People will just choose not to do it at all. I am pretty much in that camp. OR people will choose to pirate and do what they want anyway.

                                  The Entertainment Industry makes it so difficult to buy things and try to limit everything thing I do with what I buy that I just say screw them forget the whole industry.

                                  Until they realize they provide a SERVICE to customers they are doomed. They seem to think they are the Benevolent Benefactor that allows me the privilege of listening to (or watching/playing/using) their content. They treat everyone like they are a criminal, yet the Entertainment Industry screws their customers at every turn.

                                  Bought an ebook, Naw we aren't happy you paid us for it, we won't refund your money, but we will refuse you access...

                                  Bought a movie, but want it in a format for your linux computer, screw you! You must be a thief!

                                  Want to play this game, get on-line and let us make sure you paid.

                                  Did you buy this software, no? CRASH.

                                  Actions like these don't make anyone want to go out and pay for content.

                                   

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                              Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:23am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                              what kind of enforcement of copyright law

                              The idea that you're failing to grasp is that if you follow those suggestions, you won't need to worry about enforcement.

                              If you're selling a product that the customer wants in a convenient manner at a price they're willing to pay, then you don't need to waste the time, money, effort, and customer goodwill that enforcement costs.

                              I cannot remember the last time I torrented music. It was months ago that I even ripped a song from Youtube. This coming from me, an avowed and unapologetic pirate. Why? Because I'm perfectly happy with Spotify (and before that, Grooveshark).

                               

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                                Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:25am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                Argh, that^ was me.

                                 

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                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:38am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                So what good are rights if they can't be enforced? I doubt many here would be ok with the idea that their right to free speech was unenforceable. Or that any random person could hop in their car and take it for a drive.

                                I will never accept that a right exists without having corresponding redress against its violation.

                                 

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                                  Mr. Applegate, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:26am

                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                  Your still missing the point.

                                  First of all Copyright was originally, as I understand it (I am not an attorney), about keeping others from SELLING copyrighted material. It was not originally intended to prevent the sharing of copyrighted material between individuals, the original intent was to stop people from making a profit off others work, not to prevent others from seeing/hearing a copyrighted work without paying.

                                  Second, if you follow the well tested practice of Supply and Demand you can't go wrong. Guess what with digital music there is an unlimited supply.

                                  That means that people are willing to pay less for an item, but it also means the potential market is much larger.

                                  So, if I can get a known good, high quality, copy for .50 or download some crap low quality mp3 I probably will spend the money. UNLESS you start saying here is a copy, but you can't change the format, you can only listen on this device, you can only stream.. Suddenly, I would rather have to low quality copy I can do with what I want.

                                  It really isn't a hard concept to grasp, it is ingrained in human nature to do things that allow us to most easily achieve our goals. Copyright holders SHOULD realize that and give the people what they want. They would buy it except the industry is making it too hard, or in many cases flat out saying NO.

                                  I still buy real books (and scan them). That's right, I buy a book and copy it so I can get it in the format I want without all the DRM crap or violating the law. That is easier than buying a DRM laden ecopy.


                                  Look at say water. Plentiful, potentially free, yet people spend millions to get water that is filtered (known good quality) and bottled (in a format they can easily use).

                                  What the Music Industry does is take the water, mix it with mud, put it in a can with no opening and then say, why won't people buy my water! Gee, I don't know maybe it is because I have to have a special tool to get to it, then I have to filter it and disinfect it so I can drink it.

                                   

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                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:32am

                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                    Yes, again I acknowledge that more robust distribution is desirable. But there are still those who convert the copyrighted content of others to their own financial gain. Like it or not, our system of law calls for rights to be enforceable. Otherwise the inherent right is meaningless. The constitution grants such a right.

                                     

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                                      nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:51am

                                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                      The constitution grants such a right.

                                      No, it does not. The Constitution grants Congress the authority to make such statutes.

                                       

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:00am

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                        "The constitution grants such a right."

                                        No, it does not. The Constitution grants Congress the authority to make such statutes.

                                        Is English not your first language? Read this again:

                                        "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." {emphasis mine}

                                        Congress's role is to determine the duration of the exclusive period; the very existence an EXCLUSIVE RIGHT is clearly codified in the Constitution.

                                         

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                                          Mr. Applegate, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:13am

                                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                          I think you are the one that needs to learn English!

                                          Article 1, Section 8 begins by saying:
                                          "The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;"

                                          note the semi colon at the end. That means what follows is a continuation of "The Congress shall have Power"

                                          Clause 8 Says: "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;"

                                          "the very existence an EXCLUSIVE RIGHT is clearly codified in the Constitution."

                                          Wrong! The right of CONGRESS to DETERMINE these rights FOR A LIMITED TIME is clearly codified in the constitution, not the right itself.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:08am

                                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                            I humbly beg to differ:

                                            Graham, 383 U.S., at 6, 86 S.Ct. 684 (“Within the limits of the constitutional grant, the Congress may, of course, implement the stated purpose of the Framers by selecting the policy which in its judgment best effectuates the constitutional aim.”)

                                            While perhaps not explicit, clearly the court has held that it is a constitutional directive, implemented (and requiring implementation) by Congress. So we can argue about the level of mandate, the effect is the same. Any attempt for Congress to diminish or eradicate exclusivity would fail on Constitutional grounds. (imho). You make your point well. Hopefully some of the zealots will take note and step up their game.

                                             

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                                              Mr. Applegate, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:26am

                                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                              "...(“Within the limits of the constitutional grant, the Congress may, of course, implement the... "

                                              How exactly does "MAY" translate to MUST in the English language? I must have slept through that lessen in English class.

                                              Further, your cite clearly does not preclude congress from diminishing the right by lessening the time or anything else. It simply states that congress should act as stated in the constitution as the framers intended.

                                              Somehow I doubt the framers envisioned 70 years beyond death, and I seriously doubt they envisioned copyright held by someone other than the author.

                                              Regardless, your cite does not prove your initial statement that "the very existence an EXCLUSIVE RIGHT is clearly codified in the Constitution."

                                               

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                                      Mr. Applegate, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:59am

                                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                      They ARE enforceable! I can't help it that it is not easy to enforce. So you are saying the answer is to say those who pay are punished for paying? That is your answer?

                                      Really???

                                      Look, there are 3 basic paths.

                                      1. Try to make it harder to pirate DRM.... We have been travelling down that road for at least a decade, we know it is a hard road and that it pisses off paying customers and drives them away.

                                      2. Pirate. Currently, this is easily done, with little chance to be caught and I can do what ever I want with it when I get it.

                                      3. Change the model, lower the cost, make the distribution fast and easy.

                                      So where do you see people going?

                                      Look at it like this

                                      1. Is like an old mountain trail, it is rough, and many people will die along the way.

                                      2. Is like a country road. I can pretty much go anywhere and do anything, but there may be a dead end here or there and the occasional pot hole.

                                      3. Is the super highway I can get on fairly easily through well known channels and I can go anywhere I want easily and quickly.

                                      Which road do you take?

                                      Build the super highway, and you can thank me later. I won't even charge you for the use of the business model.

                                      "Like it or not, our system of law calls for rights to be enforceable. Otherwise the inherent right is meaningless. The constitution grants such a right."

                                      "Article I, Section 8, Clause 8 of the United States Constitution, known as the Copyright Clause, empowers the United States Congress:
                                      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."

                                      I am pretty sure that does not entitle a right holder to anything! It empowers CONGRESS to control the laws regarding IP, nothing more.

                                      Now if you want to talk about the laws congress have enacted that will be a completely different discussion!

                                       

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                                  Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:50am

                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                                  So what good are rights if they can't be enforced?

                                  I agree!

                                  Modern technology (the general purpose computer and the internet) has made copyright unenforceable. And in the same manner, they've made it possible for creators to create and distribute for little or no cost, to make a living doing so, and for billions of people to have access to what they've created.

                                  How anyone can possibly see how those things are undesireable is an idea that I cannot fully grasp at an instinctual level.

                                   

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                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:45pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                  Citation needed. Show where 'illegal downloading has put a huge dent in revenue for music labels.'

                  Yes, revenue is down so budgets are down but that's not the same thing.

                  However, there is a positive and it's not just a positive spin either: the music industry is growing. There's more music now. More albums are being made now. What's down is legacy recording industry revenues. That's nothing to loose any sleep over.

                   

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                    Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:50pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                    "More albums are being made now."

                    This is one more contributing factor to the decline in sales.

                    There has been an absolute saturation of music into the market since it's become easier and cheaper to make it. I think that this is problematic because you have a lot of similar sounds out there, but I think it encourages artists to try and be more unique and creative in their approach to music, which could be considered a bad or good thing.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:07pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                      Personally I think a lot of smaller acts is a good thing. Homogeneous is not a rich culture.

                       

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                      PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:09pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                      "This is one more contributing factor to the decline in sales. "

                      I hear phonograph and piano roll sales are also down... burn the pirates!

                      "There has been an absolute saturation of music into the market since it's become easier and cheaper to make it."

                      But if you want to you're as likely to hear Hendrix as Rick Astley. Distribution is as democratised as creation, and that's scary to the people who just want to send One Direction out to get the NKOTB money...

                       

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              Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:01am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              "So trying to say piracy is ok because there have been some record labels that have pulled some shady shit just doesn't fly."

              There may be some here who advocate piracy (I don't) but there's a lot of people here who aren't big fans of it, and do realize it has a part in the monetary woes of musicians.

              I also agree that piracy is not justified by the hypocrisy of some of the record labels. However, their hypocrisy makes it more difficult for some people to take them seriously.

              In my opinion, change for the better needs to come from the record labels. So many musicians are irate with spotify's payouts when the company is giving a large chunk of it's revenue to the record labels, and trying to stay afloat with whatever's left over. The artists should be lobbying for change in the royalty rates and the accounting practices, instead of attacking the services that help people find their music.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:05am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                Couldn't agree more. More transparency is always good. For everyone.

                 

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              MrWilson, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:05am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              Yes, cheating artists out of the proceeds from the actual sale of their work isn't nearly as bad as people not paying for something that they may not have paid for anyway, or have already paid for in a different format, or aren't able to legally purchase in their area, or who spent more on concert tickets and merchandise that goes more to the artist than $1 downloads they avoided purchasing.

              Between real money and hypothetical money, I'd favor real money.

               

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              dennis deems (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:07am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              And btw, you could add up every nefarious deed ever committed by every record label in history, and it still wouldn't come remotely close to equaling the amount of illegal downloads that have happened in the past 13 years.
              I'd absolutely love to see the math by which you arrived at that conclusion -- particularly as the cases we know of musicians being screwed by the labels for their entire career and beyond are merely the cases we know about. You know what they say about the cockroaches you see.

               

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:33am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              No one has said that piracy is ok.
              What has been said is that piracy can be dramatically reduced by intelligent business opportunities and practices. Also, no one has ever said that it will completely go away. I think any brick and mortar store owner can tell you that shop lifting can be minimized and accounted for. Criminals exist.

              And to extrapolate on what you said, because your industry is rife with criminals, the government must protect it's artists. Pretty sad.

              But to be on point with the current discussion, current copyright laws are far beyond what was originally envisioned. The punishments afforded by these laws exceed the ones given for murder and other heinous crimes. This clearly appears to be a case of misapplied priorities.

              Furthermore, copyright has proven repeatedly to stifle innovation significantly. Even when it has been shown that many artists used already existing material to create their own. The very material those artists are demanding payment for the use of. Seems a bit disingenuous doesn't it?

              Copyright as it was designed served a clear purpose. As it stands now, it only serves to further greed and control. I would say that the worlds population, who fund the copyright laws, are not getting their monies worth.

              I am guessing that you make the majority of your income from copyright in one form or an other. Good for you. You are in a unique position to see both sides of the argument. Keeping copyright is fair. Keeping copyright as it currently exists, is unfair and will eventually drive innovation out of this country. It is up to people like yourself, you get engaged in both sides of the argument and ignore the rhetoric from each side, to find a balance that keeps your industry and others alive and vibrant.

               

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              Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:53am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              So trying to say piracy is ok because there have been some record labels that have pulled some shady shit just doesn't fly.

              I agree.

              Piracy is OK for entirely different reasons.

              But all the shady dealings just brings a hell of a lot more attention to how fucked up copyright law is.

               

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:49pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              And btw, you could add up every nefarious deed ever committed by every record label in history, and it still wouldn't come remotely close to equaling the amount of illegal downloads that have happened in the past 13 years.


              Really? Using what units? If you're going to compare the two we'd need to quantify it first so obviously you've got some units in mind? Oh, you were just pulling comparisons out of your ass? Carry on then.

              So trying to say piracy is ok because there have been some record labels that have pulled some shady shit just doesn't fly.


              Seems like a perfectly good reason to refuse to do business with the labels and functionally there's not any difference between the two.

               

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              PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:05pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              You know what I love? The fact that every time that these kinds of messages are posted, they're from people who "make their living within the recording industry". People who neither list their credentials nor state their names, but lash out wildly at the people who pirate. Who never take into consideration that there's more nuanced positions, that the industry being criticised doesn't deserve defending and that the problems people like me were pointing out 30 years ago are still happening. Only consumers don't have to stick to your methods...

              "Everyone, it seems, wants to work in this business. "

              I don't, I just want to listen t what the talented people in it want to make. Guess which industry gets between us and stops me spending my time and money on them?

              "So trying to say piracy is ok"

              I didn't say any such thing asshole, but I still heavily criticise your industry. What do you make of that?

               

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          MrWilson, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:51am

          Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

          I agree that musicians and artists should be properly represented when it comes to copyright discussions and policy. But what does that have to do with an organization made up of large corporations who not only fail to represent artists and musicians, but also are the biggest abusers of artists' rights?

          And while artists are indeed the ones whose privileges granted by copyright are most abused in that narrow context, it's the public's natural rights which are most abused by the state of copyright law. Citizens who are neither pirates nor consumers of music from the RIAA companies have had their freedom of speech assaulted, their government corrupted, and their ability to have a voice in their own government drowned out by the money that organizations like the MPAA put into politics.

          How much of any lawsuit settlements or awards went to those artists?

          They just appointed a crack dealer to head the DEA and you're cheering the fact that the crack addicts have representation now.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:59am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

            Not to mention, how much does Amanda Palmer give to the RIAA? Or Jonathan Coulton? Or the multitude of non-RIAA represented artists? How much do they give to the RIAA?

            When people give money to these non-RIAA represented artists, are these people stealing from the RIAA?

             

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          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:52am

          Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

          It's difficult to come up with a group of people that have had their rights granted under copyright trampled more than musicians.


          With the RIAA members being the biggest culprits, by finding every means possible not to pay them.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:03am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

            This just isn't true. There would be a mass rebellion by musicians and people would be protesting in the streets of LA, Nashville and NYC if it was.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:06am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              Kind of hard for them know they're being stolen from when the accounting practices of the record labels are under wraps.

               

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              JEDIDIAH, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:06am

              Re: And this is why....

              Who exactly are they going to run to? The RIAA is a cartel.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:44pm

                Re: Re: And this is why....

                They are protected under the same laws that cover business practices as any other working person.

                 

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:51am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              As income from recording contracts averages about 6% of a musicians income, who is taking advantage of who in recording contracts.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:43pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                Not sure where you got this figure, but there is no blanket percentage of their income that a musician makes from record sales; depends whether not they tour, what rate they negotiated in their record contract, etc.

                 

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                  Gwiz (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:21pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                  Not sure where you got this figure, but there is no blanket percentage of their income that a musician makes from record sales; depends whether not they tour, what rate they negotiated in their record contract, etc.

                  Take a look at this chart from Peter DiCola's Money from Music: Survey Evidence on Musicians' Revenue and Lessons About Copyright Incentives. It show us that "composers" make about half of their income directly or indirectly from copyright. The rest of musicians (not including the top 5% income earners in Pop, Rock, etc. - otherwise known as the "lottery winners") make less than 25% of their money directly or indirectly from copyright and most of those percentages are much smaller than 25%.

                  I'm simply not convinced that sales of recorded music really is all that important to a musician's bottom line.

                   

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:39pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              There is a mass rebellion by musicians. That's why the labels are loosing money while the industry as a whole grows: more and more artists are jumping ship.

               

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          John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:32am

          Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

          The RIAA isn't a corporation.


          Yes, it is.

           

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            PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:27pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

            To be fair it's not a corporation. It's a collective that happens to be dominated by corporations. Apparently that makes a major difference. Why? I'm not sure..

             

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              Mr. Applegate, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:22pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              Looks like a corporation to me. More specifically a Not for Profit Corporation.

              A quick search turns up:

              ----------------------
              NYS Department of State
              Division of Corporations
              Entity Information
              The information contained in this database is current through January 31, 2013.

              Selected Entity Name: RECORDING INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA, INC.
              Selected Entity Status Information
              Current Entity Name: RECORDING INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA, INC.
              DOS ID #: 76630
              Initial DOS Filing Date: SEPTEMBER 04, 1951
              County: WESTCHESTER
              Jurisdiction: NEW YORK
              Entity Type: DOMESTIC NOT-FOR-PROFIT CORPORATION
              Current Entity Status: ACTIVE

               

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          JEDIDIAH, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:04am

          Re: And this is why....

          Are you joking?

          The RIAA isn't musicians. It's publishers. They are the group abusing musicians. They are the ones that trample the rights of musicians the most.

          P2P are amateurs when it comes to piracy when compared to the RIAA.

          ...not that it makes sense to appoint ANY ONE with an axe to grind regardless of how legitimate you think their grievances are. These posts should be as free from bias and politics as possible.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:48pm

            Re: Re: And this is why....

            The RIAA is an entity that represents record labels, not publishers. While record labels often have publishing arms, that is not what the RIAA was formed to do per se.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:59pm

              Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              Don't be naive, yes it is.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:00pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                Ummm... he's right. Ever hear of ASCAP

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:05pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                  Yes. What does ASCAP have to do with which interests the RIAA represents and the fact that today the RIAA represents the interests of the record labels exclusively?

                   

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                  btrussell (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:10am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

                  Yes, but, what exactly is an ass cap?

                  That what the Y gen have to wear 'cause their pants waist is at their knees?

                   

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              nasch (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:07pm

              Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              The RIAA is an entity that represents record labels, not publishers. While record labels often have publishing arms, that is not what the RIAA was formed to do per se.

              And how many RIAA members aren't also publishers?

               

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          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:38pm

          Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

          What does this have to do with an RIAA lawyer getting a copyright office position? How's that going to help the musicians? It's not going to do anything for the musicians. In fact it might end up hurting them.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:52pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

            Musicians have had their work exploited by outside profiteers en masse without compensation for 13 years. The government has done little to nothing to help protect their legal rights. I think even those ICE busts only went after a couple domains out of the hundreds they shut down.

            The sad truth is that the government really doesn't care about musicians.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:03pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              Always more rhetoric, never an address of the issue.

               

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:05pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              The government only cares about these guys:

              http://imgur.com/6N01yQ9

               

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              nasch (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:11pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

              Musicians have had their work exploited by outside profiteers en masse without compensation for at least 65 years. The government has done little to nothing to help protect their legal rights.

              FTFY. The outside profiteers are the record labels. I say outside because they're certainly not musicians.

               

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          Mr. Applegate, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:35pm

          Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

          Yes it is!
          A quick search turns up:

          ----------------------
          NYS Department of State
          Division of Corporations
          Entity Information
          The information contained in this database is current through January 31, 2013.

          Selected Entity Name: RECORDING INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA, INC.
          Selected Entity Status Information
          Current Entity Name: RECORDING INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA, INC.
          DOS ID #: 76630
          Initial DOS Filing Date: SEPTEMBER 04, 1951
          County: WESTCHESTER
          Jurisdiction: NEW YORK
          Entity Type: DOMESTIC NOT-FOR-PROFIT CORPORATION
          Current Entity Status: ACTIVE

           

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        anonymouse, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:13pm

        Re: Re: And this is why....

        I think this is where the government has lost touch with the people. When you create laws that just do not make sense and are themselves totally unfair to anyone other than the big businesses those laws will either be ignored as copyright law is , or will create a problem in the industry as there is no balance, just as laws causing problems with patents and laws regarding unions has caused a big problem with wages not only not keeping up with inflation but being lowered as big business gains more and more power by getting only the laws passed that are in their perceived best interests.

        Nobody I know respects any form of copyright law now, we see all the time where patents are stifling innovation in the US and the rest of the world where they are honoured. And unions around the world have been destroyed, and that is casing businesses to not only benefit from lower wages but suffer from people having no loyalty to any business they work for like they used to, this becomes a problem and a problem that can only be fixed by having the public and the citizens involved in creating the laws and putting the public interest before big business. But as we have seen with many recent trade agreements , those affected are not even allowed to know what is being discussed never mind have a say.
        It will all come to a stop though as government's see higher unemployment and much lower taxes received, they can only bleed the public for money for so long until there is just no more blood to give.


        excuse my writing on some serious medication at the moment.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 5:18pm

        Re: Re: And this is why....

        "How they expect people to respect THE INTERNET when it's clear that it's being influenced only by big corporations with no concern for the public?


        http://thetrichordist.com/2013/01/28/over-50-major-brands-supporting-music-piracy-its-b ig-business/

         

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          Rikuo (profile), Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 7:08am

          Re: Re: Re: And this is why....

          I know I'm a couple days late, but what the hell.

          From your article

          "Brands like Coke and Pepsi do not seem to appear on pirate sites"

          Why would you expect SOFT DRINKS COMPANIES to be appearing on "pirate sites"? Did you write that article with the expectation that you would fire up a torrent and have a can of Coca Cola magically appear in your hand?

           

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      Zakida Paul (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:47am

      Re: And this is why....

      I trust the email I received from a Nigerian prince over the US government - or the UK government, for that matter.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 5:16pm

      Re: And this is why....

      "I still trust Google over the U.S. Government, despite the fact that Google does a lot of evil things in the world."

      be careful what you wish for...

      http://www.cccblog.org/2013/01/20/vint-cerf-appointed-to-national-science-board-by-president-oba ma/

      http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/03/ff_nsadatacenter/all/

      The NSA Is Building the Country’s Biggest Spy Center (Watch What You Say)

       

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    Ninja (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 4:46am

    It is said that Chuck Norris can slam revolving doors. The US need Chuck Norris. Badly.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 5:57am

    *pops on conspiracy theorist hat*

    It's all mind control, man! The lizard aliens from proxima centauri are trying to take over our coulture! You think aliens care about who they hurt to control our minds? No! It's all out there, man! But they won't have me. They can't silence me! I know you're out there, aliens! I know your plan and you won't get away with it while I'm aliiiil;jsafd

     

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    The Real Michael, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 5:57am

    No surprise in their selection. The Copyright Office is a front for the RIAA and MPAA to hold office in government. They're not even attempting to disguise the blatant corruption from within.

     

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    davnel, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 5:59am

    What I don't understand is this:
    I got my first cell phone in Dec 2005. Within two months I had cancelled my land-line phone account with Qwest, relying solely on wireless. This has been happening continuously to the point where AT&T is now talking about shutting down the copper phone network and, likewise, relying solely on wireless. Please observe that AT&T posesses the largest copper network in the US, but they are quietly, and likely gleefully abandoning hardwired service for wireless. Why can't Hollywood follow the same general path without all the hystrionics?

     

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      PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:52am

      Re:

      "Why can't Hollywood follow the same general path without all the hystrionics?"

      They used to have one revenue stream - theatres. Over the following few decades, they built up numerous other revenue streams (ironically only after trying to fight them tooth and nail) - licencing to TV and other venues followed by cable/satellite, home video rental, home sales, etc. On top of this, they could filter out material when and where it most suited them, meaning that people often had to pay multiple times for the same content, were forced to wait or perform expensive import or premium purchases. Everything was set up to benefit them, and there were only a few distributors and studios truly in control.

      The new technologies remove all of this. Release dates don't matter, format windowing can be bypassed, as can regional windows. Many of those people who used to pay multiple times for the same content now only pay once, often through less profitable avenues. The gatekeepers can easily be bypassed, meaning that they no longer guarantee the lion's share of the revenue available, and there's no way to force people to consume in the way the studios prefer, nor their content at all.

      In short, they loved the old setup where they had complete control and little competition. The new setup not only brings in competitors, but gives the viewer a real choice in what, when and how they consume movies. They don't want that, they want the profits and control that came with the old models. So, they fight...

       

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        MrWilson, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:24am

        Re: Re:

        Which pops the balloon in any argument made on the point that music labels are making less money than they used to. The recording companies had an artificially inflated profit margin because they were able to monetise the same content in multiple, overlapping ways. The technology has reduced their ability to do that and now they're screaming that they can't gouge people anymore.

         

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      Josef Anvil (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:16am

      Re: scary

      I don't know if AT&T is trying to abandon their fixed service or not, but it does seem plausible.

      They have had the hardest time trying to convince the public to accept data caps on fixed service (copper and fiber), but they have had phenomenal success in training the public to pay for minutes on mobile and data caps over mobile. That is back to the way it used to be on fixed service. A cash cow.

      They don't want the public aware that they've already merged their fixed and mobile networks and their costs of service are the same for either. Migrating to completely mobile service is not moving into the future for the telcos, but rather going back to the old days of charging per minute and even better charging for huge overage fees on small data caps. Well done, AT&T. Enjoy it until you're dismantled again.

       

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      Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:16am

      Re:

      Why can't Hollywood follow the same general path without all the hystrionics?

      This will hurt to say: Because compared to Hollywood, mobile phone service is highly competitive.

      If you want mobile phone service, you have between 3 and 8 choices of companies (depending how you count).
      If you want to see NewMovieXYZ (legally), you have exactly one choice as to where your money goes: the studio that distributes it. Sure, there are other movies you can see, but they will be significantly different experiences.

      There's also the difference between infrastructure. AT&Ts copper is old and costs AT&T money to maintain and upgrade. They're not necessarily wanting to get rid of it entirely, they just don't want to have to keep maintaining parts of it (as required under various laws). They'll use much of it for other things, all the backhaul and fiber for the calls going through their mobile towers, for instance.

      For Hollywood, their studios are nothing but money makers. The production companies (that never show a profit on paper) pay for them. They don't own the theaters (anymore) so don't have to pay for that, and most of the ticket money theaters make goes directly back to the studios anyway.

      There are other reasons, of course, but think about the money first.

       

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:15am

    Could you imagine the Copyright Office naming a top EFF litigator as second in command? Exactly the point.

    Could you imagine Techdirt naming a top pro-copyright litigator as second in command? Exactly the point. Sorry, Mike, but your anti-copyright zealotry is showing. Tell us again how you're just not sure whether or not we should have any copyright. I'm sure there's one or two idiots who'll believe you're actually on the fence. In the meantime, since you're so undecided and so on the fence, can you point me to even one article written by you out of the thousands wherein you take a stance that could be classified as even remotely pro-copyright? I mean, if you're so undecided, surely your writings must reflect this indecision. Oh wait, all of the thousands are squarely in the anti-copyright camp. Weird. It's almost like you're a fake and a coward who's too dishonest to say what he really thinks.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:21am

      Re:

      Yes, because suing laser printers and dead grandmothers is the way to go forward.

       

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        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:24am

        Re: Re:

        Brilliant argument! Because that's the only thing that copyright is about.

         

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          silverscarcat (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:30am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Well it certainly doesn't seem to be about helping creators.

          Even cracked.com gets in on this...

          http://www.cracked.com/blog/5-reasons-to-be-thankful-when-glee-robs-you-blind/

           

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          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:31am

          Re: Re: Re:

          It's what the RIAA is about; that much is accurate.

           

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          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:39am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Not the only thing it's about. The rest of what it's about doesn't look too good either, though.

           

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            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:48am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Let me ask you this. Mike claims that he's on the fence about copyright. He's just not sure whether or not we should have any. Given the fact that he's written thousands of articles about copyright, he should be able to find at least one sentence in one article that reflects his indecision. Right? Be honest. What do you think?

             

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              Jeff (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:57am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              I think you've worn that question out... Just like "Why won't you debate me" before it... You've wrung every last scrap of patience out of it.

              Please - for the love of god! Take your meds!

               

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                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:59am

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

                What do you think Jeff? Do you honestly believe that Mike is completely on the fence about his feelings for copyright?

                 

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                  Jeff (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:05am

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

                  So tell me something... when did you stop beating your dog?? When did you stop taking your meds? Does your mother know your using her computer?

                   

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                    identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:07am

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

                    Don't be shy, Jeff. Please tell us your honest opinion about whether or not you believe that Mike has no opinion whatsoever as to whether or not we should have copyright. This is called a discussion. Please contribute.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:51am

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

                      That's not a discussion. It's more of you goading someone into a playground brawl.

                      Your adolescence is showing, Aj.

                       

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                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:19am

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

                      I know Mike's opinion of copyright: it's flexible, but copyright, as a concept, is economically incorrect.

