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View Diary: Labor and Copyright Law (71 comments)

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  •  basically, (0+ / 0-)

    we got screwed by The Mouse

    Quick! Man the Blogs!

    by HiBob on Thu Feb 15, 2007 at 04:58:02 PM PST

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    •  how does that help to understand (0+ / 0-)

      99.999999999999999999999999999 of all the other works out there that aren't an easy to hate target?

      •  HiBob may be more terse than me (1+ / 0-)
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        Progressive Moderate

        but he isn't far from the truth.

        How many people were making a lot of money with 1920s copyrights when they passed the Sonny Bono Act.  Not damn many.

        A handful of extremely long lived cases are driving general rules.

        "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities" -- Voltaire

        by ohwilleke on Thu Feb 15, 2007 at 06:05:18 PM PST

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        •  Music copyright holders... (1+ / 0-)
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          The Irvin Berlin family still makes substantial amounts of money on the songs he wrote almost 100 years ago.

          I suspect the Cole Porter estate and a whole host of other songwriters with substantial catalogs are in a similar position.

          If you want to arrange a song for performance, you have to get permission and pay a fee. If you want to perform that arrangement in a public setting where admission is charged (even if you yourself don't profit), then you have to pay ASCAP licensing fees.

          It's not just about copying CDs and sharing MP3 files.

          The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it -- GB Shaw

          by kmiddle on Thu Feb 15, 2007 at 06:27:12 PM PST

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          •  Just because it is doesn't mean that it should be (1+ / 0-)
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            it is an outrage that people still pay royalties to sing "Happy Birthday" in movie.

            Irving Berlin had no reasonable expectation that his family would still be collecting royalties when he created the work.  Neither did Cole Porter.  Those heirs are receiving a windfall that is nothing more or less than theft from the public domain via lobbist.  It is even worse than abolishing the estate tax.  

            That kind of B.S. discourages creative innovation.

            "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities" -- Voltaire

            by ohwilleke on Thu Feb 15, 2007 at 06:33:11 PM PST

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          •  The ASCAP tried to sue the Girl Scouts back in (0+ / 0-)

            1996 and was publicly humiliated into dropping it. I'll be damned if they're going to snoop into high school talent shows or Kareoke bars. Likewise, going after people who sell their old CDs at garage sales is also an act of abuse. If an official from the RIAA or ASCAP ever came to my house and pulled this shit on me, I would chase such a person out and call the police to get a restraining order.

      •  I realize this comment is late (0+ / 0-)

        and on a tangent to your diary, and worse, I have no real training in this field. but this is a topic that interests me and i hope you have time to answer this point:
        I don't think whether there is remaining revenue to be extracted from a greatly  extended copyright is relevant. Copyrights are granted as an incentive  to get creators to create and to publishers to publish, not as a reward for things already in the market. The idea is 1., that the general public receives benefits from creators that have exclusive rights that they wouldn't receive from creators that don't have exclusive rights. 2., those benefits the general public receive due to that incentive are greater than the costs the general public incurs from that incentive. I know laws have changed, but personally I think they should hew to the original model.

        The incentive is the promise of future revenue. But money you will get in the future isn't worth is much as money you will get today: you have to calculate it's value as an incentive using the discount rate. which even for the safest possible investment is 6%. So the highest possible value (today) of an incentive of the possibility of getting a dollar 50 years from now is 5.4 cents.  Adding a 51st year to the incentive adds 5.1 cents, and so on. And that's being pretty generous; I'll spot you a few decimal points and say that in the real world a copyright longer than 40 years does not provide any meaningful incentive for the creation of 99.99% of all copyrighted works.

        It does however increase the cost to the public:

        1. abandoned works. If you can't figure out who to pay for licensing, you can't create something new from something old.

        This is an increasing problem.

        1. Monopolies, i.e., the mouse. A lot of things could be created using Walt Disney's work, but they won't, because they're locked up.

        I'm sure you can come up with more examples.

        Quick! Man the Blogs!

        by HiBob on Fri Feb 16, 2007 at 07:25:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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