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Looking Back At Copyright Predictions 148

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the 20-20-hindsight dept.
Techdirt has an interesting look back at some of the more interesting predictions on copyright. The article looks at two different pre-DMCA papers and compares them to what has happened in the world of copyright. "The second paper is by Pamela Samuelson, and it discusses (again, quite accurately) the coming power grab by "copyright maximalists" via the DMCA, entitled The Copyright Grab. It clearly saw the intention of the DMCA to remove user rights, and grant highly questionable additional rights and powers to copyright holders in an online world. Samuelson lays out many concerns about where this is headed -- including how these proposals appear to trample certain fair use rights -- and in retrospect, her fears seem to have been backed up by history. Samuelson, by the way, has just written a new paper that is also worth reading pointing out how ridiculous current copyright statutory rates are -- an issue of key importance in the ongoing Tenebaum lawsuit, which (thankfully) the judge in the case is going to consider."
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Looking Back At Copyright Predictions

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  • by brian0918 (638904)
    I'm fine with showing companies how idiotic their rules are, how they're destroying their own business, driving away their customers and fans, etc, all out of some irrational fear of the internet. I'm also opposed to the kind of public-private partnership that has become all too common from the recording/film industry, from which we get excessive fines based on little or no evidence.

    What I'd like to make clear, though, is that I fully oppose those people who would like to take it a step too far, and clai
    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      What I'd like to make clear, though, is that I fully oppose those people who would like to take it a step too far, and claim that there's no such thing as intellectual property, no property rights, that people don't have the right to the product of their own ideas, etc.

      Bullshit! I have a 15-year-old, and neither he nor any of his generation seem to have any concept of digital copyright. The content industry has entirely failed at educating the masses, and their ultimate demise is completely assured. You can

      • For better or worst, it seems that there is a coming rebellion against copyright. The system as it stands today is holding all creative works produced since 1923(or so) hostage for the betterment of a few rich and powerful people.

        If this rebellion against copyright comes to pass, nobody will create anything as polished as what we see and hear today. The music industry will look like the one in China where artist make the most of their income on stage and not in a studio. The movie industry, however, will be

        • by Geof (153857) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:52PM (#27618041) Homepage

          If this rebellion against copyright comes to pass, nobody will create anything as polished as what we see and hear today.

          If this were true (I don't know that it would be), how bad would that be? In other words, how important is it that our entertainment be polished?

          I'm not going to make the full argument here, but I'll throw out some thoughts.

          The pyramids are great works of architecture. Wonders of the world. But we don't build them anymore. The cost is not worth the benefit. (As it happens, one of those costs was slave labor.)

          I love television. I prefer good TV shows to good movies. Has TV made the world a better place? Research strongly points to television as a reason for a collapse in social and political participation since the 1960s. There's no question of abolishing television, but should we step in and enforce onerous regulations in order to preserve it as it is?

          What is better: listening to highly polished music, or learning to make music and playing for your friends? We used to *do* culture instead of simply observing it. Most people could sing or play an instrument. Many more played sports. Drawing was a basic skill for educated people. But we were not professional artists. We were not usually able to both compose the song *and* sing it. We drew on the culture around us, and transformed it to enrich our lives. Now our entertainment is provided to us, and for the most part we don't contribute. Copyright as it stands entrenches that passive role because wit forbids us from most forms of participation - particularly when we use the everyday digital media and technology through which we live our lives and connect with the people we care about.

          • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

            by Tanktalus (794810)

            We were not usually able to both compose the song *and* sing it. We drew on the culture around us, and transformed it to enrich our lives. Now our entertainment is provided to us, and for the most part we don't contribute.

            It's nice to know that some people are encouraging us to compose and sing again, contributing back to our culture. Oh, I suppose American Idol was precisely what you were talking about. Woops, nevermind. :-P

          • If this rebellion against copyright comes to pass, nobody will create anything as polished as what we see and hear today.

            Meaning we'll have to settle for Shakespeare and do without Britney? May as well bring on the apocalypse.

        • by MightyMartian (840721) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:55PM (#27618079) Journal

          If this rebellion against copyright comes to pass, nobody will create anything as polished as what we see and hear today. The music industry will look like the one in China where artist make the most of their income on stage and not in a studio.