                       

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                      Rikuo (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:24am

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

                      I thought I told you to fuck off. I thought I had exposed you for the angry, selfish, egotistical whiny man child that you are.
                      Yet here you are, tooting the same horn. AGAIN. Tell me, should I add masochist to the above list? All you're doing by constantly demanding a debate here in the public forums is hurting yourself, and what little credibility you had to start with.

                      AJ...NONE of us want you here. No-one. You contribute precisely ZERO to any discussion in the comments. You've advocated for the removal of the presumption of innocence in court trials, you've conflated copyright infringement with murder and rape, and you've bogged down the comments with selfish demands that you know will never be met, yet still make them anyway.


                      SO KINDLY FUCK OFF!

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:43am

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

                        At this point, I think you should just drop the "KINDLY" part. He's way past the point of deserving that.

                         

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:27am

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

                        AJ...NONE of us want you here. No-one. You contribute precisely ZERO to any discussion in the comments. You've advocated for the removal of the presumption of innocence in court trials, you've conflated copyright infringement with murder and rape, and you've bogged down the comments with selfish demands that you know will never be met, yet still make them anyway.

                        AC or AJ, you should listen to the leprechaun. TD is not interested in anything resembling debate or dissent. Other than you and a few others, it is simply a large, self-reinforcing ecosystem of piracy apologists, hypocrites and wannabe anarchists. They scream about censorship, but routinely vote to hide even reasonable comments that run counter to their master's narrative.

                        Masnick is completely opposed to copyright. That should be evident. His rhetoric makes it undeniable. But he'll never come out and say it because it would destroy any appearance of a vestige of reasonableness he may have (which is close to zero) outside of the community of anti-copyright jihadists. He wants to be relevant in the discussion. But he's not and it's unlikely he ever will be.

                        Note that the TD lunatics include almost no one who make their living exclusively in the motion picture or television industry. Of course they are anti-copyright, their livelihoods aren't affected. On the contrary, they benefit financially from piracy and the destruction of copyright because they are getting something of value for free. And they justify it with silly things like complaining about copyright length, when most of the stuff they're *stealing* is the most recent releases. They fabricate these parades of horribles surrounding censorship and collateral damage- not because those are inherently so bad, but knowing that is the only justification that can be made to argue against anti-piracy measures. It's the restricting of free access to content that is their issue, collateral damage is the tail wagging the dog.

                        Suffice it to say that the screws will continue to tighten. SOPA was a valuable lesson. No law that restricts freeloaders access to free content will ever pass. Industry cooperation and industry enforcement will continue to march forward. The ISP's have a financial interest in content distribution, the payment processors have little at stake economically to wish to defend business relationships with infringing sites. The ad networks, including Google seem to be cooperating as well.

                        So what's next?

                        I'd expect the licensing/regulation of encryption and VPN's to appear on the horizon before long. Of course, it will be done as necessary national security legislation. However, I wouldn't be too surprised if there was significant collateral damage done to content freeloaders as well.

                        Have a nice day!

                         

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                          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:32am

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

                          "They scream about censorship, but routinely vote to hide even reasonable comments that run counter to their master's narrative. "

                          Really? Care to share any hidden reasonable comments that aren't rife with insults?

                          "So what's next? "

                          Bankruptcy for the copyright cartel, which will be poetic and awesome, but you keep on complaining about a little tech blog.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:46am

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

                            Really? Care to share any hidden reasonable comments that aren't rife with insults?

                            Are you kidding? It happens all the time. Here's one from above. Polite, straightforward, no insults or profanity- but questioning of the TD narrative:

                            "What do you think Jeff? Do you honestly believe that Mike is completely on the fence about his feelings for copyright?"

                             

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                              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:50am

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

                              Talk about being willfully blind. Have you seen the number of comments AJ has made about this?

                              Tell me...is this comment related to the discussion at hand because it sound like it was made with the intention to taunt Masnick.

                               

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                                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:53am

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

                                Have you seem how many rambling, lunatic rants Gorehound has made. If you can't acknowledge that theres a double standard, then it is you who refuse to see what is absolutely plain.

                                 

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                                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:59am

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

                                  Yes, I have, but at least he stays on subject.

                                  Have you seen the many comments AJ has that aren't hidden? Those are his most enlightening moments where he is actually discussing things instead of having a pissing match with Mike, and they don't get reported because they add to the discussion.

                                  I know that's a difficult concept to wrap your head around, but people here do like to have constructive discussions.

                                   

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                                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:37am

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

                                    Perhaps you need to give a more in-depth look at Gorehound's nutty screeds.

                                     

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                                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:48am

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

                                      I still don't see the double standard. Gorehound doesn't taunt whoever's writing the blog.

                                       

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:59am

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

                                        I still don't see the double standard. Gorehound doesn't taunt whoever's writing the blog.

                                        Seriously? You consider this censored post taunting? Maybe try dictionary.com

                                        ""What do you think Jeff? Do you honestly believe that Mike is completely on the fence about his feelings for copyright?""

                                         

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                                          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:04pm

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

                                          I'm not really sure what point you're trying to make. You obviously know that AJ was saying this to goad Mike into a fight and that can be seen by Mike's various reactions to references about how he is apparently "on the fence."

                                          My brothers and I used to do this when were young. We'd keep repeating the same thing over and over, even if it made the other person irritated.

                                          The fact that you can't acknowledge the mocking tone of AJ's constant reference to "sitting on the fence" is pretty hilarious.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:32pm

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

                                            The comment was part on an ongoing exchange between this AC and a guy named Jeff.

                                             

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                                              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:44pm

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

                                              But it references Mike...

                                               

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                                              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:16pm

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

                                              In the same way someone might speak someone's name loudly near a them to taunt them while ostensibly facing someone else...

                                               

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                                          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:14pm

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

                                          Yes. Of course that's taunting. It's a naked challenge. That's literally what a taunt is. Dictionary.com indeed...

                                           

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                          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:33am

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

                          Masnick is completely opposed to copyright. That should be evident. His rhetoric makes it undeniable. But he'll never come out and say it because it would destroy any appearance of a vestige of reasonableness he may have (which is close to zero) outside of the community of anti-copyright jihadists.

                          It is abundantly clear that he has strong feelings about all things copyright. That's why his pretending to be "agnostic" about whether we should have any is being met with disbelief from even his most ardent supporters. Thanks for the comments.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:37am

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

                            "That's why his pretending to be "agnostic""

                            There's an "assume" joke in there somewhere, but it's good to know you're sure of yourself, AJ. That kind of confidence will take you far in the world of guilty until proven innocent.

                             

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                              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:39am

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

                              There's an "assume" joke in there somewhere, but it's good to know you're sure of yourself, AJ. That kind of confidence will take you far in the world of guilty until proven innocent.

                              Given how incredibly opinionated he is about copyright, it's clearly disingenuous for him to pretend like he's incapable of having any opinion on this.

                               

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                                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:40am

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

                                "Given how incredibly opinionated he is about copyright, it's clearly disingenuous for him to pretend like he's incapable of having any opinion on this."

                                That's not really your prerogative to determine that, is it?

                                 

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                                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:48am

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

                                  That's not really your prerogative to determine that, is it?

                                  It's not my prerogative to make an obvious conclusion? Can you name one other person who has published even half as many words critical of copyright as Mike has? I can't. To say he's opinionated about copyright is to say the sky is blue.

                                   

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                                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:54am

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

                                    It is obvious he has strong feelings about copyright, but I'm referring to your assumption that he is incapable of having an opinion on that piece of the copyright law.

                                    I'm sure you can agree that author's rights is a much a more complicated subject than a general viewpoint on copyright.

                                     

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                          Rikuo (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:11am

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

                          " TD is not interested in anything resembling debate or dissent."

                          Many a time, I'm the one calling for debate. And by debate, I mean a sane rational argument, with both sides backing up their point of view with quality evidence.
                          AJ doesn't do evidence. In the last article we had about Six Strikes, he kept claiming that no-one is being accused of breaking the law, that the accusations come from the ISPs (who are for some reason paying someone else to make these accusations?) and other such bullshit statements.
                          Not only that, but he's constantly stopped any form of debate here on TD by constantly demanding a debate with Mike. As I've said before, no-one here in the comments care whether Mike debates with him or not. If he actually wants to debate Mike, then why doesn't he send an email saying "This time, This Place, let's do it"? No, AJ is the complete opposite of a debater.
                          Oh, and why are you going with an ad hom (leprechaun)? Is that really the best insult you can come up with? I know I've called AJ all sorts of things, but those insults I've called him...were the result of what he's written. AJ is whiny, he is egotistical, he is selfish. Are you finally admitting that I am Irish, and therefore, not Mike Masnick in disguise?


                          We've explained to you about censorship before. Your comments are still viewable. You can, if you choose, continue to comment here from now until the end of time. However, I am urging you NOT TO. It is because YOU ARE NOT WELCOME. If you actually debated, in a calm and rational manner, you would be. You don't.

                          So what if Mike really is anti-copyright? It's a man-made law, and people can be pro and against certain laws. Even though I would never smoke, I'm against the criminalisation of smoking pot. When you go on about what exactly Mike is...you're not debating the points of his beliefs. You are attacking Mike simply because he holds them. To you, Mike Masnick is not allowed to be anti-copyright. No-one is. Copyright is the holiest law of them all, and should never be questioned. If you are really so pro-copyright, come here, debate RATIONALLY and CALMLY your points, list them out in bullet form if you have to (I'm even giving you some free fucking tips, I'm that nice). DO NOT ATTACK US for simply holding certain views, as if merely having them is automatically wrong.

                          "Note that the TD lunatics include almost no one who make their living exclusively in the motion picture or television industry. Of course they are anti-copyright, their livelihoods aren't affected."
                          That part actually made me laugh out loud. I'm going to divulge a certain fact about myself. I work in a supermarket chain, a grocery and textile chain. According to what the MPAA says...my livelihood IS being ruined by anti-copyright jihadists! They have counted grocery employees as the victims of online file sharing.

                          "Fabricate" Really? So every story that is run on Techdirt, of artists being silenced, of people being accused and punished, then questions asked...are false?



                          To sum up: Get out. Unless you are willing to talk sense and actually use evidence and truth in what you write, then get out. I don't like you. I don't want to read another word from you. I'm sick of constantly reading the comments, of seeing great view-points being written...and then running into YOU.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:30am

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

                            To sum up: Get out. Unless you are willing to talk sense and actually use evidence and truth in what you write, then get out. I don't like you. I don't want to read another word from you. I'm sick of constantly reading the comments, of seeing great view-points being written...and then running into YOU.

                            There's a wet spill on Aisle 6. Why don't you tend to that instead. You seem to be a bit too thin-skinned and prissy to engage in rough-and-tumble policy debates.

                             

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                              silverscarcat (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:49am

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

                              Wow, looks like AJ's never had to work a day in his life, has he?

                              news flash, AJ, despite what you try to do, that is, embarrass people who have real jobs, the fact is, you can make fun of those people all you want, at least they can put gas in their car, food in their fridge and pay their taxes.

                               

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                          alanbleiweiss (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 2:08am

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

                          "TD is not interested in anything resembling debate or dissent."

                          I'm quite happy to sit here and inform you that is absolutely not the case. I've had extensive dialogue with others on this site where we had opposing views and I've never been censored by communal vote. In fact, I've had a number of debates that extended for dozens of back and forth comments - for example, in my opinion related to copyright as a right of inheritance.

                          The difference you so completely fail to acknowledge however, is when I engage "the majority view" here, it's through intellectual, well thought out position, point and counter-point.

                          Because unlike trolls who repeatedly and consistently only or mostly slam Mike just to get him to engage in an argument with someone who comes here close-minded and refusing to discuss differing views intellectually, my methods actually contribute to the discussion.

                          As for Mike's position, it's much more abundantly clear than you make it out to be, at least from my perspective. That position? That copyright, patent law and related issues are extremely messed up in their current form. And further, a great many problems come along where maximalists do all they can to act the bully.

                          And besides, unlike some blow-hards, like Bill O'Reilly, who claim "fair and balanced", this isn't a site that pretends to be neutral in the extreme. Because being neutral in the extreme is not a basis for a site that promotes dialogue.

                          So the bottom line then, in my view, is "does dialogue require allowing an asshat to spit vomit over and over again, without offering any serious volume of dialogue?"

                          And if the community feels that's not acceptable, it's the community that votes a comment into oblivion.

                          Except I routinely expand such comments so I can read them and guess what I've found? The overwhelming majority that have been hidden are complete and utter trash. Oh. how odd...

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 5:01am

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

                            Yes, Mike thinks copyright is completely messed up. Funny how he never acknowledges any of the positives. Never once do he ever mention those. He has no interest in perspective or balance or fairness. He lives in a naive world where since a couple famous people whipped up a frenzy on the internet, that means we should dump the whole copyright system altogether. Try and get Mike to talk about the nuances or details of anything, and you get nowhere. Mike doesn't discuss details. Mike doesn't address the tough issues that are fundamental to the copyright debate. Mike just shits on everyone else's beliefs while being too scared and dishonest to put forth an opinion of his own that actually addresses the issues. Here's Mike's argument: JoCo worked up the internet into a frenzy over the Glee situation, ergo, no need for copyright! How dumb is that? Pretty fucking sad and dumb. Sorry, but I now get that Mike doesn't have anything close to the goods, and he probably never will. That's why for almost three years he's been running away from me like a little child. He can't carry his side in a debate, that much he's proven 1000 times over.

                             

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                              PaulT (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 5:47am

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

                              "Funny how he never acknowledges any of the positives."

                              Which positives, and are they outweighed by the negatives? Could you name them - bearing mind that creating a pension for your grandchildren while less successful works literally rot away in vaults isn't a positive.

                              "That's why for almost three years he's been running away from me like a little child."

                              There's only one child I see here on a regular basis, and it's not the guy who wrote this article. A whiny, lying, petulant child, at that...

                               

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:00am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              I think you're an idiot, and Mike certainly has an opinion on whether or not we should have copyright. You can find it by ACTUALLY reading the articles on this site.

              What you won't find, or get, is Mike wanting to have anything in the way of a discussion with you. Why? [points at your comments] Because you're incapable of acting like a mature and reasonable adult. At the end of the day, Mike, like the rest of us, realizes that having any kind of meaningful discussion with you is an exercise in futility. No matter what he says, what evidence he presents, etc. you'll never be satisfied with any response he gives one way or another. He also realizes, like the rest of us, that you'll never shut the fuck up regardless and you'll just keep trolling like you're doing now (but at least you're not going off the rails like last time... yet). So his silence is at least being done for a positive reason, it doesn't necessarily silence you but it gives you less to harp on about. As opposed to responding to you and then you getting riled up over whatever he may say and then further derailing threads when he throws up his hands and basically says, "Fuck this. You sir are a complete loon and I have no idea why I even entertained the notion that I could speak to you and get anything in the way of a proper logical and reasonable response. At least without ad homs thrown in on your part or demands to answer loaded questions."

              So seriously, stfu already. Mike obviously isn't going to answer you. Obviously he's not open and honest blah blah blah. So there, you've won. STOP FUCKING REPEATING YOURSELF OVER AND OVER AND FUCKING OVER. You've made your point. We don't need you to ask/state the same bullshit in EVERY SINGLE FUCKING ARTICLE EVERY SINGLE FUCKING DAY. It's annoying. So be an open and honest and REASONABLE human being and just fucking let it go already.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:04am

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

                Okay we're getting somewhere. You think that Mike "certainly" has an opinion about whether or not we should have copyright. Great! So that means you must agree that he's lying when he pretends otherwise.

                Now I'm wondering, is there any person who actually believes that Mike has no opinion about whether we should have any copyright? If so, please explain.

                 

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                  Aaron *Head* Moss (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:13am

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

                  My question is, if you find Mike so dishonest why come to "his" website?

                  Seriously. If I find a site and I feel the owner or one of the admins are dishonest and resort to lies all the time, I'll find somewhere else to hang my hat.

                  So my question to you is, why do you care so much about Mike and what he writes?

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:20am

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

                    My question is, if you find Mike so dishonest why come to "his" website?

                    Seriously. If I find a site and I feel the owner or one of the admins are dishonest and resort to lies all the time, I'll find somewhere else to hang my hat.

                    So my question to you is, why do you care so much about Mike and what he writes?


                    Simple. He's the loudest, most opinionated person in the copyright debate. He purports to have only opinions based on evidence. I think it's easy as pie to show that most of what he posts is faith-based, biased nonsense. That he won't defend what he writes, and that he can't be honest about his own beliefs while being hyper-critical of everyone else's, says it all. I'm doing what he says people should do: publicly shaming him and calling him out. Yet, even on his own turf with all the sycophants, fanboys, and sockpuppets to defend him, he is still too scared to discuss nuances and details. Hmmm. Funny that. The more dishonest I think him to be, the more I'm going to post here reminding everyone of that. I think the world should know what MM is all about--and it ain't pretty.

                    Tell me this, Aaron. Do you honestly believe that Mike has no opinion one way or the other as to whether we should even have any copyright rights? If not, then why do you think he's lying? If so, how did you arrive at this opinion? I think the thousands of articles he's written that all take an anti-copyright POV are proof positive that he's anti-copyright. Yet, he's unable to discuss that honestly. It's really remarkable.

                     

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                      Aaron *Head* Moss (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:35am

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

                      I'm sure Mike has an opinion on the matter. I haven't read enough of his articles on the matter to know EXACTLY how he feels, but the way I see it, it's not that he's actually AGAINST copyright, but he's against the abuse of copyright that's been going on.

                      I've never said he's lying about anything. That's on you. The articles I've read are usually no so much anti-copyright, but anti-copyright abuse.

                      And he's written several times (whether he believes it or not is not my concern) that he believes in copyright, but not the way it's currently being handled and the way that the MPAA/RIAA runs roughshod over the everyday people's concerns, wants and needs.

                      And while I might not agree 100% with everything that Mike says, I agree with enough of it, to keep reading his articles.

                      Now if it gets the point where I believe Mike is lying and all of his articles are BS, then I'll go elsewhere, because honestly, I have more important things to do with my time/life then spend time on a site that I think is being run by someone so dishonest.

                      If you have nothing better to do with your life, then I guess you can feel free to continue to rant and rave and tilt at the windmills.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:53am

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

                        See AJ, this guy gets it, why can't you?

                        Oh right...ego.

                         

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:41am

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

                        I think that is the AC's issue. Techdirt spends a ton of time articulating how the copyright system is broke, misused, abused- but I don't recall seeing a single, unified article outlining how copyright should be, and what are acceptable, viable methods for enforcing the legitimate property rights of copyright holders.

                        It's far easier to attack a system than to build one. I see lots of the former but almost none of the latter.

                        But I doubt this is the place; for in order to make any progress there has to be a basic acknowledgement of a creator's right to exploit his intellectual property. Most here aren't dependent on the markets suffering the corrosive effects of piracy to earn their living. In fact, they're economic beneficiaries of piracy.

                         

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                          Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:45am

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

                          "but I don't recall seeing a single, unified article outlining how copyright should be"

                          If you browse the comments, there are occasional suggestions for improvement. I have read a few articles here of examples of ways to overcome piracy as well. I guess that's why subjectivity is such a good thing.

                          "It's far easier to attack a system than to build one. I see lots of the former but almost none of the latter. "

                          So if you see something wrong with a system and point it out, it's considered attacking?

                          " Most here aren't dependent on the markets suffering the corrosive effects of piracy to earn their living. In fact, they're economic beneficiaries of piracy."

                          Mmm, how do you know that?

                           

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                          John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:33am

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

                          I don't recall seeing a single, unified article outlining how copyright should be, and what are acceptable, viable methods for enforcing the legitimate property rights of copyright holders.


                          You require a single, unified article instead of the collection of articles and comments that routinely discuss aspects of this very thing?

                          Also, you've already chosen really limited parameters for what constitutes a proper discussion. Why should it be limited to discussing better methods of enforcing copyright law?

                          The majority of the discussion here, and there's tons of it, is around how an artist can thrive in a world where piracy is a reality, without causing so much collateral damage to innocent others.

                           

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                            Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:43am

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

                            "piracy is a reality"

                            What really surprises me about the people who believe that piracy is equivocal to crime, is that they seem to miss the fact that enforcement methods for offline criminal activities do not prevent all crime from occurring.

                             

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                          John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:36am

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

                          But I doubt this is the place; for in order to make any progress there has to be a basic acknowledgement of a creator's right to exploit his intellectual property.


                          Nobody here has ever, so far as I've seen, failed to acknowledge a creator's right to make money off of what he produces.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:40am

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                            I disagree. There have absolutely been calls to abolish copyright, which protects rights holders exclusive ability to exploit their work.

                             

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                              Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:44am

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

                              And none of those calls were from Mike! And those calls are not representative of the entire community.

                               

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                              Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:45am

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

                              Yes, in the comments there have been, but that's the beauty of opinion.

                               

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                              John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:57am

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

                              Believing that copyright should be abolished is an entirely different thing from believing that artists should not be able to profit from their works.

                               

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                              nasch (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:34pm

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

                              There have absolutely been calls to abolish copyright, which protects rights holders exclusive ability to exploit their work.

                              But not their ability to exploit their work.

                               

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                                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:39pm

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                                Seriously? I invest $2 million and five years of my life to make a movie and I am not entitled to any exclusivity? You'd have the same right to monetize it that I do? You can't actually believe that, can you?

                                 

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                                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:46pm

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

                                  Seriously? I invest $2 million and five years of my life to make a movie and I am not entitled to any exclusivity? You'd have the same right to monetize it that I do? You can't actually believe that, can you?

                                  This is exactly the type of question that Mike can NEVER give an answer to. Mike, please tell us your opinion on this. Please don't pretend like you would have to have some function maximalized. You can't even tell us what the variables would be in that calculus, much less whether it's maximized or not. Stop hiding behind excuses. Stop running away from taking a position on the fundamental normative issues. Tell us your honest opinion so that we can have a productive dialogue. Stop pretending like your nonanswers have done anything to further the debate. We know you hate copyright. Sit down at the table and discuss the issues. Stop hiding behind the excuse of incomplete data sets on issues that will always have incomplete data sets.

                                   

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                                    Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:54pm

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

                                    I am beginning to see why the "Googles" (aka the techies who create technological advances outside of the Entertainment industry) don't enjoy sitting at any tables with you.

                                    That explains a lot of the SOPA problems too, all the RIAA BS of "Just talk to us" - just like you're doing now.

                                    Mike answered your questions, you just keep rehashing and rewording and trying to get what you really want: "We know you hate copyright."

                                    If you truly believe that, in spite of what he has already said which is counter to that, why keep bugging him?

                                     

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                                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:17pm

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

                                      I am beginning to see why the "Googles" (aka the techies who create technological advances outside of the Entertainment industry) don't enjoy sitting at any tables with you.

                                      That explains a lot of the SOPA problems too, all the RIAA BS of "Just talk to us" - just like you're doing now.

                                      Mike answered your questions, you just keep rehashing and rewording and trying to get what you really want: "We know you hate copyright."

                                      If you truly believe that, in spite of what he has already said which is counter to that, why keep bugging him?


                                      The thing I'm talking about is fundamental unfairness. I think that not giving authors any copyright rights is fundamentally unfair. Mike is trying to say that since we can't maximize some function--a function that he never actually produces other than to say the indeterminable that it promotes the progress--then he's completely unable to have any opinion either way as to whether authors should ever have any rights. It's clearly an excuse. He's pretending like I'm asking him to prove something as fact. I'm not. I just want his opinion. Given how opinionated he is about copyright in general, he can surely come up with some opinion here. What's his best guess? That's all I'm asking. The fact that he won't give an answer should tell you how little he cares about doing anything other than shitting on everyone else's beliefs. He has no intent to ever discuss the specifics about his beliefs. He'll just pretend that since he can't know for sure, that means it's impossible to have an opinion. Only problem with that is the fact that he's able to have so many other opinions about copyright even though he isn't 100% sure. It's only when faced with a direct question that he's too chicken shit to answer does he pull out this excuse. I just want his best guess. We all know for a fact that he has an opinion.

                                       

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:24pm

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

                                        "I just want his best guess."

                                        Why?

                                         

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                                          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:44pm

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

                                          Why?

                                          I'm asking the most opinionated guy in copyright for his opinion as to whether we should have any copyright. He says he's willing to chuck the whole system if some magic formula that he never produces tells him that the public good is being maximized. That's great and all, but it doesn't tell us anything since he never tells us exactly how to gauge whether the progress is being promoted and maximized. I'm asking him to get off the fence and give us his best guess either way whether artists should have any rights in their works as a matter of opinion. Once we understand his normative views, we can begin to discuss the relative strengths and weaknesses of his arguments and beliefs. As it is now, he just tells us why everyone else is wrong without ever telling what he thinks is right. That's not nearly as productive as sitting down at the table with an actual, articulate position. I want to discuss his beliefs and my beliefs and other people's beliefs on the merit. IMO, just being hyper-critical of everyone else isn't maximizing the public good. He should sit down and give us his views. Pretending like he can't have any because he doesn't know for sure is an excuse. I don't know for sure either. Nor does anyone else. But we obviously disagree on much of the fundamentals, and that's the natural place to start if we are going to have a real conversation on the merits. From what I can tell, Mike has no interest in such discussions. That's why he runs away every time.

                                           

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                                        Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:29pm

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

                                        More like he's already answered it for the umbrella of copyright in general, which applies to any art, authors or not.

                                        The only people screwing authors over on copyrights are the publishers.

                                        Again you seem like this:
                                        YOU: "Mike is murder wrong? Does it make us feel unsafe?"
                                        MIKE: "Yes, of course, though I don't have the data to give you a quantifiable, absolute proof with regards for safety. However, there's no excuse for murder"
                                        YOU: " You didn't answer my question, is murdering via death row wrong?"
                                        MIKE: "WTF?"

                                         

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                                        Karl (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:40pm

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

                                        I think that not giving authors any copyright rights is fundamentally unfair.

                                        Why is this more "unfair" than not copyrights to plumbers, assembly-line workers, auto mechanics, secretaries, customer service representatives, chefs, or lawyers?

                                        Why is it more "unfair" to authors than it is to graphic designers, commercial jingle writers, recording engineers, radio/TV personalities, actors, or wedding-band musicians?

                                        These people do not receive a post-publication monopoly on the work that they did. Yet they all get paid, and their employment is not considered unfair. What makes authors so special?

                                         

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                                          Karl (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:48pm

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

                                          not copyrights to plumbers

                                          Uh, not "giving" copyrights to plumbers.

                                           

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                                          Karl (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:06pm

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

                                          Also, keep this in mind.

                                          Look at the history of AFTRA. Look at what payments and royalties they've managed to get.

                                          Now keep in mind that throughout most of its history, AFTRA members did not hold any copyright rights.

                                          That should give you an idea of how useless copyright is to artists' rights. All of the benefits that artists and musicians got from AFTRA, they got without copyright.

                                          That's just one particular example. Others abound. The plain fact is that artists don't gain power by exploiting their copyrights. They gain power through collective bargaining, and threatening to withhold their labor, not their copyrights.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 3:25am

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

                                            Doubtful you know much of anything about AFTRA (now merged with SAG)

                                            "Currently, downstream revenues from the reuse of feature films and television programs and lawful sales of sound recordings generate $1.5 billion annually in essential residuals and royalties for our members. In 2010,
                                            o For AFTRA recording artists, 90% of income derived from sound recordings was directly linked to royalties from physical CD sales and paid digital downloads;
                                            o DGA members derived 21% of their compensation from residual payments; 1 and
                                            o SAG members who worked under the feature film and television contract derived 48% of their compensation from residuals. 2
                                             Residuals and royalties also play a significant role in funding the health and pension plans that benefit all of our members. These benefits provide a guaranteed safety net for our members, and are part of our industry’s long-established and collectively bargained agreements.
                                             In 2010, residuals derived from the sale of Features to Free TV and/or Features and Free TV to supplemental markets (Pay TV, DVD, viewing on airplanes, etc.) funded:
                                            o 73% of DGA’s Basic Pension Plan;
                                            o 60% of the MPI Health Plan (for IATSE Members); and
                                            o 23% of SAG/AFTRA Pension and Health Plan.
                                            1 Residual payments also fund most of the Basic Pension Plan.
                                            2 Reported initial compensation earnings are subject to caps."

                                            All of that is derived from copyright, paid from the copyright owners to members.

                                             

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                                              Karl (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:03am

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

                                              All of that is derived from copyright, paid from the copyright owners to members.

                                              Yes, actors receive royalties. But they are not derived from the actors' copyright on their performances, because they never had it. By law, acting is a "work for hire" profession.

                                              They got those royalties, not through copyright law, but through collective bargaining. The same way that the UAW bargains for higher wages.

                                              Yet, you seem to think this is "unfair."

                                               

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:44am

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

                                                Yet, you seem to think this is "unfair."

