Let Congress Know That Now Is The Time To Fix Copyright, Not To Put Their Head In The Sand

from the mpaa-provides-such-nice-sand,-though dept

Perhaps the most amazing thing about the Republican Study Committee report on copyright reform by Derek Khanna isn’t so much that it was one of the sanest pieces about copyright written from within a government, or that it was withdrawn so quickly after being published, but that Congress’ response to the whole matter has been to stick its collective head in the sand and try to pretend the whole thing never happened. At the very least, you would expect people in Congress to admit that there are different views on copyright that go beyond the RIAA/MPAA view of the world. But, apparently, that’s considered a “radical” thought and not allowed. The folks at EFF and Fight for the Future are now asking people to reach out to Congress and let them know that now is the time to fix copyright, rather than ignore it. Telling Derek Khanna to go find another job doesn’t make the issue go away. Quite the opposite. It just highlights how corrupt Congress is concerning these issues, in that it doesn’t even want to acknowledge the uncomfortable truth that it’s been simply rubberstamping the entertainment industry’s wishes for decades — and that’s created a huge mess today. The time to fix it is now, but it appears that most in Congress prefer the comfort of the sand around their heads.

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Comments on “Let Congress Know That Now Is The Time To Fix Copyright, Not To Put Their Head In The Sand”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Fixing the message

From the EFF Deeplinks post:

So join us in calling on Congress: when the legislative session resumes in January, let’s have a reality-based debate, and let’s fix copyright.

So the message should be: January is the time to fix copyright.

Unfortunately, that’s little lacking in the punch! and oomph! department. It sounds like something that can be put off?and that won’t do. An effective message needs immediacy! and it needs now!

So what is it time for? It’s time to organize holiday parties! Holiday political parties! Ok, I can see it still needs more cowbell….

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

“A whole new generation of young people have grown up to hate the copyright laws. A revolution time-bomb just waiting to go off. One SOPA act too many, and you’ll light the fuse.”

Just consider this: SOPA, PIPA, and the Megaupload raid woke up * a lot * of people that used to more or less ignore politics–myself included.

Suffice it to say, most people age 30 and under have a very different view on copyright than the RIAA/MPAA does…and about half of them aren’t yet old enough to vote. Let that sink in.

out_of_the_blue says:

No, Mike, it's only time to patch up the holes pirates are making.

Shiver me timbers!* Pirates be attacking! Man the guns! Raise the battle flag! Prepare for boarding! We’ll hang the lot! — That’s what decent people DO when pirates attack, Mike. They don’t cave in and say, well, okay, you’ve got some new toys, guess we give up: take all you want.

And in any case, for the moment, people with millions and billions make the rules: I’m forced to agree with the creators that copyright in general is FINE, but I’ve reservations that’d reduce its value to them.

On other hand, Mooching Mike supports Megaupload and unlimited “sharing” without a cent going to the producers. That’s not a workable way to run an industry, nor moral for either downloaders or grifters like Dotcom.

And quit trying to claim you’ve any basis for your views except “I’ve got a computer on teh internets! Now I pwnz all movies!”

(* Anyone besides me know the origin of that phrase off top of head? … No? What fine pirates you are.)

Franklin G Ryzzo (profile) says:

Re: No, Mike, it's only time to patch up the holes pirates are making.

No matter how many times you use those words, they still don’t mean what you think they do.

Origin of “shiver me timbers”… Pretty sure that’s something Dark Helmet said at the last in_to_the_coo family reunion to your mom… or was it your sister? It was hard to hear over the sounds of your frantic typing on your extra clicky keyboard as you vomited forth another lobotomy induced internet rant.

jameshogg says:

Re: No, Mike, it's only time to patch up the holes pirates are making.

I borrowed some Anime from a friend (Gundam Wing), meaning that when I watched it I gave the makers of that anime exactly as much as I would have given if I streamed it for free off of the internet.

Am I somebody who the government just cannot cave into, either? Do you want first-sale laws extending so that my borrowing (ahem, sharing) is illegal, too? We all know Ebay is guilty of this idea. What about forcing me to pay every time I watch the anime? After all, if I watch it twice I have to pay double, right? Because in cinemas you have to pay two tickets to see a movie twice, so why not?

Don’t try to say something like “where do you draw the line, here?” and then immediately attempt to draw it.

