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Wednesday, January 02, 2013

OTP - Jan 2013: Jewish Journal:E1: An error in baseball and Mideast politics

Tripon Posted: January 02, 2013 at 02:48 PM | 2805 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: ot, politics

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   2001. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:40 PM (#4352176)
Yes, making a copy, a mere copy, of something that does not belong to you can be a species of stealing. I mean, I thought that would almost go without saying. Anytime you deprive an owner of his peaceably right to own--and that means not depriving him of that which owning entails: possessing, alienating, deciding who has access when and how, disseminating (at a price). You don't like that--establish your own damn digital library of free stuff; then you own it and are sovereign over these things. You can give total free access.

Now, how serious the theft is...?
   2002. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:41 PM (#4352177)
talk about punting on the day guys.
You can't expect them to be happy about today. Japan doesn't celebrate V-J Day.
   2003. formerly dp Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:43 PM (#4352178)
Sam, if you're going to continue to rail against theft, you should probably change your handle.
   2004. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:45 PM (#4352179)
Copying isn't taking. That's sort of the crux of the issue.


Well, just a matter of fact, that is not correct. If it weren't, commercial ad makers wouldn't have to worry about referencing popular works (without in parody or otherwise) in their ads. Why don't you have an ad for a building and loan using some clip from It's A Wonderful Life? It's just copying, and a small bit of it, at that.
   2005. formerly dp Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:50 PM (#4352181)
Yes, making a copy, a mere copy, of something that does not belong to you can be a species of stealing.
"Can be"? It's "making an unauthorized copy". It's not theft. Anytime you conflate the two, it's a victory for the RIAA and MPAA. If the unauthorized copy causes lost revenue on the part of the copyright holder, that is not the same as stealing that money from them.

January 21, 2013: the day BTF discovered the intellectual property debate.* Congratulations and welcome to the internet!

*Although I swear we went through all of this when Andy admitted to nefariously recording TCM movies onto DVR.
   2006. Howling John Shade Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:52 PM (#4352182)
Still, even if a copyright has run on a book, that doesn't mean you can copy it. You still don't own the book itself, and you copying it is in violation of indices of ownership.


I don't get this. That's exactly what it means. What "indices of ownership" are we talking about here? Obviously I can't mug you and take your copy of the book just because the copyright has expired, but if I can legitimately gain access to the book I can copy it.

I think the PACER case is a cleaner example of this argument. Do you think Swartz stole something when he downloaded the files from PACER and published them? What did he steal?
   2007. formerly dp Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:53 PM (#4352184)
If it weren't, commercial ad makers wouldn't have to worry about referencing popular works (without in parody or otherwise) in their ads. Why don't you have an ad for a building and loan using some clip from It's A Wonderful Life? It's just copying, and a small bit of it, at that.
Unauthorized use is not the same as stealing, either. Do you just blanket all illegal things under the umbrella category of "stealing" and call it a day?
   2008. odds are meatwad is drunk Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:56 PM (#4352185)
Unauthorized use is not the same as stealing, either. Do you just blanket all illegal things under the umbrella category of "stealing" and call it a day?

So it's not theft if I am driving and using a car that I was no authorized to use?
   2009. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:59 PM (#4352186)
Still, even if a copyright has run on a book, that doesn't mean you can copy it. You still don't own the book itself, and you copying it is in violation of indices of ownership. Again, you may not be stealing from Walt Whitman anymore, but you are stealing from whoever owns that form you are reproducing, downloading, etc. Isn't that the law? Isn't that what Swarz really objected to--ownership (thus, restriction of dissemination) of intellectual property in any form? And that can be changed--but until it is, the law is the law.


I don't think caselaw is very well-developed on that subject at all. In my field, art history, there is a lot of discussion revolving around copyright of images. If someone photographs the Mona Lisa and puts it in a textbook, is that image itself copyrighted? The law isn't settled on the matter. There was a court case in Iowa that found that such a copy of a non-copyrighted work was not itself copyrightable, but that holding isn't binding nationally. It's a major issue. Even within the Fair Use harbor, there's a question of what qualifies as Fair Use.

P.S. every art historian I know has a personal collection of images scanned from books for use in their classes. Prior to digital images, it was personal slide collections.
   2010. CrosbyBird Posted: January 21, 2013 at 08:59 PM (#4352187)
You are trying to understand depression by comparing it to personal experiences with brief sadness that are not at all similar to the actual condition, but your lack of knowledge and appropriate context is preventing you from understanding this.

As someone who has struggled with depression for pretty much my whole life, I understand how it works, but I don't think the government is really at all culpable for Swartz's suicide. I think suggesting that level of vulnerability and creating an obligation for special treatment is really demeaning.

When I look at another 40-50 years of living with this condition, I understand why someone would be willing to commit suicide, especially with the prospect of any sort of extended prison sentence. There are times when the world is a completely bleak, hopeless place, and the best that can be done is distraction. I don't defend Swartz's decision, which caused his friends and family incredible pain, and also took from us one our strongest fighters in the trenches for electronic freedom. I do understand it. As for blame, we haven't figured out this disease, and society's attitudes toward depression certainly make it harder for people to get the treatment they need.

I have very serious problems with a system that threatens anyone with an outrageously long sentence, grossly disproportional to the crime committed, in an effort to compel a guilty plea. I have serious problems with a law worded broadly enough to place downloading and sharing copyrighted material in the same category as wire fraud.

If they're clinically depressed, you shouldn't threaten them with sixty times as much jail time as you actually intend for them to serve, because they're pretty much axiomatically going to take it the wrong way, and it might be enough to make them kill themselves.

I really think that is really insulting to Swartz. He was a very bright guy. He wasn't naive as to how heavy-handed the government could be, and what it would do, in the interests of stopping "undesirable communication." Jump to around 15m in.

If anything, he was all too aware of what could happen. I don't believe for one minute that the prosecution would have gone easy on Aaron Swartz in trial. I don't think they would have suggested one day less than the maximum permissible sentence. And I think people in government would have loved to see this upstart kid, a major force in the shattering of SOPA, and a powerful force for electronic freedom in general, pay dearly for his hubris in challenging their power.
   2011. Howling John Shade Posted: January 21, 2013 at 09:00 PM (#4352188)
Well, just a matter of fact, that is not correct. If it weren't, commercial ad makers wouldn't have to worry about referencing popular works (without in parody or otherwise) in their ads. Why don't you have an ad for a building and loan using some clip from It's A Wonderful Life? It's just copying, and a small bit of it, at that.