                                                No this is perfectly fair. But those revenues are still derived from revenues generated by copyrighted content. A percentage of revenue from a copyrighted motion picture goes to actors and directors as residuals; and more flows to their benefit funds. That's all I was saying.

                                                 

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                                                  Karl (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:14pm

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

                                                  No this is perfectly fair.

                                                  This directly contradicts your earlier statement:

                                                  "I think that not giving authors any copyright rights is fundamentally unfair."

                                                  The copyright in a film is not held by any of the "authors" (here, actors and other artists) who work on the films. It is held by a corporation, and the "authors" never held it at any point.

                                                  But those revenues are still derived from revenues generated by copyrighted content.

                                                  You're assuming that the current copyright levels are necessary for those revenues, which is almost certainly false. But never mind.

                                                  The point was that the revenue going to actors is not derived from copyright. Nowhere in the copyright statutes are actors granted any kind of royalty rights.

                                                  If this situation is not "unfair" for them, why is it "unfair" for other artists?

                                                   

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:24pm

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

                                                    No this is perfectly fair.

                                                    This directly contradicts your earlier statement:

                                                    "I think that not giving authors any copyright rights is fundamentally unfair."

                                                    The copyright in a film is not held by any of the "authors" (here, actors and other artists) who work on the films. It is held by a corporation, and the "authors" never held it at any point.

                                                    Do you not understand that you can elect to assign your beneficial rights to another party? And particularly in low budget films, copyright is often held directly by one or more creators.

                                                    "But those revenues are still derived from revenues generated by copyrighted content."

                                                    You're assuming that the current copyright levels are necessary for those revenues, which is almost certainly false. But never mind.

                                                    Yes and it a right that someone can also elect to waive. Why don't you go raise a few hundred thousand, make a movie and waive your copyright? Then let us know how it worked out for you.

                                                    The point was that the revenue going to actors is not derived from copyright. Nowhere in the copyright statutes are actors granted any kind of royalty rights.

                                                    They get residuals, in part because they waive their own IP rights. It is codified in their union agreements.

                                                    If this situation is not "unfair" for them, why is it "unfair" for other artists?

                                                    I didn't say it was. Maybe more musicians should join AFM.

                                                     

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                                                      Karl (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:59pm

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

                                                      Do you not understand that you can elect to assign your beneficial rights to another party?

                                                      Do you not understand that "assignment" is not the same as "work for hire?"

                                                      According to Title 17, sections 101 and 201:
                                                      A "work made for hire" is [...] a work specially ordered or commissioned [...] as a part of a motion picture or other audiovisual work [...]

                                                      In the case of a work made for hire, the employer [...] owns all of the rights comprised in the copyright.

                                                      Actors did not "assign" or "waive" their copyrights (through "union agreements" or otherwise). By law, they never held them in the first place.

                                                      Maybe more musicians should join AFM.

                                                      And if they do, then you would be OK with musicians not having copyright rights, like actors?

                                                       

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                                        John Fenderson (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:12am

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

                                        The thing I'm talking about is fundamental unfairness. I think that not giving authors any copyright rights is fundamentally unfair.


                                        Now we're getting somewhere.

                                        The purpose of copyright law is not to create some kind of "fairness". It's purely to benefit the general public. Providing a benefit to creators is a means, not a goal.

                                         

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                                          Karl (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:54pm

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

                                          The purpose of copyright law is not to create some kind of "fairness". It's purely to benefit the general public.

                                          I disagree (slightly). The purpose of copyright law is to create some kind of "fairness."

                                          It is to benefit the general public, by increasing public access to works of art.

                                          If we are talking about copyright law, that is the only kind of "fairness" that we can talk about. The more copyright law benefits the general public, the more fair it is. The less it benefits the general public, the more unfair it is. There is literally no other moral consideration to make.

                                           

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                                  Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 4:23pm

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

                                  Seriously? I invest $2 million and five years of my life to make a movie and I am not entitled to any exclusivity? You'd have the same right to monetize it that I do? You can't actually believe that, can you?

                                  Again, I don't know if this works out in a manner that maximizes the benefit or not, but you could see an argument where, even without exclusivity, you still benefit massively. For example, people would still know who actually created it -- and they often wish to support those creators (see recent experiments by Amanda Palmer, Louis CK and others to get fans to fund their work).

                                  Furthermore, if others misappropriate it in a way that seems unfair, your fans will likely come to your defense, and it will harm the reputation of those who did that without first working out an arrangement with you (whether or not they're legally required to do so). In act, should someone seek to "misappropriate" your work in this manner, it gives you a huge opportunity to point it out, and create more publicity for your own work (see: Coulton, Jonathan and Glee).

                                  And that's the key point in all of this. There are serious and compelling arguments for ways that you could benefit very handsomely even in the absence of exclusivity and enforcement mechanisms. What I'm most interested in are how well the different combinations work in the long run, both in creating incentives, but also in the actual creation of content.

                                   

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                                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 5:27pm

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

                                    Again, I don't know if this works out in a manner that maximizes the benefit or not, but you could see an argument where, even without exclusivity, you still benefit massively. For example, people would still know who actually created it -- and they often wish to support those creators (see recent experiments by Amanda Palmer, Louis CK and others to get fans to fund their work).

                                    Furthermore, if others misappropriate it in a way that seems unfair, your fans will likely come to your defense, and it will harm the reputation of those who did that without first working out an arrangement with you (whether or not they're legally required to do so). In act, should someone seek to "misappropriate" your work in this manner, it gives you a huge opportunity to point it out, and create more publicity for your own work (see: Coulton, Jonathan and Glee).

                                    And that's the key point in all of this. There are serious and compelling arguments for ways that you could benefit very handsomely even in the absence of exclusivity and enforcement mechanisms. What I'm most interested in are how well the different combinations work in the long run, both in creating incentives, but also in the actual creation of content.


                                    Yes, some people can certainly make money without relying on exclusivity. How does that fact connect to the question of whether any author should ever have any exclusivity? You seem so smitten with the thought that the lone artist can use the power of the internet to whip up support. What about artists who just want exclusive rights to their works? What about the author who just wants to sell copies of his books without someone with deeper pockets doing it better than him and taking his sales without giving him any recompense? How do you account for that injustice? Or do you think that there is no such thing as unfair competition? I've yet to see you identify any competition, even from illegitimate sources, as unfair. Is it your belief that all competition is fair no matter what?

                                    I'd like to know too why you never ever discuss any of the positives that come from copyright. You claim to be searching for the truth about what is behind "actual creation of content." What about all of the content that is in fact created because of copyright? If you're really searching for truth, why don't you ever write anything positive about copyright? Can you even acknowledge that there is even one iota of positive from copyright? You claim to be unable to get off the fence on whether we should have any copyright, so that indicates that you must see some good or at least some potential for good. What good do you see? Please explain.

                                     

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                                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:49pm

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                                    Sorry Mike, this just falls flat for the motion picture and television industry, which is why you offered up no direct examples from those areas.

                                    While a few big name directors and stars may be able to mobilize a fan base to support them, they often do not hold significant rights or any rights at all. The big rights holder is typically the studio who assumed the risk of bankrolling, publicizing, promoting and distributing the production. Few corporate entities have a fan base to rush to its side over a piracy claim.

                                    It's even worse for mid and low budget films where the actual creators have a real financial stake in the rights. There are largely unknowns or have a meager fan base. By the time they could mobilize their fans, the film has already pirated and the value to distributers in secondary markets is devalued because it is freely available online. They aren't going to pay a fair price on the theory that the fans of unknown directors and obscure actors are going to come running with open wallets rather than opt for "free".

                                    So while your theory may apply to a band with a dedicated following, it won't with a new band and it's wholly unworkable in the motion picture industry.

                                    But the question I asked that is still unanswered is:

                                    If I invest $2 million and five years of my life to make a movie, am I not entitled to any exclusivity? Should you have the same right to monetize it that I do?

                                    That, in my judgment is THE fundamental question to resolve. I understand it may be a "yes, but..." or "no, but..." response. However, until that core issue is addressed I don't think an honest discussion can be had.

                                    I have made my position crystal clear:

                                    I believe that a rights holder has an absolute right to economically exploit his creative output for a given period of time and enjoy the full protection of the law against others infringing upon that right.

                                    I've been direct and spoken with complete candor in articulating my core belief, and would appreciate the same from you.

                                     

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                                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:40pm

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                                      Great points. I hope Mike takes a moment to address them squarely. Your question reminds me of a friend of mine from high school who is now a camera operator for motion pictures. When films are shot in my state, he gets the call to go to work. That job is based on the fact that people invest money in that film with the expectation that they will be able to derive value from it exclusively because of the copyright rights. Say there were no copyright. How is someone like my friend who works a camera supposed to get the internet masses riled up and on his side? Why should he have to? Isn't it silly to think that riling up the public on the internet will take care of the misappropriation and unjust enrichment problems? I just don't understand the argument that because Louis CK can do something then it must follow that everyone else who relies on copyright could do it too. That makes no sense and seem exceedingly simplistic. How do you account for people who aren't in a position like Louis CK, Mike? Please do respond. We're explaining ourselves. It would be nice if you did as well, since that would be moving the discussion forward. Just saying "Look at Louis CK!" doesn't tell us much if anything. I'm glad that what Louis CK did could work for others. But what about the folks for whom it wouldn't work? How do you answer to that?

                                       

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:59pm

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                                        The film industry is different than the personality-centric music/live entertainment. A band has a following, tours the country, can interact with fans, charge admission to watch, sell t-shirts, etc. That does not have a corollary in the film business. You can't assemble the hundreds of crew or even the director and cast to tour the country to tour for months, because they have to move on to the next gig. And even if you could, how many much more money'd be realized by selling out one movie theater at a time?

                                        I doubt that Mike will directly answer my question as it has put him squarely in a box. At this point, I'd be happy to have any one of his acolytes address it.

                                        So I will ask any and all comers:

                                        IF I PUT FIVE YEARS OF MY LIFE AND $2 MILLION INTO MAKING A MOVIE, SHOULD I HAVE THE EXCLUSIVE RIGHT TO PROFIT FROM IT FOR A CERTAIN PERIOD OF TIME? SHOULD YOU HAVE THE SAME RIGHT TO MONETIZE IT DURING THAT PERIOD AS I DO?

                                        It is really a very simple question that no one seems willing to answer. But it is at the very core of copyright debate. I hear a lot about the rights of the consumers of content, I would like a better understanding of how those consumers view my rights.

                                         

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                                      Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:09am

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

                                      Sorry Mike, this just falls flat for the motion picture and television industry, which is why you offered up no direct examples from those areas.

                                      Possibly -- though again, I'm not 100% sure that's true. I agree that the argument may be harder to support when talking about video, but I'm not 100% convinced of that. If you want examples in the video/movie world they're starting to pop up.

                                      Nina Paley, who we've written about often and sometimes posts here, has done quite well despite eschewing all exclusivity over her film. She explicitly allows anyone who wants to profit from her work to do so. And it's not like she was a huge famous star when she made Sita Sings the Blues -- yet her fans support her, and they know that if they want her to make more movies they should continue to support her. And Sita still continues to make money for Nina despite having been out for years.

                                      Kevin Smith has certainly talked about how he sees infringement as a form of free marketing, and he realizes that he can continue to sell certain interesting scarcities that can't be pirated. For example, for his last film (and his next one), he's "toured" with the film, charged high amounts for the *singular experience* of watching the film with him and then doing a (hilarious) Q&A afterwards. On a per ticket basis, he probably made more with that film than most films ever. No need for "enforcement," just loyal fans.

                                      As we've discussed, Kickstarter has helped fund about 8000 films over the past few years. While some of those filmmakers still choose to make use of enforcement, it does show that there are alternative business models that do not rely one enforcement.

                                      Lloyd Kaufman, head of the famous Troma Films believes that you don't need enforcement to build a successful business model. Just recently he put up a bunch of his back catalog on YouTube and he encourages people to share it, knowing that it continues to build an audience and fans.

                                      Filmmaker Jonathan Reiss has also pointed out that focusing on enforcement often makes little sense for filmmakers today -- as the end result is often antagonizing fans, when there's much more benefit in connecting with them, building a relationship and giving those fans reasons to want to support you.

                                      And, of course, there are a growing number of video productions that are internet only. A whole bunch of "networks" of shows have popped up on YouTube where they tend to ENCOURAGE as much sharing as possible, and they don't worry about exclusivity, because they don't need to. It's just so easy to watch the stream / embed -- in which case they can then monetize via YouTube's system, that the "problem" of infringement isn't a problem at all. They've figured out that delivering what fans want to those fans in a format that makes sense, and not worrying about enforcement, they can often build up quite a lot of support.

                                      So, no, I don't think that there's evidence that films *necessarily* need exclusivity and an enforcement mechanism. Whether that's true across the board -- I don't know. Some have made the argument that there are differences depending on the size of the budget -- and perhaps that's true. I think it would be interesting to explore that.

                                      While a few big name directors and stars may be able to mobilize a fan base to support them, they often do not hold significant rights or any rights at all. The big rights holder is typically the studio who assumed the risk of bankrolling, publicizing, promoting and distributing the production. Few corporate entities have a fan base to rush to its side over a piracy claim.

                                      I've given some examples above, of both known and unknown filmmakers, so, not sure that the above is necessarily true. Also, as you know, a growing number of films are NOT financed by the studios, but rather by other investors, and the studios come in later (Sundance, Cannes, other festivals) and buy up the distribution rights. Yes, they still directly finance some films, but it's a smaller and smaller percentage of films.

                                      And, for those big studio films, take a look at the box office results lately. The biggest studio films are often the most pirated, but they do exceedingly well at the box office, because people love to see those films on the big screen in the theater environment. Yes, some people infringe too, but it seems that an awful lot are willing to pay.

                                      It's even worse for mid and low budget films where the actual creators have a real financial stake in the rights. There are largely unknowns or have a meager fan base. By the time they could mobilize their fans, the film has already pirated and the value to distributers in secondary markets is devalued because it is freely available online. They aren't going to pay a fair price on the theory that the fans of unknown directors and obscure actors are going to come running with open wallets rather than opt for "free".

                                      Again, that may be true in some cases, but we've so many cases that go in the other direction, I'm not convinced this argument is accurate. Lots of films under the old system were unsuccessful and failed to get good distribution deals just because the films weren't good enough to get distribution deals. We should be careful not to conflate films that never were going to score lucrative distribution deals anyway with films you believe were hurt by online availability.

                                      And, as we've seen, for filmmakers who seem to really seek out an audience, embrace them, and encourage them to support them, it's quite possible to build up a loyal following who are willing to pay.

                                      Furthermore, services like Netflix are doing quite well in the market, getting people to pay subscription fees for access -- and thus if you can get distribution on Netflix or other similar services, it's often actually MORE convenient for fans to watch the movies that way on a legit offering.

                                      So while your theory may apply to a band with a dedicated following, it won't with a new band and it's wholly unworkable in the motion picture industry.

                                      "Wholly unworkable" is clearly false, since we're seeing it work for some. The real question is how many. Is it limited to just a few outlier cases, or can it be applied more broadly? I think it can be applied more broadly, but it's still early.

                                      If I invest $2 million and five years of my life to make a movie, am I not entitled to any exclusivity? Should you have the same right to monetize it that I do?

                                      I don't know. "Should" is a moral question, unrelated to the question I'm focused on, which is what is optimal to society. I think "should" is a distraction. The real question is whether or not you need such exclusivity to best compensate you and to best get your movie out into the world. You, clearly, believe that to be the case. And you may be right.

                                      I think there is growing evidence that exclusivity is not necessarily needed, but with only a small number of artists experimenting in that direction, the data is admittedly too small a sample size to tell at this point.

                                      That, in my judgment is THE fundamental question to resolve. I understand it may be a "yes, but..." or "no, but..." response. However, until that core issue is addressed I don't think an honest discussion can be had.

                                      Again, you're asking a purely moral question. And since it's a moral question, I can't see how it's "the" fundamental question here. A moral question is one that everyone answers individually, but gets us nowhere near any objective truth or useful data.

                                      I believe that a rights holder has an absolute right to economically exploit his creative output for a given period of time and enjoy the full protection of the law against others infringing upon that right.

                                      By law you are correct that you are granted such a right. Whether or not it is "absolute" may depend on your definition of such things. But, again, I'm not really sure how that moves the conversation forward in any way. We know what you believe, but does the data actually support that? I don't know.

                                      I've been direct and spoken with complete candor in articulating my core belief, and would appreciate the same from you.

                                      Sure. I hope I've done the same with you and explained my position as well.

                                      If you'd like slightly more elaboration, I think it's clear that new services, tools and business models are showing up, and they're enabling new ways to create, to promote, to connect, to distribute and to monetize all sorts of content, including film. Many of these new things do not rely on or require exclusivity or protection, and so far, I think it's likely that such services will find success and support in the market.

                                      However, a few caveats on that: we're clearly in a time of transition, and those can be messy. One thing is that these tools are actually leading to *greater competition* meaning that it may be harder for some to succeed, just because they have more competition, both in being discovered, but also in competing for revenue. That's a big challenge. But I don't see how exclusivity deals with that challenge at all. In fact, it goes back to the famed Tim O'Reilly line that, for most in that situation, obscurity is a much bigger issue than piracy.

                                      In addition, being in a time of transition is extra difficult, because the clear roadmap disappears. Lots of creators try lots of different things, and there's no "this is how you make a movie and make money" plan out there any more. So that's a challenge (and makes it challenging to get good data). But we're seeing some pockets of success (Kickstarter is a prime example, TopSpin has had some successes, BitTorrent, HumbleBundle, etc...) and as that happens people will gravitate more and more to these things, and hopefully a few basic roadmaps start to make themselves clear. I believe that the end result will still be many more options for content creators, and the ability to forge their own path, but a few "standard" paths that are more easy to emulate.

                                      Whether or not those will *require* a form of exclusivity -- that's entirely possible. I'd like to see how they develop before I'm convinced one way or the other.

                                       

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 3:43am

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

                                        Thank you for the response. I do believe that the "moral question" you describe needs to be answered in order to move forward. It is the essence of the debate. So while I respect your thoughtful comments, I am still hoping someone else will add to the discussion taking the opposite view of my own so I can better understand the argument on that side.

                                        I'd also add that I agree that there are successful artists who have done well with out utilizing copyright protections. I still do not believe that makes a compelling case to to remove those protections for everyone.

                                        The notion that someone has poured years of their life and millions of dollars into a project, yet has no greater rights to financially exploit it than any member of the public still strikes me as absurd and fundamentally unfair. I'd love to hear the argument against my position.

                                         

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                                          PaulT (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 3:56am

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

                                          "I still do not believe that makes a compelling case to to remove those protections for everyone."

                                          Is anybody suggesting that here? I've seen a lot of arguments as to how the current system is broken, needs to be reformed or even scrapped and rebuilt. I've seen arguments that it's totally overreaching and needs to be limited to less time and enforced with the rights of both the public and artist respected alike rather than being done for a small group of corporations' needs at everyone else's expense. I've seen arguments that the problems associated with copyright infringement can be dealt with by business methods rather than legal attacks and oppressive laws. I don't believe I've seen anyone apart from the odd fly-by troll suggesting that all copyright protection should be completely removed.

                                          If I missed that, would you mind pointing to that article?

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 5:50am

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

                                            "I still do not believe that makes a compelling case to to remove those protections for everyone."

                                            Is anybody suggesting that here?

                                            Not Mike, but any number of regulars have stated that in plain terms.

                                            I've seen a lot of arguments as to how the current system is broken, needs to be reformed or even scrapped and rebuilt. I've seen arguments that it's totally overreaching and needs to be limited to less time and enforced with the rights of both the public and artist respected alike rather than being done for a small group of corporations' needs at everyone else's expense.

                                            Yes, I've seen the criticism too. What I haven't seen is any reasonable proposal to balance the rights of the public and rights holders, including meaningful enforcement.

                                            I've seen arguments that the problems associated with copyright infringement can be dealt with by business methods rather than legal attacks and oppressive laws.

                                            What business method has been effective?

                                            I don't believe I've seen anyone apart from the odd fly-by troll suggesting that all copyright protection should be completely removed.

                                            Purely from recollection, Joshfromcharlotte is the last one I recall who believes the system should simply be scrapped. He's not alone.

                                            If I missed that, would you mind pointing to that article?

                                            I don't know if it's in the article. The discussion evolved. It's easy to criticize, which is entirely what commenters on this site do. Let's hear some solutions for a change. Not that I particularly that most are interested in solutions, but rather measures calculated to assure the flow of free content.

                                             

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                                              PaulT (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:13am

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

                                              "Not Mike, but any number of regulars have stated that in plain terms."

                                              OK, so you agree Mike doesn't hold that opinion, although that was who you were addressing when you were making those comments for some reason. Any number of regulars (myself included) have said something completely different, mind you.

                                              "What I haven't seen is any reasonable proposal to balance the rights of the public and rights holders, including meaningful enforcement."

                                              Define "meaningful enforcement". Also, read the threads, these things are often discussed when trolls aren't derailing things.

                                              "What business method has been effective?"

                                              Many of them, although some are either too new to get a clear picture of their overall effectiveness or are hampered/strangled at birth by the legacy industry's attempts to maintain their foothold. I would maintain, however, that removal of DRM, regional blocks, choice of formats, reasonable pricing, etc., are far more effective at reducing piracy and encouraging sales than any "enforcement", even before you start looking at the more innovative business models.

                                              "Purely from recollection, Joshfromcharlotte is the last one I recall who believes the system should simply be scrapped. He's not alone."

                                              Well, without knowing which thread you're referring to I'll have to take you at your word. But, all you're really saying is that on a global forum with many members expressing different opinions - some of them the polar opposite of another commenter - some people have the opinion you criticise.

                                              "It's easy to criticize, which is entirely what commenters on this site do"

                                              If you believe that, you haven't been reading it properly.

                                              "Not that I particularly that most are interested in solutions, but rather measures calculated to assure the flow of free content."

                                              ...and a blatant insulting lie to finish up. Nice.

                                               

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:18am

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

                                                You confuse me with another AC. I didn't attribute that to Mike. He choses his words very carefully. And yes, I realize that not everyone is a copyright anarchist.

                                                Meaningful enforcement would mean measures that protect rights holders property from being unlawfully exploited during the exclusive period they're granted.

                                                Many of them, although some are either too new to get a clear picture of their overall effectiveness or are hampered/strangled at birth by the legacy industry's attempts to maintain their foothold. I would maintain, however, that removal of DRM, regional blocks, choice of formats, reasonable pricing, etc., are far more effective at reducing piracy and encouraging sales than any "enforcement", even before you start looking at the more innovative business models.

                                                You first spoke of business methods to stop infringement. Then you simply allude to many of them without an example of a single one. Then you cite examples that encourage proliferation, but do nothing to stop or inhibit the unlawful infringement itself. If you don't believe in enforcement, that's fine- but you should simply say so.

                                                I do believe that 99% of the commentary are criticisms with constructive input on creating a fair, balanced system. I can't even get you to give me a straight answer as to what would be an acceptable way to enforce the legal rights of rights holders when I asked directly. You provide the example yourself.

                                                "Not that I particularly that most are interested in solutions, but rather measures calculated to assure the flow of free content."

                                                ...and a blatant insulting lie to finish up. Nice.

                                                Not meant to insult, just an inescapable conclusion from a combination of endless criticism of existing law and a dearth of alternatives posed balancing the constitutional rights of creators with those of the public. Add to that the numerous assertions by regulars on this site that they pirate because it's "too expensive" or hiding behind statements like "information [entertainment] wants to be free" makes it fairly plain.

                                                 

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                                                  PaulT (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:56am

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

                                                  "You confuse me with another AC. I didn't attribute that to Mike."

                                                  You have the same snowflake as the AC who replied to Mike in the comment I replied to above. If this is getting confusing, you have a way to type a name so that you don't get misidentified.

                                                  "Meaningful enforcement would mean measures that protect rights holders property from being unlawfully exploited during the exclusive period they're granted. "

                                                  If you mean ensure that nothing is ever misused, that's impossible - just as it was pre-Internet. If you mean punishment for those who do so, that's where the problem lies. Most enforcement so far is based on such flimsy evidence that innocent people are bound to be attacked, or so over-reaching that perfectly legitimate, legally and morally correct uses and business models are prevented. Half the "enforcement" we've seen so far amounts to little more than a protection racket.

                                                  There needs to be a balance, and I consider the business model approaches far more workable and effective than those suggested on the enforcement side. In fact, much of enforcement we've seen so far has actually encouraged infringement, not stopped it.

                                                  "I can't even get you to give me a straight answer as to what would be an acceptable way to enforce the legal rights of rights holders when I asked directly."

                                                  Because you can't define the question properly. I've answered my side - if you want more specifics, you'll have to be more specific with what you're asking. My general points cover most general situations.

                                                  "If you don't believe in enforcement, that's fine- but you should simply say so"

                                                  I don't believe that and I believe exactly what I say. Sorry if the realities I'm addressing can't be answered with a black and white blanket answer as each case will be different, but do not use that as an excuse to put words in my mouth or pretend I mean anything other than what I say. I totally believe in enforcement - but not at the expense of free speech, due process, market freedom or as an alternative to adapting to modern market realities.

                                                  "Not meant to insult, just an inescapable conclusion from a combination of endless criticism of existing law and a dearth of alternatives posed balancing the constitutional rights of creators with those of the public."

                                                  Bullshit. Alternative business models are discussed here all the time, as are alternative suggestion on how to work with consumers and other industries rather trying to paint them as an enemy. However, you may find the overriding opinion that the rights of an artist do not trump the rights of consumers or society at large, and I agree with that. You don't get to kill the rights and freedoms of others just because you want more money for whatever you decided to peddle. It's also a matter of degree. I have no problem with repeat infringers or people making large amounts of money from piracy being targeted. What I baulk at is the lack of evidence, lack of due process, wildly inconsistent and inappropriate punishment, attacks on network protocols, crippling of new industries and other collateral damage that comes with the tactics used so far - tactics which are clearly ineffective.

                                                  "Add to that the numerous assertions by regulars on this site that they pirate because it's "too expensive" or hiding behind statements like "information [entertainment] wants to be free" makes it fairly plain."

                                                  Why do you fixate on those people rather than the many others who don't pirate or (like myself) point out the hundreds of obstacles that many legitimate consumers have to climb over to get legal content - if it's even offered to them at all? Pretending we don't exist doesn't help the honesty of your own arguments, and you are insulting us if you do.

                                                   

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                                              Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:40am

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

                                              My position is that it is unethical/immoral to restrict the availability/distribution/use of knowledge/ideas/culture when those things can be copied/distributed/practically used at no/neglible cost.

                                              I see nothing wrong with a company making use of knowledge/ideas/culture and charging for it, as long as they are not in any way preventing others from doing the same.

                                              To me, the internet represents an infinite worldwide public library where everyone should have full and complete access to enrich themselves with every scrap of knowledge and culture the human race has ever produced.

                                              You when ask a moral question, that is my response.

                                              I don't know for absolute certainty if my position is ultimately workable, but I favor those attempts that move us closer and vehemently object to those which move us away from it.

                                               

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                                          Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 5:03am

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

                                          Thank you for the response. I do believe that the "moral question" you describe needs to be answered in order to move forward. It is the essence of the debate. So while I respect your thoughtful comments, I am still hoping someone else will add to the discussion taking the opposite view of my own so I can better understand the argument on that side.

                                          Mike doesn't have a good response to the moral issue, that's why he pretends like it's an issue that requires no response. It's only *the* fundamental issue at the heart of copyright law. Yet Mike thinks we can just ignore it. Mike = total fake + total coward. He can't even address the issue in an intelligent way, so he runs away and hides. Again. As always.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:05am

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

                                            I tend to agree. The essence of copyright is the time-limited exclusivity of a rights holder to economically exploit creative output.

                                            I don't know how one can have a discussion without resolving whether he supports that concept or not. Perhaps you could have a discussion, but there will never be an agreement or progress made toward a resolution.

                                            The major criticism of the anti-copyright side is a total failure to pose viable alternatives; particularly surrounding effective enforcement. I'd venture many of the things on the anti's wish list like copyright terms would be far more negotiable if rights holder copyright enforcement was also embraced.

                                             

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                                              Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:40am

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

                                              "The essence of copyright is the time-limited exclusivity of a rights holder to economically exploit creative output."

                                              This is factually inaccurate and is completely your opinion on the essence of copyright.

                                              The ACTUAL essence of copyright is the time-limited exclusivity of a rights holder to the distribution of their work, in exchange for which after the allotted time has expired the work belongs to the public. Nothing more, nothing less. But it DOES NOT mention a thing about "a rights holder to economically exploit creative output."

                                              "I don't know how one can have a discussion without resolving whether he supports that concept or not."

                                              Well, again, that's because your misunderstanding something and putting your spin on it. As there is no mention of the exclusive right for a rights holder to economically exploit their creative output, there's no need to have a discussion with the intent of resolving whether one supports that concept or not. It's largely irrelevant.

