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SOPA and PIPA

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KVRAF
 
2202 posts since 19 Apr, 2005, from The City Beneath the Sea
  

Postby dnekm; Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:06 pm

Been thinking about this.....

Copyright as it stand is not about protecting the rights of the originator during their lifetime but bequeathing to their descendants - who then hopefully sell the rights to someone else. Thus creating an extension....

What if the term of copyright only lasted 40 years?

That leaves a long enough span for the creator of such work to reap whatever benefits they could - and then it goes into the public domain...

It is not as if after 40 years I am still going to be selling the very first thing I came out with..... Life changes, you move on.... Unless you are the RIAA....
KVRian
 
940 posts since 26 Nov, 2005

Postby JJBiener; Mon Feb 27, 2012 9:04 pm

dnekm wrote:Been thinking about this.....

Copyright as it stand is not about protecting the rights of the originator during their lifetime but bequeathing to their descendants - who then hopefully sell the rights to someone else. Thus creating an extension....

What if the term of copyright only lasted 40 years?

That leaves a long enough span for the creator of such work to reap whatever benefits they could - and then it goes into the public domain...

It is not as if after 40 years I am still going to be selling the very first thing I came out with..... Life changes, you move on.... Unless you are the RIAA....


Copyright is recognized internationally as a human right. No matter how you try to justify it, you are still talking about limiting someone's human rights. If you are willing to place arbitrary limits on copyright, what other rights are you willing to place arbitrary limits on?
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KVRAF
 
9613 posts since 18 Jun, 2008, from Melbourne, Australia
 

Postby ZenPunkHippy; Mon Feb 27, 2012 9:20 pm

But that doesn't mean it should be extended "forever".

All artists benefit from previously published works whether they are in the public domain or not. Disney, for example, plundered classic stories to create an empire. Elvis and Led Zeppelin would not have written and performed the music they did without an influence from the blues.

The influence is clear, so why should someone see rewards "forever" after borrowing (or to put it another way: blatantly stealing) from our existing culture? This so called "influence" should be acknowledged by placing the work in the public domain, after a reasonable amount of time has passed.

20 years should be perfectly sufficient for any artist to realise a decent wage (or in some cases huge profit) from their work.

Peace,
Andy.
KVRian
 
940 posts since 26 Nov, 2005

Postby JJBiener; Mon Feb 27, 2012 10:01 pm

ZenPunkHippy wrote:All artists benefit from previously published works whether they are in the public domain or not.


This is true.

Disney, for example, plundered classic stories to create an empire. Elvis and Led Zeppelin would not have written and performed the music they did without an influence from the blues.


And Elvis and Led Zeppelin have influenced countless others even though their music is not in the public domain.

The influence is clear, so why should someone see rewards "forever" after borrowing (or to put it another way: blatantly stealing) from our existing culture? This so called "influence" should be acknowledged by placing the work in the public domain, after a reasonable amount of time has passed.


Everything we create is influenced by everything else. That influence is repaid by inspiring those who come after. Artists contribute to the culture by creating their work in the first place. They don't need to further contribute by being forced to give up their rights to that work.

20 years should be perfectly sufficient for any artist to realise a decent wage (or in some cases huge profit) from their work.


Based on what? By what objective criteria do you determine that 20 years is sufficient? What if the artists has received no income during that time? Do you still believe he has been sufficiently compensated?
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KVRAF
 
9613 posts since 18 Jun, 2008, from Melbourne, Australia
 

Postby ZenPunkHippy; Mon Feb 27, 2012 10:31 pm

Nothing you have said convinces me that the artists children, great grandchildren etc. should also receive benefits from a published work, but I guess that brings us back to the "it's the same as a house" argument.

Someone posted an example of stealing my inventory of Widget2 a while back. When Widget2 is physically stolen, and sold to various people, I am deprived of a market. Very few of the people will buy a Widget2 from me because they already have one. Further, I was also physically deprived of stock that will need to replaced, which will obviously cost money.

When someone breaks in to my virtual locker and makes 1 copy of my song, and then makes it available online for free, I have not yet been deprived of any income and the replacement cost is zero. I can still sell my art without incurring any additional costs.

Yes the potential for being deprived of sales exists, but even if 1 billion people go on to download the free version I have not lost 1 billion sales: only the potential for 1 billion sales is diminished.

How much the potential sales are affected is a huge part of what this argument is about, and these figures have been distorted massively by those who stand to gain from complaining the loudest.

I've often wondered if the various media giants are able to claim tax breaks from losses due to piracy? That would be an excellent reason to fake some numbers ...

Peace,
Andy.
KVRian
 
940 posts since 26 Nov, 2005

Postby JJBiener; Mon Feb 27, 2012 10:32 pm

Andy, I would like to examine a couple of points you've made. You have indicated that you believe the culture benefits from works being placed in the public domain. I think we can both agree that very few works can stand the test of time, but let's take a look at one that has. George Gershwin wrote Rhapsody in Blue in 1924. It is still being recorded to this day. There is no question that our culture has benefitted and continues to benefit from Gershwin's work. Do you believe people would stop recording Rhapsody in Blue if the record companies had to pay a few cents per copy to Gershwin's estate? Do you believe people would stop buying it or seeing it performed if Gershwin's heirs were compensated?

Let's look at the other extreme. A songwriter writes a great song in 1982. It is now 30 years later, and he is playing the song at an open mic night in St Louis, MO. A publisher hears it and is convinced George Strait could have a million seller with it. After the show, the publisher talks to the songwriter and realizes the song is in the public domain. The publisher can't sign a contract for the song, so George Strait never hears it or records it. This song is effectively lost to the culture. How does this benefit anyone?

One more example. NASA is publically funded, so all pictures and videos created by NASA are public domain. Most people have no idea this vast collection even exists. I have looked and it has some incredible stuff. Most people don't know about it because it isn't in anyone's interest to promote it. Does this benefit our culture if remains largely undiscovered?

Far from impeding culture, ownership and profit benefit culture by providing incentive to bring works to the public's attention.
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KVRian
 
940 posts since 26 Nov, 2005

Postby JJBiener; Mon Feb 27, 2012 10:59 pm

Andy, let's look at this from a business standpoint. A copyright is no different from the shares of a business. It is a cliche that time is money, but it is essentially correct. Your boss pays you in return for your time and effort. You can take the money (your time and effort) and invest it in a share of stock.

A songwriter invests his time and effort into creating a song. His claim to that song is same as your claim to your share of stock. Even more so since he created the song, and you merely bought the share of a company that someone else created.

You like the example of a house, but this is a better comparison. Both the song and the share are, shall we say, insubstantial. Neither one has any physical existence.

You share of stock is yours. Forever. Or until you choose to sell it. When you die, it gets passed down to your child. And then to your grandchild. And on and on until someone sells it and then it belongs to that family.

How long should you be able to profit from your investment before your share becomes public domain? Is 20 years sufficient? If you are able to profit indefinitely from your investment of time and effort, why shouldn't a songwriter be able to do the same thing from his time and effort. Why are his rights less important or valuable than yours? If we are to use your cultural argument, the culture benefits far more from the songwriters investment than it does from yours. If you feel justified in stripping a songwriter of his rights, why shouldn't we feel justified in stripping you of yours?
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