Because the copyright hasn't expired? If someone uses a clip of It's a wonderful life in an ad, they won't be prosecuted for theft. They might be sued by Paramount for copyright infringement.
   2012. Howling John Shade Posted: January 21, 2013 at 09:05 PM (#4352190)
I don't think caselaw is very well-developed on that subject at all. In my field, art history, there is a lot of discussion revolving around copyright of images. If someone photographs the Mona Lisa and puts it in a textbook, is that image itself copyrighted? The law isn't settled on the matter. There was a court case in Iowa that found that such a copy of a non-copyrighted work was not itself copyrightable, but that holding isn't binding nationally. It's a major issue. Even within the Fair Use harbor, there's a question of what qualifies as Fair Use.


The photograph has to add something creative to the work that is being photographed. A "faithful reproduction" of someone else's work doesn't qualify for a new copyright: Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp.

That is kind of a sort of blurry line though.
   2013. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: January 21, 2013 at 09:08 PM (#4352192)
So it's not theft if I am driving and using a car that I was no authorized to use?
No, theft is when you took the car. Whether you drove the car or loaded it onto your hovercraft, the taking is the stealing.

If you could create an identical copy of a car by running a perl script, such that one could use the car without taking it, then you could have an analogous situation.
   2014. Mefisto Posted: January 21, 2013 at 09:09 PM (#4352193)
Isn't the real dispute here the view that non-rivalrous goods shouldn't be "owned" in the same way that rivalrous goods are?
   2015. tshipman Posted: January 21, 2013 at 09:13 PM (#4352194)
No, theft is when you took the car. Whether you drove the car or loaded it onto your hovercraft, the taking is the stealing.

If you could create an identical copy of a car by running a perl script, such that one could use the car without taking it, then you could have an analogous situation.


You wouldn't download a car, would you?


PS: I agree with Ray from the previous page. I don't think second term inaugurals are a big deal.
   2016. Danny Posted: January 21, 2013 at 09:25 PM (#4352198)
I don't really know, honestly. This isn't a case of people who created valuable intellectual property defending their right to realize some profit from that creation. It's hard for me to see where the actual intellectual property crime happens if the creators of the intellectual property aren't meaningfully affected.

Part of allowing intellectual property creators to profit from that creation is allowing them to transfer/license those rights. The academic journals and universities selling those rights to JSTOR doesn't release the articles into the public domain, and disliking JSTOR's business model doesn't negate the rights they've acquired.
   2017. CrosbyBird Posted: January 21, 2013 at 09:38 PM (#4352200)
I am not watching an hour long academic lecture on depression. Sum up.

In short, depression is fundamentally the inability to experience pleasure and psychological comfort in the way that a healthy person experiences pleasure and psychological comfort. It is biologically distinct from the "depression" that healthy people feel: people who suffer from depression have a different biochemistry; they have different sleep patterns; they respond differently in a neurological sense to stress.

On a personal note, that video was very difficult to watch: anhedonia, guilt, psycho-motor retardation, insomnia, and a highly-activated stress response; this is my life. It's been over five years since I had a brutal experience coming off of Effexor; tomorrow, I pick up a new SNRI (Pristiq). Over the past fifteen years, I have tried around fifteen or twenty different drugs with little to no effect. I have considered electroshock therapy, but I cannot afford to lose my memory; my job depends on my ability to connect individual student problems to the database of solutions in my brain.
   2018. Tripon Posted: January 21, 2013 at 09:50 PM (#4352204)

You wouldn't download a car, would you?


Damn right I would download a car! With 3D printers, we're getting closer to copying actual manufacturing goods, and that's only a good thing.
   2019. Swoboda is freedom Posted: January 21, 2013 at 09:54 PM (#4352206)
Crosby,

I am really sorry to hear that. My aunt has suffered depression for most of her life and it has been horrible to watch. There have been several times when the meds just don't work. Best of luck.
   2020. The Good Face Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:04 PM (#4352211)
The issue of rural white cultists is appropos here because there was no shortage of BBTF posters defending and justifying the Feds killing the lot of them, including the children. Not the right kind of people, don't you know.

Aren't you the one who thinks the sick and/or stupid should just die already, rather than be held afloat by you and yours as a drain on resources?


Well, you're conflating letting people die of illness with shooting them in the face. If a guy on Medicare needs a heart transplant but dies before a suitable donor is found, we wouldn't say the government killed him.

But also, you're not accurately stating my position. As I've outlined here before, I'm just fine with a safety net that provides food/shelter/clothing, etc. to anyone who needs it. I differentiate medical care for a number of reasons that would require a longer post that I don't have time for right now. Stupid people are much more deserving of pity than scorn; low intelligence is a massive disadvantage in our society and it's not their fault they lack it. Ideally, we'd construct a society that would find a place for low intelligence people to do something reasonably productive, but that ship appears to have sailed, so the best remaining option is to put them on the dole and try to manage the social pathologies that result from low intellgence people with nothing to do.
   2021. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:15 PM (#4352216)
It's "making an unauthorized copy". It's not theft.


Okay. I don't think it will serve the general discussion to get bogged down in definitional minutia. An unauthorized use or taking is a species of theft. In fact, many states list "unauthorized taking and use" in the category under theft headings. Let's try not to be so hypertechnical, especially when it comes to making distinctions based on names. It's an axiom law that what you call something--the heading--is not the law.

What matters in law to an effective degree is not what you call something but what the elements of definition for the proscribed act are. If two things have the same definition, it doesn't if for some other purpose they are called something different. For instances, many white collar theft crimes are not called "theft"; they're called embezzlement or misappropriation or something. That's still theft. It's still stealing.

An unauthorized taking or using is the same as theft except with an unauthorized taking there is no intention to deprive the owner permanently of his property. Joy-riding as opposed to stealing an automobile, for instance. But, in both instances there was an intentional taking of someone else's property without their okay.

*Although I swear we went through all of this when Andy admitted to nefariously recording TCM movies onto DVR.


Yes, we did, and it was treated for the most part as a joke, as it probably should in those instances. JOLLY was not downloading all that stuff and then releasing it to the world to the musical accompaniment of "Born Free."

We think a lot of crimes are trivial and deserving of nothing much more than snickers and sneers. With Swartz this may be one. It doesn't seem like it's trivial to me, reading the underlying facts giving rise to the violation, but I open to opposite argument on this. (And by the way, "stealing" was exactly how the US attorney characterized what he did.
   2022. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:18 PM (#4352219)
I think the PACER case is a cleaner example of this argument. Do you think Swartz stole something when he downloaded the files from PACER and published them? What did he steal?


Don't begin by asking what he stole? Ask what he took? What did he take? Was it illegal for him to take the thing he took?

   2023. DJS and the Infinite Sadness Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:19 PM (#4352220)
The photograph has to add something creative to the work that is being photographed. A "faithful reproduction" of someone else's work doesn't qualify for a new copyright: Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp.

And Feist v. Rural! Didn't look it up, I just enjoy reading Supreme Court decisions for some strange reason.
   2024. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:21 PM (#4352222)
What matters in law to an effective degree is not what you call something but what the elements of definition for the proscribed act are.


