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This is (c) jake.

This topic was created by jake .

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This is (c) jake.

Because I wrote & posted it.

Not sure what that means in the great scheme of things, but there you go.

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It means nothing.

The copyright assertion is essentially a US invention as copyright was not automatic until the US joined the Berne Convention in 1989. However, you're more likely to win a bigger fine against a copyright infringer if you do include a copyright statement.

The accepted forms are:

Copyright [YEAR] [AUTHOR NAME]

© [YEAR] [AUTHOR NAME]

Copr. [YEAR] [AUTHOR NAME]

E.g.

© 2012 Sean Baggaley

Note that the use of a "c" in parentheses is not considered a valid abbreviation. It has to be one of the options listed above. Also, it is not necessary to write "Copyright © [YEAR] [AUTHOR NAME]" as the "Copyright" makes the "©" glyph redundant. It is also no longer necessary to add "All Rights Reserved."

There is one exception to all this: recorded music. A recording of a song involves two copyrights. The first is the song itself, while the second is the performance or recording. (Not every performer writes their own music, and not every songwriter is a performer.)

The recording copyright uses a "P-in-a-circle" symbol (the "P" stands for "phonogram") and looks like this:

℗ [YEAR OF FIRST PUBLICATION OF RECORDING] [AUTHOR NAME]

(The author's name is optional as it can be usually inferred from the packaging of the recording.)

And now, here is some music...

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(Written by Reg staff) Bronze badge

Is this a real forum, then?

(nm)

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Pint

Re: Is this a real forum, then?

Of course not.

Relax and have a homebrew :-)

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Re: Is this a real forum, then?

However, is this the right room for an argument?

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(Written by Reg staff) Bronze badge

Re: Is this a real forum, then?

Apparently not!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Is this a real forum, then?

No, just being-hit-on-the-head lessons in here.

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Copyright and morality

Be aware that you have moral rights as well, the right to be named as the author

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Re: Copyright and morality

I've read some of my posts. I'm not sure "moral right" is the phrase I'd use.

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Pirate

few ideas are original and excessive rights are immoral

Most ideas and creativity builds on what went before. Open source just reflects the reality of the need to cut transaction costs in software. In academia referencing is about being honest with your sources. Life plus seventy years is making my partner's life hell, she's attempting to put together historical tours, and the time/effort/cost in researching when unknown photographers of old postcards died or clearing rights (which can still be charged for whether or not these exist due to information asymmetry) can become a significant cost.

That's bad enough, but occasionally you encounter a real horror story, where significant cultural content is forced out of circulation: In the case of "Eyes on the Prize" this programme content was culturally so important that enough money was raised to clear the rights, but most such works will effectively become unreusable for the maximum conceivable rights duration without similar fundraising and campaigning: http://www.boston.com/news/globe/ideas/articles/2005/01/16/eyes_on_the_prize_off_the_shelf/ .

Overlong copyright is clearly immoral when it defeats the reason why legislators created a copyright monopoly in the first place, i.e. for the promotion of the arts.

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(Written by Reg staff) Bronze badge

And if you don't mind me saying.

... that's not a terribly original observation.

Most people can value originality even if some nerds can't. (It's characteristic of autism).

If you're interested about how this idea went in out of fashion, and why, I wrote about it here:

http://www.spiked-online.com/index.php/site/article/5795/

To whet your appetite:

<snip>

... the misanthropy runs even deeper with many digital rights activists. Not content with challenging the economic incentives to creativity, they question the validity of the notion of creativity itself.

‘Substantially all ideas are secondhand, consciously and unconsciously drawn from a million outside sources, and daily used by the garnerer with a pride and satisfaction born of the superstition that he originated them’, wrote Jonathan Latham in an essay widely cited by digital rights activists (4).

Latham’s view owes much to Structuralism, the lit-crit fad that usefully blew away the romantic notion of the author as the sole font of creative expression – but replaced it with one of the author as a dumb conduit, lacking autonomy or even the most basic self-awareness.

‘Since my creative work is non-unique’, wrote one commenter, encapsulating the digital rights philosophy, ‘I can’t expect compensation for it; because anyone could have done that. I just happened to get the idea first.’ (5)

From such a position of absolutism, it must be hard to see that one idea added to an existing body of work can nevertheless create something interesting and new.

</snip>

That's all it takes, usually.

