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BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)

MudGuard 20 Nov 00 - 07:08 AM
mkebenn 20 Nov 00 - 07:17 AM
Jon Freeman 20 Nov 00 - 07:27 AM
GUEST,Big Mick 20 Nov 00 - 10:44 AM
Bill D 20 Nov 00 - 12:56 PM
Jim Dixon 20 Nov 00 - 01:10 PM
GUEST,T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 20 Nov 00 - 01:55 PM
mousethief 20 Nov 00 - 02:20 PM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 20 Nov 00 - 02:34 PM
Jim Dixon 20 Nov 00 - 03:16 PM
Jim Dixon 20 Nov 00 - 03:16 PM
Clinton Hammond2 20 Nov 00 - 03:22 PM
mousethief 20 Nov 00 - 04:31 PM
MMario 20 Nov 00 - 04:48 PM
Bill D 20 Nov 00 - 04:51 PM
Clinton Hammond2 20 Nov 00 - 05:02 PM
mousethief 20 Nov 00 - 05:09 PM
MMario 20 Nov 00 - 05:13 PM
GUEST,Kernow Jon 20 Nov 00 - 05:41 PM
GUEST,Kernow Jon 20 Nov 00 - 05:44 PM
McGrath of Harlow 20 Nov 00 - 07:42 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 20 Nov 00 - 08:04 PM
Iarf 20 Nov 00 - 08:38 PM
McGrath of Harlow 20 Nov 00 - 08:46 PM
Midchuck 20 Nov 00 - 08:56 PM
Clinton Hammond2 20 Nov 00 - 08:59 PM
Big Mick 20 Nov 00 - 10:41 PM
mousethief 21 Nov 00 - 12:15 AM
GUEST,Kernow Jon 21 Nov 00 - 04:03 AM
Wolfgang 21 Nov 00 - 04:53 AM
McGrath of Harlow 21 Nov 00 - 06:47 AM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 21 Nov 00 - 09:59 AM
mousethief 21 Nov 00 - 10:12 AM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 21 Nov 00 - 10:20 AM
McGrath of Harlow 21 Nov 00 - 12:50 PM
Bert 21 Nov 00 - 01:18 PM
MMario 21 Nov 00 - 01:26 PM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 21 Nov 00 - 01:46 PM
McGrath of Harlow 21 Nov 00 - 04:26 PM
GUEST,Big Mick 21 Nov 00 - 05:19 PM
Bill D 21 Nov 00 - 10:00 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 21 Nov 00 - 11:33 PM
mousethief 21 Nov 00 - 11:54 PM
mousethief 22 Nov 00 - 12:01 AM
Wolfgang 22 Nov 00 - 05:18 AM
John P 22 Nov 00 - 08:40 AM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 22 Nov 00 - 09:11 AM
Jon Freeman 22 Nov 00 - 09:34 AM
McGrath of Harlow 22 Nov 00 - 10:11 AM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 22 Nov 00 - 10:22 AM
Mary in Kentucky 23 Nov 00 - 12:04 AM
John P 24 Nov 00 - 09:37 AM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 08 Dec 00 - 08:28 PM

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Subject: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: MudGuard
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 07:08 AM

Just found this and had to share it with you: Dilbert
MudGuard


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: mkebenn
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 07:17 AM

Love it, And no, not if it's downloaded or reproduced. Public domain should be exempt. MB


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 07:27 AM

Thanks Mudguard. I hadn't read any Dilbert for a while.

Jon


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Big Mick
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 10:44 AM

GREAT LINK!!!!!!! It exactly demonstrates the point that I have tried to make with my young friends. I don't give a shit how you try to color this issue, it boils down to folks getting something for nothing. Want to argue that Arista is ripping off consumers, I probably wouldn't argue. But it is damn difficult to make that same arguments about the Folk Legacy's and the Camsco's of the world. The Paton's and Dick Greenhaus continue to make the music we love available to us and usually don't make much money doing it. The survive by the thinnest of margins. Things like free distribution of that which they provide could be the thing that puts them under. And until there is a way to compensate the artists for their labors, I will be completely opposed to the use of this technology. It is not on my computer and will not be.