…it’s exactly that kind of mentality that allows you to portray victims of government aggression – the people and businesses who lost legitimate files on MegaUpload – as somehow conspiring criminals in the grand scheme of piracy.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: No, Mike, it's only time to patch up the holes pirates are making.

You should try out some of the other Gundam series, especially the Universal Century ones. Or, if you liked Gundam Wing, take a look at Gundam 00, which has some similarities to Wing.

And don’t worry about Megaupload. Kim is bringing it back in January, painted red and 3 times faster (that was a Gundam joke).

Basically Megaupload –> MEGA = Wing Gundam –> Wing Zero Gundam.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: No, Mike, it's only time to patch up the holes pirates are making.

Aren’t you the guy who said pirates will do anything to avoid paying? If that’s true then what would trying to stop piracy really accomplish?

Force pirates into libraries and having friends lend them movies and stuff?

Or hey, there’s a lot of great legally free alternatives that tend to not get advertised so there’d likely be an explosion of “all the free things” forum topics.

Either way, the only reason to stop it would be for a warped sense of “fairness” that does nothing for artists in the end.

Greevar (profile) says:

Re: No, Mike, it's only time to patch up the holes pirates are making.

What an entitled child! You think that we somehow owe it to you to establish a monopoly system on speech to provide you a means to earn an income? How utterly selfish! What makes you think that you are somehow more special than the rest of humanity that society is obligated to enable you to make a profit? You are nothing but a parasite. You demand that people give you rights that nobody else gets and do nothing to deserve it. You don’t deserve copyright. You never did. It was created for the good of the public, not scum sucking parasites like you. It was supposed to encourage more art, not encourage people to produce one-hit wonders and milk it for the rest of their lives, but that’s what the “poor suffering creators” convinced congress to allow.

Furthermore, you think all that shit is your property. It’s not. Property is perpetual. Copyright expires. Property is naturally exclusive. An expression is not.

“He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine.” – Thomas Jefferson

Do you know whose property it is? Everyone’s! That’s right! Those movies, songs, books, etc., belong to us all because they are built on the foundation of our common culture, which belongs to no one exclusively. You can’t create anything without building on what belongs to us all, thus your works are naturally part of the public domain. It’s like going to a state park, cutting down some trees and building a house. The labor is yours, but the source material you used belongs to the public.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: No, Mike, it's only time to patch up the holes pirates are making.

So basically you are saying everything should be free and we creators should be more than happy to not try to earn money from our work? I wonder who’s the REAL entitled child here…unlike what TV would tell you, not every creator is some bigshot millionaire. In fact, most of us are average people who just want a decent living…JUST LIKE YOU GUYS. Nobody will pay or support creators of anything if it is legal to just take it…that’s kind of why copyright was created in the first place. (of course, disney had to come along and make it unreasonable, but no reason congress can’t put it back to the 26 with one more renewable 26 that it was before disney’s meddling)

Greevar (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: No, Mike, it's only time to patch up the holes pirates are making.

“So basically you are saying everything should be free and we creators should be more than happy to not try to earn money from our work?”

No, that’s not what I said. That is a straw man. Let me reiterate my analogy with a bit of emphasis on the important item:

“It’s like going to a state park, cutting down some trees, and building a house. The labor is yours, but the source material you used belongs to the public.”

Do you see that? The labor you put in is yours. None of that other shit matters. You can control that; nobody can “steal” your labor if you refuse to do the work unless you get paid. Start from there and build your business around that fact.

“Nobody will pay or support creators of anything if it is legal to just take it”

Nobody will create anything they want to be paid for if nobody is willing to pay for it. It works both ways. It starts with finding the people who are willing to pay. Those are the people you need to worry about. There’s an exponentially diminishing ROI for trying to convince people that don’t want to pay. Exerting energy trying to fight people who refuse to pay is energy not being spent on finding all the people who will pay.

The failure in your thinking is that there is only one way to do it and it requires copyright to make it happen. That is just simply and totally false. There are plenty of options that creative folks can use that has nothing to do with exchanging money for copies of the works. Until you can realize and admit the fact that the copyright system is only one option among many, and quite literally the weakest, you can finally stop trying to criminalize everyone because they found the inherent weakness in your business model. If there was no law against copying of any kind, it would not make the content business impossible. It would only shift the business model from retail to service, because that’s what it really is in the end. Some companies might go belly up because they can’t adapt, but more would move it to take their place. Change is good. We should all endeavor to change ourselves a little bit every day.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: No, Mike, it's only time to patch up the holes pirates are making.

