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Denying Ignorance about Copyright

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posted on May, 15 2012 @ 08:13 PM
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I've noticed that a number of users on ATS, seem to hold the rather tragically misguided impression, that copyright (or "intellectual property," more generally) is somehow a necessary, or morally or rationally, legitimate or defensible concept. I'd like to offer an article link which will hopefully serve to resolve that misconception.

The Surprising History of Copyright and The Promise of a Post-Copyright World


For three centuries, the publishing industry has been working very hard to obscure copyright's true origins, and to promote the myth that it was invented by writers and artists. Even today, they continue to campaign for ever stronger laws against sharing, for international treaties that compel all nations to conform to the copyright policies of the strictest, and most of all to make sure the public never asks exactly who this system is meant to help.

The reward for these efforts can be seen in the public's reaction to the file-sharing lawsuits. While most people agree that this time the industry went too far, the error is mainly treated as one of degree — as if the record companies had a valid point, but had merely resorted to excessive force in making it.

To read the true history of copyright is to understand just how completely this reaction plays into the industry's hands. The record companies don't really care whether they win or lose these lawsuits. In the long run, they don't even expect to eliminate file sharing. What they're fighting for is much bigger. They're fighting to maintain a state of mind, an attitude toward creative work that says someone ought to own products of the mind, and control who can copy them. And by positioning the issue as a contest between the Beleaguered Artist, who supposedly needs copyright to pay the rent, and The Unthinking Masses, who would rather copy a song or a story off the Internet than pay a fair price, the industry has been astonishingly successful. They have managed to substitute the loaded terms "piracy" and "theft" for the more accurate "copying" — as if there were no difference between stealing your bicycle (now you have no bicycle) and copying your song (now we both have it). Most importantly, industry propaganda has made it a commonplace belief that copyright is how most creators earn a living — that without copyright, the engines of intellectual production would grind to a halt, and artists would have neither means nor motivation to produce new works.

edit on 15-5-2012 by petrus4 because: (no reason given)




posted on May, 15 2012 @ 08:27 PM
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reply to post by petrus4
 


Agreed.

The concept of a "copyright" is wrong, flawed and serves to accomplish nothing but personal interests and greed.

If you made something good, good for you people will probably praise you for it. You can't force people to praise or pay you for your creations, crappy or otherwise. You can't demand a "right to respect, money and power" because you personally think you released something into the world that's worthwhile. It's inevitable that it will be copied, face it. Everything is a copy or reinvention of some former concept, in some way or another.

That being said, I can't really think of a copyright action that has been pursued I would consider legitimate in its intent. The actual things that people are being arrested and punished over (crappy movies, 4 minute long audio smaples) aren't worth all the ridiculous amount of resources and time that are spent on them in the first place. It's a worthless, obviously greed motivated concept.

If you create or do something worthwhile, you'll probably be credited anyways. If you expect "compensation" for whatever "intellectual property" you throw out into the world, then you obviously weren't doing anything to help anyone or anything in the first place, only yourself, why do you deserve anything?



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 08:43 PM
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Copywrite issues made simple.

I, some poor dude, spent a year making a absolutely brilliant book. I spent ages researching, tons of creative sleepless nights writing.
I then got my finished book of labor and brought it to a company to print it

They copied it all, gave me back the original, and published it themself, removing my name, and making the profit all for them.

Is this fair?

Copywrite protects the little man far more than it protect the big companies. An argue against respecting copywrite is suggesting the richest and most powerful should be able to steal any idea, imagination, or labor anyone less than them can do.

Careful what you shake your fist at.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 08:52 PM
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Originally posted by SaturnFX
Copywrite issues made simple.


Did you read the article?

Your answer suggests not, and it also suggests that you have no intention of doing so. In other words, apparently you prefer to remain ignorant. The article addresses the very claim you've made.

If there is one thing I am tired of observing on this site, it is people repeating, often in a belligerent and hostile manner, the governmental or corporate brainwashing that they have received, while at the same time being equally hostile to viewing evidence that they are ignorant.