Big Mick


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Bill D
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 12:56 PM

at least most of the music I buy, when I have $$$ to buy ANY, has a shelf life of decades, if not centuries...*grin*...I do pity the sad situation of those whose tastes require them to 'keep up' with the latest 9347 'hits'....with CDs at $15-$18, a current library is EXPENSIVE....I do agree with Mick that an artist oughta get a fair return for his work, but technology that makes cheating easy will ALWAYS get used.....if theft could be stopped, maybe prices could come down to a reasonable point.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 01:10 PM

Undoubtably, if music could be legally copied by anyone at no charge, it would be the death of commercial music as we know it. Some might argue that would be a good thing.

By the way, is there anyone out there who doesn't own a bootlegged tape?


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 01:55 PM

I'm reasonably confident that the tapes in my posession that I made myself are lawful under the provisions of 17 U.S.C. #107 or under 17 U.S.C. #1008. (This is, of course, not legal advice; it's just private opinion).

The question of whether music should be free on the WWW is primarily a question of public policy. There is no a priori principle that all labor utterly without exception must be compensated. A slaver works hard transporting his cargo, but society has decided that this labor should not be compensated. Rather, the slaver should find some other employment.

The existence of copyright laws reflects a collective decision to impose a de-facto tax (in the form of a government-enforced monopoly) on readers for the benefit of writers. This collective decision is contested by some, but even if we accept it we are only slightly further along. As in all questions of taxation, we must decide the details: how heavy should the tax be ? should anyone be exempt, and if so, who ? In the present context these translate as: what should be the scope and duration of copyright ?

In 1998, the already-long duration of copyright was extended for a further 20 years, to a staggering 95 years for works published before 1978. The scope of copyright was effectively expanded in the same year by passage of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act which butressed the copyright monopoly by new-fangled "paracopyright" provisions against "circumvention" and "trafficking in circumvention devices". The courts have interpreted this as making it illegal in some circumstances even to create a hyperlink to the source code for software which can de-crypt DVDs.

The only purpose of copyright is to enlarge the public domain in expression by encouraging authors to write. Many of the recent developments in copyright law amount to a brutal rape of the public domain, rather than its cultivation. In light of this brutality, I feel that those who complain about the free circulation of musical recordings on the web are not entitled to any words of support from me. I don't participate in the circulation of unlicensed MP3 recordings of copyrighted music, but I won't be very quick to condemn it until those who speak so piously about artists' rights show more than a perfunctory appreciation of the public's right to a constantly growing public domain in musical and literary expression.

T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: mousethief
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 02:20 PM

Huh? The public's right to a constantly growing public domain? Where in the Constitution is THAT stated? Is that in the WHO "human rights" decree? Or did you just make it up out of whole cloth?

And why just written material? On your logic, shouldn't the public have a right to manufactured goods without paying for them? Anti-theft laws, on your reading, become a "tax" on consumers for the benefit of manufacturers. This way madness lies.

Copyright law is the only way a creative artist has of protecting his investment in his work (or hers of course). Without such protection, the incentive to create and share art would be severely diminished. Why should the blacksmith, the manufacturer, the farmer have recompense for his labor, but not the artist? You envision a world where all labor is rewarded monetarily except art, and the artist becomes a de facto slave of the public's right to "an ever-expanding domain" of art.

I'm sorry, I just can't see it.

Alex
O..O
=o=


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 02:34 PM

mousthief,

-> You failed to note the distinction, implicit in what I wrote, between means and ends.

-> You are falling back on the copyright-maximalist trick of replying to questions about the proper scope and duration of copyright by simply repeating arguments for why there should be some copyright rather than no copyright, leaving the question of "how much ?" unanswered.

-> The Constitution states that Congress has the power "to promote the progress of science and useful arts". This means enlarging the public domain. If there remains any doubt, the same clause goes on to state that the monopolies granted under this power must be for limited times.

T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 03:16 PM

Okiemockbird: I just read 17 U.S.C. #1008 from your link. Does this mean, then, that it's perfectly legal for me to borrow my friends' CD's and copy them for my own personal use, without paying royalties? Funny, I always thought this was illegal, although everybody does it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 03:16 PM

Okiemockbird: I just read 17 U.S.C. #1008 from your link. Does this mean, then, that it's perfectly legal for me to borrow my friends' CD's and copy them for my own personal use, without paying royalties? Funny, I always thought this was illegal, although everybody does it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Clinton Hammond2
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 03:22 PM

"The Constitution states that Congress"... blah blah blah...