          Which is pretty much how musicians have made a living for thousands of years. The brief period in which a musician could become a multimillionaire because of a peculiar alignment of recording and playback technologies and a rather clever distribution and marketing system are gone. It was good (for some) while it lasted, but it's toast, and sending TPB's founders to jail and taking college students to court won't make it come back.

          The movie industry, however, will be unrecognizable compared to today.

          That's the one that's going to be interesting. Technologies are going to allow movies to be made cheaper, but no matter what way you cut it, even a low-end Indie film is a multimillion dollar enterprise. The only thing that might save it, in my view, is the movie theater itself. I have to admit that, at least for some kinds of film, experiencing a movie as a group of people is significantly different than sitting in your livingroom watching it on DVD.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Alzheimers (467217)

            Clerks [wikipedia.org] which had been shot for US$27,575 in the convenience store where director Kevin Smith worked, grossed over US$3 million in theaters, launching Smith's career and reinvigorating the field of independent films.

            Pi [wikipedia.org] had a low budget ($60,000), but proved a financial success at the box office ($3.2 million gross in the U.S.) despite only a limited release to theaters. It has sold steadily on DVD.

        • by Vancorps (746090) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:59PM (#27618167)

          Given the state of chinese films I tend to wonder where you get your ideas from? I've seen some that were every bit as polished. Take Hero for one.

          People will continue to create polished works regardless due to pride in their work and the reality that you can do a lot more with less now than you used to be able to. You can create studio quality sound at home for only a couple of thousand dollars now compared to hundreds of thousands for a professional recording studio. A lot of the extras are simply unnecessary now especially given that the vast majority of listeners aren't listening to your work on multi-thousand dollar stereo systems.

          If you cut the cost of production from a couple of million dollars to a couple of thousand then you now do not need to charge anywhere near as much for your music. In fact, the costs would be so much lower that you could make a very good living touring and selling merchandise. Of course a lot of middle-men wouldn't be happy with that.

          Why should consumers suffer high prices for content when the option exists that allows them an easy path? Combine that with the very unfriendly practices of the past, refusals to replace scratched or broken cds for instance and its no wonder people have no problems copying music from someone that did run the risk of paying for a CD which may or may not have had some form of malware on it.

        • by alexo (9335)

          If this rebellion against copyright comes to pass, nobody will create anything as polished as what we see and hear today.

          I am more than willing to test this hypothesis in practice.
          Let's abolish all copyright for a 100 years and see how it works.

        • A *lot* of people drink when underage too. Yet the law stands. Well most are a bit better than the US. You are allowed to drink from 16-18 in most places.

          Using the irresponsibility of teenages to make point doesn't really work. What are their driving habits like? Do they take drugs? Do they have a job or pay rent? In fact do they have any responsibilities at all?

          Ignorance is no excuse in the eyes of the law.
      • by foobsr (693224) on Friday April 17, 2009 @04:24PM (#27619431) Homepage Journal
        You can't put 90% or even 30% of the people in jail

        You can make the country a jail.

        CC.
      • I posted this to the wrong post below....

        A *lot* of people drink when underage too. Yet the law stands. Well most are a bit better than the US. You are allowed to drink from 16-18 in most places.

        Using the irresponsibility of teenages to make point doesn't really work. What are their driving habits like? Do they take drugs? Do they have a job or pay rent? In fact do they have any responsibilities at all?

        Ignorance is no excuse in the eyes of the law.
    • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn@gm[ ].com ['ail' in gap]> on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:05PM (#27617211) Journal

      What I'd like to make clear, though, is that I fully oppose those people who would like to take it a step too far ...

      Ok, that's fair for you to have an opinion like that. I think right now you just need to take baby steps and get everyone on all sides to agree that the system is broken. While the majority of us are saying that, the RIAA/MPAA/BSA/Lawyers are still in a stubborn mule state. Which is fine because the longer they put off overhauling the system, the longer it hurts them and they lose ground to be seen as a rational actor we can work with to adapt to the changes that this magical internet has brought about.

