Rep. Nadler Claims 'You Bought It, You Own It' Is An 'Extreme Digital View'

from the oh-really? dept

We've written about Rep. Jerry Nadler a few times. He recently became the "ranking member" (i.e., highest ranking Democrat) on the House subcommittee on intellectual property, which clearly made copyright maximalists happy. Nadler has a history of heavily supporting copyright maximalist positions, including pushing for what was effectively an RIAA bailout a couple years ago, and has previously supported ridiculous dangerous concepts like a new copyright for fashion designs (and idea that is both unnecessary and likely to harm the fashion industry).

He's already off to a dangerous start, introducing a bill to create artist resale rights (something he's done before. This is an issue we've written about many times, creating a ridiculous idea that people who buy artwork no longer own it outright. Any time they resell the artwork at auction, they might have to pay some of the proceeds back to the original artist. As with the fashion copyright idea, what this does is harm innovative new artists by favoring wealthy established artists. As we've discussed, this punishes investors who are willing to support new artists, taking away their incentive to invest in those artists, while at the same time decreasing the incentive for other artists to continue producing art (since now they get paid multiple times for the same work).

Given all that, it's quite clear what Rep. Nadler thinks about basic concepts like property rights: he's not a fan at all. In fact, in a rather astounding statement to the Association of American Publishers, Nadler claimed that the idea that "you bought it, you own it" is somehow extremist:
“The ‘you bought it, you own it’ principle is an extreme digital view and I don’t think it will get much traction,” he said, referring to the mantra of proponents of the right to resell digital goods.
Oh really? The specific discussion concerned people wanting to be able to resell used ebooks, just like they can resell regular books. But, really, the idea that "you bought it, you own it" is somehow extremist? Isn't that a fundamental concept in property rights? In fact, we've highlighted how copyright maximalists are trying to destroy property rights by denying people the basic ownership rights over things they bought.

It seems extremely troubling when such a key member of the House subcommittee on intellectual property has such a negative view of our basic property rights.

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  • icon
    rw (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 9:50am

    So, according to this moron, the land I bought isn't really mine or my descendants? I thought that property ownership was one of the things this country was based on.

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

    • icon
      crade (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:14am

      Re:

      What he is trying to say is that only extremists apply property rights to digital merchandise. As per usual, he doesn't need to convince, only excuse. He can claim whatever ridiculous thing he wants as an excuse for making our lives miserable.

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

    • identicon
      Rich, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:17am

      Re:

      Well, no, not when they can use eminent domain to take it away and give it to Wal-Mart.

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

    • icon
      The Mighty Buzzard (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:18am

      Re:

      It's a trap! This is all a rope-a-dope to get us starting to think of intellectual property as property.

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

      • identicon
        Pragmatic, 21 Mar 2014 @ 4:34am

        Re: Re:

        But he just said it's not. If you bought it, you don't own it, therefore it's not property. Remember, people think of selling items such as CDs as "selling," not licensing. This is not about property rights per se, it's about extending licensing rights.

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

    • icon
      sorrykb (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:22am

      Re:

      So, according to this moron, the land I bought isn't really mine or my descendants? I thought that property ownership was one of the things this country was based on.

      Not to derail the thread (This Representative is, if not a moron, still a bad representative for the people and his statements are ridiculous), but...

      Taking land from some people and giving it to others is also one of the things this country was based on. Just ask the descendants of the people who once lived on your land.

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

      • identicon
        JEDIDIAH, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:38am

        Completely off topic...

        My land was not permanently occupied by anyone before European settlers moved in. European notions of property didn't exist here. What notions did exist here weren't necessarily consistent with other tribes either.

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

        • icon
          John Fenderson (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:54am

          Re: Completely off topic...

          However, the Europeans certainly had the concept of ownership, and it seems reasonable to judge their behavior by their own standards. And their standards say it was theft (or would say that if they recognized the natives as human beings).

          Remember that the main justifications for stealing the land were twofold: the natives were subhuman savages, and they were criminally underutilizing the land they lived on.