                                              "The major criticism of the anti-copyright side is a total failure to pose viable alternatives; particularly surrounding effective enforcement."

                                              That is purely your opinion. The anti-copyright side has largely posed viable alternatives, particularly surrounding effective enforcement. Examples have been lowering the maximum amount of fines for non-commercial infringement (or basically, the "every day" infringement of your average pirate), also a great way to beat piracy (as has been stated repeatedly on this site) is not so much through enforcement but through the releasing of the material in an easy to acquire manner with no restrictions and reasonably priced (which DOES NOT mean "free"). Just those two alone would be hugely successful at lowering piracy and would do much towards reestablishing goodwill between the rights holders and the public.

                                              "I'd venture many of the things on the anti's wish list like copyright terms would be far more negotiable if rights holder copyright enforcement was also embraced."

                                              So you're saying, if the anti-copyright side caves in on essentially anything/everything the rights holders want regarding enforcement (6 strikes, active monitoring of internet connections, massively disproportional fines for infringement, the shutting down of legitimate services like file storage lockers which are legal, etc) then MAYBE we could get copyright terms to be reasonable again?

                                              That's a load of bollocks. At the end of the day the rights holders would never agree to such a thing. Nor would the anti-copyright side. (And that's a misnomer by the way. It's not anti-copyright, so much as copyright reform side. People aren't saying let's do away with copyright entirely, at least not many. They're saying let's get things back to being realistic and in line with what was originally conceived for copyright. That's a big difference and one you're either intentionally ignoring or conflating with something else ignorantly. Not sure which.)

                                               

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:16am

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

                                                "The essence of copyright is the time-limited exclusivity of a rights holder to economically exploit creative output."

                                                This is factually inaccurate and is completely your opinion on the essence of copyright.

                                                The ACTUAL essence of copyright is the time-limited exclusivity of a rights holder to the distribution of their work, in exchange for which after the allotted time has expired the work belongs to the public. Nothing more, nothing less. But it DOES NOT mention a thing about "a rights holder to economically exploit creative output.


                                                What does this mean: 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.

                                                The exclusive right means that you alone have the right to do with it whatever you please. Historically, that means exploiting economically. Do you think a lot of people make movies to keep them on the shelf?

                                                "I don't know how one can have a discussion without resolving whether he supports that concept or not."

                                                Well, again, that's because your misunderstanding something and putting your spin on it. As there is no mention of the exclusive right for a rights holder to economically exploit their creative output, there's no need to have a discussion with the intent of resolving whether one supports that concept or not. It's largely irrelevant.

                                                You are utterly demented. You acknowledge that the rights holder has exclusive rights to his creation, yet somehow suggest that the right to financially exploit that creation isn't part of the overall right? Are you kidding?

                                                "The major criticism of the anti-copyright side is a total failure to pose viable alternatives; particularly surrounding effective enforcement."

                                                That is purely your opinion.

                                                No shit. And I'm hardly alone in it.

                                                The anti-copyright side has largely posed viable alternatives, particularly surrounding effective enforcement. Examples have been lowering the maximum amount of fines for non-commercial infringement (or basically, the "every day" infringement of your average pirate), also a great way to beat piracy (as has been stated repeatedly on this site)

                                                Wait, you are saying that lowering penalties will create greater compliance with the law? Obviously you must have a ready citation for how that piece of absurd reasoning has worked somewhere.

                                                ..is not so much through enforcement but through the releasing of the material in an easy to acquire manner with no restrictions and reasonably priced (which DOES NOT mean "free"). Just those two alone would be hugely successful at lowering piracy and would do much towards reestablishing goodwill between the rights holders and the public.

                                                I agree on easier access, but still believe in the laws of supply and demand. Why should I price my highly sought after movie the same as some piece of shit horror film? Because you'll freeload it if I don't? Fuck that. If you think it costs too much, watch something else. Or read a book.

                                                "I'd venture many of the things on the anti's wish list like copyright terms would be far more negotiable if rights holder copyright enforcement was also embraced."

                                                So you're saying, if the anti-copyright side caves in on essentially anything/everything the rights holders want regarding enforcement (6 strikes, active monitoring of internet connections, massively disproportional fines for infringement, the shutting down of legitimate services like file storage lockers which are legal, etc) then MAYBE we could get copyright terms to be reasonable again?

                                                That's a load of bollocks. At the end of the day the rights holders would never agree to such a thing. Nor would the anti-copyright side. (And that's a misnomer by the way. It's not anti-copyright, so much as copyright reform side. People aren't saying let's do away with copyright entirely, at least not many. They're saying let's get things back to being realistic and in line with what was originally conceived for copyright. That's a big difference and one you're either intentionally ignoring or conflating with something else ignorantly. Not sure which.)


                                                Whine all you like about copyright length. Then go and look at what is being unlawfully acquired. The overwhelming amount of content is the latest and greatest. Not 5, 10, 15 or 20 years old. If there was a way to trade copyright duration of ten years for no infringement, the industry would knock the door down to make that deal.

                                                 

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                                                  Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:08am

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

                                                  "What does this mean: 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.

                                                  The exclusive right means that you alone have the right to do with it whatever you please. Historically, that means exploiting economically. Do you think a lot of people make movies to keep them on the shelf? "

                                                  Yes, but you were saying exclusive right to economically exploit. THAT IS NOT STATED IN THE COPYRIGHT CLAUSE ENACTED BY CONGRESS. It just states exclusive rights, the one and only of which is distribution (or right to copy). It in no way states exclusive right to economically exploit. That is something is done through the distribution of the right to create copies, but it isn't the right referred to by the copyright clause.

                                                  That it happens and can be done isn't irrelevant, but it's not the way you're making it out to be. Which is that it's the exclusive right referred to.

                                                  "You are utterly demented. You acknowledge that the rights holder has exclusive rights to his creation, yet somehow suggest that the right to financially exploit that creation isn't part of the overall right? Are you kidding?"

                                                  Are you? I pointed out, twice now, what the one and only exclusive right is. The other is a byproduct of that exclusive right. Without the former, the latter doesn't happen at all. So stop trying to portray the clause as giving a right that isn't actualy being given.

                                                  "No shit. And I'm hardly alone in it."

                                                  And we all know that multiple people sharing an OPINION therefore makes that opinion factually true. /s Hint: It doesn't.

                                                  "Wait, you are saying that lowering penalties will create greater compliance with the law? Obviously you must have a ready citation for how that piece of absurd reasoning has worked somewhere."

                                                  No, I didn't say that. You're taking what I said out of context. You specifically previously stated that no viable alternatives were being given concerning enforcement. I listed two. One is reducing the fines associated with and making the distinction between commercial infringement and non-commercial infringement. I DID NOT SAY IT WOULD LEAD TO MORE COMPLIANCE WITH THE LAW. I am stating, rather clearly, that a distinction needs to be made.

                                                  You go on and on about morals and what's fair, yet you want to justify that a person downloading a song is deserving of a fine up to $150,000? How is that moral or fair? (Ignoring that they could distribute it or aid in it's distribution. For the sake of argument, just pretend that only they were able to copy this song and it only gets copied once to their computer.) And keep in mind that is for a digital copy. Something that is infinitely reproduceable at almost no cost. YET, if that person were to physically steal the physical equivalent (a CD) the fine would be less than $500. Keeping in mind that there is now an actual physical and verifiable loss for wherever they stole the CD from. Proportion. You want to talk enforcement and greater amounts of it but you don't want to discuss the morality or fairness of how ridiculous disproportional said enforcement is or the penalties associated with it. Hypocrisy, thy name is you.

                                                  "I agree on easier access, but still believe in the laws of supply and demand. Why should I price my highly sought after movie the same as some piece of shit horror film? Because you'll freeload it if I don't? Fuck that. If you think it costs too much, watch something else. Or read a book."

                                                  Did you see me say I'll freeload something? Don't put words in my mouth. I merely stated a reality. If people have legal and easy access to a product they'll purchase it. You want to completely lock out a market, for whatever artificial reason, then complain when they acquire a product through unofficial channels. If you're not offering a product to someone, you can't complain about losses that wouldn't have existed in the first place. Ditto overpricing. If you overprice something, and your "value" of your own product will never be in line with everyone else's perceived value of your product, no one will buy it. This is simple economic reality. History is littered with examples of what should've been successful products that flopped completely due to this kind of thinking. "My product is awesome! Pay me a bajillion dollars for it!" Uh, no.

                                                  Also, you make the mistake of assuming your product is highly sought after. All this time we've been dealing with your hypothetical "2 million dollar movie, 5 years of work". You can't assume it'll be highly sought after. In point of fact, some of the biggest grossing movies of the past decade have been "piece of shit horror film" type movies. Created on shoe string budgets and shot in as little as half a year (if that). But I digress, if you overprice your product you are guaranteed to lose sales. Either because people will do without or they'll go the piracy route. Logic, therefore, dictates that you should price your product reasonably to MAXIMIZE sales. A reasonably priced product will sell more than a higher priced one. That's a fact. I'd rather have 1,000 sales of my $2 book than have 10 sales of my $100 book.

                                                  As for me personally, I'd much rather read a book than watch a movie. That's just me though. Fuck you and fuck your "highly sought after" fictional/hypothetical movie.

                                                  "Whine all you like about copyright length. Then go and look at what is being unlawfully acquired. The overwhelming amount of content is the latest and greatest. Not 5, 10, 15 or 20 years old. If there was a way to trade copyright duration of ten years for no infringement, the industry would knock the door down to make that deal."

                                                  No, the industry would NOT knock the door down to make that deal. They've fought routinely and since time immortal to NOT give people easier access to their goods. They've fought and made ridiculous demands of those who would help them give people easier access to their goods (ala Apple and iTunes, Amazon and Amazon Instan Video, Netflix, Google Play, etc). They seem to not want to give people legitimate ways to purchase their products.

                                                  But see what you did there? You are pretty much demanding answers to YOUR questions and YOUR perceived wrongs and harping on how only your side wants to work things out and come to an agreement and blah blah blah. Yet when I try and talk to you and give you answers to some of the questions you've raised your response has been "fuck you" and to call me a freeloader and to say things like that. You aren't interested in working with anyone. You want solutions to your PERCEIVED (and not necessarily real) problems, you want people to guarantee your revenue stream, you want people to respect your exclusive right (to copy, and nothing more), but you don't want to discuss anything or give anything in return. And it's exactly that mentality/attitude on the part of yourself (and rights holders in general) that makes all this a futile effort, insofar as trying to work things out goes. You want others to give but you offer nothing in return. And the ability to watch your "high sought after" movie isn't as big a deal as you might (mistakenly and egotistically) believe it to be. Until you're willing to give on some issues there will be an impasse. And from what I've read of your comments so far, that's going to remain that way indefinitely. Seeing as how you don't want to do much in the way of solving the issues seen from the customers/pirates side (much less the copyright reformers) of the debate.

                                                  Now, if you'll excuse me. I've got a computer to repair and a book to read while various things run as I do so. A reasonably priced, digital copy of a hugely successful author's book at that. You know, because the publisher/author gave me what I wanted. Access to the latest book at a not unreasonable cost (and it wasn't $2) in a manner of my choosing as far as digital format goes. Did I mention it's DRM free? Hey, maybe you could stop acting like a dick and take a page from these guys' book (pun intended). Catch more flies with honey and all that jazz. (Because fyi, you're more focused on punishing than providing a better customer service experience. As any person in retail sales will tell you, you'll lose out on a lot of business that way. And I say that as someone whose worked in retail and had to deal with you know... actual theft. As opposed to IMAGINED theft, because there's no proof whatsoever that piracy is as rampant as some like you claim it is. And what proof is out there shows when you make your product available in a convenient and easy way, reasonably priced, piracy will drop. But heaven forbid you consider that solution. ENFORCEMENT ENFORCEMENT ENFORCEMENT! Amirite?)

                                                   

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:19am

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                                                    Nice to see you double down on your absurd theory on economic exploitation and the period of exclusivity. You are nuttier than squirrel shit and ought to derive some insight into the merit of your position by the utter lack of support for it by anyone else.

                                                     

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                                          nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:25am

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                                          I do believe that the "moral question" you describe needs to be answered in order to move forward. It is the essence of the debate.

                                          A question that has nothing to do with the constitutional purpose of copyright is the essence of the debate? Maybe in France where the law recognizes moral rights, but not in the US.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:00am

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                                            It has everything to do with the constitution:

                                            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.

                                            It is not simply a moral question, it is a matter of constitutional fact. Exclusive, time-limited right is what we have been discussing.

                                             

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                                              nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:41am

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                                              To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts

                                              Not "to promote fairness and morality".

                                               

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:53am

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                                                "To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts..."

                                                Not "to promote fairness and morality".

                                                Oops, you forgot the inconvenient part:

                                                "...by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries."

                                                So let's ignore the "fairness and morality" part if you like. Let's talk about the exclusive rights that are guaranteed yet are under attack by pirates and freeloaders around the world. That's the problem and you have just personified it- you only want to talk about the half that affects you and disregards the rights of others.

                                                 

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                                                  Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:07am

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

                                                  So let's ignore the "fairness and morality" part if you like. Let's talk about the exclusive rights that are guaranteed yet are under attack by pirates and freeloaders around the world. That's the problem and you have just personified it- you only want to talk about the half that affects you and disregards the rights of others.

                                                  Just a point of clarification. The "exclusive rights" are not guaranteed. Congress has the ability to assign those exclusive rights, but only if they promote the progress of science and the useful arts.

                                                  So it does seem like a viable point to discuss if, at their current levels, they do that. Or... if they would do so moreso at other levels, or even no levels at all. Right?

                                                   

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:20am

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

                                                    You can't say that exclusive rights are not guaranteed. They are. It's in plain English. The duration of the exclusive rights may be an issue, but certainly not the very existence of them.

                                                     

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                                                      nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:46am

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

                                                      You can't say that exclusive rights are not guaranteed.

                                                      They are not guaranteed in the usual sense the way things like freedom of speech are guaranteed. Congress could revoke them at any time.

                                                       

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:52am

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                                                        They can legislate the duration, the inherent right is still guaranteed. And before you suggest that Congress could limit the right to one day, that will never happen as the court and anyone with half a brain realizes that the purpose of the exclusionary period is to allow creators to economically benefit from the act of creation.

                                                         

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                                                          Gwiz (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:23am

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                                                          They can legislate the duration, the inherent right is still guaranteed.

                                                          No it's not. The Constitution does not define the word "Right" in any sort of context. Congress decided which rights to include in copyright. And could decide to revoke any of the currently defined rights at any given time.

                                                          Congress could also (theoretically) decide that your "exclusive rights" ended at the moment you showed your work to another person (that's the point where your natural exclusive right ends anyways) and still be technically within Constitutional limits, in my opinion.

                                                           

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                                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:40am

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                                                            Pathetically weak with no basis in fact or law. Makes me sorry I was nice to you.

                                                             

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                                                              Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:03am

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                                                              "Pathetically weak with no basis in fact or law."

                                                              That summarizes your comments to this point, but Josh and others are right. That "copyright law" you keep referring to (when discussing rights holders exclusive rights) is NOT as you're making it out to be.

                                                              You've quoted it several times and seem to overlook one key point, all it is at the end of the day is a RIGHT for Congress to allow for copyright as they see fit, given that it complies with one important thing, "to promote the progress of the sciences and the arts". In exchange for said promotion the AUTHORS and INVENTORS (note that it doesn't say "rights holders", it's a difference that I believe is lost on you) get exclusive limited time rights. Which are set and determined by Congress.

                                                              You keep going on about the right to economically exploit, which isn't a right granted by Congress to those allowed the privilege of copyright. The only exclusive right is that of distribution (right to copy). If they can economically exploit said right, more power to them.

                                                              But at the end of the day, all the Copyright Clause does is give one specific right to one specific group of people, and that's Congress. To make a law regarding the promotion of the sciences and the arts. The method by which this is done is copyright, and the method by which sciences and arts are promoted is by giving authors and inventors exclusive limited rights, and said right is the right of distribution.

                                                              It's amusing how well you started off entering this thread and where you've ended up. You came off as reasonable and wanting to genuinely discuss and debate things. But here we are where you're insulting others, dismissing anything that doesn't comply with your (mis)conceived notions and what have you. And you wonder why the anti-copyright/copyright reform side won't come to the table to meet with you and yours. Your demands are unreasonable and your proof/evidence is severely lacking, which is the same as your understanding of the copyright clause. Congress could do away with copyright entirely and there'd be no Constitutional problem, as they'd be well within their right as allotted them by the copyright clause.

                                                               

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                                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:16am

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

                                                                It's amusing how well you started off entering this thread and where you've ended up. You came off as reasonable and wanting to genuinely discuss and debate things. But here we are where you're insulting others, dismissing anything that doesn't comply with your (mis)conceived notions and what have you. And you wonder why the anti-copyright/copyright reform side won't come to the table to meet with you and yours. Your demands are unreasonable and your proof/evidence is severely lacking, which is the same as your understanding of the copyright clause. Congress could do away with copyright entirely and there'd be no Constitutional problem, as they'd be well within their right as allotted them by the copyright clause.

                                                                We disagree. And I am not begging anyone to come to the table. SOPA has been implemented by and large, without any pesky requirement to go through the courts. Six strikes is here. More is coming.

                                                                The people I know in the industry see themselves as making gains. How about you? Are you ok with the status quo? I hope so, because I see no genuine interest from your side related to any sort of compromise.

                                                                 

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                                                                  Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:24am

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

                                                                  "without any pesky requirement to go through the courts"

                                                                  The fact that you see something as going through the courts (aka due process) as a pesky requirement says quite a lot about you and your beliefs.

                                                                  "The people I know in the industry see themselves as making gains. How about you? Are you ok with the status quo? I hope so, because I see no genuine interest from your side related to any sort of compromise."

                                                                  I guess trying to come up with ways to get your products out there or create them more efficiently and at lesser cost isn't anything coming from my side in the way of compromise. Ditto pointing out all the ways to reduce piracy and increase sales. (Put your shit out there in as many legal ways as possible and at decent prices.) And so on and so forth.

                                                                  Again, it comes back to you being unrealistic and wanting more than what you're willing to give.

                                                                  Status quo? I think we've made plenty of gains. We removed DRM from music, a huge hindrance. We've shown the potential of streaming products, and it's massive economic success as a business model. Etc.

                                                                  But as for the rest? Fuck it. At the end of the day if I wanted to pirate your 2 mil/5 year work of a movie I could. And there's literally nothing you could do to stop me. And that's what counts. I can take from you if you aren't willing to be reasonable. And your bit about "pesky requirement" says all I need to know. That you view due process and the courts as a pesky requirement says that those who do pirate are more than justified in doing so for whatever reason they have. You want the rule of law enforced when you see fit, and ignored when you view it as an cumbersome. You want to have your cake and eat it to. Your worse than the pirates/freeloaders. Of which I'm not one. Too bad I don't know what you do, or what if any product you've ever put out (if any). I'd pirate it on principle alone. (Your holier than though, fuck the courts attitude certainly didn't raise my level of respect for you, not that it was high to begin with.)

                                                                   

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                                                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:21pm

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                                                                    I say pesky requirements because a perfectly well-reasoned law was torpedoed by the Good Ship Hyperbole. You now have almost exactly the same thing minus the judicial oversight and your hysteria is why there's no oversight.

                                                                     

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                                                          nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:03am

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

                                                          They can legislate the duration, the inherent right is still guaranteed.

                                                          No, it isn't. The Constitution says "The Congress shall have Power... To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;"

                                                          That's it. No guarantee. Not even a mandate to Congress to do anything. Just a grant of the power to do so. If Congress decided copyright is stupid and withdrew from the Berne Convention and repealed all copyright laws, that would be totally constitutional.

                                                          Contrast that with the First Amendment: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." Notice the difference. The 1st amendment forbids Congress from doing anything to abridge rights. The copyright clause allows Congress to pass laws that would secure rights that otherwise would not exist.

                                                           

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                                                      Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:03am

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

                                                      You can't say that exclusive rights are not guaranteed. They are. It's in plain English. The duration of the exclusive rights may be an issue, but certainly not the very existence of them.

                                                      That statement is factually incorrect. I see you repeat it multiple times below, but that does not make it any more correct. The Constitution is enumerating the powers of Congress in that section, not the rights of the people. It says that Congress has the power to grant such exclusivity, not that it must and not that those rights are guaranteed. It simply says that *IF* it promotes the progress of science and the useful arts than Congress MAY grant such an exclusive privilege.

                                                      Nowhere does it say or imply that such a monopoly is guaranteed.

                                                       

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:30am

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

                                                        That statement is factually incorrect. I see you repeat it multiple times below, but that does not make it any more correct. The Constitution is enumerating the powers of Congress in that section, not the rights of the people. It says that Congress has the power to grant such exclusivity, not that it must and not that those rights are guaranteed. It simply says that *IF* it promotes the progress of science and the useful arts than Congress MAY grant such an exclusive privilege.

                                                        Nowhere does it say or imply that such a monopoly is guaranteed.


                                                        That's my Mike. Always got time to pop in to correct one minor issue, but completely unwilling to discuss his own beliefs or morals and unable to discuss the nuances of his position. JoCo got a minor buzz going over a little issue, so that means we don't need copyright and that all competition is fair! Hooray internet! I'll be here in case you ever decide to address the tough questions directly. Saying that you need more data or that it's a moral question so it's not even worth answering is you running away from the discussion with more excuses. Man up and discuss, Mike. For once in your life be a man.

                                                         

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                                                      Karl (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:22pm

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

                                                      You can't say that exclusive rights are not guaranteed. They are. It's in plain English.

                                                      The Constitution does not say that authors are guaranteed exclusive rights. It says "Congress shall have the Right" to grant them. It grants rights to Congress, not to authors.

                                                      The Constitution does not establish copyrights, but provides that Congress shall have the power to grant such rights if it thinks best. Not primarily for the benefit of the author, but primarily for the benefit of the public, such rights are given.
                                                      - House Report on the Copyright Act of 1909

                                                       

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:26pm

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                                                        Ummm... yeah, Congress gets to make the law, not the authors. Thanks for clearing that up.

                                                         

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:25am

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

                                                    Just a point of clarification. The "exclusive rights" are not guaranteed. Congress has the ability to assign those exclusive rights, but only if they promote the progress of science and the useful arts.

                                                    So it does seem like a viable point to discuss if, at their current levels, they do that. Or... if they would do so moreso at other levels, or even no levels at all. Right?


                                                    Please discuss how this standard would work. How do we decide what promotes the progress? How do we measure it? Do you think the same things promote the progress as I do? That standard is meaningless if you don't tell us what you mean by it. It's always going to be your crutch to get out of discussing the messy details. You'll just say the progress might be promoted more if we did something else, but you tell us how to measure the progress so we know when the changes are working. And considering your incredibly bleak outlook on all things copyright (I have yet to ever see you say even one positive thing about it, even though you feature copyrighted books in your book club for example). How in the world are you, the most opinionated and extremist person this is in the debate, any sort of person qualified to gauge what the progress means? And why should we trust you anyway when you never discuss the specifics?

                                                    Seriously, Mike. Stop running away from the hard questions. Stop pretending like you can't have an opinion on things because you don't have perfect data. Nobody has perfect data yet we all have opinions. Stop pretending like since you have an idea that maybe works for some people that you've got the answer and there's no need to discuss messy things like morality. Morality matters, and if you think it doesn't, you're amoral. Are you amoral? Is that why you are incapable of ever discussing directly your personal views on morality?

                                                     

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:48am

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

                                                    Following a point I made elsewhere, the most heavily pirated stuff is also the most recent. If copyright reverted to 13 years, would that be an acceptable exchange for greater enforcement. Or would there still be the same hue and cry about collateral damage and free speech?

                                                    Do you believe that enacting SOPA (without DNS blocking) would be an equal trade for a 13 year exclusivity period?

                                                    Disclaimer: From the perspective of the studios, I don't think so. They have search engine burial instead of the SOPA delisting; they have voluntary cooperation of payment processors and ad networks. All without the need to first go before a judge to have a hearing, as SOPA required.

                                                     

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                                                      Gwiz (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:32am

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

                                                      Following a point I made elsewhere, the most heavily pirated stuff is also the most recent. If copyright reverted to 13 years, would that be an acceptable exchange for greater enforcement. Or would there still be the same hue and cry about collateral damage and free speech?


                                                      I believe that if you limited copyright to a reasonable time, such as 13 years that respect for copyright would begin to be restored. That in and of itself would help curb piracy and greater enforcement wouldn't be all that necessary.

                                                      As for collateral damage of free speech, any at all is unacceptable to me. Free Speech vs. Copyright is a no brainer for me and Free Speech wins hands down, every time. No exceptions. No passing GO. No collecting $200.

                                                       

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:45am

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                                                        As for collateral damage of free speech, any at all is unacceptable to me. Free Speech vs. Copyright is a no brainer for me and Free Speech wins hands down, every time. No exceptions. No passing GO. No collecting $200.

                                                        I see, so some of the pigs are more equal than others.

                                                         

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                                                          nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:13am

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                                                          I see, so some of the pigs are more equal than others.

                                                          If by "pigs" you mean "parts of the Constitution" I would personally agree with that.

                                                           

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                                                          Gwiz (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:15am

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

                                                          I see, so some of the pigs are more equal than others.

                                                          No. Not at all. (great Animal Farm reference btw).

                                                          To me, the fundamental concept of Free Speech is infinitely more important than the fundamental concept of Copyright, that's all.

                                                          Like the saying goes - I may not agree with what you say, but I will fight to the death for your right to say it. As for your right to monetize your copyrighted work, meh, not all that important to me really.

                                                          Free speech is also the reason I advocate a completely unfettered internet. The internet is the single most important invention since the Gutenberg press, in my opinion. For the first time, lowly average citizens can truly express themselves with a extremely low barrier of entry. All one needs is a computing device and a connection and thousands of others can hear you words. Never in the history of humankind has this been available. I believe it's worth preserving unfettered access at any cost.

                                                           

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                                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:29pm

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

                                                            Like the saying goes - I may not agree with what you say, but I will fight to the death for your right to say it. As for your right to monetize your copyrighted work, meh, not all that important to me really.

                                                            Does that mean that you don't click the 'report' button when I say things you don't like?

                                                             

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                                                              Gwiz (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:44pm

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                                                              Does that mean that you don't click the 'report' button when I say things you don't like?

                                                              Actually, I don't use the report button that way at all. As a matter of fact I rarely hit the report button at all. Obvious spam, stupid "First" comments and really, really offensive off-topic comments are all I report.

                                                              It's my opinion that speech I disagree with should be countered with more speech, not censored. This also has roots in my firm belief in the fundamental concepts of Free Speech.

                                                               

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                                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:53pm

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                                                                Very noble. But I was kind of kidding. Do you report really offensive on-topic comments? I generally am good for a few of those too.

                                                                 

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                                                                  Gwiz (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 2:13pm

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                                                                  Do you report really offensive on-topic comments?

                                                                  They have to be really, really offensive to me.

                                                                  There were a couple I recall that used the "n" word and extremely offensive to basically anyone with any intelligence.

                                                                   

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                                                  nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:15am

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                                                  Let's talk about the exclusive rights that are guaranteed yet are under attack by pirates and freeloaders around the world. That's the problem

                                                  Why is that the problem? When we're seeing steady and large increases in creative output, which is what copyright is supposed to be all about, why are you defining copyright infringement as the problem?

                                                   

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                                              Karl (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:59am

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                                              It has everything to do with the constitution:

                                              Yes, and what the Constitution says is "moral" is the promotion of "the Progress of Science and useful Arts."

                                              If there is any moral imperative, it is this, and this alone: copyright "must ultimately serve the cause of promoting broad public availability of literature, music, and the other arts." (Twentieth Century Music Corp. v. Aiken.)

                                              The granting of exclusive rights is not a moral good. In the words of Congress: "The granting of such exclusive rights, under the proper terms and conditions, confers a benefit upon the public that outweighs the evils of the temporary monopoly."

                                              There is nothing moral about copyright's exclusive rights. It is a purely utilitarian construct, designed to promote a different moral good: a moral good that accrues to the general public, not to copyright holders.

                                              A moral good that you haven't even mentioned in this discussion. The only thing you're obsessed with is some kind of right to the "evil" of the temporary monopoly.

                                              You are simply demanding that others respect your right to be evil. That is not a moral standpoint. By criticizing others for not agreeing with you, you have shown that you have no particular regard for morality.

                                               

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                                          Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:57am

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                                          Thank you for the response. I do believe that the "moral question" you describe needs to be answered in order to move forward.

                                          Well, even if it needs to be answered, since it's a moral question, it needs to be answered individually, so I'm not sure how much benefit there is to trying to force a position on everyone.