Yes, I think we're all aware that if the glove don't fit, you must acquit.
   2025. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:34 PM (#4352231)
and to think for years civil rights activists openly dismissed gay rights activists working to make the two causes similar.


Some, not all, arguably not the paradigmatic activists. Bayard Rustin organized the March on Washington. This is a discussion that has been ongoing, and while the case for alliance over division has only definitively triumphed recently, the movement for such alliances is nothing new.

In fact it's been quite a long while since any major civil rights organizations showed any hostility to gay rights.

---------------------------------------

Well, just a matter of fact, that is not correct. If it weren't, commercial ad makers wouldn't have to worry about referencing popular works (without in parody or otherwise) in their ads. Why don't you have an ad for a building and loan using some clip from It's A Wonderful Life? It's just copying, and a small bit of it, at that.


Because the copyright hasn't expired? If someone uses a clip of It's a wonderful life in an ad, they won't be prosecuted for theft. They might be sued by Paramount for copyright infringement.

The irony there is that it hasn't been that long since you could walk into any video store and buy half a dozen different public domain versions of It's A Wonderful Life for anywhere from about $5.00 to $10.00 depending on the disk quality. They may have been bootlegs, but if they were, it sure took them a hell of a long time before they disappeared from those stores.

---------------------------------------

I don't think caselaw is very well-developed on that subject at all. In my field, art history, there is a lot of discussion revolving around copyright of images. If someone photographs the Mona Lisa and puts it in a textbook, is that image itself copyrighted? The law isn't settled on the matter. There was a court case in Iowa that found that such a copy of a non-copyrighted work was not itself copyrightable, but that holding isn't binding nationally. It's a major issue. Even within the Fair Use harbor, there's a question of what qualifies as Fair Use.


On my non-football website I sell poster-sized reproductions of covers from the old Masses magazine. The artwork is by many noted American artists of the early 20th century---John Sloan, George Bellows, Art Young, Stuart Davis, etc., and if I reproduced just the artwork by itself, the estates of those artists could come after me. But as long as I reproduce the entire cover with The Masses masthead and the accompanying text, it's all in the public domain, since the copyrights on the magazine itself pre-dated 1923 and the magazine went out of business by 1917. I've sold these reproductions to museums that never could find the original copies of the magazine, which are Rare with a capital "R".
   2026. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:42 PM (#4352237)
If the magazine is in the public domain, wouldn't the art reproduced on the cover also be? They are also pre-1923.
   2027. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:42 PM (#4352238)
I've sold these reproductions to museums that never could find the original copies of the magazine, which are Rare with a capital "R".

Why do museums want magazine covers?
   2028. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:46 PM (#4352241)
So it's not theft if I am driving and using a car that I was no authorized to use?


Naming is good for making distinctions, and distinctions serve real purposes, but unauthorized taking and use is of the same essence as theft. They are of the same family—with the same progenitor. Siblings if you like. It's giving it a name so as to designate it as a lesser offense--but of the same exact type of illegal behavior.

Unauthorized use is not the same as stealing, either. Do you just blanket all illegal things under the umbrella category of "stealing" and call it a day?


Theft and Unauthorized Use

And from my state:

Unauthorized use of a movable is the intentional taking or use of a movable which belongs to another, either without the other's consent, or by means of fraudulent conduct, practices, or representations, but without any intention to deprive the other of the movable permanently.

Theft is the misappropriation or taking of anything of value which belongs to another, either without the consent of the other to the misappropriation or taking, or by means of fraudulent conduct, practices, or representations. An intent to deprive the other permanently of whatever may be the subject of the misappropriation or taking is essential.[/quote]





   2029. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:50 PM (#4352244)
talk about punting on the day guys.


This is the ticker from Fox during the ceremony today.
   2030. Howling John Shade Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:50 PM (#4352245)
Don't begin by asking what he stole? Ask what he took? What did he take? Was it illegal for him to take the thing he took?


Ok, was it?

P.S. Technically, by quoting my post you're infringing my copyright (and vice versa, of course). This whole website is a nest of thieves.
   2031. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:53 PM (#4352247)
What did he take?

Why was that illegal?
   2032. SteveF Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:53 PM (#4352248)
P.S. Technically, by quoting my post you're infringing my copyright (and vice versa, of course). This whole website is a nest of thieves.


You took the words right out of my mouth.
   2033. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 21, 2013 at 10:57 PM (#4352252)
I have very serious problems with a system that threatens anyone with an outrageously long sentence, grossly disproportional to the crime committed, in an effort to compel a guilty plea. I have serious problems with a law worded broadly enough to place downloading and sharing copyrighted material in the same category as wire fraud.


I too have problems with these things. I have not argued otherwise in this thread.
   2034. formerly dp Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:03 PM (#4352255)
And by the way, "stealing" was exactly how the US attorney characterized what he did
Well, I guess that settles it.

You're saying it's unproductive to quibble about semantics, but the semantics question is part of what people like* Swartz try to call into question-- that is, treating physical property and intellectual property in the same terms.

An intent to deprive the other permanently of whatever may be the subject of the misappropriation or taking is essential.


Using a photograph of Mickey Mouse without Disney's permission does not permanently deprive Disney of anything.

*I don't know enough about Swartz to say that this was his specific philosophy, but for others in the copyleft movement, they insist on specifically not categorizing unauthorized use as theft. The Grey Album was unauthorized use, going to Best Buy and taking copies of the White Album and the Black Album is theft.
   2035. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:07 PM (#4352259)
Do we have copyrights to this stuff? How was our copyrights infringed?

As for theft: What did I take and how did I deprive you of anything and was it without your consent (or vice versa, of course)? The agreement we signed with our host might have something to do with this.
   2036. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:10 PM (#4352262)
I have very serious problems with a system that threatens anyone with an outrageously long sentence, grossly disproportional to the crime committed, in an effort to compel a guilty plea. I have serious problems with a law worded broadly enough to place downloading and sharing copyrighted material in the same category as wire fraud.


I too have problems with these things. I have not argued otherwise in this thread.

Who has?
   2037. CrosbyBird Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:20 PM (#4352271)
Quite frankly, I don't get the mindset that you can just take stuff from other people because it happens to be digital. I don't understand how anyone can download music and video without paying and think they're not stealing.

There is an argument that stealing requires that one deny the rightful owner of possession; there's no taking, because the original owner still has it.

I'm not sure how I feel about the issue, honestly. I think there is an advantage to protecting intellectual property in incentifying creation, but I also am a strong proponent of free exchange of information. It's pretty clear to me that the life of copyright is particularly outrageous; I'm not so sure that copyright shouldn't exist at all.

"It's the law" is, of course, not an argument that it is at all compelling.
   2038. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:25 PM (#4352275)
I've sold these reproductions to museums that never could find the original copies of the magazine, which are Rare with a capital "R".

