I just see copyright as a sorry excuse for the all-too-often apologist mantra "I believe in freedom of speech BUT..." Or as Salman Rushdie has recently called it, the "but brigade".
If I can't write a 5-novel epic of Mickey Mouse full of clever metaphor critical of his "official" world then I am being censored. There's no other way of putting it. And don't give me that idea/expression "dichotomy" nonsense: expressions ARE ideas. As Orwell used to demonstrate, the language reveals all. Pay real attention to those words and you will see there is no difference between them. An Orwellian is and always will be hundreds of leagues ahead of a lawyer with his "intellectual" jargon. ("There are some ideas so absurd that only an intellectual could believe them.")
Stop the above 5 novel scenario from ever being published, and you necessarily take a certain sting out of my message. "Just use a different expression" is a euphemism for "tone it down". And a euphemism for thought crime.
"Intellectual property"... I guess to steal from said property is to commit an "intellectual crime" in that instance. Which sounds so much better than thought crime, doesn't it?
Upton Sinclair once said "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"
I should add to that and say that a lawyer's salary depends entirely on everybody else not being able to understand a certain something. So of course there is an incentive to make law as complex as possible, given the right levels of corruption.
And there is a reason why they can and will seek to over-complicate a field like copyright before other fields such as libel law - because the very nature of copyright is its needless complexion based on its fundamental logical fallacies. If fair use cannot be commercial (you know, the ONLY real "use" you have), in what sense is it really fair? And isn't the very phrase "fair use" not just a euphemism for "permitted stealing", according to copyright believers? It should be. A penny stolen from a safe is still theft. "Transformative" should be a euphemism for "derivative". "Substantial amount" is basically saying "if the wallet has $500, you are free to steal $50", as well as many other contradictions that the copyright believers don't want to face up to, for risk of them being well and truly exposed for the censors they are.
I do not know of any legal field that is as complex as copyright law. The vortex that is American tax code, perhaps? Which results in only those who can pay for professional lawyers being able to find the hidden loopholes? Other than that I do not know.
But what I do know is it is a gross insult to those of us who are loyal to the principle of Occam's Razor. One of the very first posts the legal-body head Terry Hart displayed on his pro-copyright site "copyhype.com" was a post praising complexity seemingly for its own sake, and took a dismissive attitude towards those of us who seek to eliminate the multiplication of unnecessary constants.
This is the mentality of lawyers. They want complexity in law as their very own careers benefit enormously from it. Everything about it must be resisted. And especially in America: land of the lawyer, home of the sued.
And one of the best places to start is where a whole legal framework is rooted on a fallacy: that of copyright.
"Copyright doesn't protect the notes, it protects the symphonies!"
A word is a symphony of letters. A sentence is a symphony of words.
A line is a symphony of dots. A square is a symphony of lines. A cube is a symphony of squares.
A blended colour is a symphony of primary colours.
Only when you point these things out do you then hear the cries of "well we're still going to just set the limits here, here and here anyway because we JUST ARE" when their logic of "symphonies, not notes" falls apart, sometimes it's "but those things you mentioned are too foundational to meet the limits" one time and "three black circles DOES count for Disney!!" another: they fall back onto "we decide" as the basis of their argument, which is way too slippery a standard to pass any elementary freedom of expression test.
When you cut through all the jargon and crap, copyright believers make the same claim as all censors: they consider themselves capable of drawing lines without falling into corruption.
He obviously hasn't read "In Defense Of Plagiarism".
He complains about how the Internet has become "monetized,"
The internet has ALWAYS been monetized, ever since ISPs started charging for internet connections and advertising has been rife.
Cyber-utopianism is self-evidently a false idea but unfortunately a popular one, just like the utopia of copyright philosophy. However, it will come to falsify itself in clear colours, without the need for unnecessary regulation that will not solve any problems and just accumulate power to the state.
The questions about liberty and freedom remain the same regardless of the internet's existence. Which means the state and corporations should all be seen as suspect, just like before.
This has got to be the pinnacle of human absurdity.
Didn't anybody during the course of this lawsuit not just wake up and think, "Wow, this entire case is fucking stupid?" Didn't anybody not realise "Wow we are spending tons and tons of court time and effort and money for years and years on a fucking 1cm x 1cm marking on the back of a fucking watch that for all intents and purposes ought to be treated like a fucking regular piece of property?"
