No, a line extends infinitely in both directions. It is closer to say that a point is a zero length line segment, but even that doesn't quite work since line segment is normally formally defined as being bounded by two distinct points. (Definitions of line-segments that permit zero length lines would result in most theorems that deal with line segments to require a caveate that they are talking about a non-zero length line, which is just awkward).
More than that, anyone who has not studied mathematics would probably intuitively agree with the judge. To move it entirely outside of math, the judge could have said "That is silly, that is like saying standing still is a zero-length walk."
Most government reports are designed to support a view...
Overally, this was a great article and thank you for putting it together.
I have to make a possibly significant quible about one thing: "The report itself explicitly states that it is not designed to be used to support any particular policy. "
I have not read this report, but if it is like others I have read, it is a common disclaimer on a huge array of government reports and even some datasets in acadameic papers. It is meant to show that the people who gathered the data were (at least supposed to be) unbiased and unaffected by politices or policy.
That in no way means that the statistics should not then be used by others, along with analysis, to actually support a view, just that the report itself is not take a position.
I have exactly two 10 digit phone numbers memorized, and that came through repeated use rather than than a conscious attempt to memorize (and 3 of those 10 digits are the area code, so really I memorized 2 7 digit numbers).
"the fact that the tracks were authorized is not a defense"
I am not a lawyer, but I think this is a defense. Anything which asserts that a key element is missing is an example of a defense.
I do not think it would be an *affirmative defense* though. An affirmative defense involves showing that the prohibited act did occurr, but that there is either a justification or excuse for it. Self defense is the classic case of affirmative defense. I think authorization distrubtion is fully permitted so authorization would mean that there was no prohibited action, not that there was an excuse or justification.
Again, I am not a lawyer but I think the difference is significant because of how they are treated. With an affirmative defense the burden of proof can be shifted to the defendant, for one thing.
You make a fair point, and perhaps simply the word "paid" would have been better.
With that said, I do beleive that a painter with a valid copyright should, in general, be able to demand payment for any major use of their painting in a film.
That of course is qualified with in general because it should not apply when there is fair use, but that is a case by case decision. It also should not qualify after the copyright term expires. I believe our current copyright term is too long, but that is somewhat tangential to the current discussion.
This time, I must respectfully disagree. A piece of visual art is precisely that, and often created, at least in part, with the intent to monetize the ability to view that art. Buying a copy is very different from purchasing a license to use it by visually representing it. And with a painting, its value is largely in the ability to see a visual representation. I think there is, in general, a valid right for the artist to be compensated for its inclusion in a movie since then the movie viewers see the art which is its primary value.
Now, some artists, especially ones not well established, might well offer their work for free or even pay to have it included in a movie for exposure, but that is the artist's right and not something to be assumed. And this is very different from a can of coke because with coke the value is in drinking it, not in seeing it.
There are other reasons that this particular case might not make sense, but not the reasons you list. For one, I believe our copyright term is too long and something from 1907 should be in the public domain now, but until that law is properly changed it is still in copyright. I also note that a license fee was already paid, but whether or not that covers this version is precisely the heart of this case so the court will decide it. Also, there might be a fair use claim especially for art that is not significant to the movie and shown only in passing.
I agree. I bought Dragon Age: Origins used, and on a whim because I got it cheap. Since then, I bought every piece of DLC including Awakenings, preordered Dragon Age 2, and have money waiting for Dragon Age 3 as soon as preorders open. But that probbly never would have happened if Dragon Age had not been available used.
It might be worth looking a bit earlier than the Constitution to the Statute of Anne. It includes as part of the purpose section "and for the Encouragement of Learned Men to Compose and Write useful Books".
It seems mandatory arbitration can be beneficial when both sides have equal bargaining power and it is truly a part of a fully negotiated contract. It is a great time and money saver in many business arrangements.
But I do see great problems when the power base is so clearly lopsided. I think arbitration clauses should not be permitted as part of a standard contract with individual customers, especially when that contract is a contract of adhesion attached to a product already purchased.
Not needing registration is good, but the term is too long
"Now, of course, neither registration nor renewal is required: everyone is granted a copyright on everything they create, lasting until long after their death, despite clear evidence that the value of a commercial monopoly almost always expires in a fraction of that time."
I personally think it is a good thing that registration is not required. Amoungst other benefits it makes it simple to know that everything new is copyrighted unless explicitly released and, in an era where more is published then ever before, saves a tremendous amount of paperwork for registering.
With that said, the copyright term is far too long and there is tremendous value in a large public domain. The copyright term should probably be well short of the 28 years mentioned.
I sincerely hope that Senator Wyden manages to propose these ammendments in some other fashion, perhaps as their own separate bill. ACTA and TPP clearly have the qualities of a treaty and should require Senate approval.
The phrasing on this quote "the CERN team that first said they saw some FTL neutrinos, now admit they made a couple mistakes. " does the CERN team a disservice.
They arranged an incredibly complex experiment and got anomolous results. When they could not find a reason, they presented to the broader community for analysis. They always contemplated that it could be an error or systematic flaw. This phrasing, while technically accurate, seems to imply that they tried to hide or were at least surprised by the fact there were mistakes.
A better phrasing would be "the CERN team, after displaying unusual data, determined definitively that it was caused by a mistake and what that mistake was with input from the broader scientific community."
The CERN team worked hard, honestly presented their results with full contemplation it might include errors, and publicized all details when they were known. The Scientific Community, including the CERN team, worked exactly the way it should in this case.
I am not a lawyer, but I do not think you can "pretty much prepare any legal filing ". There is certain boiler plate that is used repeatedly of course, but much of that is provided by the Courts themselves in their published forms and in places like appendixes to the FRCP. There are certain other paragraphs that will need only minimal customization to the particular case, but they still need customization and that requires a full understanding of them.
Also, with a few exceptions that are sealed for various reasons, most court filings are part of the public record. That means that anyone can go down to the court house (or sometimes even the Court's website) and get a copy for a relatively small fee, with none of that money being paid to the lawyers that created the document.
I agree with some of your underlying points, but I have to disagree that music is not a product. It certainly no longer needs to be a product, but it still can be.
When I buy a track off of Amazon from say Nightwish, my goal is to buy the ability to listen to that music as often as I wish. It certainly feels and seems like I am buying if not the music then a copy of the music which is really no different from buying the music. It is not an MP3 file I am buying, but the music that happens to use MP3 as its packaging.
In certain areas, yes. I am an enormous fan of wikipedia.
But I am not so certain that process works well for fiction or visual art. Even if I were proven wrong, it wouldn't really change the fact that there will be a ton of stuff that is just bad or good but outside the genres I like.
I personally am quite willing to pay for someone to collect the best of the "Professional Amateur" work in genres I like, do the tedious but important work of fixing minor typos and grammar errors, and then see to it that I can easily provide some support/compensation to those creators. This seems to be close to the definition of an editor-reviewer.
I love the variety that can spring up due to lower barriers to entry in many of these fields.
Yet, after sifting through a substantial amount of low quality material it seems that as gatekeepers become less necessary, editors and reviewers to help identify, refine, and highlight the work that is of genuinely high quality will become far more significant.