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Pirate

Straw man

A straw man argument is one which misrepresents opposition to an extreme position by excluding the middle ground. The middle ground here is to seek a more balanced form of copyright which does its job, of incentivising new work to the limited extent this is needed, but which does no more.

So I'm all in favour of limited and balanced IP rights, such as were described in the US constitution, when terms of 14 - 30 years were thought appropriate, and when the idea of suppressing non-commercial copying in order to maximise the business interests of commercial publishers would have been considered abhorrent. Literature and sheet music were then commonly copied non-commercially using pen and paper.

Copyright law exists to incentivise creativity and need not be legislated for more than this modest need, either by :

a. denying privacy of communications in respect of non-profit making infringement (e.g. HADOPI, DEA) or

b. through suppression of the freedom of expression of programming thought and related speech claimed to threaten copyright enforcement (e.g. the conference paper which resulted in Dimitry Sklyarov's arrest under the DMCA and Sony's litigous bullying of George Hotz ) or

c. through suppression of the freedom of speech in saying where allegedly infringing non-commercial content is located (SOPA, PIPA) or

d. by extending copyright further into the future than needed to do its job, making creation of new works referential of old works more difficult and expensive, thus defeating the original purpose of copyright.

Copyright advocacy makes a bad name for itself through the absolutism of media interests willing to trample upon any other established human rights in pursuit of copyright revenue maximisation. These are the absolutists, not those of us who in awareness and consideration of rights other than copyright are challenging these excesses and are proposing a more balanced and defensible position.

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Re: Straw man

You've just called 'straw man' on Andrew, and gone on to do exactly the same thing yourself...

And you did put that argument in your earlier post that nothing is original. Though your 2nd post is a lot more balanced, so he had a point with his attack on your argument. But having gone on to say what you think more clearly, you then say that the absolutists are all on the other side.

Well that's clearly not true. You appear not to be one. But it doesn't mean there aren't people on the anti-copyright side who argue that there should be no reward for creators, other than the happiness of creation itself. They are absolutists, and I think most people would agree their argument is silly. Equally there are a lot of people who agree with copyright, but don't think it should last in perpetuity, merely to enrich the industry.

I'm not sure what the right term-length is. 60 years seems a long time, but should someone lose control of their work because they did it early, and then got old? And only for the life of the artist is a bit unfair on the family of someone who dies in their 20s/30s.

But if there's one argument that pisses me off it's the: 'the music industry is bankrupt, all their stuff is shit, so why should I pay for it?' To which I say: Well, if you hate it so much, why the hell are you downloading it in the first place? Admittedly I think a lot of their stuff is shit, but for some reason people seem to be willing to pay for it...

I also take issue with some of the anti publlsher / middle-men stuff. It's not ideal that be-pony-tailed coke-snorting arses make money from people's creative talents. But firstly, that's not a fair description of all of the industry, and secondly, creators aren't always business people. So you're going to get greed where there's money, so long as publishing is doing some good, we ought to be careful about destroying it.

I guess my argument is that the absolutists on both sides are poisoning the debate. Also there's too much idealism involved. What we want is a bit of dirty old reality. Which is to have a system that works, as efficiently as we can make it, to channel society's money, into getting things created that society wants, and needs. Perfection is impossible, so all we can manage is the usual grubby compromise (the reason so many people seem to despise politicians, but surely also the reason we keep them around...).

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"the usual grubby compromise"

I think you misplelled "gobby" ...

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Pirate

@ I ain't Spartacus

The points you make are made very reasonably. As to life of copyright, most professionals don't get paid for what we did last year, let alone what we did 30 years ago, so I don't feel obliged to pay Bob Marley's grandchildren's pensions simply because I like Bob Marley's music. It would be better for them if they have to work for a living, as applies to older artists if they have not saved any of the money earned while successful as youths. The monopoly of copyright is an artificial privilege granted by the state which comes with costs and obligations for the rest of us, so it should not be accepted as a natural human right.

As I see it the term of copyright should be set to compromise the increase in artists' incentive (which make longer terms more desirable than shorter ones) against the lower transaction costs for new artistic works referential of older works (which make shorter terms desirable). Having shorter terms is of particular importance for the feasibility of cultural heritage, historical preservation and reinterpretation work, a field of artisitic creation in its own right, regardless of the fact that this needs to reference and reuse older work. Having overlong copyright devours our future understanding of recent history, to the extent that the cost of researching and obtaining rights to works long out of publication exceeds the commercial benefit in doing so.