      That said, I will make the prediction for the future of Copyright: It will only get longer. It will only take longer for works to enter public domain and it will only get worse for the majority of the population. This has been true historically (Mickey Mouse Act, Sonny Bono, etc) and it will continue to be true. Where is our voice (public and public domain) represented in this process? The lobbyists run congress unopposed and hilarious lawsuits spring up routinely. It ain't a platform or election issue for the politicians so they don't care.

      I'm not saying there is no such thing as intellectual property. I am saying that there are special classes of intellectual property like software and music that the law needs to adapt to. With the advent of the internet, this change must come more now than ever. We're about a full decade late in preparing the law for this wonderful technology.

      When will you be able to sing Happy Birthday and White Christmas with your family publicly?

      • by gaspyy (514539)

        The problem as I see it is the radicalization process of everyone's stance.

        On one hand we have absurdly long copyright lengths, DRM and a total disregard of fair use. On the other hand, so many people expect to get anything and everything for free.

        Ideally, content producers (big and small) should realize that restrictions upon restrictions alienate their users, while users would understand that it's unrealistic to expect all things to be free.

        I'm not holding by breath for this to happen.

    • by nine-times (778537) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:18PM (#27617457) Homepage

      I'm not sure whether we're quite on the same page (we might be). It's not that "intellectual property" isn't a useful idea, but that it was never intended to control what happened to your ideas when they went out into the world. Owning the copyright on a book wasn't intended to control who read your book, or whether that book could be lent or shared among friends. It was intended to allow you to prevent other commercial publishers from profiting from your work without paying you.

      It's also noteworthy that in the US, the government is only granted the power to give copyrights for the sake of promoting the "useful arts", and traditionally there has been the concept that copyrights were only applicable for a limited time before the work become public property. In fact, the concept was that the intellectual property would become public by default, and that copyrights were an additional reward that the public was willing to grant for the sake of encouraging and promoting the work.

      I think we have to start from that foundation. From there we can ask, "Given this new age of ubiquitous information, what kinds of temporary rights is the public willing to part with for the sake of encouraging artistic work?" It should not start from believing that people have an inalienable human right to control the destiny of every thought that happens to pass through their heads.

      • I wish I had mod points right now. You make an excellent case for what I believe. There should be copyright for a limited amount of time (at most the life of the author or 25 years, whichever is longer. But the essentially perpetual copyright we have today is ridiculous. It is time for the Walt Disney corporation to find a new cash cow other than Mickey Mouse.
    • by Geof (153857) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:31PM (#27617699) Homepage

      I fully oppose those people who would like to take it a step too far, and claim that there's no such thing as intellectual property, no property rights, that people don't have the right to the product of their own ideas

      Copyright was created as a monopoly privilege, not a property right. In recent years maximalists have waged an ideological campaign to redefine copyright. The individual property rights position is radical. In the U.S., it is also well outside what the constitution allows: copyright is a regime intended to further the public interest (advancement of arts and sciences), *not* preserve or create some kind of individual rights. That individual "moral rights" approach is from the European (particularly French) tradition, and has been rejected by the United States. Lawrence Lessig (who is quite moderate) asserts that the only justification for copyright is the creation of works that would not otherwise exist.

      You can talk about the foundation of copyright in moral rights in theory, but in practice it is almost never used for anything other than economic gain: and in fact promotes control and consolidation by media companies to the exclusion of all others - including artists.

      It wasn't until quite recently (the 19th-20th centuries) that the idea of moral rights and individual originality even made sense. Many cultures still don't recognize it. It's a product of a particular culture at a particular moment in history. In practice, it creates all sorts of inconsistencies. It's a romantic notion that has very little to do with how creativity actually operates. It's interpretation and fleshing-out by courts has led to extremely weird and contradictory outcomes. For example, a doctor can patent your genes without your consent because he is the "creator" of his discovery. I can film people being shot in a demonstration, and *I* own the images - they have no right to them. But if those people are performing theater, all of a sudden copyright steps in. Copyright demands hard boundaries between what is "mine" and what is "yours", when no such hard boundaries really exist. Governments can create laws and call them "rights", but they are legal fictions, not reflections of some preexisting reality.