                                          So while I respect your thoughtful comments, I am still hoping someone else will add to the discussion taking the opposite view of my own so I can better understand the argument on that side.

                                          Here's the one point I will make on that: If (and I concede that this is a big if, but work with me here) it turns out that at some greatly reduced level of protection or exclusivity (or even none at all), the end result is actually a *LARGER* market with *GREATER* opportunity to make money, then wouldn't it be possible, if not almost necessary, from a moral standpoint to argue that's a favorable result?

                                          I'd also add that I agree that there are successful artists who have done well with out utilizing copyright protections. I still do not believe that makes a compelling case to to remove those protections for everyone.

                                          I agree that that alone does not make a compelling case for removing protections from everyone. But, it, at the very least, suggests that there are alternatives to relying solely on exclusivity and protectionism. It is that space that I think is worth exploring. Are those who do that *exceptions* and *outliers* or is it possible that those are leading the way to a *better* way to create/promote/connect/distribute/monetize?

                                          The notion that someone has poured years of their life and millions of dollars into a project, yet has no greater rights to financially exploit it than any member of the public still strikes me as absurd and fundamentally unfair. I'd love to hear the argument against my position.

                                          Well, here's the thing: even if we assume they have "no greater *right*" I would argue that they have MUCH, MUCH, MUCH greater *opportunity* to financially exploit it than anyone else. And that's the key point that I think those examples show, and which is the area I think is worth exploring.

                                          And, if they can *better* exploit the work, even without the exclusivity (or with greatly diminished exclusivity), then, is that really unfair?

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:20am

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                                            Well, even if it needs to be answered, since it's a moral question, it needs to be answered individually, so I'm not sure how much benefit there is to trying to force a position on everyone.

                                            So we all get to decide for ourselves what's moral? So I could murder your family, and as long as I think it's moral, that's OK? Of course not. The fact is that we as a society decide that certain things are amoral. Please stop running away from the morals. You can at least tell us what you think is moral. Stop making excuses.

                                            Here's the one point I will make on that: If (and I concede that this is a big if, but work with me here) it turns out that at some greatly reduced level of protection or exclusivity (or even none at all), the end result is actually a *LARGER* market with *GREATER* opportunity to make money, then wouldn't it be possible, if not almost necessary, from a moral standpoint to argue that's a favorable result?

                                            Lots of ifs and maybes, but extremely short on the details. What about people are feeding their children today? Why should the fruits of their labor be used against their will to make money for other people who don't give any of the money to the creator? All of your ifs and buts are fun to think about as well, but that's no excuse to run away from discussing the real issues. Stop running away. Stop pretending like "But Louis CK!" is a complete answer to the issue. It's not.

                                            I agree that that alone does not make a compelling case for removing protections from everyone. But, it, at the very least, suggests that there are alternatives to relying solely on exclusivity and protectionism. It is that space that I think is worth exploring. Are those who do that *exceptions* and *outliers* or is it possible that those are leading the way to a *better* way to create/promote/connect/distribute/monetize?

                                            Now you're actually admitting that it's not compelling for removing the protections from everyone. Tell me this, why are you set on the answer being that there's no exclusivity? You obviously think that there shouldn't be any exclusive rights, hence your blog that day after day shits on the idea of exclusive rights while never discussing in a positive light. We all know you think there's a better way. That's fine. But given your concession that for now at least there is no compelling not to have exclusive rights for some, then why do you shit all over people when they enforce their exclusive rights? Having exclusive rights means excluding people. Why don't you ever acknowledge that it's OK to exclude sometimes?

                                            Well, here's the thing: even if we assume they have "no greater *right*" I would argue that they have MUCH, MUCH, MUCH greater *opportunity* to financially exploit it than anyone else. And that's the key point that I think those examples show, and which is the area I think is worth exploring.

                                            And, if they can *better* exploit the work, even without the exclusivity (or with greatly diminished exclusivity), then, is that really unfair?


                                            You keep saying that there's this great opportunity, but then you also concede that you can't make the argument for everyone. So then why do you shit all over the people that exercise their exclusive rights? YOU CAN'T PROVE THAT YOUR ALTERNATIVES ARE BETTER THAN THE STATUS QUO FOR MANY PEOPLE. Given that, why are you so freaking bitter at everyone who enforces their rights?

                                            And why won't you discuss directly the problem of a party that spends millions to make something of value only to have that value misappropriated by others? Discuss the moral issue. Stop being such a coward. And stop ignoring me. It only strengthens my resolve to hound you on the questions you refuse to answer.

                                             

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                                              Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:25am

                                              RExmany

                                              Your first analogy is so horribly wrong, it's no wonder people become frustrated.

                                              You equate exclusive rights to a temporary monopoly over the ability to create copies of a piece of work to taking a life, a criminal offense?

                                              Wow.

                                               

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:37am

                                                Re: RExmany

                                                Another criticism.

                                                OK, so what is appropriate? What specific steps would you see as a fair and balanced approach to the enforcement of the constitutional right of a creator against those who infringe upon that right?

                                                 

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                                                  Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:50am

                                                  Re: Re: RExmany

                                                  I already outlined those 6 steps. That's how you maintain a fair and balanced approach.

                                                  You and the industry did NOT follow all of those steps.

                                                  iTunes/Spotify/Amazon are NOT FOLLOWING ALL of those steps.

                                                  Until you do, AND STOP PUSHING DRACONIAN "ENFORCEMENT" measures you won't see your rights respected.

                                                  Psy didn't push draconian enforcement policies, he didn't even go after people with his current legal rights. He did well, very well.

                                                  The fair and balanced approach is to go after commercial infringers (NOT CREATORS OF TOOLS SOME USE TO INFRINGE NON-COMMERCIALLY). Then stop the exploitation in various markets. Why is a CD $30 in Australia but $15 here? How is that fair and balanced?

                                                  You want fair and balance, you have to give it! Copyright, as it exists, is NOT fair and balanced.

                                                  You want your kids to have a good life, teach them a damn trade and invest the money you earn for yourself and them.

                                                  If you think the only enforcement is through draconian laws, then fuck it, go after Microsoft because their OS allows the majority of the computer users to connect to the web, which the USER CHOOSES to use to download content (copyright or not).

                                                  Then go after Apple, Dell, Samsung, HP, etc.... all the computer manufacturers because Microsoft's Windows doesn't run on air. Then go after the cable manufacturers and fiber manufacturers, and installation technicians, don't forget all the router companies, ISP's, satellite companies, HDD manufacturers, technicians who install them...

                                                  because in your view, all of them COULD be used BY THE USER to infringe upon your "rights" to a TEMPORARY monopoly, despite the rest of the fucking planet telling you that how YOU UTILIZE your "rights" (aka distribute) is NOT what they want!

                                                  But hey, why listen, why not just figure out ways to lock it down like a politician because you don't understand a) the true intention of the law, b) how the law has been manipulated to void the benefits to society it once intended to protect, c) you don't want to listen to what people want and prefer to tell them what they want and complain when they figure a way around your wall, you built and support.

                                                   

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                                          Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:20am

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                                          I do believe that the "moral question" you describe needs to be answered in order to move forward.

                                          Why does it *need* to be answered to move forward? What if circumstances make it moot?

                                          If (in general) creators can make a living without requiring exclusivity to what they create, then the answer to whether they should have a right to exclusivity doesn't matter. If both society and creators are better off without an exclusivity right then the concept of fairness does not apply.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:27am

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                                            If both society and creators are better off without an exclusivity right then the concept of fairness does not apply.

                                            That's a huge part of the argument. Beyond the fact that the Constitution grants rights holders exclusive rights already. I dispute that creators are better off. There's no way I am better off if I have spent five years and $2 million on a movie that you, Josh, have the same right to monetize during my exclusive rights period as I do. That is absurd.

                                             

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                                              Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:37am

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                                              Can you stop repeating you spent 2mill/5yrs on a movie?

                                              The more you repeat, the more annoying you become and the less sympathy you obtain.

                                              If your movie is good, people will buy it. If you want more to buy it, don't lock it down, and offer unique, actually scarce goods and you'll make even more money.

                                               

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                                                PaulT (profile), Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 4:53am

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                                                The funny thing about that screed is that it opens up the next logical question - WHY did you spend so much time and money? A true artist who had a story he just needed to tell would happily let the story get out there, grateful for financial success but more grateful for the number of people who saw it. He's not likely to whine about people seeing it for free, but happily accepts any profits coming his way. The other side of the scale is a profiteer - someone who saw film merely as an exercise in making money and so is thus heavily disappointed that the riches he sought were not coming his way.

                                                Frankly, we need more of the former and less of the latter. Which is why this type of argument is hilariously ineffective.

                                                 

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                                              Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:22am

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                                              Beyond the fact that the Constitution grants rights holders exclusive rights already.

                                              This is why so many of these conversations turn bad. You are knowingly and deliberately mistating facts.

                                              The Constitution does not grant any exclusive rights to creators. It grants Congress the power to enact laws for the purpose of promoting the progress of science and the useful arts. There would be no Constitutional issue if Congress decided to abolish copyrights.

                                              I dispute that creators are better off. There's no way I am better off if I have spent five years and $2 million on a movie that you, Josh, have the same right to monetize during my exclusive rights period as I do. That is absurd.

                                              You are better off. You have a far better oppurtunity to exploit your work than I would. You can make a deal with Netflix for them to distribute your movie - or any other company that would pay you so they can distribute it. Responsible companies would only deal with the creator of the work where it is possible, and the public has shown that they are absolutely willing to support the creators by choosing responsible companies to give their money to when it is an attractive option in terms of availability, features, and price. I myself have done so - as I stated above, I can't remember the last time I torrented music since I started paying for Spotify and before that Grooveshark.

                                               

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                                                Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:29am

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                                                And frankly, if you are unable to exploit that oppurtunity better than I would, then copyright will not help you. Someone smarter is going to come along and exploit it, legally or illegally, regardless of whether you have that exclusive right or not.

                                                 

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:35am

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                                                Josh,

                                                Congress has a duty to implement those creator rights which are in the Constitution. That's why it was important enough to appear in the constitution. Copyright didn't spring up from a law or bill. It is derived directly from Constitutional mandate.

                                                "I dispute that creators are better off. There's no way I am better off if I have spent five years and $2 million on a movie that you, Josh, have the same right to monetize during my exclusive rights period as I do. That is absurd."

                                                You are better off. You have a far better oppurtunity to exploit your work than I would. You can make a deal with Netflix for them to distribute your movie - or any other company that would pay you so they can distribute it.

                                                Here's where your train starts to run off of the fucking tracks.

                                                Responsible companies would only deal with the creator of the work where it is possible, and the public has shown that they are absolutely willing to support the creators by choosing responsible companies to give their money to when it is an attractive option in terms of availability, features, and price.

                                                Responsible companies? If you have the same legal right to sell my movie as I do "responsible companies" acting within the law will buy the rights from you (or someone else) for $10, $100, $1000, $10,000 or even $1 million. Meanwhile, I have $2 million invested along with my time. How do I make my investment back? Why would a company pay me millions more for the identical product they can legally obtain elsewhere for a pittance? This shit is really weak Josh, I honestly don't see how you can believe it.

                                                 

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                                                  nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:11am

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

                                                  Congress has a duty to implement those creator rights which are in the Constitution.

                                                  That is ridiculous. Look at the other powers granted by that section: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enumerated_powers

                                                  You're telling me Congress has a duty to borrow money? To levy tariffs? To declare war? If not, then what makes the copyright clause different from all the others? If so, then you are way past left field.

                                                   

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                                                  Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:52am

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

                                                  Congress has a duty to implement those creator rights which are in the Constitution. That's why it was important enough to appear in the constitution. Copyright didn't spring up from a law or bill. It is derived directly from Constitutional mandate.

                                                  Bollocks, and you know it. I'll let you reply to nasch^ if you want to keep going down that absurd path.

                                                  Responsible companies? If you have the same legal right to sell my movie as I do "responsible companies" acting within the law will buy the rights from you (or someone else) for $10, $100, $1000, $10,000 or even $1 million.

                                                  Here's where you always fail to understand where I'm coming from.

                                                  You think responsible automatically equals legal, and that illegal automatically equals irresponsible and immoral.

                                                  I will not accept that. As Augustine of Hippo said: "An unjust law is no law at all."

                                                  The completely one-sided contracts that the labels get musicians to sign by promising them the world, while taking every penny they make through bizarre accounting and turning them into indentured servants, are perfectly fine to you since they're legal. Companies sending out DMCA notices and forcing down content that only has a vague resemblance or brief snippet to a copyrighted work are perfectly fine to you since it is legal. To me, neither of those things are fine - they are unethical and morally reprehensible.

                                                  You have gone down the path where your morals have been defined by what an authority (the government) will allow you to get away with if you convince them to pass a law. That's frightening and has led to all sorts of historical excesses. Please get a wider perspective for your own sake.

                                                  As we've seen in so many cases where someone is taking credit for someone else's work, the public backlash and bad press would stop responsible companies from doing what you describe. Nearly all ordinary people, when given the chance and in a way that they can accept and afford, will do the right thing.

                                                  Copyright infringement and piracy of content happen when you don't give them that chance.

                                                   

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:16pm

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                                                    As we've seen in so many cases where someone is taking credit for someone else's work, the public backlash and bad press would stop responsible companies from doing what you describe. Nearly all ordinary people, when given the chance and in a way that they can accept and afford, will do the right thing.

                                                    I'm not talking about taking credit, I'm speaking of wrongful appropriation. Where is the widespread outrage over pirate sites unlawfully distributing copyrighted works? I have seen no popular uprising.

                                                     

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                                                      Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:20pm

                                                      REx25

                                                      I'm not talking about taking credit, I'm speaking of wrongful appropriation. Where is the widespread outrage over pirate sites where some users unlawfully distributing copyrighted works? I have seen no popular uprising.

                                                      FTFY.

                                                       

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                                                      Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:24pm

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

                                                      I'm not talking about taking credit, I'm speaking of wrongful appropriation.

                                                      You focus on one aspect while failing to understand that they are linked. People want to support the creators they love when given the chance.

                                                      I have seen no popular uprising.

                                                      I guess few people it as wrong, or at least not that important an issue, or just a business model dispute.

                                                       

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                                                        Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:46pm

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                                                        Geeze, not sure what is up with my typing today. That should be
                                                        "I guess few people think of it as wrong..."

                                                         

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                                                      Gwiz (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:54pm

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

                                                      I'm speaking of wrongful appropriation. Where is the widespread outrage over pirate sites unlawfully distributing copyrighted works? I have seen no popular uprising.


                                                      I would say there has been no widespread outrage over pirate sites unlawfully distributing copyrighted works for two main reasons:

                                                      1) The most popular pirate sites are not actually distributing the works themselves. They are only connecting those who wish to share between themselves. Sure there are ads on these sites or subscriptions, but most filesharers feel that to be acceptable for the service they provide and the bandwidth and overhead that has to be paid. You might not see it as a huge distinction, but I think the average filesharer does. In their minds they are paying to be connected other filesharers, not paying some company who illegally appropriated someone else's copyrighted works.

                                                      2) The huge over-extension of copyright and massive pushes for draconian punishments has created a general disdain of copyright in the general population. This part of the equation is entirely on the shoulders of the content industries and is completely up to them to rectify it. If you want copyright to be respected to an acceptable degree, then respect MUST be reciprocated to the general public or you will get nowhere fast. Returning things back somewhere near the original copyright laws would be a huge step towards achieving this. Limited time would actually mean a limited time. Works would start to enter the public domain once again. The public would actually see fruition for holding up their end of the bargain.

                                                       

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:16pm

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

                                                        Good newsI My ride is delayed, so I have time for another bitch slap.

                                                        "I'm speaking of wrongful appropriation. Where is the widespread outrage over pirate sites unlawfully distributing copyrighted works? I have seen no popular uprising."


                                                        I would say there has been no widespread outrage over pirate sites unlawfully distributing copyrighted works for two main reasons:

                                                        1) The most popular pirate sites are not actually distributing the works themselves. They are only connecting those who wish to share between themselves. Sure there are ads on these sites or subscriptions, but most filesharers feel that to be acceptable for the service they provide and the bandwidth and overhead that has to be paid. You might not see it as a huge distinction, but I think the average filesharer does. In their minds they are paying to be connected other filesharers, not paying some company who illegally appropriated someone else's copyrighted works.


                                                        Shall I cue my comparison to hoteliers offering rooms by the hour knowingly profiting from prostitution or do you prefer to answer why bankers should be able to turn a blind eye when Tony Montana shows up with duffel bags full of hundred dollar bills?

                                                        2) The huge over-extension of copyright and massive pushes for draconian punishments has created a general disdain of copyright in the general population. This part of the equation is entirely on the shoulders of the content industries and is completely up to them to rectify it.

                                                        Here's where I get to point out that the "draconian" laws arose due to disrespect of copyright. Not vice versa.

                                                        If you want copyright to be respected to an acceptable degree, then respect MUST be reciprocated to the general public or you will get nowhere fast. Returning things back somewhere near the original copyright laws would be a huge step towards achieving this. Limited time would actually mean a limited time. Works would start to enter the public domain once again. The public would actually see fruition for holding up their end of the bargain.

                                                        Heres a homework assignment. Go look at the Top 100 most pirated works of 2012- film, tv, music- no matter. Then report back how many would fall outside of the original copyright limitation span. Go look at the Top 1000 for that matter.

                                                         

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                                                          Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:30pm

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                                                          Here's where I get to point out that the "draconian" laws arose due to disrespect of copyright. Not vice versa.

                                                          And here's where I'll point out that disrespect for copyright arose out of a failure of the content industry to embrace new business models that new technologies made possible.

                                                           

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                                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:41pm

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                                                            Gee, in most industries that would mean you'd lose customers to a competitor rather than having them*steal* from you.

                                                             

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                                                              Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:46pm

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                                                              Piracy is the competitor. And please point out exactly what they are stealing from you. Is it the money that is theirs that they weren't going to give you for your poor quality products/services? Is it the money they paid for services that did give them what they want? Is it the money they spent on other forms of entertainment instead of the kind you made? Is it the content *that you still have*?

                                                               

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                                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:50pm

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                                                                *steal* is quicker to write than "unlawfully and unjustly enriching themselves by infringing on my intellectual property right to my creative output" Happy now?

                                                                 

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                                                                  Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:54pm

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                                                                  It's also misleading! And unless your creative output is enriching, they are not enriching themselves.

                                                                  Your right to create exists regardless. Your right to release and copy and release those copies exists regardless.

                                                                  They are not respecting your exclusivity for a number of reasons, already listed, not wasting time repeating.

                                                                   

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                                                          Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:41pm

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

                                                          Heres a homework assignment. Go look at the Top 100 most pirated works of 2012- film, tv, music- no matter. Then report back how many would fall outside of the original copyright limitation span.

                                                          14 or 28 years? Nearly all of them, I'm sure. There's a problem with this line of thought. At the time those term lengths were created, the world was a very different place.

                                                          For example, the fastest means of communication was a courier riding a fast horse, and they could be carrying little more than a few books worth of information. While the printing press was widespread, it still wasn't exactly cheap to make copies and distribute them.

                                                          It would take days for small smounts of information to spread from one side of the country to another, even assuming it was really important information.

                                                          Now, I can carry a copy of the sum total of human creativity prior to 1990 or so in a small bag (if not my pocket), and I could transmit it entirely around the world in times ranging from seconds to hours.

                                                          Yet copyright term length has moved in the complete oppposite direction from technological progress.

                                                           

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                                                          Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:43pm

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                                                          I call bullshit on your Draconian laws.

                                                          1978 Sonny Bono Act had fucking nothing to do with filesharing as technically, it wasn't even heard of beyond the few who had computers.

                                                           

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                                                          Gwiz (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 5:45pm

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

                                                          Here's where I get to point out that the "draconian" laws arose due to disrespect of copyright. Not vice versa.

                                                          Go a step or two further back. The extensions to copyright term limits came first and didn't arise from any mass infringement by the public.

                                                           

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                                                  Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:19pm

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                                                  So, one criticism that you said above is that the anti-copyright side has never offered up solutions. Others have, I have not. I've laid out specifically products/services that would get me to stop pirating (and as stated, Spotify has done so as far as music goes), however I've never laid out the legalislative side, short of "burn it to the ground." Here's my attempt at a framework of a compromise between no copyright and what we have now:

                                                  1) All personal copying/format shifting/time shifting is legal, regardless of the method used (i.e. no more anti-circumvention clause in the DMCA).
                                                  2) Infringement over filesharing networks by individuals for no monetary gain may be punished in the following way:
                                                  a) Fines may not exceed 20 times the fair market value of any individual work, to a maximum of $200 per work, unless the work costs more than $200, in which case that is the maximum fine. Therefore, if someone is sharing a song that can be purchased for $.99 on iTunes, the fine may not exceed $19.80. A rip of a 15-track CD that sells for $15 would cap out at $200. A rip of a DVD that costs $25 would cap out at $200. A $50 video game is again capped at $200. A $300 piece of software - maxed at $300. Collections/anthologies I'm open to some ideas. These are maximum fines - a neutral party may adjust per incident.
                                                  b) Administrative costs for each incident may not exceed $50 per incident. If you can figure out a way to prosecute someone sharing 1 song and pay for the cost with $70 in potential fines, go for it.
                                                  c) No monkey business in charging someone multiple times for the same file detected at different times. No monkey business charging someone 20 times individually over 20 songs that came from the same CD.
                                                  c) No forced disconnections, throttling, etc. of the connection.
                                                  d) Due process must be followed. Parties have the right to fully examine all evidence and the methods used to gather it and point out flaws.
                                                  e) If the question of who performed the infringement (in the case of multiple people at the same IP address), investigation must be performed to identify the correct person if the proceedings are to continue.
                                                  3) A creator may be granted a maximum of 10 years of commercial exploitation of a work under the following conditions:
                                                  a) Licenses must be granted to distribute to other commercial entities at fair, reasonable, and non-discrimintory rates. Any process to set those rates for a wide swath of companies must be open, presided over by a neutral body made up of representatives from consumer protection and public advocacy groups as well as content and tech industry reps. No particular side may have enough votes to dominate the body.
                                                  b) No forced-windowing. If you want your movie showing in theaters and Netflix wants to stream it at the same time, it happens. You may of course negotiate individually, but I imagine if this system were to come about no one would want to go back.
                                                  4) Commercial scale infringement can be prosecuted, but fines and penalties must be reasonable and based on profit or revenue of the infringer. But if 3) happens, this would rarely be necessary. Jail time should be completely off the table.
                                                  5) An end to one-sided contracts and shady accounting. I'm not sure how to do this in a sane manner, so I'll leave it for the responsible lawyers to work out.

                                                  I'm sure others can expand on some of these ideas.

                                                   

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:24pm

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                                                    So in essence, make it so costly and unwieldily as to render enforcement meaningless. No thanks. I'll stick with what we've got and what's coming.

                                                     

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                                                      Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:38pm

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                                                      No, make it so the *everyone* benefits from the system, including the creators, and all the profits and power doesn't go to a few middlemen who corrupt the system as a whole.

                                                      You keep your system if you want it - I'll keep pirating until a reasonable system emerges for the content I want. Keep your penalties and strikes - you're only accelerating the emergence of strong cryptography for everyone. Keep your focus on enforcement over providing better services to customers - they'll spend their money elsewhere. Keep heading down that same tunnel - but here's a tip - that's not the light at the end - its the headlamp of the next oncoming train of more disruptive technologies and an arms-race you cannot win.

                                                       

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:43pm

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                                                        Thanks for your advice. You're a bigger monkey than you avatar suggests.

                                                         

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                                                          Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:49pm

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                                                          Humans and chimps are apes, not monkeys. Lrn2Biology pls.

                                                           

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                                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:54pm

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                                                            Thanks for setting me straight. BTW, it's a flattering photo. You're not nearly as repulsive as your demeanor suggests. See you Monday, Bonzo.

                                                             

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                                              Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:34am

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                                              That's a huge part of the argument. Beyond the fact that the Constitution grants rights holders exclusive rights already.

                                              Except, as I (and others) explained above, this is simply incorrect. Nowhere does the Constitution do any such thing. It simply gives Congress the power to grant such exclusivity if it promotes the progress.

                                              I dispute that creators are better off.

                                              You dispute it but there is evidence that you may be wrong.

                                              There's no way I am better off if I have spent five years and $2 million on a movie that you, Josh, have the same right to monetize during my exclusive rights period as I do. That is absurd.

                                              A few points on this. First off, what does the amount you spent have to do with anything. If I say that I spent 100 years and $5 billion on a movie, you might argue that's stupid, and no matter what I do I'll never recoup it.

                                              We should never, ever base how we set the rewards based on "sweat of the brow." That actually takes away the incentive for people to become more efficient. No one in the computer business says "but how will I continue being able to make $5,000 computers. They realize they need to make *better* computers for *less* money because that's where the market is.

                                              Second, how do you know that there's "no way" you're better off. As I've already mentioned, many who seem to give up on the enforcement of that exclusive right HAVE found that they're better off for one key reason: by willingly giving up on that exclusivity, they can build a larger audience. It can be seen as all about the pie size. Do you want 100% of a small pie, or 20% of a pie 100 times as large?

                                              And that's the issue. It all comes down to the size of the pies and the slices. You are arguing that it's self evident that having the whole pie must be better than having the slice, but you aren't discussing the size of the overall pie (or you're assuming that the pie is the same size).

                                              Finally, you keep saying that if you and Josh have the same "right" to monetize it, it's unfair. But you ignore the fact that if you made the movie, even if you both have the same right to monetize it, you have a MUCH greater *opportunity* to monetize it, since you're the filmmaker.

                                               

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:13pm

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

                                                Finally, you keep saying that if you and Josh have the same "right" to monetize it, it's unfair. But you ignore the fact that if you made the movie, even if you both have the same right to monetize it, you have a MUCH greater *opportunity* to monetize it, since you're the filmmaker.

                                                I'll disagree from the bottom up this time to change things up. Any advantage I may have as a filmmaker will be a direct function of how big a head start I get on Josh. I'm starting $x million in the hole plus the value of my time. Josh starts his quest to make money on my back $x million ahead and with no comparable investment of his human capital (i.e. my talent). That is why a period of exclusivity is both fair and reasonable. After all, what legitimate claim does he have to monetize my creative output and realize the fruits of my investment and talents.

                                                I will concede that exclusivity is not a constitutional mandate anymore than promoting the useful arts and sciences. However I do believe that the constitution does direct action and duty upon congress to apply both of those principles. I appreciate the thorough discussion.

                                                The discussion seems to be turning back to earlier economic arguments you've made that fixed (production) costs can simply be ignored. I still don't buy that. If I have costs in the millions and your costs are zero or negligible, you have a likely advantage, governed solely by who is a "better" marketer. Plus, you can eat me alive on price since you begin at zero and work up, while I begin deep in the hole.

                                                And I don't know how I necessarily build a bigger market. If I compete on price, you can still cut my throat. Again I have to pit my marketing skills against an interloper and find a way to beat him other than on price. And with the constant clamoring over the unfairness of content pricing I hear every day, There's no reason to expect the market to not react to price. And maybe you'd get some goodwill if you were a famous director or actor, but that is exceptional and almost unknown in the low budget film world.

                                                 

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                                                  Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:59pm

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                                                  Any advantage I may have as a filmmaker will be a direct function of how big a head start I get on Josh.

                                                  That right there is exactly how you make your money against me.

                                                  Instead of silly release windows, you come out all at once on every service and screen you can get your film on to.

                                                  You offer so many reasonable ways for customers to pay for your content, that there's no point to looking for a copy of it on the torrent sites.

                                                  By the time I could get my hands on it and make knock-offs, it is already ubiqitous on quality services that people are already using. And those people by and large will choose the legal routes. I may make a few scraps, but if you've positioned yourself well, I wouldn't have a chance.

                                                  Of course the market reacts to price. But they react to ease-of-use, quality, availability moreso. You act like price is the ONLY way you can compete.

                                                   

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                                                  Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 2:11pm

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

                                                  I'll disagree from the bottom up this time to change things up. Any advantage I may have as a filmmaker will be a direct function of how big a head start I get on Josh. I'm starting $x million in the hole plus the value of my time. Josh starts his quest to make money on my back $x million ahead and with no comparable investment of his human capital (i.e. my talent). That is why a period of exclusivity is both fair and reasonable. After all, what legitimate claim does he have to monetize my creative output and realize the fruits of my investment and talents.

                                                  Yes, you may be in a deeper hole, but if the advantage of being you greatly outweighs that hole, then, what's the issue? And as for the "legitimate claim" -- the "legitimate" part is again dipping into morality. However, I'll answer it this way: if he can *better* distribute your work, and provides a BETTER job serving consumers, such that they benefit more, then perhaps there is a compelling reason for allowing him to do so.

                                                  That is, perhaps he is getting support not because of the content, but the distribution service.