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

    • identicon
      monkeygrudge, 20 Mar 2014 @ 3:42pm

      Re:

      You mean after the "founders" stole said property from the original inhabitants?

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

    • identicon
      David, 21 Mar 2014 @ 2:31am

      Re:

      If there was something like "you bought it, you own it" to the government, there would be no legal basis for property taxes.

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

    • identicon
      Pragmatic, 21 Mar 2014 @ 4:32am

      Re:

      Hold on a moment... he says that the ‘you bought it, you own it’ principle is an extreme digital view. Therefore he seems to think that 'you made it, you own it' is not an extreme digital view, right?

      How is that reasonable?

      Remember this: Edging toward the fully licensed world?

      We're nearly there.

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

  • icon
    Ninja (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 10:51am

    Makes sense. I bet he'd be happy to know GM will be taking a chunk next time he sells his car. Or whoever built his house now has a share on how much you get out of selling it regardless the fact, you know, you PAID EVERY SINGLE CENT.

    Apply his ideals to his own property then ask him again if he thinks its extremist.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:02am

    So intellectual property is property but ownership cannot be transferred ?

    If it cannot be transferred how can it be stolen ?

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

    • identicon
      JEDIDIAH, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:08am

      Raving monarchist.

      Property exists. It just doesn't exist for us little people. Property is only for Lords and Kings and the modern day equivalent of the British East India Company.

      Property rights only matter for the 1% and everyone else is subservient to their whims.

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

    • icon
      Jeremy Lyman (profile), 21 Mar 2014 @ 7:33am

      Re:

      With a tape recorder and a pipe wrench?
      "Tell me about your idea..." *Whack!*

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:08am

    the problem lies more with those who put him in the position to be able to do this, when it is plainly obvious he doesn't have a clue!!

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

  • identicon
    Shmerl, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:10am

    The guy is evil.

    "What yours is mine". That's what he says.

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

  • icon
    SolkeshNaranek (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:12am

    negative view?

    It seems extremely troubling when such a key member of the House subcommittee on intellectual property has such a negative view of our basic property rights.

    It is not so much a negative view he came up with on his own, it is more of a "purchased" negative view sold to him by copyright extremists.

    I wonder, now that it appears he is "bought and paid for" if the copyright industry thinks "you bought it, you own it" applies?

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

  • identicon
    Crazy Canuck, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:28am

    That old Ford you want to sold, did you give a portion of the money to Ford? After all, their artists/engineers designed the look of aesthetics of the car.

    How about reselling your home? I'm sure the architect would love a piece of that action too.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:52pm

      Re:

      realtors tried (unsucessfully) a few years ago to make it a crime to sell a house without a realtor. they justified it with the argument that selling a house was far too complex for the average person.

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

      • icon
        jupiterkansas (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 2:19pm

        Re: Re:

        hmmm... and I wonder why it's so complicated? Maybe to force people to use realtors?

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

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 4:08pm

        Re: Re:

        If people are able to sell the house(s) on their own, quite obviously it isn't too complex.

        Now, I can see why people might want to have a realtor deal with all the hassle and paperwork involved, rather than having to do it all on their own, but to make it illegal to cut the realtors out of the loop just smacks of protectionism.

        Ah, gotta love those parasitic middlemen...

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:31am

    If the artist is entitled to a cut of future sales, does destroying art you bought become a crime? Could the artists, or more likely the copyright owner, sue for the loss of future income?

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

    • identicon
      JEDIDAH, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:41am

      Not a fan. Just have it around.

      You know. After I heard the EU nonsense about cheese names being outlawed I wanted to dispose of a bottle of Dom in the most disrespectful means possible. Kind of along the lines of "I fart in your general direction" but much more crude.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:32am

    It's an attack on our right to own property. Take a car for example. If Rep. Nadler had his way, we wouldn't full 'own' our cars, because the car's electronic systems have copyrights and patents on them.

    If those systems also use some form of DRM, you're potentially committing a felony if you attempt to fix your own car.

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

  • icon
    aethercowboy (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:41am

    Does this view of Nadler's also apply to big business' purchase of congresspeople?