    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Take the high road and support individual rights across the board, and reject government intervention in the economy.

      All copyright legislation is obviously government intervention in the economy. I absolutely support your individual rights to profit from any ideas you may have. I don't support your right to prevent others from exercising their own rights, simply because you had a similar idea first.

      Copyright is a government-granted monopoly. That is the ultimate government intervention.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      First I'd like to say that for the most part I agree with your stance. Copyright and patents exist for a reason, and the reason isn't obsolete just yet. That said, I agree with the people who say that intellectual property doesn't exist.

      There is no intrinsic reason that people should be granted an exclusive right to the use of ideas they come up with, and claiming otherwise is basically equivalent to claiming that because a law exists, it is incorrect to try to change it. Rather, IP law exists because it

    • Wow, I went from nil to +5 and back to nil in no time. Thanks! :)

      (Next time bring an argument and leave the emotions at the door.)
      • Wow indeed. Now it's rated as troll -1. That is unkind and unworthy of the mods. For what it's worth, while I think you are very wrong about a serious issue and have replied in no uncertain terms, I don't think you're trolling. Your point of view is legitimate. Wrong - harmful even, but legitimate. And by all indications, honestly held.

        For anyone else reading this: We need to hear from guys like this. He has laid out a widely-held point of view, one that he honestly shares, and he has stayed in the

        • by brian0918 (638904)
          Don't worry, I'm not being chased anywhere. :) I have enough positive karma from my previous ~1,000 comments to last me ten lifetimes. Plus, I am correct in my views, so I have that motivation as well.
    • Take the high road and support individual rights across the board, and reject government intervention in the economy.

      You are, of course, aware that copyright is government intervention? It exists in the USA because the Constitution gave Congress the power to establish temporary monopolies. Temporary, government-imposed, monopolies, with the usual distortions to the economy.

      Take the government out of this, and there is no such thing as copyright, and we're back to the old scheme where we could copy mus

    • by skeeto (1138903)

      that people don't have the right to the product of their own ideas, etc.

      No one has the right to control public information. It isn't property.

      Take the high road and support individual rights across the board, and reject government intervention in the economy.

      Copyright is government intervention. Individual rights is opposed to copyright law, as copyright is entirely about removing individual rights.

  • Whether or not one agrees with the rights that copyright holders are granted today it is imperative that one realizes the idiocy of killing the Internet to enforce those rules.

    I think that is the key question that will limit the right of copyright holders.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by russotto (537200)

      Whether or not one agrees with the rights that copyright holders are granted today it is imperative that one realizes the idiocy of killing the Internet to enforce those rules.

      The Internet -- a vast entity based largely on copying data without regard to its content -- is not compatible with copyright as we know it today.

  • by TerraFrost (611855) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:07PM (#27617277)

    Exxon Shipping Co. v. Baker [wikipedia.org] held that "a ratio of no more than one-to-one between compensatory and punitive damages is generally appropriate in maritime cases". In other words, punitive damages cannot exceed compensatory damages. If this were applied to copyright infringement, it would mean that the most any record label could collect per infringing song would be $2.00. $1.00 since that's how much it could be bought off of iTunes, or something, and another $1.00 for punitive damages.

    • by maxume (22995)

      It isn't terribly clear that possession is infringement. It certainly isn't the only form of infringement. For example, distribution, at a minimum, should be roughly equally as prevalent as possession. In that case, it isn't the song, but the number of times the song was distributed.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by drinkypoo (153816)

      If this were applied to copyright infringement, it would mean that the most any record label could collect per infringing song would be $2.00.

      I'm not sure that is true. Even that price makes the assumption that the amount lost when someone gets a song for free is the retail price of that song, but the assumption that the user would ever pay the full retail price is a mistaken one in many cases. In addition, there are two possible sources of damages when p2p is involved, both the receiving of the file (which in this case you appear to be arguing is equivalent to causing damages equal to the retail price of the track) and the distribution to anothe

    • I believe the precedent in that case only held for cases involving federal maritime claims. What I learned was that, as a general rule, punitive damages should not exceed a 9-to-1 ratio over compensatory damages, but that of course depends on dozens of factors regarding defendant's conduct.
    • by russotto (537200)

      Exxon Shipping Co. v. Baker held that "a ratio of no more than one-to-one between compensatory and punitive damages is generally appropriate in maritime cases". In other words, punitive damages cannot exceed compensatory damages.