If you are not willing to educate yourself, do not bother simply repeating said ignorance; as though repetition alone is going to make it any more accurate.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 08:54 PM
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I can see it from both sides. On the one hand, people should have the right to make money off their creations, no matter what their creation is, but the sheer obsessiveness and inflexibility of those laws is too much. I think a line does need to be drawn to protect a person's rights over their creations, but the laws right now go beyond that. There needs to be a balance, but I'm not sure anyone really knows what that balance should be.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 08:58 PM
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reply to post by petrus4
 


Absolutely NOT. To ignore IP is exactly in favor of the largest companies with the best lawyers. I write and create IP for my company every single day and you know what, I would not do it if it could be stolen and used by others. I also write and contribute to several open source projects as well but you wont catch me crossing those lines with my life's work which happens to be code. Years of development, sacrificing, working my A$$ off would never have happened for any other reason then to put myself ahead.

Make something for yourself that you have spent hundreds of hours on and have someone take that idea and roll it into a major project, then get back with me. I learned my lesson the hard way with some of my works, and it was a major company that took my code and rolled it into a larger item. Know what? I should have paid more attention to what I was doing before I even started the project.

Get a clue. Get a job. Get some understanding of the issues.
edit on 15-5-2012 by jollyjollyjolly because: (no reason given)

edit on 15-5-2012 by jollyjollyjolly because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 09:05 PM
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Originally posted by petrus4
If you are not willing to educate yourself, do not bother simply repeating said ignorance; as though repetition alone is going to make it any more accurate.


I read (skimmed) it, and it is the same ole "you can't own my thoughts" argument


The record companies don't really care whether they win or lose these lawsuits. In the long run, they don't even expect to eliminate file sharing. What they're fighting for is much bigger. They're fighting to maintain a state of mind, an attitude toward creative work that says someone ought to own products of the mind,


I even went to the website and skimmed the full article.

It is at the perspective that corporations are limiting artistic freedom and a new open source style method of works...which the end user would benefit from (theoretically) if enacted.

I fully disagree. this sword cuts both ways, and although it would slightly hurt the big corps, it does far more damage towards the other end (the starving artist).

Because I have a different view on this does not mean I am somehow ignorant. I can suggest the same for you (and the article writer).
A strong economic civilization is built on pattens and copyright. You will find the areas of the world where such things are not honored or enforced are also the poorest and most desperate nations on earth. This is not a coincidence...the rich eat the poor if there is no protections.

I would recommend this. reread the article, but put in your mind this is actually a subterfuge attempt by a large corporations to remove copyright in order for them to ultimately steal all respective items from poor artists, writers, etc.

The copyright laws we have today may not be perfect, but what we need are stronger enforcements, not less.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 09:06 PM
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I have heard the argument repeatedly. I have a different take on it. I once wrote software for the Apple and the PC. I developed a "Readability" program that measured the grade level of written material by measuring sentence length, multi-syllabic words, and a host of grammar issues. There are a number of Readability formulas out there. My program used nine of them and would spit out an answer: "This text is written at a fourth grade reading level, more or less." The specifics and veracity of this approach can be argued, but is really beside the point for this thread. The point is, "I wrote software."

Now, I'm just a librarian with no marketing experience, but I tried hard to market the software myself. This was in the days when an Apple had 64K of memory max, when 16K cost $120.00. I spent a total of $7,000 on my Apple ][ setup. And I spent at least 1,000 hours developing this program. Given what programs were selling for in those days I decided I would try a price point of $30.00. For that I sent you a 5-1/4" floppy disk and a manual of operations. I set up operations on the dining room table and went to work. I did "order fulfillment" every night. Finally I turned the program over to a real publisher named, of all things, "Micro Power & Light" and let them deal with it. I was really too tired to continue. At its heyday I managed to make just shy of $4,000 per year for about three years before the program fizzled (and rightly so.)

Obviously, if you do the math above, I really didn't make any money. There was a cost to every sale: mailing, copying, etc. and I believe the "profit" from my "Schedule C" sole proprietership was in the black by a few hundred dollars for those years, for which I paid taxes. Needless to say I was unable to quit my day job and eventually I just gave up doing it because, you know, I'm no Bill Gates and there's not a lot of call for readability programs. Besides, Microsoft Word has it built in these days. But I had my shot and I don't regret it. Not a lot of people have made any money writing software and I can count myself among them, so Yay for me. I put it on my resume. I doubt it ever made a difference. Besides, that whole experience made me understand "how stuff works" and I probably did much better in my career as a librarian turned computer nerd than if I had not had such an experience.

But imagine my surprise when I discovered that nearly every school district in the country had multiple copies of my program. Teachers, always claiming how impoverished they were, had copied the program for use in their classrooms. There were literally tens of thousands of copies of my program throughout the country. People would call me up and ask for help with a problem, yet they weren't even my customers!