Hey, I’m a creator and I have yet to make a single cent on my stuff I created! I am free to do whatever I want, and I’ll allow people to do whatever they want with my stuff. I don’t have power over them.

You… well, I want to see what you do. What’s your name and what do you do? If you do say something, then I’ll tell them to avoid you, considering if this is how you want to be.

Old Dog learns New Tricks says:

Simple way to fix any problematic legislative mess

Please gentle folks,

Remember that each member of your congress is a simple working man or woman who needs to put food on his/her table for their kids (Remember the children in all of this).

They are just simple folk who can be reasoned with like any other simple folk. Remember what they did to the simple folks who were their rulers in the Robert Heinlein story “The day after Tomorrow (Sixth Column)”. The people discussed their problems and sent the rulers back with a simple message which got the attention of everybody in the debate.

Something similar might well be possible with your congress.

Remember that your politicians (on both sides) are very reasonable men and women and they listen to their paying constituents to help them sort out their problems and needs like all good politicians.

All your concerns about copyright, etc., can be solved with reasonable discussion.

Look to Australia for the example of our current Prime Minister. She demonstrates her outstanding ability to listen to the people and give them what they need to continue raising their standard of living. We are now world leaders in all areas of economics, environmental protection, health, taxation, etc.

Crosbie Fitch (profile) says:

You cannot fix copyright

You cannot fix copyright – to do so would require not only brainwashing the people to pretend they had no natural liberty to share & build upon their own culture (largely successful), but also to actually prevent people accidentally/instinctively enjoying their liberty to share & build upon their own culture (not very successful at all).

If you cannot fix copyright, because you cannot fix people to obey it (as well as agree that it’s a jolly good 18th century privilege), then you have to abolish it – you have to fix the law by repealing the privilege that annuls the people’s right to copy.

But, while we enjoy the hegemony of the church of the copyright cartel, and the brainwashed masses’ support for the privilege that culturally represses them, they will not abolish their ‘blasphemy laws’.

Crosbie Fitch (profile) says:

Re: Re: You cannot fix copyright

There’s nothing wrong with copying banknotes.

After all, it’s merely an unfulfilled contract, and as you should know, contracts are often copied in triplicate.

The wrong comes when people fraudulently attempt to fulfil the contract multiple times – or pass off a copy of a contract as a separate contract.

This is why each banknote has a serial number. Each serial number denotes a distinct contract.

Currency is based upon the distribution of banknotes where only zero or one copy exists of any particular banknote at any one time.

Of course, because it is particularly tempting to pass off copies of banknotes as if they were not copies (and everyone assumes only one copy exists) governments typically make the manufacture of copies illegal, even though the fraud only occurs when an attempt is made to pass off a copy as genuine (counterfeit).

Thus copyright is nothing to do with fraud, which remains wrong even after copyright has been abolished.

Anonymous Coward says:

and that's created a huge mess today

“and that’s created a huge mess today

such as ??

if the was actually a ‘huge mess’ I am sure ‘the Masnick’ would be the first to talk about it in high detail (especially in an article like this).

do you mean ‘huge mess’ like the sub-prime mortgage market ? or the “war on terror” ?

I for one have NOT noticed the massive drop in the number or quality of movies, or music available today compared to 10 or 20 years ago, nor have I noticed a major change in the relative amount of money charged for that.

we have plenty of music shops here, availability of movies and music (and books!!!) appears adequate.

I don’t seem staring musicians or actors now homeless because of the “huge mess” like has occurred from the GFT!

I don’t see massive closures of movie or music industry companies, no just the normal progression of business.

Or is it a huge mess like the US Auto industries mess ?

I know why congress does not care about this subject, it’s simple they don’t fucking care, they have more important things to worry about

Sure, forget fiscal cliffs, financial crises, Europe going broke, sub-prime, people losing their homes, US manufacturing going overseas, national debt, none of that is important,,,, drop everything, masnick things you should address the freetards before anything else..

I mean if you cant download what you like, when you like, what is the world coming too ???

Congress will get right on it, as soon as they have done EVERYTHING else, probably.

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