      Not applicable, even considering that this isn't maritime law. The obnoxious statutory damages aren't intended as punitive, they are intended as compensatory. (They aren't, but that's another matter)

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by noidentity (188756)

      Exxon Shipping Co. v. Baker held that "a ratio of no more than one-to-one between compensatory and punitive damages is generally appropriate in maritime cases". In other words, punitive damages cannot exceed compensatory damages. If this were applied to copyright infringement[...]

      Copyright infringement? This clearly applies to all acts of piracy, both on and off sea!

  • Copyright Law (Score:5, Insightful)

    by JCSoRocks (1142053) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:08PM (#27617289)
    This is just another example of how the citizens have completely lost control of their government. Elected officials no longer see themselves as being responsible to the electorate but to the corporations that fund their campaigns and posh trips. This crap needs to end. Is there anyone outside of CEOs that really agrees with the sort of copyright policy we currently have? The laws need to reflect the people's wishes rather than the politician's corporate sponsors.
    • by Dotren (1449427)

      This is just another example of how the citizens have completely lost control of their government. Elected officials no longer see themselves as being responsible to the electorate but to the corporations that fund their campaigns and posh trips. This crap needs to end. Is there anyone outside of CEOs that really agrees with the sort of copyright policy we currently have? The laws need to reflect the people's wishes rather than the politician's corporate sponsors.

      Well said! The question though is: how do we change things?

      There is a saying about how you don't change Washington, it changes you. Now, I'm not sure how much of Obama's campaign was about truth and how much of it was just lies he just said to get elected. I'd very much like to think he is actually going to be an instrument of change, however, he IS a politician after all. Assuming for a moment he was sincere with his campaign promises, is it even possible for one man, even the president, to change how

      • That's that sad conundrum. Unfortunately, I don't have any simple answers either. I suppose the most obvious start is to completely remove the ability of corporations to benefit politicians in any way. No corporate campaign donations, no make believe consulting positions, no all expenses paid trips, etc.

        Politicians will follow the money. Once we've made it impossible for them to get the majority of their money by pandering to companies they'll have no choice but to come to us.

        We need to bring back the i
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Voyager529 (1363959)

        There is a saying about how you don't change Washington, it changes you.

        So then in Soviet Russia, do you change Soviet Russia?

    • by RAMMS+EIN (578166)

      ``Is there anyone outside of CEOs that really agrees with the sort of copyright policy we currently have?''

      I bet there are some lawyers who enjoy the current law.

    • This crap needs to end.

      So end it.

    • by evilviper (135110)

      Elected officials no longer see themselves as being responsible to the electorate but to the corporations that fund their campaigns and posh trips.

      Ranting and raving is always nice, but tell me this: When in history has this NOT been the case?

      Politicians, have always had their big-money and big-influence supporters they try hard to please. In fact today is nothing compared to the early 20th century, when all the Rockefellers and Carnegies came around.

    • by drsmithy (35869)

      Is there anyone outside of CEOs that really agrees with the sort of copyright policy we currently have?

      I imagine anyone who has made it onto the copyright gravy train is pretty damn happy. Who wouldn't be in that situation ?

  • by Weaselmancer (533834) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:12PM (#27617365)

    Any time there is a broad new (read that as "poorly worded") piece of law drafted people always use it to the poorly worded maximum.

    No knock warrants were originally to "fight terrorism" - now they're used as a judicial shortcut to bust drug dealers. Often times with horrific results. [google.com]

    Forfeiture laws were originally to return the goods from a crime to their rightful owners. Now, it's a cash grab by the government. [fear.org] They actually find property guilty. Or sometimes not even that much. [chicagotribune.com] Then they find the property (not the person carrying it, mind you) guilty and keep it. [npr.org]

    Now we have the DMCA, which is being used to stifle competition and strangle free speech. [cmu.edu]

    Why is anybody surprised?

