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Former Congressman Learns About Streisand Effect 527

corbettw writes "Ted Alvin Klaudt, a former South Dakota lawmaker convicted of raping his two foster daughters, has sent news organizations what he claims is a copyright notice that seeks to prevent the use of his name without his consent." The story says Klaudt maintains "no one can use his name without his consent, and anyone who does would owe him $500,000."
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Former Congressman Learns About Streisand Effect

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  • Fair Use? (Score:5, Funny)

    by EraserMouseMan ( 847479 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:20PM (#30465188)
    I wonder how many times he used the foster girls without their permission.
    • by Tetsujin ( 103070 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:24PM (#30465286) Homepage Journal

      I wonder how many times he used the foster girls without their permission.

      Well, I think his line of defense there has been that the girls laughed at his penis: therefore the entire act falls into the "parody" category.

    • by langelgjm ( 860756 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:28PM (#30465372) Journal

      Well, he might have a defense given three of the four factors: []

      Was the nature of the use commercial, or for non-profit, educational use?

      Did he use the entire work, or just portions of it? (I'm guessing just portions.)

      Did his use of the work affect its marketability?

      Wow. Even I found that tasteless.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      +1 Sad.

      Scarring two teenage girls probably for life = Not Funny.

      • Re:Fair Use? (Score:5, Informative)

        by geekoid ( 135745 ) <dadinportland&yahoo,com> on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @07:16PM (#30466220) Homepage Journal

        the act of doing so isn't funny, that doesn't mean someone can't make a joke. Learn the difference.

        • Re:Fair Use? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by randy of the redwood ( 1565519 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @08:36PM (#30467120)

          the act of doing so isn't funny, that doesn't mean someone can't make a joke. Learn the difference.

          Consider the case of Tiger Woods for a current example:

          Difference between a Cadillac and a golf ball? Tiger can drive a golf ball over 300yds.

          Why did Phil Michelson call Elin? To find out how to beat Tiger

          Where was Elin the night Tiger crashed? Out clubbing.

          and on it goes. Humor is a way of dealing with the awful. We'd all be happier if it didn't happen in the first place, but if it did happen, we might as well derive something positive from it.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Opportunist ( 166417 )

        The act may not be funny, but it's funny to make fun of a guy who first of all does it and then has the audacity to pull a stunt like that.

    • Re:Fair Use? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Sponge Bath ( 413667 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:35PM (#30465532)
      Wikipedia says 8 times proven in court. He must have gone to the Larry Craig/Mark Foley School of Family Values.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by digitalunity ( 19107 )

      Indeed, but I think more noteworthy than this copyright claim is that he was sentenced to 44 years for rape.

      Seems excessive doesn't it? I read the affidavit [] describing what he did exactly and it seems very predatory and wrong, but 44 years is a lot...

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by timmarhy ( 659436 )
        and how many years will those young girls suffer for what he has done? 44 years isn't enough.
        • by selven ( 1556643 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:58PM (#30465932)

          I find it hard to imagine that they're now suffering anything close to the way in which being locked in a 3*3*2 meter cage for half the day is suffering. 44 years is way more than I would give even for a double murder.

          • Re:Fair Use? (Score:4, Insightful)

            by Khashishi ( 775369 ) on Thursday December 17, 2009 @01:12AM (#30469354) Journal

            How can the grandparent post get modded a "5" and the parent get a "0"? There's nothing insightful at all about the GP. It's just vocalizing the popular opinion. It certainly doesn't make a good argument.

            I've noticing more and more that Slashdot mod points are used to express agreement and disagreement rather than quality of post. Slashdot is showing more mob-censorship and conformity of opinion than just about any other site.

            The punishment should be proportionate to the crime. It's ludicrous to think that molestation is anywhere near as traumatic as beating, psychological abuse, torture, or imprisonment. I'm not saying any of those are ok, but Americans have some way distorted views of anything sex. I swear, if the kid is still traumatized after many years, it's because the traumatic response was manufactured by counselors and psychologists.