                                                  I will concede that exclusivity is not a constitutional mandate anymore than promoting the useful arts and sciences. However I do believe that the constitution does direct action and duty upon congress to apply both of those principles. I appreciate the thorough discussion.

                                                  Cool.

                                                  The discussion seems to be turning back to earlier economic arguments you've made that fixed (production) costs can simply be ignored. I still don't buy that. If I have costs in the millions and your costs are zero or negligible, you have a likely advantage, governed solely by who is a "better" marketer. Plus, you can eat me alive on price since you begin at zero and work up, while I begin deep in the hole.


                                                  Clarification: I have NEVER said that fixed costs can or should be "ignored." I am sorry if you believe I implied that. What I've said is that they are to be ignored in *pricing* decisions, but NOT in the overall business model. That is, it DOES matter in making go/no go decisions. You obviously need to take into account the fixed costs in looking at the wider picture and determining how you will recoup the costs. But if you are only looking at them in the pricing context, you open yourself up to being undercut on price.

                                                  So, in this example, perhaps it still makes sense to price at zero, where there's "competition" but then you recover the fixed costs (and profit) through things that Josh *cannot* compete with you on. That can include things like direct connection between you and the fans (they want to support you, not Josh). It could include uncopyable scarcities, like the Kevin Smith Q&As. It can include other uncopyable scarcities (the opportunity for a bit part in future works). Basically the canvas is unlimited, but I suggest focusing on the things that can't be copied, because that's an advantage that Josh will never win on.

                                                  And I don't know how I necessarily build a bigger market. If I compete on price, you can still cut my throat. Again I have to pit my marketing skills against an interloper and find a way to beat him other than on price. And with the constant clamoring over the unfairness of content pricing I hear every day, There's no reason to expect the market to not react to price. And maybe you'd get some goodwill if you were a famous director or actor, but that is exceptional and almost unknown in the low budget film world.

                                                  Again, it appears there are lots of ways... but part of what's happening today is that people are figuring those things out. But my key suggestion: focus on two things: building any kind of connection with your audience (and, yes, small indie filmmakers can absolutely do that) and look for ways to provide scarce value that any copyist cannot.

                                                   

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 3:33pm

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

                                                    Well, I'm back. Thanks for the thorough discussion. I still have grave doubts, but appreciate that you stepped up, answered every challenge directly and made a spirited case for each and every one of your points. I can't ask for much more. I'll happily serve as a character witness for your detractors who claim you duck hard questions.

                                                    I am troubled by the fact that Josh's superior marketing ability trumps my right to exclusive exploitation of my work for a period of time. I continue to believe that the most fair system is for a creator to have exclusive control for a period of time. I actually lean more in your direction on the issue of appropriate length.

                                                    I don't think fixed costs can be ignored within the specter of competing with "free." If I can't compete on price with Josh because to do so may mean decades to recover my investment and tolling additional interest, my only hope is to provide more robust distribution and user experience, further increasing my marginal costs.

                                                    Anyway, I appreciate the spirited exchange and hope that future clashes are similarly productive.

                                                     

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                                                      nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 4:24pm

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

                                                      I continue to believe that the most fair system is for a creator to have exclusive control for a period of time.

                                                      Sure, but the more important question to me is why do you continue to believe that fairness to creators is the purpose of copyright?

                                                      I don't think fixed costs can be ignored within the specter of competing with "free."

                                                      Zero is just another price. If fixed costs don't factor into price in a competitive market, then it doesn't matter if the price is zero or non-zero.

                                                      If I can't compete on price with Josh because to do so may mean decades to recover my investment and tolling additional interest, my only hope is to provide more robust distribution and user experience, further increasing my marginal costs.

                                                      Sure, that's fine. As long as you're making enough profit to recoup your investment, it doesn't really matter if your costs are higher than someone else's, does it?

                                                      PS don't construe any of this to mean I'm favor of abolishing copyright.

                                                       

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                                                      Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 4:54pm

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

                                                      I am troubled by the fact that Josh's superior marketing ability trumps my right to exclusive exploitation of my work for a period of time. I continue to believe that the most fair system is for a creator to have exclusive control for a period of time. I actually lean more in your direction on the issue of appropriate length.

                                                      Two quick points, and then I'm probably logged out for the weekend:

                                                      1. Again, the purpose of the system is for what's best for the overall public, not what's "most fair." You can argue that if it's not fair for creators that it won't be best for society, and that may be true. Just would need to explore if that's necessarily the case.

                                                      2. I agree with you that it is entirely possible that a system of limited exclusivity may, in fact, benefit the public the most. That's what I've said all along, despite the one commenter above who keeps insisting otherwise. But, I think this is the area most worth exploring. Is it necessarily true, and if so, how can we most focus in on finding the level of exclusivity/protection/enforcement that *is* most likely to maximize societal benefit.

                                                       

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:41pm

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                                                We should never, ever base how we set the rewards based on "sweat of the brow." That actually takes away the incentive for people to become more efficient. No one in the computer business says "but how will I continue being able to make $5,000 computers. They realize they need to make *better* computers for *less* money because that's where the market is.

                                                This analogy applies to two different films, each with sunk costs competing head-to-head. Not to me competing against Josh with an identical product on which I have invested significant resources and he has not.

                                                 

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 4:57am

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                                        I don't know. "Should" is a moral question, unrelated to the question I'm focused on, which is what is optimal to society. I think "should" is a distraction. The real question is whether or not you need such exclusivity to best compensate you and to best get your movie out into the world. You, clearly, believe that to be the case. And you may be right.

                                        I think there is growing evidence that exclusivity is not necessarily needed, but with only a small number of artists experimenting in that direction, the data is admittedly too small a sample size to tell at this point.


                                        Should is the whole point, Mike. You're doing what you always do and trying to avoid addressing the actual issue head on. Stop making excuses and for the first time in your life actually address the "should" argument. The fact that you CAN'T address it speaks volumes. Why should companies with deep pockets be able to profit off of the labor of the little person who writes a book or makes a movie? That "should" question is at the very heart of the entire copyright debate, and the fact that you have no answer says all there is to know about you. You don't have the goods, so no one should listen to you. You're too scared to put any actual skin in the game, so no one should listen to you. That's what your non-answer says.

                                        Again, you're asking a purely moral question. And since it's a moral question, I can't see how it's "the" fundamental question here. A moral question is one that everyone answers individually, but gets us nowhere near any objective truth or useful data.

                                        Everyone else in the copyright debate is able to address the moral issue. Yet you pretend like it can be swept under the rug. Pretending that it isn't there doesn't make it go away. Deal with the "should" issue directly and honestly. We'd all love to hear an actual answer rather than another excuse. If you can't even address the tough question directly, then why should anyone ever listen to you? Man up, put some skin in the game, and quit running away from the tough questions. There are fundamental issues with copyright that have been debated for centuries, yet you're pretending like you're above even going there. You're not above it. You're just a fake and a coward who can't even address a difficult question head on. Seriously. WTF, dude? How many years have you been in the copyright debate, yet you can't even address the tough questions? That's sad.

                                         

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                                          nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:30am

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

                                          Why should companies with deep pockets be able to profit off of the labor of the little person who writes a book or makes a movie?

                                          What if turns out that's the way society gets the greatest and highest quality production of cultural and scientific works? Would you still argue it's the wrong solution?

                                           

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                                      nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:16am

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

                                      I believe that a rights holder has an absolute right to economically exploit his creative output for a given period of time and enjoy the full protection of the law against others infringing upon that right.

                                      Is that because you think they won't do it without the exclusivity, or because it's not fair if they don't get the exclusivity?

                                       

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:50am

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                                        I think that I invest years of my life and hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars that I should have an exclusive right to monetize my project for a given period of time. I don't think it is just for you to have rights equal to mine to make money on my creative output during that limited time period. Do you?

                                         

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                                          Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 7:47am

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

                                          I think that I invest years of my life and hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars that I should have an exclusive right to monetize my project for a given period of time. I don't think it is just for you to have rights equal to mine to make money on my creative output during that limited time period. Do you?

                                          Sorry. Mike doesn't discuss his beliefs or morals. Whatever you're asking, he needs more data so he's incapable of having an opinion. You see, everyone creates their own morals, so that means that Mike doesn't have to discuss anyone's morals, especially his own. He's more interested in how people can beg for money on Kickstarter or use the internet to shame people into doing things than he is in discussing substantive like where you're trying to go. Just look at JoCo and Louis CK. That's the answer. There's no need to consider artists' rights or unfair competition or unjust enrichment or even what it means to promote the progress. Just know that Mike has a secret definition of what it means to promote the progress, and he's using super secret formulas to crunch the data. And it doesn't look good. Everything about copyright is just bad, bad, bad. Oh, the good parts? What good parts? We don't talk about people's rights. You're so stuck in the old view, man. Smoke some grass and look around you. You don't need exclusive rights when you can whip up a mob on the internet. Just look at how effective Mike's lies were early last year. There was no time to discuss fundamental issues. Repeat after me: "Collateral damage! Internet freedom! Louis CK! Nina Paley! Don't break the internet! Censorship!" Don't sweat the details. The mobs on the internet don't like details. Just give them one of those buzzwords and let innuendo do the rest. We don't talk about the details here. We just pretend like the messy parts don't matter. Exclusivity? Nope. There's no property in cyberspace, dude. Give it up already.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:00am

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

                                            Do you ever stop to shower after posting so much shit every day?

                                             

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                                          Gwiz (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 8:54am

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

                                          I think that I invest years of my life and hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars that I should have an exclusive right to monetize my project for a given period of time.


                                          First off, you are sort of drifting into the "sweat of the brow" argument which was rejected by the SCOTUS in 1991.

                                          Aside from that, not a lot of other business ventures outside of the entertainment sector are given the same protections. If invest 1 million dollars opening a coffee shop, there is nothing stopping Starbucks from opening up next door. It's just competition in a free market.

                                          Now that being said, I personally feel that authors SHOULD get limited protection of their work. And by limited I mean 10-15 years max. I also feel that those works should then be released to the public domain at the end of the term, no exceptions. The other major problem with copyright that needs to be addressed is the exploitation of the creators by the middleman and gatekeepers. There isn't a period in the history of copyright where some large company (publishers, record labels, movie studios, etc) wasn't screwing over both the consumers and the creators on either end of the deal.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:08am

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

                                            Your analogy doesn't fly (and yes, it's me from your six strikes beating). Your analogy is apt if you and I both make a movie about a serial killer and release it simultaneously. Multiple films are released every week. Those compete with each other as well as television, books, live theater, sports, etc for the entertainment dollar.

                                            To use your analogy, how about if you open up a restaurant and let me use it for free as a bar after you close for the day? You good with that?

                                             

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                                              Gwiz (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:38am

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                                              Yeah, I know a real world small business analogy doesn't really compare to copyright. I was just making a point that there are tons of businesses out there getting venture capitol without guarantees of exclusivity like with copyrighted content and they are surviving.

                                               

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:12am

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

                                            By the way, I was just breaking your balls. I appreciate the candor regarding exclusivity and agree on the copyright term- but only if a higher level of enforcement exists during a more limited exclusive period. Thanks for your contribution.

                                             

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                      Ed C., Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:05am

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                      Yes, Mike believes that copyright has a purpose, the purpose stated in the Constitution, and that current law is not serving the original purpose. If you actually bothered to read, or even comprehend, what he writes, you would realize that your anal questions have been answered thousands of times over the last decade, and has given evidence to back his claims.

                      Yet, you think that because he's against what copyright law has become, that he's against ANY form of copyright. And you continue to believe your own non-sense despite all evidence to the contrary. Face it, you don't give a damn about the truth, you just want him to somehow confirm your delusions about him, and then keep whining that it never happens.

                       

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                      techflaws (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:23am

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                      I think it's easy as pie to show that most of what he posts is faith-based, biased nonsense.

                      Which is an utter and completely failure on your part. Sorry.

                       

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                      Ron, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:17am

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                      Sounds to me like you are calling everyone here stupid, except yourself. Is this what you think? You think Mike is our God, our hero? You think we need him to give us thoughts in our little brains? You are the one that comes here and screams about shit that is contrary to what everyone here thinks. To me, you are the dumb-ass, not Mike, not us, YOU!!!! Mike reports on things that all of us here are interested in. You should be attacking all of us, not just Mike.

                       

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                      John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:12am

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                      I think it's easy as pie to show that most of what he posts is faith-based, biased nonsense.


                      Then why do you consistently fail to show this?

                       

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                      JMT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:43pm

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                      "I think it's easy as pie to show that most of what he posts is faith-based, biased nonsense."

                      If it's so easy why have you never even come close to doing that?

                      "I think the world should know what MM is all about--and it ain't pretty."

                      I think the world should know what you are all about, but unlike Mike, you're to gutless to put your name to what you write, so all your accusations and insults are just noisy bluster, with zero credibility or respect. You're the one who's scared, not Mike.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:04pm

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                        I think the world should know what you are all about, but unlike Mike, you're to gutless to put your name to what you write, so all your accusations and insults are just noisy bluster, with zero credibility or respect. You're the one who's scared, not Mike.

                        So JMT reveals exactly what about your identity? Is there really a difference between the three letters JMT and a uniquely assigned snowflake? Not in my book.

                         

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                  PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:20am

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                  "So that means you must agree that he's lying when he pretends otherwise."

                  Has Mike ever said to you that he doesn't have an opinion? If not, you're just projecting your own delusions on to him, whereas everybody else here seem capable of grasping that he does have an opinion. Even if he doesn't feel the need to write it in large letters in crayon so you can catch up.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:29am

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

                    Of course he said it. That's why I'm bringing it up. I'm on my phone right now so I can't dig up the link, but I promise I will later. In the meantime you should know that Mike is Not denying it. If it weren't true you know he'd be denying it very quickly.

                     

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                      PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:33am

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                      Well, given the level of accuracy you usually display at understanding what people write, their intentions therein, and the context in which it was presented, I hope you'll forgive me if I wait for that link before passing judgement.

                       

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                      Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:53am

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

                      Of course he said it. That's why I'm bringing it up. I'm on my phone right now so I can't dig up the link, but I promise I will later. In the meantime you should know that Mike is Not denying it. If it weren't true you know he'd be denying it very quickly.

                      Here is what I said. Note that it is entirely different from one that commenter here is arguing. He is misprepresenting my statements entirely, pretending like I am 100% on the fence about TODAY's copyright vs. any other level of copyright. That is 100% incorrect as was clearly stated to him.

                      http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20130121/14473121743/global-hackathons-prepared-to-carry-fo rward-work-aaron-swartz.shtml#c377

                      Read that and read the comments above by the AC, and feel free to determine for yourself who is being dishonest here.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:38am

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

                        Here is what I said. Note that it is entirely different from one that commenter here is arguing. He is misprepresenting my statements entirely, pretending like I am 100% on the fence about TODAY's copyright vs. any other level of copyright. That is 100% incorrect as was clearly stated to him.

                        http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20130121/14473121743/global-hackathons-prepared-to-carry-fo rward-work-aaron-swartz.shtml#c377

                        Read that and read the comments above by the AC, and feel free to determine for yourself who is being dishonest here.


                        Thanks for finding the link.

                        Yes, that's you admitting that while your view of copyright is dim, you are unable to take a position as to whether we should have any copyright at all. It's a simple question. I'm not asking you to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt. I'm just asking you simply and directly to give an opinion as to whether you think authors should have some sort of exclusive rights in their writings. I understand that future data might make you change your mind. I understand that it's just an opinion and not fact.

                        In your opinion, should authors have any exclusive rights to their writings? Yes or no?

                        That's the question you won't answer, and I think it's because you're being dishonest and are too ashamed to actually state what you believe. I think you want to shit all over everyone else's beliefs while pretending like you have none of your own. Readers can decide for themselves whether or not you really have no opinion as to whether there should be any copyright at all. I think we all know which side of the fence you're on.

                         

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                          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:51am

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

                          "In your opinion, should authors have any exclusive rights to their writings? Yes or no?"

                          Wow, so you whined for weeks when you could have just emailed him this question?

                          Oh right...ego.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:00am

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

                            Wow, so you whined for weeks when you could have just emailed him this question?

                            Oh right...ego.


                            On the contrary, I'm proving that he's a liar. He's proving it again in these very comments by pretending that he's not on the fence and that he's actually answered the question. I enjoy bringing him public shame because, well, he deserves it for being so dishonest. You reap what you sow.

                             

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                              Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:04am

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

                              Technically he did answer your general question about copyright, which I've seen you ask multiple times in the past few weeks.

                              The specific one you just asked about author's rights, however, I have not seen as a topic until today.

                               

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                          MrWilson, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:38am

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

                          "Readers can decide for themselves whether or not you really have no opinion as to whether there should be any copyright at all. I think we all know which side of the fence you're on."

                          You're contradicting yourself there. Yes, readers can decide for themselves, to the point that they can speak for themselves and don't need you purporting to know what they think and speak on their behalf. If you and a few other trolls are the only ones who perceive this grand conspiracy, you might want to question whether you're really seeing "the truth" or are just blinded by your own bias and lashing out emotionally because you're obsessive and have found a forum to put your ego on display.

                           

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                          Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:58am

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

                          I'm just asking you simply and directly to give an opinion as to whether you think authors should have some sort of exclusive rights in their writings. I understand that future data might make you change your mind. I understand that it's just an opinion and not fact.

                          As I have said to you before, and in *this very thread* I am agnostic on the topic, because there is not enough data, and it would be *DISHONEST* of me to take a firm position when the answer is that I do not know yet.

                          Do you believe that people who are agnostic about God are somehow "on the fence" and do you demand that they answer "Do you believe in God, yes or no?"

                          I'm not sure why you insist that people must have a definitive opinion on what the perfect level of copyright is. That's a rather odd position for you to take. It is not a yes or no question, so I don't answer it as yes or no.

                          For the life of me, I do not understand why this upsets you other than the fact that you have decided, incorrectly, in your head that I am 100% against all copyright. That you hold beliefs about me that are incorrect, and then I tell you that you are wrong does not make me dishonest. It just means that the strawman in your head is not me. I have told you this before, and yet you refuse to recognize this.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:08am

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

                            As I have said to you before, and in *this very thread* I am agnostic on the topic, because there is not enough data, and it would be *DISHONEST* of me to take a firm position when the answer is that I do not know yet.

                            There you go. You are claiming to be "agnostic on the topic." That's being on the fence. Thanks for again explicitly admitting that you're on the fence. No need to lie and pretend like you're not on the fence, as you have done.

                            Trying to compare this to belief in God is dumb. I just want to know, given the data that you do have and given what you know and believe, do you think authors should have some sort of exclusive rights to their writings. Given how incredibly opinionated you are about all things copyright, it's simply unbelievable that you have no opinion on this.

                            I'm not sure why you insist that people must have a definitive opinion on what the perfect level of copyright is. That's a rather odd position for you to take. It is not a yes or no question, so I don't answer it as yes or no.

                            And I have said repeatedly that I'm not asking you to give a definitive position on the "perfect level of copyright." You're simply deflecting and being disingenuous by pretending like I am asking for that. I'm asking for your opinion as to whether as a general matter authors should have some sort of copyright rights. That's it. I'm not asking for proof or perfection or anything like that. Just an opinion on the matter given the data and beliefs that you do have.

                            For the life of me, I do not understand why this upsets you other than the fact that you have decided, incorrectly, in your head that I am 100% against all copyright. That you hold beliefs about me that are incorrect, and then I tell you that you are wrong does not make me dishonest. It just means that the strawman in your head is not me. I have told you this before, and yet you refuse to recognize this.

                            It's because you play games and refuse to discuss any of your beliefs directly, Mike. It upsets me that you shit on everyone else's beliefs about copyright when you're too chicken shit to discuss your own. It upsets me that you lie and pretend like you're not on the fence when you so clearly are. Get off the fence. Give us your opinion. Be open, honest, and human. I hear that works well for people.

                             

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                              Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:14am

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                              It upsets me that you shit on everyone else's beliefs about copyright when you're too chicken shit to discuss your own.

                              I discuss my own opinions all the time. In this very thread. You are being dishonest (on purpose?) when you claim I do not discuss my opinions. The fact that I do not know the exact right position for copyright does not mean I do not discuss my opinions.

                              Why do you keep lying like that?

                               

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                                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:17am

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

                                I discuss my own opinions all the time. In this very thread. You are being dishonest (on purpose?) when you claim I do not discuss my opinions. The fact that I do not know the exact right position for copyright does not mean I do not discuss my opinions.

                                Why do you keep lying like that?


                                As I've indicated, you are incredibly opinionated and state your opinions all the time. That's why it's simply not believable that you have no opinion at all as to whether authors should have some sort of copyright rights. When I said "too chicken shit to discuss your own," I meant your own opinions as to this issue specifically.

                                 

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                                  nasch (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:37pm

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

                                  As I've indicated, you are incredibly opinionated and state your opinions all the time. That's why it's simply not believable that you have no opinion at all as to whether authors should have some sort of copyright rights.

                                  You have opinions on some things! That's how I know you have an opinion about this thing! RAWRRR!!

                                   

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                                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:19am

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

                                The fact that I do not know the exact right position for copyright does not mean I do not discuss my opinions.

                                And again, I am not asking for the "exact right position." I'm simply asking as a general matter your opinion as to whether authors should have any copyright rights. Given what you know and believe, where do you come down on the issue. That's it. No perfection. No proof. Just an unsupported opinion is all I'm asking.

                                 

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                                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:30am

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                                  No, you're asking for the "exact right portion", as you put it. That could, conceivably, include exterminating all authors rights, if there is a sound logical reasoning behind it and it benefits the public.

                                  You're sounding like a scratched tape now. Stop it.

                                   

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                                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:35am

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

                                    No, you're asking for the "exact right portion", as you put it. That could, conceivably, include exterminating all authors rights, if there is a sound logical reasoning behind it and it benefits the public.

                                    You're sounding like a scratched tape now. Stop it.


                                    I'm not asking for any details or specifics or proof. I'm just asking whether in his opinion, no matter how imperfect it may be, whether he thinks that authors should have any copyright rights. Based on what he knows and believes, what is his current opinion. That's it. I'm not asking him to say what he knows for a fact. I'm asking for him to voice an opinion.

                                     

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                                  Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:45am

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

                                  And again, I am not asking for the "exact right position." I'm simply asking as a general matter your opinion as to whether authors should have any copyright rights. Given what you know and believe, where do you come down on the issue. That's it. No perfection. No proof. Just an unsupported opinion is all I'm asking.

                                  And, ONCE AGAIN, as I have said OVER AND OVER AGAIN in this very thread: my opinion is that copyright law today is way too damaging and does not serve to promote the progress. It also serves to stifle speech.

                                  I think it needs to be scaled back significantly. To what level, I do not know.

                                  That's my opinion. If you keep saying I don't have an opinion, you are lying.

                                   

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                                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:50am

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

                                    So how about instead of simply tearing down, you actually posit something that you believe strikes a fair and equitable balance between rights holders and the public? I'd listen, and think it is a discussion worth having.

                                     

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                                      Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:00am

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

                                      So how about instead of simply tearing down, you actually posit something that you believe strikes a fair and equitable balance between rights holders and the public? I'd listen, and think it is a discussion worth having.

                                      But you're starting from a false premise, that the important thing is finding a "balance." That's incorrect. The most important thing is finding the point that maximally benefits everyone -- i.e., that leads to the greatest "promotion of the progress." That's it.

                                      My interest is in figuring out where that point is. Where do we have incentives to create, without limiting the ability of follow on creation and/or free speech. Where is the point at which there is maximum progress.

                                      Setting it up as an "either/or" situation suggests it's a zero sum equation and ratcheting up one thing hurts the other. I don't think that's true. I think that if there are proper incentives, artists can be better off and the public can be better off, and my interest is in figuring out where that point might lie.

                                       

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:17am

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

                                        But you're starting from a false premise, that the important thing is finding a "balance." That's incorrect. The most important thing is finding the point that maximally benefits everyone -- i.e., that leads to the greatest "promotion of the progress." That's it.

                                        We're getting somewhere. Thank you. How do you address the fact that we can never know what that exact point is? What A thinks promotes the progress is not the same as what B thinks. How can we maximize a function when we can't even agree as to what the variables are or what their relative weights should be?

                                        The strictly utilitarian view you're espousing doesn't give us a standard that's very useful since everyone will disagree about what it means to promote the progress. So you're basically saying that you're waiting to find out some magic number that we'll never actually be able to find out.

                                        And what do you make of other rationales for copyright? Are you strictly a utilitarian who holds no other views for why authors should have copyright rights? It's fine if you are, I'm just wondering if you think all other views are per se wrong. Is that utilitarian view the only view that has any merit?

                                         

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                                          JMT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:50pm

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

                                          "We're getting somewhere. Thank you."

                                          So Mike states the same thing he's being saying for years, and now you think we're getting somewhere? Just now?

                                          Mental illness. That's the only explanation I can come up with for the stuff you write. That's not an insult, it's a genuine opinion.

                                           

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:23am

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                                        Fair enough. But hand-in-glove with that has to be a system of protection of rights holders from having their property appropriated by others without just compensation.

                                        Without such a vehicle, then you really are talking about an either/or where the anti-copyright side has it 100% their way. Love to hear your thoughts on appropriate, practical enforcement measures.

                                         

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                                          Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:39am

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

                                          Fair enough. But hand-in-glove with that has to be a system of protection of rights holders from having their property appropriated by others without just compensation.

                                          Is that necessarily true? I'm not convinced of that. I think we've seen that many artists who don't embrace any form of enforcement actually *benefit* and are able to make more money by staying away from the threat of enforcement, which can scare off fans.

                                          And, again, your statement above makes some assumptions that I'm not sure are true, such as using the word "property" when it is not appropriate.

                                          Separately, as we've seen a few times, most recently with the Jonathan Coulton situation, it often appears that public awareness is a better mechanism for dealing with "unfair" appropriation than any legal enforcement mechanism. If the public thinks something is unfair, then there are ways to respond. To date, they've done that by buying Coulton's version, rather than the Glee version, even if the Glee version is completely legal. That seems like an example of an effective tool to respond to what is generally seen as misappropriation, without needing a law for "enforcement."

                                          You can argue that this is a special case, or that it only works if there are tools for enforcement, but I'm not convinced of that.

                                          Without such a vehicle, then you really are talking about an either/or where the anti-copyright side has it 100% their way. Love to hear your thoughts on appropriate, practical enforcement measures.

                                          Again, I'm not convinced of that. It is *possible* that some form of enforcement makes sense against what may be considered "egregious" situations of appropriation/infringement. But it is also possible that specific tools for enforcement actually lead to a decrease in benefit for both the producers and consumers of content. As an example, when we have seen content creators take an aggressive stance on enforcement, it often drives away fans and interest, and thus shrinks the market.

                                          You may argue that the impact is less than the impact of infringement/misappropriation, but again, I think that the data there is not at all complete.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:52am

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

                                            I hear you. My perspective on the issue is largely formed around motion pictures and television. Unlike music, touring and selling t-shirts isn't nearly as practical a revenue generator.

                                            Personally, I think much of the problem in this industry can and will be addressed through more robust online distribution. But my concern is that the culture of "free" is so pervasive that equally robust enforcement is a necessary part of the equation.

                                            So where is enforcement appropriate? Do we agree that revenue-producing sites dedicated to infringing activity are targets? And if so, what measures to you think are fair and effective?

                                             

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                                              Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:12pm

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                                              Have you ever had a bad experience with union workers? Someone with so much protection they feel invincible? I have.

                                              Lots of great workers out there, unions and not, but the best way to deal with ones who do what you don't like is to NOT be restrictive and enforcing. Instead, treat them as humans (which they are), treat them with respect (which they will earn after they receive it), and you'll see the difference.

                                              In other words:
                                              0) Accept that some material will be shared, regardless of whatever you do
                                              1) Accept that these "sites dedicated to infringing activities" are actually not that, but simply a tool which SOME USERS choose to infringe with
                                              2) Accept that a robust system should be one free of unnecessary locks, restrictions, and inconveniences
                                              3) Accept that people will pay, even though free is available, if there are good reasons (easier to use, has full selection, supports multiple formats, supports all available devices, supports artists fairly not just corporate copyright holders, does not have windowed restrictions, does not have unskippable lectures about "piracy devastating the industry" or commercials, is not region/country encoded/license restricted in ANY WAY SHAPE OR FORM, and finally IS REASONABLY PRICED to the point where it's almost an unthinkable financial decision, like buying penny candy)
                                              4) Accept that such a system must be open to ALL (not just corporate copyrighted works) artists
                                              5) Designed so youth who are not eligible for credit cards can make purchases with cash via kiosks which through CD/DVD/USB disk/Bluetooth/that Andtroid swipe/touch thing - can transfer the files to any device

                                              iTunes is restrictive, so is Amazon, so is any other system requiring a credit card. Do not expect youth to have to walk to a store that sells iTunes gift cards, buy them, walk back home, then download (assuming they are even allowed to register without a credit card) their content.