    We had precedents of poorly worded laws and what happens when we pass them into law. But when it's the government that benefits, it's hard to convince them to stop.

    • by Efreet (246368)

      While I agree with a good bit of what you said there, you have one thing reversed. While no knock warrants and such mainly entered the public conciousness with the Patriot act, they had been on the books and been used for quite a while before that in drug policing. I suppose democrats, who do most of the worrying about civil liberties, were less inclined to worry when there was a democrat in the White House.

  • by srussia (884021) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:14PM (#27617401)
    Repeal Copyright.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by beej (82035)

      So the biggest publisher can take your book and sell it, keeping all the profit? So anyone online can steal what you write on your blog and call it their own without giving you credit? I don't find that "fair". Simple, definitely... but I won't go so far as "elegant".

      Copyright is a good idea; it's good enough to be written into the US Constitution. It just needs a lot of TLC right now. The current duration is out of control, at the very least.

  • by Yvan256 (722131) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:18PM (#27617459) Homepage Journal

    Copyright was only introduced to allow authors to profit from their work for a LIMITED AMOUNT OF TIME, after that their work has to go IN THE PUBLIC DOMAIN.

    I don't remember for how long the works are supposed to be protected, but 20 years seems like a good compromise to me.

    Lobbying used to be illegal and was called something else. Oh right, CORRUPTION.

    Let's make lobbying illegal. That's one of the major problem that's screwing up what should be a self-regulating capitalist system.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by pi_rules (123171)

      Lobbying used to be illegal and was called something else. Oh right, CORRUPTION.

      You don't really know what lobbying is, do you? It's not the same thing as bribery. It's quite necessary in our system too.

      • by CopaceticOpus (965603) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:35PM (#27617757)

        Lobbying, as in petitioning to make politicians aware of the needs of certain industries or groups of people, is necessary and often even good. But it needs to be disconnected from the process of financing and running election campaigns. Politicians who follow the will of lobbyists in order to help their personal campaign efforts might as well be taking bribes directly.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        Lobbying needs to be subject to some additional restrictions, and a whole lot more openness. I would like to see an audio recording with automated transcript of everything said in the office of any elected official be made available to the general public. I don't see why they are entitled to privacy. If they want to seal portions of it in the interest of national security, so be it, but I want those records to be there for posterity so that if there is a question about why something happened or who is respo

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by AK Marc (707885)
        You don't really know what lobbying is, do you?

        Getting representatives to vote for reasons other than to represent their constituents. "Legal" lobbying is informing the representative of what his constituents are (or should be) concerned about and informing them of the issues. "Regular" lobbying is bribery to get time, bribery to buy votes, and extortion to prevent voting the other way. It's tolerated, as long as it isn't too blatantly illegal.

        It's not the same thing as bribery.

        Next, you'll be tell
    • by Peaker (72084)

      It was 14 years with a non-automatic extension of 14 years if the author is still alive and requests it.

    • by rajafarian (49150)

      Let's make lobbying illegal.

      After much thought, I decided that what would be best is to disallow corporations from influencing government policy (no lobbying for corporations!) and elections. Of course that will never happen because they will lobby against that happening. I am soooo sick and tired of corporations dictating policy!!!!

    • by beej (82035)

      Copyright was only introduced to allow authors to profit from their work for a LIMITED AMOUNT OF TIME

      Sadly, this seems to currently be interpreted by the court as "Not Unlimited". Every time Steamboat Willy comes up against the deadline, they push it out a bit farther.

      You know what pisses me off more than anything is the huge number of books that would have gone into Project Gutenberg if it weren't for this lobbying to get copyright extended.

      Lord help me when Tron II comes out, though. That one's even a Disney film. I guess I'm going to have to go ahead and... buy the DVD used!! Ha! Up yours, Disney!

  • Since Slashdot is coming alive today with goofy hippies and their piracy justifications [slashdot.org] because of the PirateBay verdict, I thought it would be interesting to read the opinions of artists themselves [gearslutz.com]. You know, the people whose works you pirate and justify as a favor in the fight against the record industry. The people you speak for but never asked an opinion from. The people you're ripping off.