The problem there is that the consitution on applies to one counrty... The internet is a GLOBAL medium... american laws do not apply to servers outside america...

A broader view is needed..


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: mousethief
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 04:31 PM

Guest, if you want me to pick up something from what you write, it would be helpful if you STATE it, rather than expect me to read your mind (or implications, which is the same thing). This was the bullsh*t my ex-wife was always playing on me, and it still doesn't go down well. Don't blame ME for not picking up YOUR non-stated distinction. Either state it, and we can discuss it, or let it go. But don't expect others to read your mind.

Your discussion said nothing about maximal vs. limited copyright. You appeared to be blasting copyrights in general, and indeed a public right to an ever-growing domain of artistic works seems in odds with the very existence of copyright laws. Please, rather than just muddying the waters with technical mumbo-jumbo, describe where you would draw the line. If you are not in favor of abolishing copyright, and yet are against "maximalist" copyright, where is the line? How can the state draw it? Or if not the state, who?

Finally, you fail to indicate how you would distinguish works of art from manufactured goods or anything else created for consumption. Until you can draw a line there, you will be open to the charge that you don't believe creators should be compensated, or FULLY compensated at any rate, for their creations.

Let's discuss this rather than just use catch-phrases to avoid intelligent conversation.

Alex
O..O
=o=


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: MMario
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 04:48 PM

Patents and copyright both ENCOURAGE creativity and invention - but only if they lapse within some reasonable length of time. We have a case here where virtually nothing will be entering the public domain for about 20 years -

You don't see patents going out that will last 100+ years. I think artists have a right to profit from their works - but I DO NOT think that they (their estate and or heirs) should enjoy the EXCLUSIVE right to profit from it for up to 75 years after their death! Say someone rights a song at the age of 20 - they could very easily live to be over 100, but lets say they live to 100, then their estate controls the copyright for another 75 years (assuming no extensions in the ensueing time) - that song will be under copyright for 105 years!!!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Bill D
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 04:51 PM

Clinton Hammond has a point....certain drugs illegal in the US can be obtained in Mexico...or China...by anyone who can get there...but you can't download an illegal drug over the WWW...yet. Unless you can get other countries to arrest thieves, or write un-breakable software protection for songs, it MAY be a moot point.


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Subject: Suit up, cybercowboys!
From: Clinton Hammond2
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 05:02 PM

We're goin' to Amsterdam, baby!

It's gonna make a fortune in web server hosting! Just like William Gibson said it would...


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: mousethief
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 05:09 PM

Granted, MMario. I don't see how extending a copyright 75 years after the artist's death encourages more songwriting.

Alex
O..O
=o=


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: MMario
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 05:13 PM

gadzooks! awlays prufred!

that should be "writes" a song and my example would be under copyright for 155 years, not 105.

my brain cell hurts.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Kernow Jon
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 05:41 PM

I am not able to grasp the arguments as to why music should be free.
I am in the happy position of being in a band that has just recorded a CD.
We had to pay studio time, raw materials CD's etc(we are manufacturing it ourselves to keep costs down)and pay copyrigt to 3 artists (quite rightly) who gave us permission to record their songs. Should we not be able to at least recover those costs without someone bootlegging the CD's?
KJ


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Kernow Jon
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 05:44 PM

I must belong to the MMario skule of prureaders
But the gist is there.
KJ


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 07:42 PM

The logic of the technology points to a time when everything could in fact be free, and the price mechanism and so forth is only kept in play by increasingly weird artificial methods.

And if everything is free, you don't need money, so if you write a song and other people sing it and listen to it, that's great. What more do you want? Well maybe you want people to say this great song was written by so and so, but that's all.

Murray Bookchin once wrote a book called Post-Scarcity Anarchism, and it's on my shelves somewhere. I'll have to get around to reading it again.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 08:04 PM

mousthief, where to "draw the line" is a question that I stated explicitly ("what should be the scope and duration of copyright") and that YOU avoided by accusing me of imagining "a world where all labor is rewarded monetarily except art".

T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Iarf
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 08:38 PM

Is the use of Napster acceptable or not. Advice please.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 08:46 PM

I can't really see the difference between copying a record and borrowing it off a library. If I like something I want a hard copy I can handle and keep on my shelves, rather than just a bunch of electrons floating round on a re-recordable disc.