Why do museums want magazine covers?


For exhibitions of various Ashcan school artists in cases where they can't find the original magazines themselves. John Sloan was the art editor of The Masses, and he used that position to promote socially conscious examples of the sort of work that these artists could produce. The cover art and the inside illustrations and cartoons of The Masses have been the subject of numerous museum exhibitions and at least one major scholarly work. For its unique combination of notable writing and art, it's usually considered the leading "little magazine" of the 20th century. It was shut down by the Wilson Administration in 1917 for articles urging draft resistance, and several of its editors art artists were tried (and acquitted) for sedition.
   2039. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:26 PM (#4352276)
I'm not sure how I feel about the issue, honestly. I think there is an advantage to protecting intellectual property in incentifying creation, but I also am a strong proponent of free exchange of information. It's pretty clear to me that the life of copyright is particularly outrageous; I'm not so sure that copyright shouldn't exist at all.

But how does copyright prevent free exchange of information? Once a book or film or music is published, all the informational content is free and available. The ideas, techniques, etc. are available to anyone who wants to buy a copy, or go to the library.

The only thing that's not freely exchanged is the actual specific form of the work. The words on the page, the scenes, the arrangement.

You're completely free to publish a book about a boy wizard at a wizard academy, you just can't take JK Rowlings words.
   2040. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:27 PM (#4352277)
It isn't necessary that law always be compelling; sometimes it's enough if it is only able to compel.
   2041. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:28 PM (#4352279)
If the magazine is in the public domain, wouldn't the art reproduced on the cover also be? They are also pre-1923.

I don't think that's actually the case, though in any event I'm only interested in reproducing the magazine covers as a whole, as the artwork standing alone would be lacking in historical context.
   2042. Howling John Shade Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:28 PM (#4352280)
Do we have copyrights to this stuff? How was our copyrights infringed?


Yep. You automatically possess a copyright in anything you create and fix in a medium. Writing counts as creating and publishing on the internet counts as fixing in a medium. The copyright is infringed by the act of copying. Therefore, when you wrote "Do we have copyrights to this stuff? How was our copyrights infringed?" you got a copyright in that written material, and I, through the act of copying it to quote it, infringed that copyright. Were you to sue me, I would have a couple of possible affirmative defenses: fair use, implied license, etc.

My point is simply that copyright infringement is a technical thing and it can be very different morally than stealing (It can also be fairly similar - i.e. mass downloading of copyrighted music or movies).

Taking the PACER case: What Swartz "took" (he did not deprive PACER of them) were legal cases that have no copyright. I guess if you think he stole something it has be PACER's ability to control access to those cases.
   2043. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:29 PM (#4352281)
For exhibitions of various Ashcan school artists in cases where they can't find the original magazines themselves. John Sloan was the art editor of The Masses, and he used that position to promote socially conscious examples of the sort of work that these artists could produce. The cover art and the inside illustrations and cartoons of The Masses have been the subject of numerous museum exhibitions and at least one major scholarly work. For its unique combination of notable writing and art, it's usually considered the leading "little magazine" of the 20th century. It was shut down by the Wilson Administration in 1917 for articles urging draft resistance, and several of its editors art artists were tried (and acquitted) for sedition.

I see. They can't find the original artwork?

BTW, Woodrow Wilson was among the worst, if not the worst President ever. Racist, fascist, engaged us in a completely unecessary war. There's literally nothing to like about him.
   2044. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:30 PM (#4352282)
There is an argument that stealing requires that one deny the rightful owner of possession; there's no taking, because the original owner still has it.


This theory eliminates entirely any market based incentive for the creation of art. It also undermines any argument anyone might make for drug patents. After all, if I hack Astra-Zeneca's systems, download their formulas and put a knock-off on the market at half price, I haven't actually *taken* anything from them by this definition. They still have their work.

I'm not sure how I feel about the issue, honestly. I think there is an advantage to protecting intellectual property in incentifying creation, but I also am a strong proponent of free exchange of information. It's pretty clear to me that the life of copyright is particularly outrageous; I'm not so sure that copyright shouldn't exist at all.


Modern US copyright law is stupid. This is uniquely due to Disney and the Disney lobby in DC. Rational copyright is fundamental to intellectual endeavor, unless you're willing to exit the realm of economic incentives for creative work entirely. (That is to say, punt market theory out the window.)

Free information is only important in certain use cases. Free information about the government and its actions are critical to keeping a check and balance on government behavior. Free information about research history into the last kings of Scotland? Not so much. There is no value on free information per se. Information is a dumb object in the world. The only argument for free access is a use case of actual humans in actual reality.
   2045. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:33 PM (#4352284)
Modern US copyright law is stupid. This is uniquely due to Disney and the Disney lobby in DC.

Perhaps. But nobody is really harmed by not being able to buy a knock-off Mickey Mouse hat.
   2046. Howling John Shade Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:33 PM (#4352286)
I don't think that's actually the case, though in any event I'm only interested in reproducing the magazine covers as a whole, as the artwork standing alone would be lacking in historical context.


I'm pretty sure if the artwork was still copyrighted the owners could block you from reproducing the magazine cover as well because it would be derivative of the original artwork.
   2047. Howling John Shade Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:40 PM (#4352289)
Modern US copyright law is stupid. This is uniquely due to Disney and the Disney lobby in DC. Rational copyright is fundamental to intellectual endeavor, unless you're willing to exit the realm of economic incentives for creative work entirely. (That is to say, punt market theory out the window.)

Free information is only important in certain use cases. Free information about the government and its actions are critical to keeping a check and balance on government behavior. Free information about research history into the last kings of Scotland? Not so much. There is no value on free information per se. Information is a dumb object in the world. The only argument for free access is a use case of actual humans in actual reality.


Yep. Copyright is a good idea (it sure beats the patronage system), but the law as it currently stands is meant to benefit the distributors of creative works far more than the creators and that's stupid. The ancillary laws (the DMCA and parts of the CFAA) are even worse.
   2048. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:42 PM (#4352290)
"The Simpsons: Lisa the Beauty Queen (#4.4)" (1992)
Blue-Haired Lawyer: Principal Skinner, "The Happiest Place on Earth" is a registered Disneyland copyright.
Principal Skinner: Oh now, gentlemen, it's just a small school carnival.
Blue-Haired Lawyer: And it's heading for a great big lawsuit. You made a big mistake, Skinner.
Principal Skinner: Well, so did you. You got an ex-Green Beret mad.
[he finger-thrusts the first goon in the Adam's Apple, then kicks the lawyer in the chest; they both go down groaning; as the second goon runs away, Skinner picks up the lawyer's briefcase and flings it into the air; in the distance, it knocks down the goon]
Principal Skinner: Copyright expired.