NO! Apparently we need the Supreme Court to deliberate on such a MASSIVE PHILOSOPHICAL CONUNDRUM.
It's like copyright believers have no shame. And it's like everybody forgot how to laugh at them. This should be the subject of witty cartoons and Onion articles and full-blown disgrace.
How far does it have to go before people start laughing? Do copyright lawyers need to strip naked in court?
Oh I see. Copyright holders wanting anonymity in civil courts.
You know, because secret courts are totally liberal.
Don't worry I'm sure that once that gets into swing NOBODY will be able to connect the dots and work out for themselves where and when takedowns are happening.
"Wahhh Google and Youtube put sad faces in place of infringing videos when they are taken down" - yes, I have heard this attempt to restrict Google's freedom to express what they THINK about takedowns being uttered, too.
And of course efforts to remove Chilling Effects instead of targeting the source of the piracy itself - the websites in question (which they won't do because they secretly feel that enforcing copyright is a doomed policy) will resemble the E.U. disastrous ruling on the right to be forgotten ("don't even TELL the sites you've taken down links!!!!") and will be met with inevitable Streisand Effects and total humiliation.
It's almost as if they get masochistic pleasure out of making themselves look like clowns.
Next thing they'll say is "nobody is even allowed to MENTION "The Pirate Bay" because if you do, that is the same as LINKING to it!!!". They'd be right, you know. Simply mentioning what a pirate website IS makes you a linker and morally liable for infringement.
Stretching this nonsense far enough, reading an open book on a public train could probably count as a public performance. Since anyone else could read it.
And you never owned that book in the first place. You just owned a license to make a copy of that book via the beams of light that reflect off of it and hit your eyes. Which means you also don't have the right to lend it to anyone else, as it'd be making an unauthorised copy (via the beams of light) in the process.
I'm from the U.K. Farage is a professional troll (seriously, Google his name and tell me that doesn't look like a troll face) along with the rest of UKIP. They steal right-wing votes from the mainstream right-wing Tory conservative party because UKIP sees the Tories as being too warm and cosy with Europe.
They are a bunch of separatist lunatics who want to blame all of Britain's woes on the European Union. We already have a separatist movement in my home country of Scotland in the form of Scottish nationalist separatism. Enough problems as it is, without these British nationalist separatists adding to them.
We seriously need a party committed to state unity over state amputation that is anti-nationalist and pro-internationalist. And we haven't got one. The closest thing we've had to such a global movement in recent history were the international socialists that were hostile to U.S. imperialism and Soviet Union imperialism alike. It died when socialism died, and all the nationalist cracks are appearing as a result (as well as bullshit alliances between the so-called "left" and far-right extremist Islamist movements).
The Simpsons can still on rare occasion be funny during their long-prolonged new episodes that just don't seem to end. This is a joke I saw that sums up UKIP and their sympathisers perfectly. Mr Burns has a memory lapse and has to be educated by Smithers on the history of Europe:
You don't seem to have stressed enough the disgrace of Paramount Pictures.
They did not have any moral authority to pull Team America from theaters. In a crucial moment of solidarity that had to be upheld, Paramount trashed it.
And they used copyright law to do so. That is a rather significant finding, I would think, and I can't believe it's been so easily glanced over.
What we have here is a textbook example of copyright being used to suppress freedom of expression. On a vast political and dialectical scale. That showing of Team America was a crucial act of defiance in the face of the censorship of another film, and it was wrecked by a pathetic claim of ownership of expression on an already 10 year old movie.
Good post. And all Garcia really did was conclusively demonstrate how mixing the separate and unrelated issues of copyright and defamation into the same legal sphere leads to all kinds of stupidity, such as this.
It's a philosophical defeat for the copyright believers.
Personally, I think that if fuckers are sending death threats to her in the full knowledge - the full knowledge that these fascists must have - that she was dubbed over and did not actually say what it appears, yet still continue to intimidate and frighten her, all the separate copyright provisions in the world are not going to protect her.
She needs to take the side of people like Salman Rushdie and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and say that an attack on her is an attack on everybody who wants to treat Islam with the same levels of criticism as any other religion.