When there's a film I like on TV, I often record it on tape. If I like it a lot I buy a prerecorded tape. I've taped singers at concerts, and then bought a CD off them at the end of the evening.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Midchuck
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 08:56 PM

An act that is ethically wrong cannot be justified simply on the basis that there is no actual law forbidding it.

An act that is _not_ ethically wrong does not become ethically wrong because the legislature passes a law against it. How many of us believe that our elected legislators are better judges of right and wrong than we are ourselves?

The internet has knocked the whole law of intellectual property into a shambles. When everything - text, pictures, music, even full-motion video - is just ones and zeroes, and anyone with a computer and an internet connection can get at any string of ones and zeroes that is on any other computer that's on line, intellectual property law becomes unenforeceable. Period. Any realistic enforcement of intellectual property laws would require shutting down the internet, or at least strictly limiting access to it. And it's probably too late for that.

The impossibility of enforcing the laws does _not_ change the taking of other people's property without compensation from an immoral act to a moral one. To say it does is to say "Anything I do is all right if I don't get caught." Which I think most of us would agree is not an adequate moral code.

Congress, missing the point as usual, has tried to deal with the problem by passing more and stricter intellectual property laws. They should be cutting back on the strictness of these laws, so that the public will be likely to accept them as reasonable.

We got along for many years with a 28-year-plus-one-28-year-renewal term of copyright - 56 years total. If we'd kept it, everything composed up to nearly the end of WWII would now be public domain. I think anyone who's composed anything prior to that has already taken most of the profit they could reasonably expect...

But I'm rambling.

Peter.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Clinton Hammond2
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 08:59 PM

Iarf

Until the american governmet makes up it's mind on Napster, yer gonna have to make that decision for yourself... and afterwards... Well, regardless of what the self-important think, piracy is ALWAYS gonna be around... as I stated above... the american decision is gonna have NO bearing on the rest of the world...


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Big Mick
Date: 20 Nov 00 - 10:41 PM

And despite all the lofty statements to the contrary, this still, reduced to the lowest common denominator, comes down to an argument over whether you have the right to have something for nothing. Folks have found a way to get music without compensating the artists. And they find very eloquent ways to justify their actions. The day they find a way to compensate those that have sacrificed financially to produce that which you seek, is the day I will begin to use Napster, Gnutella, et al. Those of you who take music that you have not paid for are thiefs. I am sorry that sounds so crude, but that is what it amounts to.

Mick


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: mousethief
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 12:15 AM

Swell, Guest. Where do you draw the line? Further, what IS the difference between art and other goods produced for hire? Tapdance all you like; we shall see you for what you are. Or answer the questions.

Alex


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Kernow Jon
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 04:03 AM

McGrath
I think there is a difference between copying a record and borrowing it from the library. At UK public libraries authors and artists are paid for the works in the library.
If some guy buys a CD is it OK for him to then copy it to tape for however many of his friends he feels like?
I'm sorry but like Big Mick says, whatever the excuse, it's theft!
KJ


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Wolfgang
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 04:53 AM

Artists (and distributors of art), like anybody else, deserve to be payed for what they do or deliver.
The WWW has made it possible to exchange information (including lyrics and high validity music) with near to no control possible and no loss of quality. This exchange (theft) just cannot be contained any longer except by a society we do not want to live in.
Therefore, what now is still considered theft will be legalised in the years to come and as a compensation the exchange of information will cost a bit more money than now and part of that money will go to the providers of information and part of it will got to the producers of information (artists, e.g.).
That is, you'll have to pay in distant future (like you pay now, perhaps without knowing, for the copies in a library) for services like Mudcat and the DT. Let's say you pay 5c per view of lyrics (whether you just glance at them or copy them to you local computer) and a bit of that'll go to the writer of the lyrics and a bit to Max. As for the tunes you'll have a choice between lower quality short versions to give you an idea what the music is like (5 c) or a maximum quality downloadable version (25c?).
Not all the details will be as I have predicted but I can't imagine a totally different course.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 06:47 AM

"Property is theft" Proudhon.

(And that's a slogan that means something a bit more complicated than people sometimes think.)

I've been listening to music on the radio and TV and records all my life. Sometimes I record what I like and keep it, sometimes I buy the record or the tape. More often than not I buy these secondhand in charity shoops or boot fairs or jumble sales.