Couldn't find a video clip.
   2049. Tripon Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:45 PM (#4352292)
Morty, here it is.
   2050. formerly dp Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:52 PM (#4352295)
But nobody is really harmed by not being able to buy a knock-off Mickey Mouse hat.
If only it were as innocuous as that.

Disney has used claims over unauthorized use to suppress public discourse about its products and its brand. And when a small publisher gets letter from Dinsey's lawyers, they tend to err on the side of caution. Now, of course, it's Disney's right to be overzealous in protecting their brand. But let's not pretend that it's anything other than a naked power grab. There's no ethical high ground on Disney's part.

The linked Simpsons clip is certainly an unauthorized use. Shame on you Tripon for linking to it!

   2051. Morty Causa Posted: January 21, 2013 at 11:56 PM (#4352298)
Thanks, Tripon. Don't pay attention to Barney Fife.
   2052. CrosbyBird Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:05 AM (#4352300)
I don't think it will serve the general discussion to get bogged down in definitional minutia. An unauthorized use or taking is a species of theft.

It's not definitional minutia. It's highly appropriate when the question is whether theft requires actual taking. There's a very blurry line between unauthorized use and theft, and the overwhelming majority of our laws against theft, and the principles behind them, were based on an assumption that taking specifically meant depriving another of one's rightful property. (Common law theft required the unauthorized taking, keeping, or use of another's property with the intent to permanently deprive the rightful owner of the property or its use.)

John owns a DVD copy of Titanic that has some sort of copy protection software. He wants to watch the movie on his tablet, which doesn't have a DVD player. He uses a program to bypass the copy protection, make a non-physical copy, and transfer it to his tablet via his home network. John has just committed an unauthorized use violation; is he guilty of theft?

Bill makes an archival copy of a DVD he owns, which has no copy protection software installed. He watches the DVD in one room while his son watches the archival copy in another room. Is he guilty of theft? How about if he lends the DVD to someone else while still maintaining possession of the archival copy without watching it? How about if he watches the archival copy while it is loaned out?

Ed pays for unlimited data on his smartphone. His carrier charges thirty dollars per month in addition to activate the ability to turn his phone into a tether, allowing him to use the phone's network for his laptop. He chooses not to purchase this service, instead using a free application that uses the USB connection between phone and laptop to piggyback the network. Has he committed theft?

Frank is across the street from a coffee shop that offers free wifi to their customers, but the signal is strong enough that he can pick it up with his tablet. He uses that signal to browse the web. Is he stealing?

Mark has a legitimately owned copy of a computer program, but the DVD has a giant scratch that makes it impossible to read. The company that he purchased it from no longer distributes the software; he downloads a copy from an abandonware site. This is pretty clearly a copyright violation; has he committed theft? Is it theft when the company DOES still distribute the software and wants him to pay $10 for a replacement copy?
   2053. zenbitz Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:07 AM (#4352302)
Can I buy a copy of a book still in copyright let's, say, I dunno, a twilight novel. Then cut out each word and paste them back together in a different order. Resell book. Infringement?

What if it's an e-book?
   2054. SteveF Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:09 AM (#4352303)
This is, of course, a classic.
   2055. zenbitz Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:10 AM (#4352305)
No, theft is when you took the car.


But that's because there's ONE car. What if I pointed my future tech 3d xerox / printing machine at your car and made an exact duplicate of it and drove it away?

COKES around... now I know why I read to the end of the page first... usually.
   2056. CrosbyBird Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:10 AM (#4352306)
I too have problems with these things. I have not argued otherwise in this thread.

I wasn't saying you did. I was generally agreeing with you that Swartz's depression is an irrelevant consideration in terms of criticizing the government, and didn't create some additional duty (or blameworthiness for his suicide).
   2057. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:24 AM (#4352312)
Disney has used claims over unauthorized use to suppress public discourse about its products and its brand. And when a small publisher gets letter from Dinsey's lawyers, they tend to err on the side of caution. Now, of course, it's Disney's right to be overzealous in protecting their brand. But let's not pretend that it's anything other than a naked power grab. There's no ethical high ground on Disney's part.


Hell, Disney went toe to toe against the Atlanta baseball franchise, which has been in existence in Atlanta since 1966 and in existence in other forms for 100 years, over "infringement" of their copyright claim to merchandise from the movie "Brave."
   2058. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:29 AM (#4352316)
Principal Skinner: Oh now, gentlemen, it's just a small school carnival.
Blue-Haired Lawyer: And it's heading for a great big lawsuit. You made a big mistake, Skinner.


A theater producer who didn't pay royalties on producing a George S. Kaufman play tried to excuse himself by saying "After all, it's only a small, insignificant theater."
Kaufman responded: "Then you'll only go to a small, insignificant jail."
   2059. Howling John Shade Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:39 AM (#4352321)
Can I buy a copy of a book still in copyright let's, say, I dunno, a twilight novel. Then cut out each word and paste them back together in a different order. Resell book. Infringement?


Not infringement. In fact you've created your own copyrighted work.

What if it's an e-book?


Also not infringement. Although, if the ebook has DRM protection and you have to circumvent it in order to reorder the words, you have probably committed a DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) violation.
   2060. Tripon Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:45 AM (#4352323)
It’s probably safe to assume that there are many self-identified “liberals” who enjoy watching Downton Abbey, drawn in by its air of prestige, its aura of highbrow escapism, and the fact that it’s broadcast on PBS, thus stealing money directly from American taxpayers. But do those liberals realize that they’re secretly being indoctrinated to love rich people, eventually leading to the total crumbling of their ideology? Gleeful in their discovery of this subterfuge and in finding something to talk about besides the Inauguration, Fox & Friends stupidly exposed the show’s hidden agenda this morning, letting economist Stuart Varney—whose pleasant British tones helped soften the blow against liberal dogma, much as they do on Downton Abbey—spill the beans on how the series “poses a threat to the left,” then very nicely asked some poor people to tidy up those beans, because that’s what nice rich people do.
“Rich people, powerful people, in America today, are reviled, aren’t they?... We just hate ‘em! Rich people are evil!” Varney said, using his extensive background as an economist and adult man to make his very professional assessment of the economic climate. But then a show like Downton Abbey comes along, with its classy, good-looking, job-creating rich people who occasionally express a vague semblance of human sympathy to the employees who tend to their every need and outfit change, allow their servants time to die of cancer rather than casting them into the ditch, and only disown their daughters for falling in love with the chauffeur for like a year or so. And then, before they know it, the Democrats have lost the next election to write-in votes for Maggie Smith and cummerbunds. It all makes sense, if you look at it as an economist.
   2061. CrosbyBird Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:50 AM (#4352324)
But how does copyright prevent free exchange of information? Once a book or film or music is published, all the informational content is free and available. The ideas, techniques, etc. are available to anyone who wants to buy a copy, or go to the library.

When I say "free," I mean "free," not "obtainable." If you can't access the information without paying for it, it's the opposite of free.