My own take on where these compromises might sensibly lead is that copyright terms should be different for different creative industries, probably no longer than 10 - 14 years for non-recreational software, 20 years for music, photos and literature and 30 for movies and computer games. Movies and software games are likely to need longer terms to be viable, due to the greater costs involved in their creation. But there need to be limits. For the exceptional movie which can still be watched with great interest 30 years after its first public showing this will be described as a "classic", surely a greater accolade to its creators than residual revenue cut off by democratic law through this work entering the public domain at that point. Interestingly, this reasoning awards the shortest duration here for the art I am myself most skilled in. The reason for having a much shorter copyright for business software is because this obsoletes sooner making it unsaleable, and if kept in copyright longer than it is marketable this hinders efforts at digital preservation, both of the software and systems on which this software runs, and in respect of the data formatted by such software which itself is likely to have cultural and historical importance at some point in the future.

Personally I think the need to reward artists will in future be ensured to the extent required by expanding the new commerce in art which becomes possible based on the acceptance of legitimacy of non commercial copying - in the sense that networking services, blank media and consumer electronics and computing equipment sold for the purpose of using this content can then attract appropriate sales commissions, in the same way that we now pay for the music heard in a shopping mall, on the radio or in a restaurant. We are not charged for the music at the entrance to the commercial place where the music is paid, we pay for the music as part of the cost of what we may buy there.

After the failure of PIPA and SOPA to obtain congressional support due to the recent concerted and organised Internet community backlash, I think we're very likely to see further strengthening of opposition to the privacy intrusions and gaggings which extreme copyright enforcement against non-commercial use requires.

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Facepalm

Re: @ I ain't Spartacus

I'd just like to say that in my family there are a number of professional musicians[1]. The only thing that keeps the wolves from the door and makes that job a viable career is those repeat performance and syndication fee cheques that turn up in the post on a regular basis.

Without that continuous, low-level trickle of income from previous work you condemn "music" to becoming only what's trendy right now and bugger all else. The world would be all the poorer as a result.

[1] That's real musicians, who make their money playing actual instruments for concerts, film soundtracks, CD recordings, advertising jingles, etc ad nauseum. Not some talentless prick with a fat gob and a necklace poncing around on a stage.

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Or, from an industry insider:

http://www.janisian.com/reading/internet.php

and

http://www.janisian.com/reading/fallout.php

They are long, but well worth a read. Walk the dawgs, pee, and grab a cuppa before you start ... but do take the time to actually read them. I think someone who has been involved with the recording industry for as long as I've been in IT might have a valid point or two.

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Headmaster

Re: Or, from an industry insider:

OK .... too early to hitch up the hounds, but 2 cuppa's and I have read both these links. Interesting perspective.

I did note however -

' You are welcome to post this article on any cooperating website, or in any print magazine, although we request that you include a link directed to www.janisian.com and give Janis Ian writer's credit!'. Not quite sure how I would give Janis Ian writer's credit, they do seem to be well written discussion of the IP issues from a performer's perspective.

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Re: Or, from an industry insider:

"Not quite sure how I would give Janis Ian writer's credit,"

Simply acknowledge that she wrote 'em. If you want to reprint them on your own web site, email her for permission. She's a human being, and quite approachable, unlike many stars of her caliber and longevity.

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Re: Straw man

"A straw man argument is one which misrepresents opposition to an extreme position by excluding the middle ground."

That's possibly the worst characterization of a straw man argument I've ever read. While exclusion of middle ground is a common side-effect of a straw man argument, it's neither required nor the mechanism by which a proper straw man is constructed. Neither is the extremity of either position relevant to the existence of a straw man. (In fact, the concepts of "extremism" and "middle ground" tend to be re-interpreted from the subjective point of view of the attacker, making the terms themselves a form of straw man -- or perhaps a red herring -- I think a kind of red straw herring-man is what I'm getting at here: there is no objective spectrum of positions, and where a given argument lies on a subjective spectrum is neither characteristic of, or relevant to, the actual argument.)

A straw man argument is, as you say, characterized by misrepresentation of the opposing position. But that is the sole facet of the straw man fallacy: the argument attacks, not the opposing position, but one which appears to the undiscerning observer to be the same. Whether or not the attacker leaves the possibility of a middle ground out there, it's the improper characterization of the original position which is the straw man.

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(Written by Reg staff) Bronze badge

Re: @ I ain't Spartacus

Szzz

How's your alternative currency doing?

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