            Yeah, parents really sympathize with the whole "tough on crime" philosophy. Two eyes and an arm for an eye. Until, at least, their boys and girls grow up and start getting in trouble and the parents realize that their kids aren't quite the princes and princesses they thought they were. And now the parents get to grow old and die with nobody to take care of them because their kids are in jail for a long, long, time.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by digitalunity ( 19107 )

          Sex is used as a basis to sell products across the nation every day. The media and advertisers have rammed it down our throats that beauty and sexual attractiveness mean being a skinny 19 year old girl. Whats the difference between a 19 and 17 year old girl? Essentially nothing on average. Our society has chosen numbers arbitrarily as a dividing line between those who can have sex legally.

          Mix that with a society that consumes copious amounts of growth hormones in milk and meat products and has girls reachin

          • Re:Fair Use? (Score:4, Interesting)

            by Ethanol-fueled ( 1125189 ) * on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @07:49PM (#30466618) Homepage Journal
            I agree wholeheartedly. Society has become a self-hating dichotomy thanks to ceratin religions, which teache people to hate themselves and their urges which come naturally to them. Instead of recognizing them and dealing with them in a healthy manner, they end up repressing their urges and then snapping and performing acts like child rape. See also: Catholic Priests.

            Much of the damage of rape comes not from the actual act (unless it was particularly violent) , but from all of the stigma and media circuses surrounding it. Parents freak out and yell, "OH, MY GOD!" and start screaming and crying, which dosen't help matters for the victim. Sex crimes are sexy - not to you and I, but to the media and to the prosecution who know they will profit from the circus, usually causing considerable anguish to the victim because rape is excessively emotionally-charged in our society.

            People loved to foam at the mouth with regard to Roman Polanski, but they don't realize that things like that were widespread in funkier times. Even his so-called "victim", who consented and enjoyed the act, just wanted everybody to drop it and shut up about it. Gore Vidal dismissed the incident in an interview, saying , "Meh. That was the norm, and she was a hussy." Mick Jagger had sex with his friend's 13 year-old daughter and I don't see anybody wanting to cart him to the gallows. Pete Townshend was caught looking at boy porn and his music still graces the introductions of CSI shows! The people who love or hate Michael Jackson may not agree with what he did, but those who understand his childhood also understand why he's a weirdo.

            We must end the cognitive dissonance in society and learn to see things for what they are. It makes no sense that we have a lifetime registrant list for rapists and not for murderers!
          • Re:Fair Use? (Score:5, Insightful)

            by quickOnTheUptake ( 1450889 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @07:58PM (#30466722)
            I agree that statutory rape is a bit of a crock (19 yr old boy and 17 year old girl scenarios), but look, these are his (foster) daughters. Men are not supposed to look at their daughters, nieces, or other much younger girls in his family or under his care as sexual objects. Doing so is not merely succumbing to a normal drive, it is a pretty fundamental perversion of basic relationships.
            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by Dirtside ( 91468 )

              Some states have laws that define statutory rape as having an age range limit -- e.g. you can have sex with a minor as long as you're no more than 2 years older than they are. So technically an adult and a minor can legally have consensual sex, but only if they're very close in age. This is to deal with the obvious problem of someone who's 17 yr 364 days old having sex with someone who's 18 yr 1 day old -- they're apart 2 days in age, it makes no sense that it would be illegal for them to have sex just beca

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              If you don't _look_, you should have several important hormone producing organs checked. Any parent or caregiver of children who hasn't thought about it is probably repressing something even more insidious. The difficulty is when you _act_ on those impulses: partly for genetic, cross-breeding reasons, and partly for our culture's understandable fear of abuse of such powerful relationships, such sexual relationships are taboo. But make no pretense that sex with teenagers, for example, has always been forbidd

              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                Okay, when I said "look" I meant more than notice. Yes, it is perfectly natural for a parent to be aware of his children's attractiveness and sexual development. It is not healthy for him to fantasize about them. There is I think a major psychological step that lies between merely noticing and external action, that I was calling "looking".
                As to the question of nature v. social convention and training, I'm willing to admit it may well be something trained into us (not to think of those under our care sexua
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by GooberToo ( 74388 )

            Our society has chosen numbers arbitrarily as a dividing line between those who can have sex legally.

            Some states allow thirteen year olds to have sex with other minors (some caveats) and still others allow sex with adults so long as parental consent is given (as in married).