Now I don't consider myself a greedy corporate overlord enslaving the masses. I'm a friggin' librarian, for Chrissakes! Yet had I been able to have even a modest royalty on those tens of thousands of copies of my program, my life would have appreciably changed. Instead, my blood, sweat, and tears were stolen from me. I don't blame others for my own incompetence. I wasn't selling Lotus 123 to corporate America. That part is all my fault and I acknowledge it, but this idea that I should offer up my creation for the world for free, and then they'll send me some money of they feel like it, hasn't really worked out for me and a whole lot of other people who have not written Harry Potter books and are really scraping by.

Publishers aren't in any better of a position. I wrote a book about an author's works and the author objected saying she owned anything about her works. I felt her stance was unfair. The publisher, who had spent considerable time and effort on the book (The cover was all ready to go) told me, "Margins are so slim that we cannot afford to even win a lawsuit, much less lose one." So the book was cancelled.

The real point here is that people who advocate "freedom from copyright,'" as it were, like to leave you with the impression that people who "own" copyrights are evil, foul capitalists and part of the one percent. That's not true at all. the people who are really hurt by this attitude are at the bottom of the socio-economic ladder, not the top. For every author who becomes a multi-millionaire on a surprise bestseller, there are a thousand authors like me who are condemned to never making any headway, in part due to your attitude that we don't own the works we have produced and that you have every right to use them as you see fit without any compensation at all.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 09:12 PM
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reply to post by RSF77
 


I cannot disagree with you more.
As both a graphic designer and a musician, copyrighting my intellectual property is supremely important - as it's the only way i pay my rent. I don't know what kind of work you do, but i can only assume it has nothing to do with using your brain to solve your clients "problem" in a graphical or musical way. Why shouldn't I be compensated for my "ideas" when they are used to further someone else's company or financial gain? What makes my "ideas" less valuable than the ability to dig a hole? What did i go to college for? Why did i pay all that money to learn a skill/trade? Should i not be able to protect my ideas/drawings/original music score from being "stolen" and used by someone else for their personal gain?

In essence, what you're saying is that if you invented a new way to dig holes, and you've also invented specially designed equipment - you should give this technology away - even if it has taken years of personal sacrifice and financial strain?

Yeah. Right.
You spend 3 yrs learning a skill that involves "intellectual property" and see how you feel about giving it to people for free.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 09:24 PM
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As an Author the OP is way off course.

If you want to improve copyright there is one sure way of doing so.

Copyright should only be held by individuals / human beings.

No corporate identity should hold a copyright since a company can not create anything, it is the people that create!

The big corporations are greedy little bastards!

P



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 09:29 PM
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I think that copyright laws should pertain to individuals and NOT corporations. When you really think about for as many people that are on this planet, and those that actually come up with a successful idea is very, very small.

The only thing that changed is corporations mass producing it, and then trying to stake claim. This is mostly for music/books/etc,. but what happens when a chef cooks a meal and you want to duplicate it at home, but since it was on the Food Network, you have to pay to learn it.

We (individuals) if we leave out the middle man, buy an "attorney at home" CD, and get a notary close by, can become rich without the middle man.

Peace, NRE.

I was to late pheonix358 beat me to it, but you get the point

edit on 15-5-2012 by NoRegretsEver because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 09:32 PM
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My training is on the (c) area of life. I would never mind if people were sharing my work for personal use. Copyright should protect against commericial abuse of IP. However the (c) business, the lobbyist and lawyers have bastardized it for their own cause. Spearheaded by our dearest disney.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 09:32 PM
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Originally posted by jollyjollyjolly
reply to post by petrus4
 


Get a clue. Get a job. Get some understanding of the issues.


I'm surprised that someone who responds to me with this kind of type A, paternalistic condescension has time to respond at all. Shouldn't you be busy working yourself into a premature heart attack?



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 09:55 PM
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Originally posted by petrus4

Originally posted by jollyjollyjolly
reply to post by petrus4
 


Get a clue. Get a job. Get some understanding of the issues.


I'm surprised that someone who responds to me with this kind of type A, paternalistic condescension has time to respond at all. Shouldn't you be busy working yourself into a premature heart attack?