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

  • identicon
    avideogameplayer, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:46am

    Intellectual property implies a person had intellect to begin with...

    Why don't these guys admit that there HASN'T been an ORIGINAL idea from any of them for the past 100 years?

    Anything that's out there today has been recycled so many times it's not even funny...

    'Based on...'

    'Something, something...' THE SEQUEL!

    And how many times can you say 'I love and wanna fuck you' in song form?

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 11:47am

    Send a Soveriegn Citizen to his house

    I assume that Rep Nadler owns a house, and might even have paid off the entire mortgage by now. If so, we need to send a Sovereign Citizen over to his house when him and his family are out.

    For those who don't know, 'Sovereign Citizens' are a group of radical Americans who claim that the law doesn't apply to them. They frequently do things like show up at an empty house with a gun when the owner is out and then offer to 'sell' them their home back. Because you know, they claim the law doesn't apply to them, and you left your house empty and unattended, so they own it now by rights of finders keepers.

    Maybe after a visit by such a Sovereign citizen, the idea of 'you bought it you own it' won't seem like such a 'radical' idea to Rep Nadler anymore.

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

    • icon
      silverscarcat (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:00pm

      Re: Send a Soveriegn Citizen to his house

      That...

      ...

      That's a pretty good idea, actually.

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

    • identicon
      Pragmatic, 21 Mar 2014 @ 4:38am

      Re: Send a Soveriegn Citizen to his house

      Ah, but isn't Sovereign Citizen an oxymoron? Citizenship is a legal status and if the law doesn't apply to them...

      Whoops! They didn't think that through, did they?

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

      • icon
        Niall (profile), 21 Mar 2014 @ 6:03am

        Re: Re: Send a Soveriegn Citizen to his house

        Well, if you are sovereign in your own right, you carry and 'emit' to yourself your own autonomous sovereignity. Getting people to 'recognise' that sovreignity is another matter altogether ;) That's where the gun becomes handy, but it's only as good as your line of sight/area of influence!

        Can we charge them for all the 'public good' services they utilise, such as roads, etc?

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:13pm

    Translation: We should be more like the Soviet Union because a few aging rockers aren't making money anymore.

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

  • identicon
    Just Another Anonymous Troll, 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:15pm

    Something that Rep. "Nincompoop" Nadler needs to understand...
    When I buy a book, I am purchasing intellectual property. The $15 I pay for it is me licensing one copy of the book from the author, unless you want me to believe that the costs of making a book are $15 plus the profit margin. One should think that when I license one copy, I should be able to do what I wish with it, be it read it, leave it on my shelf, give it to a friend, or burn it. I am not allowed to copy it, because I only licensed one copy and copying it (and distributing it, not some evil copyright maximalist here) would constitute infringement. For all practical purposes, I own the rights to one copy, which means that I should be able to sell the rights to that copy (I.e. Give a friend the book) without having to pay the author. If the author sells me the rights to her book, I can sell those rights without having to pay her a penny, unless such a thing was specified in the contract. This is not extreme. This is perfectly logical.

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

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    icon
    Paul A'Barge (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:22pm

    Nadler the Hutt

    Nadler is Jabba the Hutt without the cleverness.

    Being a DemoNcrat head of anything in the House is like nuts on a cow. Watch him, but lose no sleep.

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

  • icon
    jupiterkansas (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:23pm

    And Jerry Nadler's fifth largest campaign donor is...

    TV/Movies/Music $21,600

    Every time a politician is mentioned on TechDirt, it's guaranteed one of their top five donors will be the MPAA or RIAA.

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

  • icon
    Ima Fish (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:23pm

    I assume if confronted, the great representative would argue that he's only talking about copyright. And merely because you license a limited right to use a copy of a copyrighted work, does not necessarily mean you have an automatic right to transfer that license. That sounds so reasonable, right?

    The problem with that explanation is that nearly everything sold nowadays has IP issues. Your car is filled with copyrighted software and patented technology. Your house was designed from a copyrighted blue print. Heck, according to the Nadler, even the shirt on your back should be copyrighted!