            I completely agree with your post. Its important for people to keep in mind that murders often receive far, far lighter sentences. Likewise, often the biggest trauma associated with this type of rape is that which is brought about by societal stigma; as it doesn't appear to be a crime of hate, range, violence, etc. True rape is more oft

          • Re:Fair Use? (Score:4, Insightful)

            by Caraig ( 186934 ) * on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @08:33PM (#30467102)

            Mmm... I disagree in some ways. While the ages of consent are somewhat arbitrary, there is a more important condition to be taken into account here: Ted Klaudt chose to put himself in a position of responsibility and authority over two girls whom the law says must have a guardian. If he had any inkling that he would want to molest them, then he would need to recuse himself from that responsibility. Instead, he chose

            While I do agree that the American advertising culture is really rather sick, we are not machines. We are not some sort of Pavlov's monkeys, conditioned to screw at the drop of a dress. We are sentient beings, and Ted Klaudt is (ostensibly) an adult who, at various points in his adult life, has been considered capable of making his own decisions for right or for wrong, and for choosing for himself what he should or should not do. Regardless of what Klaudt has seen on television or in magazines, he -- just like everyone -- is responsible for his own actions. At the very least, he is responsible for recognizing himself as capable of molesting females to whom he has a legal responsibility for.

            Moreover, he lied to the girls and tricked them into this situation. Again, he abused his position of authority.

            The bottom line is that this was not consensual. It was rape. You might call them 'morons,' but there was nothing I saw in the articles that said that his molesting of them was consensual. They didn't want it, he did it anyway: Rape, pure and simple. It was his choice.

            All this being said... I do agree that incarceration should be rehabilitative rather than punitive. IN the vast majority of criminal cases, locking someone up does no go whatsoever, and in fact has been shown to make a person even worse. In addition... not to put too fine a point on it, but Klaudt is not a spring chicken. American prison populations have a justly-deserved reputation of being incredibly bad (to put it mildly) for child rapists. I would not bet Vegas odds on Klaudt getting through even one of his prison terms. And for the record, I do not approve.

            So, in conclusion: He chose of his own free will to rape his stepdaughters, and he needs to be put away so that, somehow, that can be rehabilitated out of him so that the thought of it never happens again. No magic moving-pictures box put those ideas into his head, nobody forced him to be a rapist. At the same time, locking him away and throwing away the key does society no good. We need better rehabilitative incarceration rather than punitative. How, though, I'm afraid I don't know.

        • Re:Fair Use? (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Onymous Coward ( 97719 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @07:35PM (#30466478) Homepage

          This sentiment may be unpopular with most folks, and Hammurabi, but I don't believe that people should be made to suffer for the sake of some kind of balancing out.

          Sentences should be given for deterrence or containment. Not retribution.

          I know it sounds kooky. I know it flies in the face of intuition. But that's what I think.

          • ...of the Justice System.

            Historically, "Justice" was a function of the family. This led to private feuds and vigilantes that literally tore towns and cities apart. There is a man in prison today who harmed one of the women in my family. He was caught, tried, convicted and sent to prison. Every man in my family can look himself in the mirror and say "Justice was done," and because of that, no one has done anything rash.

            Have you thought about how you intend to satisfy the families under your new sentencing gu

          • Re:Fair Use? (Score:5, Insightful)

            by twostix ( 1277166 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @10:59PM (#30468396)

            No more kooky than thinking that pink fairies live on the moon. You can think whatever you like, but what you think had better be backed by some solid evidence and reason as to why that's better.

            Retribution against a person who has violated another by placing them in cold hard prisons is the only way to quench the primal *need* for retribution by the victim, the victims people and the victims community.

            Ignore humanities primal needs at your peril, justice will be done either through the state apparatus in an orderly fashion, or in the style it was largely done before the 1900's; by the victims people metting out quick, harsh, brutal justice (occasionally against the wrong person). You see the state convinces the individuals in it that it's preferable to let it met out justice. But to be sure, if it fails to give a sense of justice to those wronged then the individuals will take the dishing out of justice back into their own hands.