The only thing that's not freely exchanged is the actual specific form of the work. The words on the page, the scenes, the arrangement.

You're completely free to publish a book about a boy wizard at a wizard academy, you just can't take JK Rowlings words.


Even now, you might be able to, if you add or change enough. Set one of her books to music, and that might be enough. But what you're calling the "only thing" is a pretty big thing. You're limiting the spread of information, in that particular form, in favor of the owner's right to exclusivity. I don't think it's a trivial tradeoff.

A lot of music is derivative, and the line between copying and transformation isn't very clear. There's a really cover-friendly system in place, where you can cover a song and pay the license owner a pretty small fee (I think it's around nine cents per song per unit sold), so it isn't as much of an issue as it could be. Assuming I understand the statutory licensing law properly, if you want to record an album of fifteen covers of previously released songs and sell it, you can basically send a letter of notification to the rights-holders and there's nothing they can do to stop you (unless you don't pay them).

Most intellectual property doesn't have that same statutory scheme.

It isn't necessary that law always be compelling; sometimes it's enough if it is only able to compel.

Generally speaking, how's that working out on the copyright front? I don't see a lot of ability to compel.
   2062. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 22, 2013 at 12:54 AM (#4352329)
I don't think that's actually the case, though in any event I'm only interested in reproducing the magazine covers as a whole, as the artwork standing alone would be lacking in historical context.

I'm pretty sure if the artwork was still copyrighted the owners could block you from reproducing the magazine cover as well because it would be derivative of the original artwork.


Not true. If you're interested, the whole question of the copyright status of the artwork in The Masses is dealt with in the book that's appropriately enough titled Art For The Masses (by Rebecca Zurier, Temple Univ. Press, 1988). There's a clear distinction between the covers and the artwork itself, when the covers themselves have gone out of copyright as The Masses covers did long ago. Don't forget that in most cases of magazine illustrations, the artists were hired on a piecework basis, and the entire contents of the magazine were retained by the publishers, barring any special arrangement with the artist.

--------------------------------------

Disney has used claims over unauthorized use to suppress public discourse about its products and its brand. And when a small publisher gets letter from Dinsey's lawyers, they tend to err on the side of caution. Now, of course, it's Disney's right to be overzealous in protecting their brand. But let's not pretend that it's anything other than a naked power grab. There's no ethical high ground on Disney's part.

AFAIC the only positive contributions Walt ####### Disney ever made to American culture were (a) hiring Carl Barks; and (b) this. The rest is all just a bunch of crap and pablum, no matter how technically dazzling.
   2063. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:00 AM (#4352334)
It’s probably safe to assume that there are many self-identified “liberals” who enjoy watching Downton Abbey,

It's also probably safe to assume that there are many of us self-identified liberals who'd like to see that godawful show sent back across the ocean, if for no other reason than the fact that our wives have often forced us to miss key sporting events in order that they might watch it. They should just let us keep Fawlty Towers and the BBC World News and stick the rest of it all in a sack.
   2064. Morty Causa Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:06 AM (#4352336)
A theater producer who didn't pay royalties on producing a George S. Kaufman play tried to excuse himself by saying "After all, it's only a small, insignificant theater."
Kaufman responded: "Then you'll only go to a small, insignificant jail."


I love George S. Kaufman stories.
   2065. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:07 AM (#4352337)
It’s probably safe to assume that there are many self-identified “liberals” who enjoy watching Downton Abbey,
Funny. My wife's re-watching Season 3 right now. I'd watch it with her, but I've already seen it twice. It's great.

   2066. CrosbyBird Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:19 AM (#4352342)
This theory eliminates entirely any market based incentive for the creation of art. It also undermines any argument anyone might make for drug patents. After all, if I hack Astra-Zeneca's systems, download their formulas and put a knock-off on the market at half price, I haven't actually *taken* anything from them by this definition. They still have their work.

Drug patents (and patents themselves) are a pretty interesting carve-out, and worthy of their own serious discussion. I think they're sort of necessary because of how expensive it is to develop and produce drugs and push them through trials. You probably wouldn't need to hack anything; if Astra-Zeneca has a patent, it's part of the public record. You just can't use it. Forget selling a knock-off at half-price; you can't even make it or use it yourself without the permission of the patent-holder. The other thing about patents is that they only last for a fairly narrow window. For drugs, because of the long trials, there's usually less than a ten-year window of exclusive sale.

But there's a price (in principle) for this very strong protection; you don't get to keep secrets. Other companies don't need to spend nearly as much energy reverse-engineering stuff and can develop new technology more quickly and effectively.

Modern US copyright law is stupid. This is uniquely due to Disney and the Disney lobby in DC. Rational copyright is fundamental to intellectual endeavor, unless you're willing to exit the realm of economic incentives for creative work entirely. (That is to say, punt market theory out the window.)

14 years was pretty reasonable, I think.

Free information is only important in certain use cases. Free information about the government and its actions are critical to keeping a check and balance on government behavior. Free information about research history into the last kings of Scotland? Not so much. There is no value on free information per se. Information is a dumb object in the world. The only argument for free access is a use case of actual humans in actual reality.

If there's no value in free distribution of information per se, then why not have copyright last indefinitely? Why should Hamlet ever enter the public domain rather than generate continual revenue for Shakespeare's descendants?

Information is really only of value to humanity if shared. I think that is itself a reason to presume that free exchange is a good thing.
   2067. Tripon Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:19 AM (#4352343)
Somebody mentioned al la cart pricing for TV/Movies. You're already seeing it online with Amazon video and youtube, but I feel for the most part its too expensive. Each ep is $2 for the SD version, and $4 for the HD version, and I feel that it has to move to the $0.99 model before you'll see significant movement on it. Especially since you're only streaming the videos, instead of a download. So you don't even own your own copy. You're paying for a 'unlimited' access to the stream of the ep, which may or may not actually be 'unlimited'.
   2068. DA Baracus Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:23 AM (#4352345)
The Virgina state Senate is split 20-20 D/R, so while one of the Democratic Senators was at the inauguration, the state GOP redistricted the state.
   2069. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:28 AM (#4352347)
Disney has used claims over unauthorized use to suppress public discourse about its products and its brand. And when a small publisher gets letter from Dinsey's lawyers, they tend to err on the side of caution. Now, of course, it's Disney's right to be overzealous in protecting their brand. But let's not pretend that it's anything other than a naked power grab. There's no ethical high ground on Disney's part.


Protecting their brand, usurping someone else's brand, whatevah.
   2070. zenbitz Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:42 AM (#4352350)
Can I buy a copy of a book still in copyright let's, say, I dunno, a twilight novel. Then cut out each word and paste them back together in a different order. Resell book. Infringement?



Not infringement. In fact you've created your own copyrighted work.