I honestly can't see why using computers to copy the music is particularly different. I suppose the quality of reproduction is a bit better, but it's been pretty good for the last 70m years or so anyway. My instinct is that, as with previous technological changes, the net effect will be that people making good music will get it more effectively into people's ears, and that this will mean they get more people wanting to hear them live, and sell more actual CDs or whatever.

How we use the technology is what matters. The same technology that gives us school buses gives us getaway catrsd for bank robbers. The same technology that would allow me to share songs I've made with friends on the other side of the world would allow people to deprive musicians of the money they need to have to get along in a society that still revolves round money and scarcity.

If we really wanted to make it better for live music, what would really help is some way of limiting the use of canned music in pubs and clubs and public places generally. It's that which makes it hard for ordinary musicians to make a living, far far more than kids listening to music they've copied off the radio or the net or wherever. And it deprives people of a chance to hear live music as a part of their daily life.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 09:59 AM

Big Mick, suppose a surgeon saves your life with his scapel, and you pay him $500,000.00. Isn't your life worth more to you than that ? Aren't you getting "something for nothing" with every breath you take ? Shouldn't you, by your own rule, become the surgeon's slave, so that all the profits of his labor in saving your life come to him ?

I will never tire of saying it: all works of the human mind belong by default (i.e. absent any legal regime to the contrary) to all human beings. They are "as free as the air to common use", as Justice Brandeis put it in his dissent in INS News Service v. Associated Press. Copyright and patent are temporary expedients--gimmicks, kludges, necessary evils--which we employ in order to encourage authors to enlarge the public domain. If we adopt this policy, we must necessarily make the monopoly privileges strong enough to make the incentive credible. This might mean drawing the lines of fair use such that no one may ever, in any circumstances whatsoever, uplink an unlicensed MP3 of copyrighted music to the web; or it might not require such a strict interpretation. Either way the immediate goal is a credible incentive, not the rightsholders' maximum profit or maximum control.

The ultimage goal, though, is the expansion of the public domain. In the hearings on the 1998 copyright term extension, some of the pro-extensionists dismissed the concept of public domain with scorn and derision. Such misguided fools do not deserve to be drafting our laws for us. If I were a congressman, I would refuse to support the MPAA, RIAA or any of their pet congressmen on Napster or any other issue until they were willing to acknowledge the primacy of the public domain in copyright theory.

One former lawmaker, Robert W. Kastenmeier, well understood the centrality of the public domain in so-called "intelllectual property" law. We could use more like him today.

T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: mousethief
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 10:12 AM

"all works of the human mind belong by default (i.e. absent any legal regime to the contrary) to all human beings"

Beautiful sentiments, Guest Okie. And of course everyone is welcome to have beautiful ideas; it's a free country. But if they are not the sentiments of the population as a whole, why should *WE* believe them? Why should we enforce them by our laws?

I think everybody should love God and go to church on Sunday, but I also think it would be wrong to impose that on people by law. Because I realize the difference between my feelings and desires, and what is reasonably the object of government enforcement. The purpose of government is not to enforce one person's ideals and noble sentiments, but rather to ensure that society can exist with minimal friction, bloodshed, etc.

Presumably there are people who think intellectual property should belong to its creator and his dependents in perpetuity. Why is your sentiment better, or more worthy of legal enforcement, than theirs?

Lastly, why should all works of the human MIND be public domain, but not all works of human HANDS?

Alex
O..O
=o=


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 10:20 AM

Works of human hands are sold once, for a fixed price, passing forever from their makers' control. Why would some have works of the human mind forever within their makers' control even after the public has paid the maker a fair price for them ?

T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 12:50 PM

How does it come about that copyright lasts so much longer than patent rights do?


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Bert
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 01:18 PM

"all works of the human mind belong by default to all human beings...as free as the air to common use" --- What absolute, utter, fucking, bullshit!!!!

If that theory held good it would be the end of Engineering design, Architecture, Art, Fashion, Advertizing, Music, Computer programming, Writing, Movies, TV, etc., etc.. In fact just about everything.

GET REAL and use YOUR MIND just for once!!!