            And *I think* that you and the tiny fraction of people that think like you are just western middle class individuals who've been swaddled in cotton wool for your entire lives and have never suffered true violation at the hand of another. Not only that you have been led to believe that criminals are the true victims of the crime that they commit, and the victims are inanimate objects, whose feelings and needs are completely irrelevant to the matter. As you have just inferred.

            That's what I think.

  • An idea (Score:4, Funny)

    by enderjsv ( 1128541 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:22PM (#30465244)
    Can I legally change my name to "The".
  • Lawyer in a Can (Score:5, Insightful)

    by b4upoo ( 166390 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:23PM (#30465280)

    Where did this poor fool get his law training? Despair can make a fool out of a man but then again raping one's daughters sort of establishes that he is warped to begin with. It seems to me that we have special places to put people who rape their daughters.

  • Do they have sex offender shuffles in South Dakota? I'd like to see him in version 2.0
  • Why not a Bajillion? It's just as likely.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:24PM (#30465318)

    I've never heard of Ted Alvin Klaudt before, but it sounds like Ted Alvin Klaudt is a grade A jerk. Who does Ted Alvin Klaudt think Ted Alvin Klaudt is to try to claim copyright on Ted Alvin Klaudt's name? I can't wait to see Ted Alvin Klaudt get slapped down for trying to copyright Ted Alvin Klaudt. ...Ted Alvin Klaudt.

  • You really should sue for $47 Bazillion dollars...
    It has a much better ring to it than $500K.

  • by porges ( 58715 )

    According to Eugene Volokh at his well-known (conservative) legal blog []:

    That’s legally wrong on so many levels: Short words and phrases can’t be protected by federal copyright law; common law copyright has been almost entirely preempted by federal copyright law, and in any event was applicable only to unpublished works; copyright of any sort would only apply to your own creative work, and Ted Klaudt’s name wasn’t created by him (unless it’s an assumed name); fair use would in an

  • by uvajed_ekil ( 914487 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:28PM (#30465386)
    Ted Alvin Klaudt Ted Alvin Klaudt Ted Alvin Klaudt Ted Alvin Klaudt Ted Alvin Klaudt Ted Alvin Klaudt
    No, you can not have $3 million, Ted Alvin Klaudt! Idiot.
  • Son of Sam (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Wireless Joe ( 604314 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:29PM (#30465406) Homepage
    Assuming for a second that he actually has any ground to stand on.

    Since his name is related to his crime (and felony conviction), wouldn't newspapers be protected by South Dakota's Son of Sam law, preventing him from profiting from stories/descriptions of his crimes? I guess he could win and give the money to charity, but that would mean even more publicity. The whole thing's ridiculous and he deserves whatever he gets.
  • by fahrbot-bot ( 874524 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:29PM (#30465414)
    To quell any speculation on the legitimacy of Klaudt's claims:

    Laura Malone, associated general counsel for intellectual property at The Associated Press, said names of people, companies and products cannot be protected under copyright law. Names can be protected under trademark law, but only in association with goods or services used in commerce, she said.

    "Even if there was a valid trademark, the mere use of the name in a news story is not an infringement of trademark," Malone said Tuesday.

    "There is no legal substance to these claims," she added.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by langelgjm ( 860756 )
      Seriously. The guy wouldn't have a leg to stand on under federal law - words and short phrases cannot be copyrighted. That's why he sent the notice asserting common law copyright (which varies by state, mind you). In any case, even if that common law claim is technically legitimate, the compelling public interest in freedom of speech, freedom of the press, etc., would likely ensure this case was thrown out. And the title of the /. article is right on - all this idiot has done is drawn more attention to hims
    • So if he trademarked his name and another molesting raping pedophilic pile of dog excrement came along and tried to use his name, he could sue.

  • Holy crap. I didn't realize that the Streisand Effect was where you suffocate your bed partner []. Props to the Rapid City Journal for using "Rapist" as the first word in the headline of their story about his copyright claims. Since he is a convicted rapist, it's a matter of public record and totally OK say that Ted Klaudt is a rapist, right?

  • And now for something completely different, "I'll take the rapists for $1200, Trebek."

  • IANAL, but... (Score:5, Informative)

    by ghostis ( 165022 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:32PM (#30465476) Homepage

    I thought names and phrases were the purview of trademark law and not covered by copyright law?