Of course. What fraction of words do I have to change? What if I purposefully misspell all the words so that they are phonetically identical?
   2071. Tripon Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:48 AM (#4352353)
Hahaha. Ebaum's world. One of the original internet sites, famously known for stealing acts and other stuff from other sites. Then one day, the company was sold right under the founders without them knowing about it in an equity deal that screwed them out of the profits.

Also, both Kimba the White Lion, and the Lion King is clearly based on Hamlet.
   2072. zenbitz Posted: January 22, 2013 at 01:49 AM (#4352355)
Patents (i.e, drugs, cell phones) are not copyrights. You cannot patent a chemical (including biologic, i.e, protein, RNA, DNA, whatever) for a general purpose, only for a SPECIFIC DEFINED purpose, a utility.

I am not super clear on the IP status of repurposing compounds that are already in use. I know this is done to extend drug patents, BUT I can't say that it's true for a generic compound.

Maybe you can prevent marketing a competing product that violates the utility in your new patent on an old molecule (say, Asprin as an anti-depressant) BUT you couldn't prevent off-label prescription.
   2073. DJS and the Infinite Sadness Posted: January 22, 2013 at 02:28 AM (#4352360)
My favorite trademark dispute was on the Canadian Dragons Den. A woman who owned a garage named Ms. Lube went onto the show to pitch for a capital investment to franchise Ms. Lube. One of the 5 people she was pitching for was the owner of the Mr. Lube chain, Jim Treliving. The rest of the panel was trying to explain to the woman why the name was a bad idea but she didn't understand waht the issue was. Treliving didn't participate in the discussion and he said he was keeping his mouth closed for legal reasons. You can guess what happened immediately after the show.
   2074. Tripon Posted: January 22, 2013 at 02:39 AM (#4352362)
Dan, they did a follow up to the show, and they shown that she went out of business a couple of months after the show aired. Unrelated to the trademark issues because Mr. Lube's didn't file the lawsuit yet.
   2075. DJS and the Infinite Sadness Posted: January 22, 2013 at 02:45 AM (#4352364)
They did file the lawsuit but they went out of business before it went to court.
   2076. Tripon Posted: January 22, 2013 at 02:50 AM (#4352367)
Ah, okay. I remember that segment. The odd thing is that she totally thought Jim would be impressed by the name. The Canadian's Dragon Den's is an odd show, they clearly try to get the more exotic companies on the show, and they take more chances than the American version, Shark Tank.

Just this past week, they had a pitch for a Vodka with Hemp infused that actually got invested.
   2077. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 22, 2013 at 07:10 AM (#4352374)
Still, even if a copyright has run on a book, that doesn't mean you can copy it.


Wha? Material that's in the public domain can absolutely be copied without repercussions. That's what public domain means.

The danger with copying a Penguin edition from front to back is that you might copy copyrighted material generated and owned by Penguin that's present alongside the non-copyrighted material, like a foreword or footnotes. But the rest? You can copy that.
   2078. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 22, 2013 at 07:34 AM (#4352376)
The photograph has to add something creative to the work that is being photographed. A "faithful reproduction" of someone else's work doesn't qualify for a new copyright: Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp.

That is kind of a sort of blurry line though.


In practice, the general distinction within the US is that photographic 2D representations of public domain 2D works (paintings, etc.) are OK to copy, though if there's a frame, you need to crop that out of your copy. A non-photographic representation of the work (a caricature of the Mona Lisa, etc.) is not OK to copy, since it is itself a separate creative work.

2D representations of public domain 3D works (sculptures, etc.) are not OK to copy, because the choices of lighting and angle and things like that within the 2D representation are themselves creative elements. You can create your own 2D representation of the 3D work, though, as long as the 3D work is itself in the public domain.
   2079. Lassus Posted: January 22, 2013 at 08:06 AM (#4352378)
Wha? Material that's in the public domain can absolutely be copied without repercussions. That's what public domain means.

Yep. Ask classical musicians & classical ensembles. They'd be dead otherwise.
   2080. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 22, 2013 at 08:07 AM (#4352379)
Perhaps. But nobody is really harmed by not being able to buy a knock-off Mickey Mouse hat.


That might be true if Disney had only extended the copyright on Disney works. But because they lobbied to have the term extended for all of the works created by other people during that same time span, they're holding literally millions of other works out of the public domain for the sake of one mouse.

Want to adapt Herman Melville's "Billy Budd" for the stage at your local community theater? #### you - it wasn't published until 1924! Want to use Irving Berlin's "Blue Skies" in your independent film? #### you - it wasn't published until 1926! Want to make a DVD copy of Al Jolson's "The Jazz Singer" and mail it to your grandfather? #### you - it wasn't published until 1927! And so forth...

The Melville one is particularly ludicrous, in that he died in 1891. His mouldering bones don't need the money generated by his work. His children's children died long ago. Yet the copyright endures.
   2081. Lassus Posted: January 22, 2013 at 08:37 AM (#4352380)
It's also probably safe to assume that there are many of us self-identified liberals who'd like to see that godawful show sent back across the ocean

Eh. Not exactly brilliant =/= godawful. It's well made and has good acting. Hell, any audience not enjoying Maggie Smith deserves the blame for that, not the show.
   2082. zonk Posted: January 22, 2013 at 10:01 AM (#4352395)
I thought Josh Marshall had perhaps the best summation of yesterday's inaugural:

Obama shocks DC mandarins by announcing he’ll caucus as a Democrat.
   2083. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: January 22, 2013 at 10:07 AM (#4352399)
Just this past week, they had a pitch for a Vodka with Hemp infused that actually got invested.
I'll drink to that!
   2084. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: January 22, 2013 at 10:20 AM (#4352409)
Eh. Not exactly brilliant =/= godawful. It's well made and has good acting. Hell, any audience not enjoying Maggie Smith deserves the blame for that, not the show.
Yup. Especially season one. (Been very disappointed so far with season three.)

While the politics of Downton Abbey (the politics of Julian Fellowes) are hardly liberal, they're hardly liberal in the English sense as well. His high Toryism infuses the show with esteem not for the wealthy, but for the nobility. There was no purer Fellowes/Downton villain than season two's Richard Carlisle, a dirty nouveau riche with no appreciation for the ways things should be - a man, for god's sake, with a job.
   2085. Ron J2 Posted: January 22, 2013 at 10:21 AM (#4352411)
#2005 yeah I've only been over this ground 17 billion times at slashdot.
   2086. Ron J2 Posted: January 22, 2013 at 10:35 AM (#4352423)
#2037 One reason why discussions of this type bog down is that there's a lot of talking past each other. That and a lot of attempted cleverness by non-lawyers.

I don't like it or agree that it should be that way, but from what I can tell (as I said in another post I've been through a lot of these discussions) in practical terms Morty is basically correct.
(and all of the clever arguments that you read in threads like this cut no ice if it actually goes to trial)

EDIT: I'm pretty much on the same page as CB on depression. It's a serious issue in my life, but I can't see it meriting special treatment by the prosecution.