                                              MAKE IT SIMPLE! It has to be ultra easy for ANYONE!

                                              I used to get cash for my BDay, as a teen I loved going to the music store to buy it, no sign up, no credit card, no "you must play this on Sony walkmen only", nothing! Just "Here's your tape, have a good day."

                                              That IS all possible.

                                              And YouTube handles most of those parameters, when NOT subjected to regional locks and such.

                                              So you're almost there, it just means getting OFF the control-freak high horse and making it easier.

                                              I don't care what Lowery and his trichordist "we already have robust systems" rants go on about, because he doesn't address the flaws.

                                              You do NOT have robust systems, systems always up, easy to use, nonrestrictive, full selection - yes that means UMG or Warner or DefJam or FavouredNations or Network or any indie or independent artist without a label - ANYONE!

                                              That's your robust system you want. So easy to use, walk to machine, get content. No registration, cards avail at local stores, especially variety stores, just like phone cards, then let them go to town and buy!

                                               

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:36pm

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

                                                1) Accept that these "sites dedicated to infringing activities" are actually not that, but simply a tool which SOME USERS choose to infringe with

                                                I will never accept that a pirate should be allowed to appropriate the valuable creative output of another and monetize it for his own financial gain. Never.

                                                 

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                                                  Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:47pm

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                                                  The "pirate" does not monetize.

                                                  Your argument indicates you don't fully understand what is happening.

                                                  Does every computer user write viruses? So should we block all computer users from using computers?

                                                  No!

                                                  Does the computer manufacturer share in the responsibility for those to develop viruses using said computer?

                                                  No!

                                                  So the people running sites like The Pirate Bay have USERS who share infringing content and do not make any money from doing so, aka the user of the computer who writes the virus.

                                                  The legitimate users share legitimate content, such as the latest story they wrote or distribute their favourite flavour of GNU/Linux.

                                                  They don't make any money either. They also do NOT pay for the privilege to share! Period!

                                                  The ad revenue, like YouTube, allows users, all users, to share content free of charge!

                                                  Some will share copyrighted content for a multitude of reasons which were addressed in my points.

                                                  You do not go after the computer manufacturers or even Microsoft for exploits people find or viruses people (users) write.

                                                  Yet you think it is OK to go after The Pirate Bay?

                                                  And your next argument is shot down by this: If 90% of all computer users were writing exploits and viruses, would you then be able to sue the manufacturers or Microsoft?

                                                  Again, NO!

                                                  No! No more than you can sue Ford for the DUI's people have while driving a Ford vehicle, even if it was 90% of the time!

                                                  You might think it would be "ok" to make breathalyzers mandatory, but now you've restricted because of the actions of people without looking at why!

                                                  Available transit (taxis, buses, etc..)?

                                                  You may not get the analogies, because it is difficult to relate perfect digital copies where no one is deprived of the ability to generate their own copies, but try to understand:
                                                  Those sites are wide open, they are sharing only what USERS put up!

                                                  Address the points, fail to accept and you won't reduce piracy. Fail to adapt and you won't reduce piracy. Fail to listen and you won't reduce piracy.

                                                  You'll never completely eliminate it, but you can reduce it.

                                                   

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                                                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:59pm

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

                                                    So the people running sites like The Pirate Bay have USERS who share infringing content and do not make any money from doing so, aka the user of the computer who writes the virus.

                                                    Pirate Bay and others like Ninja Video do create revenue through ad revenue, selling faster download speeds, donations, membership fees, etc. Their sole ability to realize revenue is derived from the unlawful appropriation of copyrighted content for which the owner has not been compensated. I don't see how you can defend that.

                                                     

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                                                      Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:09pm

                                                      REx25

                                                      That's for ALL content! Not just copyrighted content!

                                                      If you shut that down, you shut down all access to all content. You kill those who cannot afford or do not desire to "play ball" with corporations.

                                                      They'd love that, as they are heading down the same path as Edison's MPPC. The public won't like it and won't stand for it. Hollywood and music Labels don't care, just as MPPC didn't care.

                                                      And you think that's fare?

                                                      We've already said that if you simply listened your copyrighted content would be dramatically reduced in percentage on the sharing sites.

                                                      And you also fail to acknowledge these sites setup a system that's wide open and barely pays for itself.

                                                      I think the Pirate Bay trial proved that, despite the accusations of IFPI/RIAA/MPAA. But hey, if trials (biased as they were) could not produce the evidence you say exists, then you must know something everyone else doesn't and can't find.

                                                      Shut down those sites and not only do you see a drop in your piracy, a drop in LEGAL sharing, you'll see a drop in LEGAL PURCHASES!

                                                      I don't see how you can handle that, but I'm sure they'd blame it on piracy.

                                                      Prohibition does not work when the majority of the people disagree with you. I don't see how you can defend that.

                                                      Beating people into submission by illegally threatening them does not work in your favour. Locking things down to the point of hindered usage compared to what's freely available, does not work in your favour.

                                                      I don't see how you can defend your actions when the people have spoken, listen to your damn customers and they will remain your customers and grow in number.

                                                      Continue down the control-freak path and watch your Castles Made of Sand slip into the sea!

                                                       

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                                                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:24pm

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

                                                      "I don't see how you can defend that."

                                                      Clearly. Because he isn't.

                                                      He quite clearly stated that those sites ARE NOT doing anything in and of itself illegal. In point of fact, nothing is illegal about those websites or generating ad revenues, selling faster download/upload speeds, donations, membership fees, etc. If such actions were illegal Google would be in trouble for the first one, ALL file lockers (Dropbox, MediaFire, Rapidshare, Google Drive, etc) would be in trouble for the second, churches/Good Will/schools/etc for the third, gyms/rental storages/etc for the last one.

                                                      You're trying to conflate sites with the actions of SOME who use them to distribute copyrighted material. The point you missed was the one that compared computers and Microsoft and cars and Ford. You can't hold the latter two responsible for the actions of users who take advantage of the former two. By which I mean Microsoft/Ford and computers/cars.

                                                      I digress, their sole ability to realize revenue is by providing USEFUL SERVICES to users. Nothing more, nothing less. Unless you'd like to argue with various courts (both in the U.S. and elsewhere) that have upheld that file storage lockers (like Rapidshare) are LEGAL, and so is their method of generating income.

                                                      What YOU take issue with, and what seemed to fly over your head per the person your replying to's comment, are the end users. Some of whom are uploading and sharing copyrighted material.

                                                      See the difference? Even if you don't, it's there. Take note of it or don't, but the one looking foolish and railing against the wrong people/companies is still you regardless.

                                                      Your problem is with those end users. But here's a newsflash, they're going to do whatever they want regardless. You can either piss into the wind (like you appear to be doing) or shrug and move on (like any rational adult would). If you do the latter, you can STILL make money. GASP! Shocking I know. But many people still do it. Heck, I don't even need to look far for proof. Is the music industry still around? It is? The hell you say! But wasn't Napster killing it? It was you say? Wow. Go figure. Guess despite rampant "the sky is falling!" claims, it didn't and those who were being "decimated by piracy" somehow survived. Or better yet, maybe they saw the new opportunities on the horizon (or banging on their door) and changed appropriately. You'd do well to learn from their (not so shiny) example.

                                                       

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:26pm

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

                                                        He quite clearly stated that those sites ARE NOT doing anything in and of itself illegal.

                                                        You ignore those sites exist to promote and monetize infringing activities. Without infringement, most would simply not exist. There's nothing illegal about a motel owner renting rooms by the hour. It may indeed have legitimate nightly customers, but it is first and foremost simply a front to facilitate prostitution. The owner can't simply wash his hands in the Holy Water and be willfully blind and profit from the very illegal activity he is promoting.

                                                         

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                                                          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:31pm

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

                                                          Let's take your hotel analogy and expand on it.

                                                          What if the hotel owner was not aware of prostitution occurring on premises. People can easily sneak other people into their hotel room.

                                                          Would it then be fine for a government agency to come in and say, "we need to be able to monitor every hotel room with cameras to make sure no illicit activity occurs"?

                                                           

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                                                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:38pm

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

                                                            You missed/ignored the part about how hourly room rental promotes the illegal conduct of prostitution.

                                                            How about banks and financial institutions? Do you think they have a duty to act against money laundering in their systems. Or should Tony Montana be ok to walk in with duffel bags of cash and make a deposit?

                                                             

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                                                          Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:37pm

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

                                                          Are such motels illegal? Are motels being shut down based on suspicion and being accused of raking in millions of dollars from prostitution? Are strip clubs going after these motels claiming billions lost in revenue?

                                                          Not a good analogy. Those sites WOULD exist, just as www.distrowatch.com exists, linking to distro's of GNU/Linux and Unix and OpenBSD. Free - linking to works! Sustaining themselves!

                                                          Distrowatch makes a living with non-infringing content. The Pirate Bay would as well. The reduced traffic would mean reduced bandwidth costs as well, which would offset the loss of revenue due to loss of traffic.

                                                          But we're all at a loss as to why you don't want to accept it is the users who are infringing and the reasons have already been stated (not "dirty freetarded pirates"), the legal services (some are good) are not at the robust, adequate, easy level they need to be.

                                                          Follow my steps, watch piracy drop. But you cannot do it half-assed. Not just for the USA! Every damn country, don't give me that license BS, don't lock it down, realize that most people on the planet (who has the largest populations - India and China) do not necessarily have laptops/desktops - they have MOBILE devices (hence the bluetooth and that touch/swipe thing requirement).

                                                          Again, look at what people use, market to that unrestricted, and watch the revenue skyrocket!

                                                          No, you don't need to pay me for this service, just listen to the damn customer!

                                                           

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                                                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:34pm

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

                                                        So does your position mean that you don't think banks and other financial institutions have any duty to guard against money laundering and other financial crimes within their ecosystems?

                                                         

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:26pm

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

                                                5) Designed so youth who are not eligible for credit cards can make purchases with cash via kiosks which through CD/DVD/USB disk/Bluetooth/that Andtroid swipe/touch thing - can transfer the files to any device
                                                +1 Rad idea.

                                                 

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                                              Gwiz (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:05pm

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

                                              Unlike music, touring and selling t-shirts isn't nearly as practical a revenue generator.


                                              Really? I'm not sure George Lucas would agree with you on that.

                                              http://www.statisticbrain.com/star-wars-total-franchise-revenue/

                                               

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                                                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:16pm

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

                                                For every George Lucas there are tens of thousands who have to rely on charging money to viewers for watching their production.

                                                Let's face it, the films most vulnerable to piracy are the ones that can least afford it.

                                                 

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                                                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 5:09pm

                                                  Re: ETC

                                                  What are you talking about? Each and every time you guys suggest that artists are hurt by piracy, you claim that nobody ever downloads indie stuff. Everyone ONLY downloads Top 20 stuff, which - guess what! - is big studio, big label, big production. Exactly how do these big places fall under the "least afford it" category?

                                                   

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                                                  nasch (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:08am

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

                                                  For every George Lucas there are tens of thousands who have to rely on charging money to viewers for watching their production.

                                                  Why do they "have to" rely on that?

                                                  Let's face it, the films most vulnerable to piracy are the ones that can least afford it.

                                                  Only if you mean the bad ones.

                                                   

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                                              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:13pm

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

                                              http://torrentfreak.com/artists-make-more-money-in-file-sharing-age-than-before-100914/

                                              "Aside from looking at the reported revenue, the researchers also polled the artists themselves to find out what their income sources are. Here, it was found that record sales have never been a large part of the annual revenue of artists. In 1999, 70% of the artists made less than 9% of their total income from record sales, and in 2009 this went down to 50%.

                                              Live performances are the major source of income for most artists. 37% of Norwegian artists made more than 50% of their income from live performances in 2009, up from 25% in 1999. That said, it has to be noted that only a few artists make a full living off their music, as most have other jobs aside."

                                              Norway disagrees.

                                               

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:35pm

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

                                            Is that necessarily true? I'm not convinced of that. I think we've seen that many artists who don't embrace any form of enforcement actually *benefit* and are able to make more money by staying away from the threat of enforcement, which can scare off fans.

                                            And, again, your statement above makes some assumptions that I'm not sure are true, such as using the word "property" when it is not appropriate.

                                            Separately, as we've seen a few times, most recently with the Jonathan Coulton situation, it often appears that public awareness is a better mechanism for dealing with "unfair" appropriation than any legal enforcement mechanism. If the public thinks something is unfair, then there are ways to respond. To date, they've done that by buying Coulton's version, rather than the Glee version, even if the Glee version is completely legal. That seems like an example of an effective tool to respond to what is generally seen as misappropriation, without needing a law for "enforcement."


                                            Yes, Mike, it's possible that if you define what to promote the progress means a certain way, and then you decide that a certain formula is the correct formula to gauge exactly what it means to promote the progress, then you could theoretically say whether one system is better than another. But the real world doesn't work that way. That's why I'm asking you to give an opinion on whether you think there should be any copyright rights. I understand that you don't know. I disagree with the notion that you could ever know, so I certainly agree that you don't know. I know you don't know. I don't know either. Nobody knows for sure. That's why I'm asking you to give an opinion. What is your best guess? Give the statement whatever additional qualifications you think are appropriate, including the aforementioned fact that you don't in fact know the perfect answer for sure. What is your best guess as to whether authors should in fact have some sort of exclusive rights to their rights? Please answer as best you can while telling us one way or the other what your best guess is. We all know and accept fully the fact that you don't know for sure. We all understand that the answer you give is only an opinion and not a statement of fact. But do please just tell us an answer. Please get off the fence. Thanks.

                                            Again, I'm not convinced of that. It is *possible* that some form of enforcement makes sense against what may be considered "egregious" situations of appropriation/infringement. But it is also possible that specific tools for enforcement actually lead to a decrease in benefit for both the producers and consumers of content. As an example, when we have seen content creators take an aggressive stance on enforcement, it often drives away fans and interest, and thus shrinks the market.

                                            You may argue that the impact is less than the impact of infringement/misappropriation, but again, I think that the data there is not at all complete.


                                            Yes, yes. The data are incomplete and you can't say for sure. We got it. But clearly you give opinions all of the time where you don't have the complete data. Don't pretend like you must be absolutely sure before you can give an opinion. You know that you give opinions without being completely sure day in and day out. So drop that please.

                                            Let's explore this if you would: So do you think the fact that a party has invested time, money, and effort into creating something of value doesn't give them any sort of inherent right to expect to capitalize on that value while being able to prevent others from doing the same? Say I spend six months writing a book that is worth $50,000 in the market. Should the deeper pockets of the world like Google be able to capitalize on my work however they want? Assume I'm not sophisticated and thus I'm an ineffective competitor. I believe such competition to be inherently unfair. I'm asking you if you believe it to be unfair as well. Do you believe any competition to be unfair? Please respond. Let's actually discuss these issues for once. Thanks.

                                             

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                                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:05am

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

                                      So how about instead of simply tearing down, you actually posit something that you believe strikes a fair and equitable balance between rights holders and the public? I'd listen, and think it is a discussion worth having.

                                      Thank you for saying that. It's his being critical of everyone else while not taking any stake in the underlying matter himself that bothers me. How can Mike ever expect to have a productive discussion like this?

                                       

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                                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:08am

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

                                        I don't think I've ever heard you suggest anything as a balance...

                                         

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                                          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:43am

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

                                          I don't think I've ever heard you suggest anything as a balance...

                                          I absolutely think that copyright rights need to be balanced with First Amendment interests. That's a given. But I also think we should take things further than the constitutional minimum. For example, I think that as a policy matter, the better balance between author and public is to have more personal use rights than the public currently has. I think remixes and samples should all be noninfringement. I think that fair use should be made clearer, with some bright line rules rather than a balancing of interests the courts now attempt. Let's expand fair use and make things clearer for all involved. The balancing will go into creating the rules. The rules won't be perfect in some utilitarian sense, but they will be the rules that give much needed clarity. Striving for perfection is great, but at some point reality dictates that we just pick something and go with it. I even am open to the possibility of shortening the term of copyright, but I'm on the record as thinking that it should be life plus some number. At bottom I'm a Lockean and I think what a person creates is their property that they should own it while they're alive and then pass it to their heirs and legatees. But the public interest countervails, and where to draw the lines is difficult to gauge. For every economist who says right X should be value Y, another economist will disagree. That thinking is theoretical fine to the extent we can pretend like there'd be a consensus, but I say let's just lay down straightforward rules and get rid of these silly gray areas. Balance is wonderful, but balance is something that will never be agreed upon since we all balance things differently.

                                           

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                                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:46am

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

                                            Holy balls. Where was this awesomeness like 20 posts ago?

                                             

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                                            Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:55am

                                            REx20

                                            If you had come here with this comment FIRST, you would have generated an amazing debate, with all different viewpoints.

                                            Each viewpoint, when presented without insults/ad hom/logical fallacies, would enlighten everyone else, even with opposing view points.

                                             

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                                            shane (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:48pm

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

                                            Problematically, the idea that an idea is property is pretty much a non starter. Nor is there anything "Lockean" about IP.

                                             

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                                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:58am

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

                                    And, ONCE AGAIN, as I have said OVER AND OVER AGAIN in this very thread: my opinion is that copyright law today is way too damaging and does not serve to promote the progress. It also serves to stifle speech.

                                    I think it needs to be scaled back significantly. To what level, I do not know.

                                    That's my opinion. If you keep saying I don't have an opinion, you are lying.


                                    Yes, we all understand that you think the status quo is unacceptable. I'm asking the more theoretical question as to whether, in general and given what you know and believe at the moment, you think that authors should have some sort of copyright protection. I'm not asking you to prove or even purport to know the perfect amount of copyright. That's the question you're not answering other than to say you can't answer it because you don't know. I just want to know which way you're leaning. Qualify it all you want, but pick a side.

                                     

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                                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 1:34pm

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

                                      That's the problem with squares, everything has to have a side . . .

                                       

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                              MrWilson, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:32am

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

                              "You are claiming to be "agnostic on the topic." That's being on the fence."

                              No, it's claiming to be agnostic. On the fence means you're in the middle of two (though arguably falsely dichotomous) sides. Agnostic is a meta-perspective that questions whether you even can know enough to be on either side of the fence or on the fence.

                              A person in orbit looking down on the earth can't be said to be in one country or another or standing on the border between two countries.

                              You're being partisan and pretending there are only two sides and spineless people in the middle who haven't taken a side yet when there is a wide array of positions that anyone can take that don't have to be shoehorned into your narrow perspective.

                               

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                                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:34am

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

                                ^This

                                And I am guessing AJ wants cannon fodder to throw in Mike's face whenever his ego is feeling sluggish.

                                 

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                              John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:04pm

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

                              There you go. You are claiming to be "agnostic on the topic." That's being on the fence.


                              No, it's not. "On the fence" means that there are only two options and a person refuses to decide which of the two he will adhere to.

                              With copyright issues, there aren't only two options. There's a wide, wide range of possible opinions and combination of opinions. You are wanting to force a complex issue into a cartoony, black-and-white parody that has no bearing on the real world.

                               

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                          John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:43am

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

                          In your opinion, should authors have any exclusive rights to their writings? Yes or no?

                          That's the question you won't answer, and I think it's because you're being dishonest and are too ashamed to actually state what you believe.


                          Oh, please.

                          I have a strong and clear opinion on copyright law, but there's no way I could answer that question. It's demanding an absolute in a situation that has no absolutes.

                          Exclusive right? For how long? Does that exclude fair use? etc.

                          Anyone answering that question "yes" or "no" would be lying too simplistic to be useful. The only intelligent and honest answer would be "it depends".

                           

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                          PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:54pm

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

                          "In your opinion, should authors have any exclusive rights to their writings? Yes or no?"

                          Meh, what the hell I'll answer this, in much the same way as I think most will answer round here:

                          Yes they should, under reasonable limits. That means that they shouldn't have such rights for their distant descendants decades after their deaths, that public domain materials should be retroactively removed, that art should be hoarded away from the public because it's "unprofitable" or because the licence holder is unknown, that someone playing 10 seconds of a work in the background of a family video should be shut down or a fan site should be attacked because they dared to use an image of their chosen subject.

                          Sorry, were you expecting a binary answer worthy of a total moron rather than the nuanced arguments you constantly ignore? My apologies.

                           

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                          Karl (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:45pm

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

                          I think we all know which side of the fence you're on.

                          Which "side" would that be?

                          And which "side" is Trent Reznor on? Amanda Palmer? Jonathan Coulton? Jeff Price? Dave Allen? 50 Cent?

                          Here's a hint: they're not on your side. By your own logic, then, they're siding with Mike.

                           

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                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:25am

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

                  I don't agree with shit you say. I think you're a moron, as I already stated and as am sure many others feel and would agree. Mike's opinion, one way or another, is on this site. If you're too stupid or just have too much of a grudge against Mike to see it, that's your problem. Not mine. Not his. Nor anyone else's. But seriously, stfu about it already. Seriously. You went from amusing, to annoying, to god I hope guy gets shocked anytime he touches a computer very quickly. As a rule, I don't generally care one way or another about what happens to anyone. I prefer to wish no ill will on anyone, and as long as what you're up to doesn't harm me or mine then have at it. But if you dropped dead of an aneurysm (which I figure is going to happen eventually, what with you harping on and on and on about Mike) I would actually be pleased with that and rethink my opinion on there not being some kind of divine thing keeping tabs on all of us and making sure those of us who live only to annoy or hurt others get their dues.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:31am

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

                    On the contrary, when asked directly about his own personal beliefs as to whether or not we should have any copyright whatsoever, he states that he's on the fence because he doesn't have enough data. Amazingly, he has all sorts of opinions about so many other aspects of copyright even though he doesn't have all of the data and the word directly from God to Moses that it's so. Yet on this question, he has no opinion. Weird.

                     

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:01am

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

                    I'm just hoping he doesn't try to raise children.

                     

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                Atkray (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:15am

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

                I'm so tempted to copy this into notepad and reuse it every time he posts, but I'm too afraid of Karyn Temple will come and get me if I do.

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:21am

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

                  Well, that's all well and good for Ms. Temple, but as the legal copyright holder on said comment, I hereby grant you and everyone else (except the trolls, they know who they are) permission to freely use that comment to reply to AJ or his Anonymous Coward persona (who AJ not so secretly, obviously, is) whenever he starts derailing threads (like he usually does and is currently doing).

                   

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              Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:35am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Let me ask you this. Mike claims that he's on the fence about copyright. He's just not sure whether or not we should have any. Given the fact that he's written thousands of articles about copyright, he should be able to find at least one sentence in one article that reflects his indecision. Right? Be honest. What do you think?

              The only one being dishonest is you, again. I have never said I don't have an opinion. I told you DIRECTLY, that my opinion today is that copyright is way too draconian, and that it needs to be trimmed back. The ONLY thing I said to you was that I was not sure HOW MUCH it needs to be trimmed back. Should it be trimmed back to original copyright terms? Should it be done away with completely? Should it be trimmed back to something else? I don't know what the exact right spot is.

              For you to then come here and puke all over the comments insisting I said I have "no opinion" on what copyright should be is downright dishonest, and you must know it. You pretend like I said that I have no opinion on where copyright should be at all, and thus I should keep saying something "positive" about TODAY's copyright system.

              However, as I have obviously made clear to EVERYONE -- including directly to you -- is that I do think there's tremendous evidence that TODAY'S copyright system goes too far.

              Only you, in your sick and dishonest ways who has to make EVERYTHING about how much you hate my guts, would turn that into pretending that I'm on the fence because I don't say anything "good" about copyright.

              Please stop it.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:24am

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

                The ONLY thing I said to you was that I was not sure HOW MUCH it needs to be trimmed back. Should it be trimmed back to original copyright terms? Should it be done away with completely? Should it be trimmed back to something else? I don't know what the exact right spot is.

                And I believe the poster is saying that when you say "I don't know what the exact right spot is" about these 3 main points, and post thousands of articles that take a negative view on anything regarding copyright, the statement constitutes fence-sitting.

                I would have to agree with him.

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:57am

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

                  To him it is a for or against debate where either you are for copyright (and all of the IP Maximalist dogma) or you are against it and want it to be abolished completely. If you say you hold a position somewhere in between, then you must be "on the fence" about it. It's trying to frame the argument as an us vs. them debate where you are either for us or against us. Black or white but no grey.

                  He's conflating two different things in order to try to frame it this way. Mike has clearly stated that his opinion is that copyright can be good if it were not being abused. Mike has said that it is his opinion that it needs to be trimmed back, but the DETAILS of trimming it back is not something that he is sure about. That is something completely different than saying that you are unsure of whether copyright is good in general or not.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:04am

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

                    To him it is a for or against debate where either you are for copyright (and all of the IP Maximalist dogma) or you are against it and want it to be abolished completely. If you say you hold a position somewhere in between, then you must be "on the fence" about it. It's trying to frame the argument as an us vs. them debate where you are either for us or against us. Black or white but no grey.

                    He's conflating two different things in order to try to frame it this way. Mike has clearly stated that his opinion is that copyright can be good if it were not being abused. Mike has said that it is his opinion that it needs to be trimmed back, but the DETAILS of trimming it back is not something that he is sure about. That is something completely different than saying that you are unsure of whether copyright is good in general or not.


                    It's simple, direct question. Does he think that authors should get some sort of copyright protection? He hasn't given a yes or no answer, hence, it's accurate for me to say he's on the fence and it's inaccurate for him to pretend like he's not. I understand that he thinks it needs to be trimmed back. I'm asking if he thinks there should be any copyright rights at all. No high-level, nonresponsive bullshit. Just a simple yes or no. Clearly, he doesn't want to come down off the fence, and you and I know why.

                     

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                      Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:11am

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

                      The question seems a little loaded (funnily enough, it's a great lawyer question, IMO), and I'm not really following the claims of dishonesty.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:12am

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

                        The question seems a little loaded (funnily enough, it's a great lawyer question, IMO), and I'm not really following the claims of dishonesty.

                        He's claiming to not be on the fence about whether authors should have some sort of exclusive rights to their writings, yet he is on the fence about it and refusing to give an answer that actually answers the question. That's the dishonesty.

                         

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                          Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:21am

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

                          "He's claiming to not be on the fence about whether authors should have some sort of exclusive rights to their writings"

                          Huh? Where?

                          I'm not being facetious, I may have just missed it.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:51am

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

                            Huh? Where?

                            I'm not being facetious, I may have just missed it.


                            Just above he said this: "The ONLY thing I said to you was that I was not sure HOW MUCH it needs to be trimmed back. Should it be trimmed back to original copyright terms? Should it be done away with completely? Should it be trimmed back to something else? I don't know what the exact right spot is."

                            So basically, he's trying to have it both ways. He claims to have no opinion as to whether authors should have any copyright rights, yet he's also claiming to not be on the fence as to whether authors should have any copyright rights.

                            I'm not asking him to explain exactly what these rights should look like. I'm just asking whether in his opinion he thinks that authors should have any copyright rights. That's it. He wants everyone to think that he's not on the fence even though he can't give a "yes or no" answer to the question. Not giving a "yes or no" answer means he's on the fence. It's really not difficult.

                             

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                              Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:00am

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

                              But that was in reference to a general copyright question, not author's rights. I can see the relation between them, but they sound like two different questions on two different subjects.

                               

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                              Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:01am

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

                              Holy Shit!

                              Mike didn't mention anything specific to graphic art! Fuck, he must be on the fence about copyrights for graphic art.

                              Geeze Mike, what IS your opinion on graphic artists? Should they have their copyrights taken away but scaled back while maximizing their right to sue and give away their content for free to other freetards to avoid having it "stolen digitally" which removes any ability of them to create copies though the original digital copy still exists on the hard drive so only one single copy floats all over the pirate sites who make infinite money through ads supported by thousands of companies who clearly don't support the graphic artists who can't even get through their legal contracts which stipulate they don't even have any control over their copyrights because the company they signed with under the presumption of fairness is selling their work to corporations who don't even know the graphic artist exists and intend on exploiting them again by paying the copyright holder $1million per view and paying pirate sites to display their ads hovering over the illegal copies of the graphic artist who's dying in a ditch starving for information on why you hate to see people earn a living through creation of art but mostly because they can't get a straight answer from you on your opinion of copyrights.

                               

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                          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:29am

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

                          No, he is not claiming that at all. YOU ARE CLAIMING THAT. What he is on the fence about is quite clearly posted above by Mike himself.

                          Your original comments on here change as you get answers you don't like or refuse to accept. First you were saying Mike has no response on whether or not their should be copyright.

                          His reply is: "I think that the current system is broken and does not promote the progress, as it should do. I think that I don't know what the *proper* solution is, and I don't think anyone does, because we simply don't have enough data or experience to know. We know what doesn't work, but we don't know what might work better. That's why I've always encouraged more exploration and the ability to experiment."

