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From: Aquarion;
Newsgroups: alt.fan.pratchett
Subject: Re: [I] Copyright and rambling // was Televised books // was Top 100 Musicals (Re: [I] Re: Buffy/LOTR)
Date: Sat, 27 Mar 2004 12:10:34 +0000
Lines: 72

Take a letter Miss Jones: To Graycat, Re: [I] Copyright and rambling (long) // was Televised books // was Top 100 Musicals (Re: [I] Re: Buffy/LOTR):
> On Fri, 26 Mar 2004 23:04:57 +0000, Alec Cawley
> wrote:
>>In message , Graycat
>> writes
>>>On Fri, 26 Mar 2004 20:04:10 +0000, Alec Cawley
>>>>In message , Graycat
>>>> writes
> Well, I think that the copyright and benefits should rest with the
> creator. As long as the creator is around he/she should get to say
> what’s to be done with it. If the creator is dead he/she can’t have
> financial or intellectual interests so it doesn’t matter that
> copyright has ended.

My penny: (Two cents at current exchange rates)

I) Copyright is a Good Thing for current authors, since it enables them to earn money from what they do. Nobody trys to tell a blacksmith he shouldn’t charge for his work, I don’t see why I shouldn’t be able to. (Not that anyone – in this argument – appears to have put forward the Information Wants To Be Free thing, but it’s a basis)

II) There are times when a copyright should follow a company instead of an indervidual. Whilst Disney are still using Mickey Mouse as a logo, they should be protected from people being able to produce “Mickey Does Dallas” legally.

III) When something is no longer commercially viable to reproduce, it should fall out of copyright. This means that things like Gutenburg and the Abandonware archives become useful (Not that Gutenburg isn’t useful, but it’s useful because things have fallen out of copyright)

So far, so standard. The difficult bit:

IV) The idea that upon my death my entire oeuvre falls into the public domain isn’t really good if I want my work to support any decendants I have, or if – citing J. M. Barrie – I want to leave all profits from it to a charitable institution. I would prefer to have the freedom to do this.

IV.b) On the other hand, the last thing I want is a Tolkienesque/Fleming/Scientology world where there is an organisation whose entire purpose in life is to milk my entire output until it dies, chop the meat and sell it for sausages, then sell the bones for glue.

So, basically, I want to take copyright extension out of land law altogether and give creators the ability to say in their will “I cede all rights to my works to $foo, on the condition that on his death the rights fall into the public domain” with sub-clauses to the effect that works based on these rights don’t fall into the public domain immediatly, but will do eventually as negotiated, or something.

I don’t think blanket copyright is working, and individual cases would probably be better.

Good sigmonster, Have a bikkit.

Yours in total sincerity,


Aquarion, http://www.aquarionics.com, aquarion@suespammers.org
copyright, noun

The notion that you can protect from the future what you stole
from the past. <http://www.eod.com/devil/>

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