I am surprised someone with this kind of Type-B, Infantile perception of the world has the attention span to follow up with a post. Shouldn't you be downloading some torrents, streaming a video, sending an email, facebooking that friend from 10 years ago....oh wait that's right you are. Now let's guess WHY you are able to. Because people that value creating IP and sharing cool IP made it possible for you.

BTW the working for a heart attack is from 9-5 only.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 10:06 PM
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reply to post by pheonix358
 


Ding Ding Ding !!!!

However, if you work for "the company", your ideas ARE their ideas.

Those who download or copy for personal use....is one thing.

Those who download or copy to make money from.....is another thing. Making money from it is where the big companies are coming in to play. However, those doing it for personal use are going to get caught in the crossfire.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 10:13 PM
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Replicator (Star Trek)?

OK, this is a little off track maybe but just what is going to happen to copyright if and when Replicator (Star Trek) technology is ever invented? Then any one could have anyone could have anything just by asking for it. Even the Replicator could be replicated. I know that day is very far off but it is something to think about.



posted on May, 15 2012 @ 10:18 PM
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reply to post by wdkirk
 


I am the company. I employee other people. I am a LLC filing as a corporation. I lease office space. I pay wages. Why do people HATE so much the jobs that other people create/'have nowadays?

Do you really want to radically change the way we all do business overnight? We cant even handle a gradual change without getting scared. When small businesses get scared we start to horde money, because I have to still pay people! The WORST day of my life is when I have to tell someone they can't get a paycheck from me anymore. It feels like SH!T to break someone's life that way. I have been on the other side of that coin also and it feels like SH!T to receive news you do not have a job anymore.

One of my employee's is a college student that would have a very hard time getting another job that allows for her crazy off the wall schedule and still paid good enough she could shop for groceries.

So by your estimations I must be some evil corporation because I want to build a nice rainy day fund so I can still pay people?

This is what I mean when I say get some real experience with this before you spread crazy ideas like this cr@p

Why not go and tell a farmer "hey, you look like you got a lot of food here. I am going to just take what I need to eat." You know how that would work out. That is the exact same asinine assumption the OP makes and several others are backing.



posted on May, 16 2012 @ 01:29 AM
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reply to post by wdkirk
 


Bit off to use word "ideas" in this conversation. Copyright does not protect ideas.



posted on May, 16 2012 @ 04:09 PM
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reply to post by RSF77
 



The concept of a "copyright" is wrong, flawed and serves to accomplish nothing but personal interests and greed.

If you made something good, good for you people will probably praise you for it. You can't force people to praise or pay you for your creations, crappy or otherwise. You can't demand a "right to respect, money and power" because you personally think you released something into the world that's worthwhile. It's inevitable that it will be copied, face it. Everything is a copy or reinvention of some former concept, in some way or another.


Copyright is created the moment somebody conceives an idea, writes a song, etc. Legal copyright is merely proof of that copyright.

You seem to present the assumption that anyone who wants their work and livelihoods protected is a glory-hunting, greedy narcissist.

Those who 'create' intellectual works such a music, articles, novels, films, books, etc. make a living off that work. Of course they should be protected, otherwise we'd all be taken advantage of by enormous publishing and distribution companies.

In which case, nobody would be able to afford to produce such work, they'd be too busy working in banks or mowing lawns.

In a perfect world, or a communist society, perhaps you could argue that people should not charge money for such work. But we live in capitalist societies. If Billy is going to be paid to lay bricks, I expect to be paid for the agony and efforts I put into my work. It has nothing to do with power, glory or being rich.

Good work based on honest intentions can still be sold for practical purposes, it doesn't automatically mean such work is contrived or tainted.

You're basically saying people should work for free. Should factory workers do so too? How about police officers? Or do you consider their work more legitimate?

What a ludicrous argument.
edit on 16-5-2012 by arollingstone because: (no reason given)

edit on 16-5-2012 by arollingstone because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 16 2012 @ 06:23 PM
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Okay, so copyright law is necessary.

How do we stop it from being abused?

An individual should never have to set foot in any jail, anywhere for downloading a song. Also, how do we determine the "worth" of the information released to the public so that wealth doesn't trump common sense or someones freedom, financial or otherwise?

If the market determines that worth, and nobody wants to buy it because it's available for download that would seem to hint at the fact that it isn't worth buying. Copyright law is being abused, I say remove copyright law until you can get it right. The motivation for all copyright claims is greed, if you like it or not. I don't think the government should facilitate greed.
edit on 16-5-2012 by RSF77 because: (no reason given)



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