  • Title wrong (Score:5, Informative)

    by Wyatt Earp ( 1029 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:36PM (#30465570)

    He isn't a "Congressman". He is a former member of the South Dakota House of Representatives, which would make him a former state legislator.

  • More Info (Score:5, Informative)

    by DeadPixels ( 1391907 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:39PM (#30465636)
    The New York Times [] has a little bit more info on the story. Apparently he sent this notice from prison, where he's serving a 54-year sentence (44 for rape, 10 for witness tampering).
  • Been tried before (Score:3, Interesting)

    by MickyTheIdiot ( 1032226 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:42PM (#30465674) Homepage Journal

    This particular scam has been tried before, [] especially by convicts. At best it creates a lot of spurious legal paperwork that has to be dealt with. It's a great way to cause headaches for the legal folk.

  • by icebike ( 68054 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:44PM (#30465708)

    Look, he hasn't been in jail long enough to take the whole Jail-house Lawyer course yet. Its just a first-year noob mistake.

    Give him a few years of study in the prison library, and he won't be making these fresh-meat mistakes. I'm sure he will have a lot more experience "behind" him in a couple years.

  • Not a "Congressman" (Score:5, Informative)

    by MushMouth ( 5650 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:46PM (#30465742) Homepage

    In the United States a Congressman is specifically a member of either the US Senate or US House of Representatives. This guy was a member of the South Dakota House of Representatives, which makes him a State Legislator or State Representative, but not a "Congressman".

  • Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt Ted A. Klaudt. That should be good for a $12.5 million lawsuit. BTW - I'm in Canada, and lawsuit trolls are treated, well, fairly for the defendant - usually I'm entitled for damages - sometimes equal to what people are sued for. And frivolous copyright lawsuits are well, treated with as much respect by the justice system as they would treat a rapist... wait a minute...
  • by Weaselmancer ( 533834 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:53PM (#30465854)

    Ted Alvin Klaudt! Ted Alvin Klaudt!

    Hm. So that's what it feels like to spend a million dollars.

    Less satisfying than I had imagined.

  • by Adrian Lopez ( 2615 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @06:59PM (#30465960) Homepage

    Sorry Slashdot, but I agree completely with Ted Alvin Klaudt. If I were Ted Alvin Klaudt and had been convicted, as Ted Alvin Klaudt was, of raping my foster daughters, I too would have scrambled for ways to prevent the media from commenting on my transgressions, just like Ted Alvin Klaudt is doing. Some may say employing copyright law in the manner of Ted Alvin Klaudt constitutes blatant abuse of the legal system, but I, as Ted Alvin Klaudt, feel otherwise. Ted Alvin Klaudt hasn't done anything wrong (with respect to the copyright thing, not the rape thing), and I wish him (Ted Alvin Klaudt) the best of luck.

    Godspeed, Ted Alvin Klaudt. Godspeed.

  • by h4rr4r ( 612664 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @07:11PM (#30466168) []

    You have to do a search for him after agreeing to some terms.

    I wonder if he plans to sue the state over this?

  • by shutdown -p now ( 807394 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @07:23PM (#30466322) Journal

    A google search for "Ted Alvin Klaudt" [] currently gives the following first hits:

    "Lawmaker, Convicted Of Raping Foster Kids, Claims Name Is ... - 3 hours ago
    Ted Alvin Klaudt was convicted of raping his two foster daughters a couple years ago. Rep. Ted Alvin Klaudt was convicted of raping his two foster daughters ..."

    "Ted Alvin Klaudt | FreakBits
    Dec 16, 2009 ... Former lawmaker Ted Alvin Klaudt, who was previously convicted of raping his two foster daughters, has sent copyright threats to news ..."

    I'm sure more is yet to come.

  • WOW (Score:4, Funny)

    by greatgreygreengreasy ( 706454 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @07:39PM (#30466522)
    Is his listed weight correct? 565 pounds?!!! How could he force the girls to even FIND his penis, let alone use it against them???
  • by Gone84 ( 966822 ) on Wednesday December 16, 2009 @07:54PM (#30466678) ???

APL hackers do it in the quad.