And I too am not fond of overcharging as a negotiating ploy.
   2087. formerly dp Posted: January 22, 2013 at 10:41 AM (#4352425)
#2005 yeah I've only been over this ground 17 billion times at slashdot.
Yeah, but this time, we'll figure it out!

Edit after the refresh:
I don't like it or agree that it should be that way, but from what I can tell (as I said in another post I've been through a lot of these discussions) in practical terms Morty is basically correct.
That's descriptive rather than normative-- Morty's collapsing the two. As I understand it, part of the civil disobedience people engage in around these issues is an attempt to call attention to the obsolescence of those interpretations, and their fundamental incongruence with digital modes of distribution, where every act of circulation involves making a copy.
   2088. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 22, 2013 at 10:49 AM (#4352426)
It's "making an unauthorized copy". It's not theft.

Okay. I don't think it will serve the general discussion to get bogged down in definitional minutia. An unauthorized use or taking is a species of theft. In fact, many states list "unauthorized taking and use" in the category under theft headings


There are some debates that honestly scare me, this is one of them, unauthorized use/copying of stuff that someone else has the copyright to is theft/stealing (in both the statutory and biblical sense), I don't think that reasonable people can disagree on that, and yet we have otherwise reasonable people here disagreeing.

   2089. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: January 22, 2013 at 10:58 AM (#4352428)
unauthorized use/copying of stuff that someone else has the copyright to is theft/stealing (in both the statutory and biblical sense),


There was no such thing as copyright when the Bible was written, nor for many millennia afterward.
   2090. Ron J2 Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:02 AM (#4352429)
#2088 as I said, so many people argue based on what they want the law to be.

It's not an idle interest to me. In real life I'm a Unix sysadmin and worked for years in image processing. There are all sorts of intellectual property issues in the field.

EDIT: In particular software patents that should never have been granted because of prior art. Do you change the way you do things because of a patent that should never have been granted? (answer: yes. PITA, but unless you plan on going the legal route ... And that's neither cheap nor certain to work)
   2091. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:03 AM (#4352432)
There are some debates that honestly scare me, this is one of them, unauthorized use/copying of stuff that someone else has the copyright to is theft/stealing (in both the statutory and biblical sense), I don't think that reasonable people can disagree on that, and yet we have otherwise reasonable people here disagreeing.


Of note this morning, apparently Fox and Glee think it's okay to take people's work without asking too. Just so long as it's an "internet nobody."
   2092. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:05 AM (#4352433)
January 21, 2013: the day BTF discovered the intellectual property debate.* Congratulations and welcome to the internet!


Because BTF OTP threads never rehash old ground when the debates become topical again.
   2093. GregD Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:11 AM (#4352435)
While the politics of Downton Abbey (the politics of Julian Fellowes) are hardly liberal, they're hardly liberal in the English sense as well. His high Toryism infuses the show with esteem not for the wealthy, but for the nobility. There was no purer Fellowes/Downton villain than season two's Richard Carlisle, a dirty nouveau riche with no appreciation for the ways things should be - a man, for god's sake, with a job.
I totally get the fear about Fellowes agenda, but like you I think it maps obliquely on modern politics, and it's innocuous enough that it doesn't change my view of the show. (Which is Season One: really good, Season Two: What?, Season Three: Meh) The particular defense of the nobility is so un-American that it's neither a Rep nor Dem position, and the celebration of a kind of corporatist world has echoes in both rightist and leftist US thinking but doesn't map onto either party, since the market is the dominant metaphor of both parties. The show is about the reconciliation of change and tradition, which can be a conservative position--it is Andrew Sullivan's position--but is emphatically not a reactionary position.

I think the series has hit the Moonlighting/Cheers problem. They mistook the side bits for the main part, and once they drained the romantic tension between the leads, the side stuff isn't good enough to carry the show, no matter how well the bits are written. ("Let's not make a meal out of this," was a great line in episode three, but there's no emotional weight even in a situation like that.)
   2094. Lassus Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:16 AM (#4352436)
They mistook the side bits for the main part, and once they drained the romantic tension between the leads, the side stuff isn't good enough to carry the show

Nothing makes me leave faster than endless unresolved romantic tension - that is so, so boring. Maybe I'm unique. That's honestly not the problem with season 3, it's that there's no real overarching theme, IMO.
   2095. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:18 AM (#4352437)
Nothing makes me leave faster than endless unresolved romantic tension - that is so, so boring.


If a show is stringing out an "unrequited love" story endlessly, it means the target audience of that show is either 1) tweens or 2) women. More often, tween girls.
   2096. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:26 AM (#4352440)
I don't think there's anything complicated about the problems with Seasons two and three of Downton - Fellowes is the only writer, and he's overwhelmed trying to maintain multiple dramatic arcs and a huge cast of characters. So you get bizarre start-stop plotting, along with other plots he has no idea how to develop, plus disconcerting character inconsistency.
   2097. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:27 AM (#4352441)
If a show is stringing out an "unrequited love" story endlessly, it means the target audience of that show is either 1) tweens or 2) women. More often, tween girls.
No, it's a sign of bad writing. It's true that more shows aimed at women and girls focus on romantic storylines, but that's got nothing to do with drawing them out too long.
   2098. Lassus Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:34 AM (#4352445)
Yeah, it doesn't have to be unrequited to be drawn out and tiresome. And drawn out is fine. Drawn out and drawn out and drawn out is tiresome.
   2099. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:39 AM (#4352452)
Yeah, it doesn't have to be unrequited to be drawn out and tiresome. And drawn out is fine. Drawn out and drawn out and drawn out is tiresome.


I assume you mean will they/won't they #### like "Rachel and Ross" and "Buffy and Angel," etc. I'm sure romantic storylines can work on TV, but more often than not, once a writing crew realize that the "tension" of the "chase" is drawing the tweenie girl's eyeballs, that's going to be the next three seasons worth of "drama" for that show.
   2100. tshipman Posted: January 22, 2013 at 11:42 AM (#4352458)
I thought season 2 of Downton was brilliant. There were annoying bits to it, like the endless nonsense with Bates, but it did an admirable job of dramatizing the decline of the aristocracy and the change in English society that occurred over the first World War.

I thought that the second season far exceeded the first. There are still way too many side plots and stuff, but I thought the development of Edith as a character was very interesting (if a bit out of keeping with her character from the first season).

The Mary/Matthew storyline is incredibly silly. It's far from the central tension of the story. The central tension of the story is how will Downton survive? Mary/Matthew are just a hook to grab people with easily. I roll my eyes anytime there is fake tension with Mary/Matthew. It's so obvious that they end up together that any tension between them is silly and transitory.

Haven't watched all of season 3, so can't comment.
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