                          This is essentially, to sum it up, "Yes, there should be copyright, but as it currently stands/is it isn't working. What can we do to make it better? I don't know, but we can certainly explore and experiment with potential better options. What we have now isn't working, nor will it in view of expansions and the twisting of its original intent, which was to promote progress."

                          So again, we have Mike giving a response, you moving the goalpost and then demanding further answers to your questions. Which will inevitably lead to rinse and repeat over and over. And again, you show that Mike answering any question is pointless. "Just answer this one question Mike and I'll shut up." He does so, you then go with, "Okay, now I got an answer. So now answer this one loaded question." It never ends with you, nor will it.

                          So seriously, just stfu already for the upteenth time. No answer will satisfy you. And you'll never quit shifting the goalpost or asking "just one more loaded question".

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:57am

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

                            No, he is not claiming that at all. YOU ARE CLAIMING THAT. What he is on the fence about is quite clearly posted above by Mike himself.

                            Your original comments on here change as you get answers you don't like or refuse to accept. First you were saying Mike has no response on whether or not their should be copyright.

                            His reply is: "I think that the current system is broken and does not promote the progress, as it should do. I think that I don't know what the *proper* solution is, and I don't think anyone does, because we simply don't have enough data or experience to know. We know what doesn't work, but we don't know what might work better. That's why I've always encouraged more exploration and the ability to experiment."

                            This is essentially, to sum it up, "Yes, there should be copyright, but as it currently stands/is it isn't working. What can we do to make it better? I don't know, but we can certainly explore and experiment with potential better options. What we have now isn't working, nor will it in view of expansions and the twisting of its original intent, which was to promote progress."

                            So again, we have Mike giving a response, you moving the goalpost and then demanding further answers to your questions. Which will inevitably lead to rinse and repeat over and over. And again, you show that Mike answering any question is pointless. "Just answer this one question Mike and I'll shut up." He does so, you then go with, "Okay, now I got an answer. So now answer this one loaded question." It never ends with you, nor will it.

                            So seriously, just stfu already for the upteenth time. No answer will satisfy you. And you'll never quit shifting the goalpost or asking "just one more loaded question".


                            So which is it then? There are three possibilities:

                            (1) Mike thinks authors should have some copyright rights.

                            (2) Mike thinks authors should not have any copyright rights.

                            (3) Mike is unable to voice an opinion either way and is on the fence as to whether he thinks authors should have some copyright rights or not.

                            This isn't hard. Mike is obviously choosing Option (3) and is on the fence (while claiming not to be). You are claiming that Mike has indicated that yes, he thinks there should be some copyright rights. Yet, as you yourself quoted, he's left open the possibility that maybe there shouldn't be any. Sorry, but Mike is clearly on the fence and not choosing a side. And, of course, he's lying about it and pretending like he has picked a side.

                             

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                              John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:49am

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

                              I think you are being deliberately obtuse, and intentionally ignoring the fact that all of your questions have been adequately answered.

                              In short, you are a liar, with a mysterious special hatred for all things Mike, and your only goal is to try smear him for anything you can dream up.

                              What's sad is that you're so bad at it.

                               

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                              PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:43pm

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

                              "So which is it then? There are three possibilities:"

                              You missed 4) he voices quite clearly and specifically that authors should have some rights, but debate is open to exactly how much this should be, and how much this is worth versus the original intention of copyright promoting the arts rather than promoting pure profit.

                              Given that this is his clearly stated opinion and that you choose to deliberately ignore it in favour of your constant bullshit, there's only one liar around here. Unlike Mike, he doesn't even dare to reveal his identity because he knows he need somewhere to hide.

                              "And, of course, he's lying about it and pretending like he has picked a side."

                              Except he doesn't, and only absolute tossers would pretend there's only 2 sides in this discussion. But, hey, we all know that by now.

                               

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                      Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:44am

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

                      First you ask about copyright in general and despite repeated counter claims and proof, you kept asking.

                      Now you move on to author's rights and start the same "he didn't answer me" BS again?

                      It's definitely time to stop feeding your trollish responses. You're just trying to attack for the fun of it.

                      The more you continue, the more you lose any credibility you have left (and if you try to say the same about Mike and his non-fence sitting - you're just reinforcing the process).

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:01am

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

                        First you ask about copyright in general and despite repeated counter claims and proof, you kept asking.

                        Now you move on to author's rights and start the same "he didn't answer me" BS again?

                        It's definitely time to stop feeding your trollish responses. You're just trying to attack for the fun of it.

                        The more you continue, the more you lose any credibility you have left (and if you try to say the same about Mike and his non-fence sitting - you're just reinforcing the process).


                        Does Mike think authors should have any copyright rights? If yes, please cite his exact answer and provide a link. If no, please cite his exact answer and provide a link.

                        You guys keep pretending like he's answered the question, yet you can't tell me what the answer is. Hmmm...

                         

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                          Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:10am

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

                          Let me draw his answer, since you agree it is on copyright in general:

                          -----------------CopyrightInGeneral---------------
                          __authoers__|__musicians__|__graphic s__|__whatever

                          It's an umbrella.

                          You are being disingenuous and changing your argument over and over and refusing to acknowledge it. For what reason? Only you know.

                          YOU: "Do you believe the sun is yellow today?"
                          MIKE: "Sometimes the sun is yellow, other times it is red or orange. I cannot give you the details for today because the all the data is not in yet"
                          YOU: "You didn't answer my question, why are you avoiding my question? Is the sun yellow 2hrs from now, regardless of the timezones or any specific location on the planet you are at"
                          MIKE: "I don't have that data, sometimes yellow, some times orange, sometimes red. It depends upon the time of day and we don't know what the exact colour will be today. The data is not in yet and it would be dishonest of me to make any official colour guess."
                          YOU: "You didn't answer my question..., what colour is the sun 3 hrs from now?"

                           

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                        •  
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                          John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:51am

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

                           

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                  silverscarcat (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:03am

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

                  The only negative thing about copyright from Mike and on this site that I see, is the abuse of copyright (and governmental corruption) and that it needs to be fixed.

                  Mike has stated that he's not sure how to fix it though.

                  Do you repeal it completely? Do you scale it back to pre-Sonny-Bono? Do you scale it back to 10-28 years (original length)? Where's the best line?

                   

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                  weneedhelp (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:04am

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

                  "fence-sitting" Is either or. Stop it asshole. The statement "Should it be trimmed back to something else? I don't know what the exact right spot is." Is by no means being on a fence. There are many nuances to consider and the way you are trying to back someone into a corner and prove somehow that Mike is anti-copyright is just dishonest. Obvious troll is obvious.

                   

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                    identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:08am

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

                    "fence-sitting" Is either or. Stop it asshole. The statement "Should it be trimmed back to something else? I don't know what the exact right spot is." Is by no means being on a fence. There are many nuances to consider and the way you are trying to back someone into a corner and prove somehow that Mike is anti-copyright is just dishonest. Obvious troll is obvious.

                    He is refusing to say whether he thinks authors should have any exclusive rights to their writings. That's sitting on a fence and refusing to take a position either way. This isn't difficult.

                     

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                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:44am

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

                The only one being dishonest is you, again. I have never said I don't have an opinion. I told you DIRECTLY, that my opinion today is that copyright is way too draconian, and that it needs to be trimmed back. The ONLY thing I said to you was that I was not sure HOW MUCH it needs to be trimmed back. Should it be trimmed back to original copyright terms? Should it be done away with completely? Should it be trimmed back to something else? I don't know what the exact right spot is.

                For you to then come here and puke all over the comments insisting I said I have "no opinion" on what copyright should be is downright dishonest, and you must know it. You pretend like I said that I have no opinion on where copyright should be at all, and thus I should keep saying something "positive" about TODAY's copyright system.

                However, as I have obviously made clear to EVERYONE -- including directly to you -- is that I do think there's tremendous evidence that TODAY'S copyright system goes too far.

                Only you, in your sick and dishonest ways who has to make EVERYTHING about how much you hate my guts, would turn that into pretending that I'm on the fence because I don't say anything "good" about copyright.

                Please stop it.


                But you are on the fence. You say that you have no opinion either way as to whether we should have any copyright at all, i.e., whether authors should get some sort of exclusive rights to their writings.

                If you want to prove that you're not on the fence and that you have an opinion, then answer the question: Yes or no, do you believe that authors should get some sort of exclusive rights to their writings?

                The best way to prove that you have an answer would be to give us the answer. The fact that you're getting so angry tells me that I'm hitting a nerve. I know you don't want to go on the record as saying there should be some copyright, and I know you don't want to go on the record as saying we shouldn't have any. That's why you're playing games and not just answering the question. Pick a side. Be honest. I'm just asking for an opinion, not proof.

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:59am

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

                  Way to cherry-pick: Mike's actual words are, "I don't know if copyright should be done away with completely." That is not, "not having an opinion" (your words, not mine) That's saying, 'I DO NOT KNOW FOR SURE WHETHER NO COPYRIGHT IS BETTER THAN HAVING A SHORT-TERM COPYRIGHT.'

                  Moron.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:07am

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

                    Way to cherry-pick: Mike's actual words are, "I don't know if copyright should be done away with completely." That is not, "not having an opinion" (your words, not mine) That's saying, 'I DO NOT KNOW FOR SURE WHETHER NO COPYRIGHT IS BETTER THAN HAVING A SHORT-TERM COPYRIGHT.'

                    Moron.


                    I'm asking him simply and directly whether in his opinion authors should have any rights to their writings. I'm not asking him to prove what rights if any would maximize public good. I just want a straight answer.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:33am

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

                      And he has said, in this thread, that in its present form, he does not want copyright. He also has said, in the plainest English possible, that he is not sure if the correct response is to remove copyright completely.

                      I honestly do not know if you're a Perl script or just a retarded goldfish at this point.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:37am

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

                        And he has said, in this thread, that in its present form, he does not want copyright. He also has said, in the plainest English possible, that he is not sure if the correct response is to remove copyright completely.

                        I honestly do not know if you're a Perl script or just a retarded goldfish at this point.


                        I understand that he disagrees with the current situation of copyright. I'm asking a different question, which is simply whether he thinks as a general matter authors should have any copyright rights at all. I'm not asking for proof or perfection. I'm not asking him to know it definitely. I'm simply asking for an opinion.

                         

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                          Lowestofthekeys (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:39am

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

                          "I'm simply asking for an opinion."

                          I don't really understand why you are asking for it here.

                          If it really means that much to you, wouldn't approach him privately?

                           

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                            Robert (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:42am

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

                            He would be charged with harassment that's why and no judge in their right mind (bought out by entertainment groups or not) would do anything but throw the book at this guy.

                             

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                          PaulT (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 3:48pm

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

                          "I'm simply asking for an opinion."

                          ..and you have it. In the clearest language possible. Why are you still asking for it? Either you're too stupid to understand that "abolish all copyright" and "lock down everything" are not the only possible answers, or you're so obsessed with your imagined slight that nothing that makes sense will do as an answer, unless Mike is somehow made to look bad. Right now, all we're seeing is a lunatic who probably needs better medication,

                           

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                  silverscarcat (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:00am

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

                  AJ, do you know who you remind me of?

                  A jerk in high school who needles people endlessly and then when the person finally lashes back at you, you throw your hands up and go "woah, calm down", to make it seem like the other person's the guilty party.

                  That's what you are, a childish highschool jerk who needles people in an attempt to make yourself look better.

                   

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              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:56am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Mike doesn't claim to be on the fence (as in undecided) about copyright. He's in the middle (as opposed to being at one extreme or another) on the issue. As he has explained on countless occasions (apparently my 5 year old has apparently has better reading comprehension than you) he is not for the abolition of copyright but rather reeling in the ever-expanding maximalist policies that have been put in place over the past century such that copyright is returned to it's original purpose which is to "promote the progress of science and the useful arts" instead of harming innovation and competition in the market place for the sake of propping up the obsolete business models of the legacy players.

               

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              weneedhelp (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:38am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              WTF you just copy and paste this shit over and over?

               

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              John Fenderson (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:38am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Mike claims that he's on the fence about copyright. He's just not sure whether or not we should have any.


              Mike has claimed no such thing. He has stated his point of view numerous times, at least once directly to you.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 9:59am

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

                Mike has claimed no such thing. He has stated his point of view numerous times, at least once directly to you.

                Of course he has. He refuses to say either of the following:

                (1) Yes, authors should have some copyright rights.

                (2) No, authors should have no copyright rights.

                What he is saying is that he has no opinion on the matter, ergo, he is on the fence (while, of course, pretending that he is not on the fence).

                If you think Mike has given an actual answer that is not him being equivocal, then please link to it and quote the exact words you're looking at.

                 

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                  Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:12am

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

                  If you think Mike has given an actual answer that is not him being equivocal, then please link to it and quote the exact words you're looking at.

                  Ok, I demand you answer this question yes or no:

                  Yes, you have stopped beating your wife and children.

                  No, you have not stopped beating your wife and children.

                  Otherwise, you are on the fence.

                  Answer me!

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:15am

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

                    Ok, I demand you answer this question yes or no:

                    Yes, you have stopped beating your wife and children.

                    No, you have not stopped beating your wife and children.

                    Otherwise, you are on the fence.

                    Answer me!


                    I'm glad to answer: I have never beat my wife or my children.

                    And now you're just playing games, pretending like you just have no opinion either way. That's being on the fence. Get off the fence, and just give us an opinion. You don't have to prove that it's perfect. You don't have to prove the existence of God. Just yes or no, do you think authors should have some sort of copyright rights?

                    It's a simple question that I'm sure everyone else who reads Techdirt could answer. Yet you, the most opinionated person in the world on copyright, claim to have no opinion either way. Just be honest, Mike. Just give us a direct and honest answer. No games.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:35am

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

                      Says the guy who has been playing that exact same game for nearly three years. Just die already please, and save us the numbing agent that is your rhetoric.

                       

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                      Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:43am

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

                      I'm glad to answer: I have never beat my wife or my children.


                      You didn't answer! That was not the question! I asked you a yes or no question and you refused to answer!

                      And now you're just playing games

                      There's a mirror over there. Look in it.

                      It's a simple question that I'm sure everyone else who reads Techdirt could answer. Yet you, the most opinionated person in the world on copyright, claim to have no opinion either way. Just be honest, Mike. Just give us a direct and honest answer. No games.

                      I gave you an answer. I do have an opinion and I've told you what it was many, many times. Why do you lie so much?

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:54am

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

                        I gave you an answer. I do have an opinion and I've told you what it was many, many times. Why do you lie so much?

                        You're just playing games. I love it when you lose your cool like this, but I really would just rather have you give the answer. The opinion you have given is that you don't have an opinion on the matter. That's not giving us an opinion. That's telling us you don't have an opinion. There's no need to pretend like you just can't come up with an opinion on this. We all know you're extremely opinionated.

                         

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                          silverscarcat (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:14am

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

                          "You're just playing games."

                          The pot calls the kettle what?

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:21pm

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

                            Average Joe couldn't hack it on the Ars Technica forums. Says a lot really.

                             

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                              Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 5:13pm

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

                              You'll notice that that's why he never criticises Ars Technica, even when they report the exact same things that TechDirt does.

                               

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                  Mr. Applegate, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:17am

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

                  I can't believe I am letting myself get drawn into this.

                  "Of course he has. He refuses to say either of the following:"

                  Which of the following do you agree with?

                  (1) You are mentally handicapped and incapable of cognizant and reasoned thought.

                  (2) You are a troll unwilling to see the truth, no matter how many times it is laid before your eyes.


                  So which is it 1, or 2?

                  If you don't directly answer we will know you can't decide if you fall under 1 or 2. No commentary or explanations needed. 1 or 2?

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:38am

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

                    I guess he's on the fence about that one so it's up to us to decide.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 1:23am

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

                      Do we get to decide he's both? I mean, since we're neither mentally handicapped nor trolls unwilling to see the truth, we get to call both options, right?

                       

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                        Mr. Applegate, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 7:02am

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

                        This isn't about us! It is about him! He needs to identify which of the above are true, period. We don't want to hear any exceptions, or other options. He needs to answer the simple question asked, which of the two are true.

                        So no he can't say "I'm a little of both" or "Neither, really apply to me" or "Sometimes, hough not always, number 2 applies".

                        He just needs to answer for all to hear. 1 or 2.

                        We can think whatever we want, but he just needs to answer this one, simple question, but he seems unwilling to do it.

                         

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        Anonymous Howard (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:39am

        Re: Re:

        You can kill a regular troll with fire or acid.
        The only way to kill an internet-troll is to starve it!

         

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          Gwiz (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:48am

          Re: Re: Re:

          You can kill a regular troll with fire or acid.


          I don't think a bunch of trolls running around on acid is good either.

          Oh...wait...you didn't mean the trolls from Bored of the Rings did you? Nevermind.

           

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:22am

      Re:

      dis gon b gud

       

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      silverscarcat (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:29am

      Re:

      Hey, AJ, was wondering where you were.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:38am

      Re:

      Someone shouldn't be PRO or ANTI copyright.

      What they should be is PRO humanity, PRO "advancing the sciences", PRO "furthering the cause of human knowledge" and perhaps PRO "reducing the amount of sadness and unfairness in the world, because there's enough of that already without music and movie companies adding to our problems".....

       

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        JEDIDIAH, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:15am

        The crux of the matter.

        The question of whether or not creative property should exist is entirely dependent on WHY you think it should exist if at all. One problem with maximalist rhetoric is that it ignores the why. If you're view is that "exclusive rights" are merely a means to an end, then the answer ends up being maybe.

        That's a perfectly valid answer. It just doesn't fit in well with the maximalist mindset.

        I think that a good answer is that authors have no rights and should have no rights. Even using the term rights is misleading because we are not talking about property.

        Intellectual property as a natural rights concept should not exist. Neither should it be confused or conflated with other natural rights.

        It should remain strictly a means to an end and all public policy should be formed with that in mind.

         

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    Mega1987 (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:19am

    from what I feel with this topic is this:

    One step forward for copyright.
    One GIANT leap BACKWARDS for Innovation.

    -----

    can we please stop kidding ourselves about the "shoot first then kill THEN finally ask question later after execution method"?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:25am

    Could be worse. Could have named Carmen Ortiz.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:12am

      Re:

      Actually that might have been a good thing. Due to her current reputation, if they had, she would likely have carried the office into the light of public scrutiny beyond those of us who follow these issues.

       

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      Anonymoose, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:00pm

      Re:

      Yes, but Ortiz was not black. In the Brobama administration, blackosity trumps all other attributes.

       

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        nasch (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:40pm

        Re: Re:

        In the Brobama administration, blackosity trumps all other attributes.

        Yes, because all his cabinet members are black. And the White House staff. And everyone else he's appointed is black. All of them.

         

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    gorehound (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:29am

    F$ck You MAFIAA ! More Corruption in Washington and another day goes by.Same as yesterday and tomorrow..............until we finally rise up and make the Corporate Heads our Slaves.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:32am

    so who exactly expected there to be someone who had common sense and actually an interest in making copyright do what it was designed to do rather than what the legacy industries want? go stand in the corner!!

     

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    Rekrul, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:25am

    How is it possible to take the Copyright Office seriously as an advocate for what's best for the public...

    That's just a lie they tell people to placate them. The Copyright Office is there to serve the entertainment industry and everyone knows it.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:39am

    Oxymoron

    Given the findings from recent events, is there even such a thing as a "good litigator"?

     

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    rapnel, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 7:53am

    Oh for fuck's sake. Copyright has issues but the copyright industry serves naught but a bunch of cunts thieving humanity's creativity one bitch at a time.

    Copyright nullification. Information flow first, rights later, right now.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 8:09am

    I guess it is time...

    For a public push to replace the entire staff of the Copyright Office and the USPTO for failure to perform their Constitutionally stated purpose due to overwhelming conflict of interest and general incompetency.

     

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    mhab, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 10:11am

    What could possibly go wrong?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:25am

    OH MY FUCKING GOD STOP FEEDING THE TROLL GUYS

    Seriously I was gonna comment on the post but what's the point, everyone is too busy giving that one lunatic all of the attention he so desperately desires.

    Please ban him or give us the option to hide every response to a post that's been voted down, I don't even like reading these comments anymore because they are so completely dominated by one jerk and everyone else futilely trying to reason with him.

     

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    Canadian, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:49am

    After the dizzying attempt to follow the comments in this thread I would propose a new system for Techdirt comments.

    Perhaps in place of "Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:" we could simplify things for people who suffer from epilepsy, vertigo, troll induced nausea and possibly turrets to something simpler like "REx19"

    Thank you

     

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      Gwiz (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:33pm

      Re:

      You silly Canadian, Learn to Threaded Mode!


      PS: Just teasing btw. ("Learn to Threaded Mode" is a Techdirt meme from a couple of years ago.) But still, using threaded mode DOES tend to make the discussions a bit easier to follow.

       

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    shane (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 12:34pm

    Revolving Door

    With the number of comments here being as high as it is, I have to imagine someone has brought this up already, but the revolving door between corporate interests of various types and government is pervasive in this country and most others.

    Just one more sign of the loss of self sufficiency and self government brought on by massive corporate influence.

    And yet how few suggest the obvious solution - reform or end limited liability.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:24pm

    C'mon, Mike. Just give us your best guess:

    (1) Yes, I think that authors should probably have some exclusive rights to their writings, or

    (2) No, I don't think that authors probably should not have any exclusive rights to their writings.

    By answering, it is fully understood that you don't know the answer for sure. Nobody knows the answer for sure, yet they are able to give an opinion as to their best guess which way it is. That's all I'm asking. No excuses. No equivocating. Just give us your best guess. Let's not run away from the question. Let's have an open, honest, and human best guess. That's it. It's simple. Thanks.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 2:25pm

      Re:

      Oops. (2) should say: No, I don't think that authors should have any exclusive rights to their writings. My bad.

       

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 4:31pm

      Re:

      I have answered you as clearly as is humanly possible.

      That you think I have not is not my problem, but yours.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 5:20pm

        Re: Re:

        I have answered you as clearly as is humanly possible.

        That you think I have not is not my problem, but yours.


        You've stated that you don't know the answer. I understand that you don't know. I don't know either. Nobody knows for sure. I'm asking you as a fundamental normative manner whether your best guess is that authors should have some exclusive rights or not. I'm just asking for an opinion. You keep saying it's impossible for you to state an opinion, but that's clearly a cop out. You give opinions about things you don't know for sure all the time. Why is this different? Why is this something you can't form an opinion on? And what about the questions about other rationales for copyright? Can you please comment on that. There's lots and lots of fundamental issues to be discussed. Running away and pretending like you can't discuss these issues is disingenuous.

         

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        •  
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2013 @ 6:13pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Sorry, should say "fundamental normative matter." I'm trying to get you to talk about what your normative values are and why you believe what you believe. There's no wrong answer. No not knowing the answer. No one knows for sure, but clearly we have opinions. That's all I'm asking for, Mike. Instead of tearing everyone else down, let's talk about your arguments for why there should be no exclusivity. Explain to us how Louis CK proves that there is no need for copyright. Seems like a stretch to me. Can you fill in the blanks and give us your insights? That's all I want. That's all I've ever wanted. I want you to put some skin in the game, to sit down at the table, and to discuss the various interests at stake.

           

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            Karl (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 11:40pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I'm trying to get you to talk about what your normative values are and why you believe what you believe.

            And this is a problem - on your part. Copyright is a completely utilitarian concept. Normative values are completely irrelevant.

            The entire purpose of copyright is to benefit the public, by increasing access to works of art, and (eventually) by placing more works of art into the public domain. Copyright can be measured objectively by seeing whether it fulfills this purpose.

            But you are totally disregarding this objective measurement, and trying to bring your own morality into the equation. Moreover, you are doing it while denying that copyright should be measured in any way other than through your own moral compass.

            This is exactly how valid ideas are suppressed.

            Let's say that you were one of the Catholic priests who were questioning Galileo. Here's what you would be asking:

            "I'm trying to get you to talk about what your normative values are and why you believe that the Earth rotates around the Sun."

            You can, I hope, see the flaws in this question. The idea (read: fact) that the sun rotates around the Earth is not a "belief," and does not depend upon "normative values."

            So it is with copyright. Copyright theory does not give a rat's ass if "no exclusivity" is unfair to authors. (Indeed, copyright theory has never once given a shit about the exploitation of "authors" at all - something that I do not particularly like, but recognize.) All that matters is whether the public has increased access to artistic works. Everything else is completely and utterly irrelevant.

             

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    That One Guy (profile), Jan 31st, 2013 @ 4:36pm

    I really shouldn't have to say this(AGAIN)...

    But to all those trying to reason with Mike's #1 stalker: STOP.

    You do not try and reason with someone who has proven time and time again that they aren't interested in anything other than name calling, personal attacks, and downright creepy levels of obsession, as this just encourages them.

    All these 'reasoning' attempts are doing is encouraging his obsession, by allowing him to feel justified via his perceived 'persecution', as well as derailing any potentially otherwise productive discussions of the topic being discussed in a given article.

    Look, odds are the individual in question is either a) a troll attempting to derail any serious discussions, b) a person with an obsession focused on Mike, or c) a delightful combination of the two. Attempting to reason with a person like this is anything but productive, and plays right into their hands, so DON'T. Just hit 'report' and move on.

    Finally, for those that are worried that by not attempting to counter this individual they will just allow him to think he's 'won', I ask: So what? One person's delusion does not reality make. If he gets to think he's 'won' the debate, let him, and save your energy for people who are actually looking for a real debate/discussion, and/or the trolls who can at least come up with new material every so often.

     

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    Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:15am

    Rights and Enforcement

    These "balanced" questions are so damn loaded they don't acknowledge or care about collateral damage.

    Let's say I want to reduce drinking and driving problems, so I ban the sale of alcohol at bars and restaurants. Have I stopped drinking and driving? Nope, they can get it else where and still drive!

    What's my collateral damage? I've disabled through enforcement that which didn't do what I thought it would, but was balanced by my view because you can still drink at home. However, now people who walk or take the bus or a taxi can't drink while out, despite there being no chance of them becoming drunk drivers (shy of stealing a car or taking over the bus or taxi).

    That is NOT balance.

    Why not do what the police and volunteers have been doing - organizing later buses, coordinating with establishments for taxis, volunteer drivers on holidays, etc..

    Yes, those don't kill off DUI's completely, but they help reduce it.

    That's a balanced enforcement.

    You already have such a balance, but you haven't offered the other means to get home. Oh sure, you're current method of robustness involves the people leaving the bars, walking 6 blocks to the bus that takes them 3x the time to get home because it goes way out of their way.

    Yes, that's something people will jump to! See the stupidity in such an idea of "balance of enforcement" because that is not what you mean.

    You want "balance" where nothing copyrighted is shared without the rights holder's permission - which is impossible because of licensing, infrastructure, pricing, and some who just won't care and will share regardless.

    Meanwhile you deny that the system needs improvement. "Walk those 6 blocks, just think, you'll get exercise. If it is -46C like it was last yesterday morning, dress warm."

    You just don't get it, you're thinking it is an enforcement issue.

    The issue does NOT NEED enforcement if you listen and improve what exists.

     

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:22am

      Re: Rights and Enforcement

      I can agree somewhat. Better distribution will go a long way. But at the same time, I do not see how you can say my rights cannot or should be enforceable against those who infringe upon it.

       

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        Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:40am

        Re: Re: Rights and Enforcement

        I didn't say not enforceable, I said your idea of enforcement was impossible. Stick to commercial sales, if those even exist, using existing laws.

        And dramatically reduce your copyright duration, or expect others to come after you for stealing their ideas.

         

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        •  
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:47am

          Re: Re: Re: Rights and Enforcement

          Funny, most people around here squeal when existing law is applied. Glad you're on board.

           

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            Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:56am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Rights and Enforcement

            Wrong. Applied to COMMERCIAL infringement, no one squeals.

            Applied to non-commercial infringement for stupendous amounts of money ($750 - $150 000 per incident) is what makes us squeal.

            Again, reform is required. Just as prohibition was rampant, the law was broken, didn't work, and needed reform.

            Naturally those who benefit from the law don't want such things, because they are afraid.

            What if the bootleggers were smart and bought up a lot of drinking establishments and then when the law was finally overturned, they had a market? What if instead of pushing specific beer brands on people because of it being your cousin, you offered people good beer, got your cousin some help with making his beer good, and created a happy environment where people paid reasonable taxes (unlike Canada) on booze and were free to choose what they wanted?

            Would that not benefit everyone?

            Nah, let's restrict, enforce, lock it down and drive people away. Then wonder why no one wants to support us, despite many still doing it.

             

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:36pm

    Lest someone gets the idea I've been beaten into submission, I need to conclude my participation for awhile. Thanks for the spirited discussion. No offense intended (except for a couple of my favorite douches) and certainly none taken (despite some impressive efforts). Enjoy your weekend and try not to say anything stupid on Sunday that might mean a distraction from the Uper-Say Owl-Bay. (Don't want to infringe, you know)

     

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