    It's funny how different the opinions of the artists are from the selfish leeches who pirate their works. Again

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      The plural of anecdote is not data. Greed is still a deadly sin — a statement which appeals to me on the basis of my observations and not just my upbringing in a Christian-derived society. And finally, money still can't buy me love.

    • by Stiletto (12066) on Friday April 17, 2009 @02:37PM (#27617779)

      If songwriters, musicians, etc. get no money for their work there will be no good music.

      This opinion keeps getting repeated and repeated as if it's fact.

      • by mjeffers (61490)

        There will still be music and art created. It just won't be shared with people who value it so little that they think nothing of stealing it wholesale.

    • by h4rr4r (612664)

      Piracy is not theft, no property is taken. You still have your copy. Piracy is unauthorized reproduction of a work that the government has granted a monopoly on to the creator of said work.

      Copyright is to encourage the creative and useful arts not some natural right. So long as copyright is defined in the current way it is theft of culture.

    • by Cyberax (705495)

      So? Artists are often as stupid as RIAA bosses.

      Besides, quite a lot of them think that they'll make $$$$$$$$$$$ from CD sales if only those pesky pirates are dealt with. And almost all of them are not willing to use alternative distribution methods.

      If you read this thread, it has a lot of unproven ideas taken as facts and as much wishful thinking.

    • Fuck the artists. (Score:3, Interesting)

      by langelgjm (860756)

      Wow. Self-righteous much?

      Frankly, I don't give a fuck what the artists think. The RIAA and their ilk are small potatoes, ants, compared to the worldwide effects of intellectual property.

      The real money in IP is not in copyright, but in patents. Drugs, pharmaceuticals, etc. Sadly, part of the spillover effect of all these artists clamoring for their "rights" and "property" is that IP as a whole is viewed less as a utilitarian means to an end, and more as a natural, God-given right. Then trade policy, etc., st

      • Frankly, I don't give a fuck what the artists think.

        But I thought being able to play a couple chords on a guitar qualified you to write federal policy, right?!

    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Uh, whatever. A) I don't pirate stuff, but I still think the Pirate Bay decision is stupid (if I provide a searchable link to something that is copyrighted, am I on the hook if some other user decides to copy the material and violate copyright? If that makes sense, then libraries are in a lot of trouble), and B) the great majority of the argument has *never* been about stiffing artists who deserve to be paid for their creative works, it has been about "how much is enough?" before artists need to pay back

    • Ive listened to some new "music" lately... considering how the music industry rapes the artists, this statement is true...

      "If songwriters, musicians, etc. get no money for their work there will be no good music."

    • by russotto (537200)

      It's funny how different the opinions of the artists are from the selfish leeches who pirate their works. Again, these are the artists you pirates have, for years, claimed to be fighting for (don't ask me how pirating their work accomplishes that).

      TO me this is great news . I hope the internet will be more controlled . I would love to be able to let my kids surf the internet without having to worry about what they'll find .

      why do you think google should be untouchable?

      "Freedom" is a concept open to much deb

    • by vertinox (846076)

      Again, these are the artists you pirates have, for years, claimed to be fighting for (don't ask me how pirating their work accomplishes that).

      I used run a small record label, but I didn't make enough to live off it by itself. That said, I don't believe the government should pay me money simply because I run a business that wasn't making money.

      What you are saying is that all artists must be required by law to have other people's money to live where everyone else just has to make do with their regular 9 to 5?

    • by melikamp (631205)

      [...] opinions of artists themselves. You know, the people whose works you pirate and justify as a favor in the fight against the record industry. The people you speak for but never asked an opinion from. The people you're ripping off.

      No, you dolt. You are not talking about artists, but only about a very small group of professional artists. Not even that: only professional artists who are old enough or dumb enough to use outdated business and distribution models. And you are right, I don't give a shit about what they think.

  • Unfortunately where stuck with this intellectual property nonsense. I think business is good in general, a chronic lack of wealth has a negative effect on sociality. However large corporations (I believe this started in the eighties) now think that to protect their profits they must control a market. This is done through laws that where instituted by means of lobbying, or the extension of laws to areas where they were never meant for. Its OK if there are three or so other big players, then you cant be calle

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