    So under Nadler's view, we don't own hardly anything we buy. And that, at least to me, is an extremest position.

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

  • icon
    Gwiz (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:32pm

    "The 'you bought it, you own it' principle is an extreme digital view and I don’t think it will get much traction," he said"


    Hmmm. I thought Chris Dodd already set Congress straight on this issue after the SOPA vote when he realized that he didn't actually "own" the Congresspeople he "bought".

    https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120120/14472117492/mpaa-directly-publicly-threatens-pol iticians-who-arent-corrupt-enough-to-stay-bought.shtml

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:38pm

    If we cannot BUY a movie file online then it seems to me that Amazon (et al) is committing fraud when they offer consumers the oppty to BUY a downloadable movie.

    There's a difference in price between RENTing a movie online and BUYing a movie online. Consumers understand the reason for the difference in price: BUYing means they can keep it forever or give it away / sell it / lend it. But now we are expected to believe that the word BUY no longer means what it has always meant?

    Nonsense - Amazon clearly offers us the ability to BUY a movie or RENT a movie because they know very well that those words have a specific meaning in the minds of consumers and that consumers are willing to pay a premium to have the rights associated with BUYing that movie.

    Amazon doesn't offer that movie for LICENSE because they know that it holds much less value to the consumer.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 12:49pm

    Persons need to be mindful of the fact that the interests associated with property are easily modified via contract. For example, in the purchase of real property you can "own" a piece of land, but what such ownership comprises can be in a multitude of "flavors", i.e., fee simple, life estate, easement, leasehold, etc. In all you "own" (a word that is easy to use but wide ranging) something; however, the alienability, if at all, of each are not at all equivalent.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2014 @ 1:16pm

    You ONLY OWN...

    Things you no longer have to spend a dime on to keep.

    Take your own home and land... you technically just rent them from the government.

    You can't even develop you land the way you want... that's regulated too.

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

  • identicon
    Shadow-Slider, 20 Mar 2014 @ 1:20pm

    White Paper

    Ever since Bruce Lehman's white paper in 1991 copyright maximalists have considered anyone who values personal or private property as more important than IP as an extremist.

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

  • identicon
    bshock, 20 Mar 2014 @ 2:03pm

    let the buyer beware

    If Representative Nadler thinks that "you bought it, you own it" is an extreme attitude, then his, er, "wealthy contributors" might want to keep a close eye on him.

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

  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 20 Mar 2014 @ 8:27pm

    The cartels clearly have bought him and own his vote.
    Why are they always giving corps more rights than citizens?

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

  • icon
    G Thompson (profile), 21 Mar 2014 @ 2:07am

    I'm thinking the MPAA, RIAA, and other 'contributors' to this guys wallet ... oops... election funds wont be happy with this idea since to them its

    They bought him... they own him

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

  • identicon
    Prisoner 201, 21 Mar 2014 @ 2:45am

    This TED talk by Johanna Blakely should be mandatory for all legislators: Lessons from fashion's free culture.

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

  • icon
    Rex (profile), 21 Mar 2014 @ 3:46am

    Communism?

    Am I wrong in seeing this as a communist point of view? He's wanting to abolish the concept of personal property.

    Am I wildly off base?

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

    • identicon
      Pragmatic, 21 Mar 2014 @ 4:45am

      Re: Communism?

      Yes, you are wildly off base, Rex. The reason is, he's not advocating state ownership of property and the means of production, he's advocating corporate sovereignty. This means that all our digital purchases are belong to them and we can't do anything with them without permission. The whole "infringement is theft" notion is a part of this, they're trying to get us to accept it as common sense, then comply like good little sheep. No breach of the Constitution to see here, move along...

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 21 Mar 2014 @ 6:13am

    Recoup loss?

    So if I sell the precious IP I "bought" for less than I paid for it I can then get some of my money back from the entity I "bought" it from?

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous, 22 Mar 2014 @ 7:05pm

    As someone once said...

    Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice.

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


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