Bert (personal opinion)


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: MMario
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 01:26 PM

several articles I have seen recently point directly to Disney as the motivating force behind the latest copyright extensions.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 01:46 PM

Take a look at the case of Sony v. Universal City Studios:

The monopoly privileges that Congress may authorize are neither unlimited nor primarily designed to provide a special private benefit. Rather, the limited grant is a means by which an important public purpose may be achieved. It is intended to motivate the creative activity of authors and inventors by the provision of a special reward, and to allow the public access to the products of their genius after the limited period of exclusive control has expired. (p. 429).

Now let's break this dictum down: The purpose of copyright and patent is (1) to motivate authors and (2) to allow the public access after the limited period of exclusive control has expired.

In other words the purpose is (1) to encourage authors to (2) enlarge the public domain.

In other words, the public domain is where a work rightly belongs; copyright and patent are temporary expedients designed to move the work into the public domain.

Here's a patent-law case: Bonito Boats v. Thunder Craft Boats:

The ultimate goal of the patent system is to bring new designs and technologies into the public domain through disclosure. (p. 151).

If the public domain is not an appropriate place for "new designs and technologies", then why make a law to bring them there ?

T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 04:26 PM

"If that theory held good it would be the end of Engineering design, Architecture, Art, Fashion, Advertizing, Music, Computer programming, Writing, Movies, TV, etc., etc.. In fact just about everything."

No. Just because the things you make over and above those you make for your own personal use didn't become your private property, it wouldn't mean you stopped making them, if you enjoyed making them and didn't have to worry about making a living.

I think that is where we'll end up in time, but not in my time or our time, because that's not the kind of change that can be imposed from above, it has to grow from below.

People voluntarily pooling their resources is one of the ways it will grow, and in this context that means, for example, folk musicians agreeing to let their music be freely available over the net, in the hope and expectation that this will be reflected in live bookings and face to face sales.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Big Mick
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 05:19 PM

Okie, what the hell are you defending??? The cases you cite both allow for time for the maker to recoop the expense of developement and make a profit PRIOR to the making available in the public domain. OK, I got no beef. But that is not what the Napster issue is about. The Napster issue is about folks saying that they have a right to buy one CD and then copy it by means of the world wide net to as many people as they choose. What makes it different from the cassette tape example given is in the scope. Copying to tape is still stealing, but at least regionally, on campus, in towns, among friends, someone had to purchase the original. With the Internet, one copy on a harddrive becomes available to the entire world.

McGrath, that last paragraph just doesn't fly. Why the hell would anyone spend the $4,000 to $7,000 US it requires in the hopes that they get more bookings? And why would anyone purchase the CD at the live show if they knew they could go home and download it for free?

Come on boys, just admit it. You found a way to have all the music that you used to not be able to afford, or had to pay good money for and now you don't. You want something for nothing and are using specious and fallacious arguments to bolster your position. And the one area that you are ignoring is one of the first ones I raised. What about the folks like Folk Legacy and Camsco? OK, so you don't think you should have to pay the artist. I disagree and think you are stealing. What about those enterprises that provide hard to get material that we folkies love? What is the long term effect when they disappear? When you take what little profit motive they have left, which allows them to stay alive, who will do the field recordings?

Mick


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Bill D
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 10:00 PM

...so, okiemockbird....what's a fair price for a song?....and WHO is to pay me? Do I get a record producer to front ALL the money, and then let him try to recoup it?...and from WHOM?.....The way it is sort of set up now, if I write a GOOD song, a lot of people buy copies and I make more money than if I write a bad song. But if the minute ONE copy gets out, it is fair game for everyone and "belongs by default to all human beings", I'd better be damn sure I get a good price for #1 copy!...

never mind...unless you can explain how an artist dealing in intangibles, (music, poetry, photographs, designs..) that can easily be copied....can ensure a fair deal, we have little to discuss. The issue is already a problem...this idea of "belongs by default to all human beings" would just stultify creativity ...(easier to be a plumber!)


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 11:33 PM

Bill D in an example of how a defense of the public domain is so often misconstrued as an attack on all copyright. Bill D's statements in fact don't respond to my views, only to his own prejudiced distortions of them.

Big Mick, I'm not "defending" anything except the public domain, from a centuries-long, brutal, rapine assault by the copyright maximalists.

You seem to think that the teenagers who download from Napster want "something for nothing", and that wanting something for nothing is always a contemptible desire. Passing over such difficulties as how everyone of us gets his life from his mother "for nothing", let us examine just who, as a result of recent developments in copyright, is getting something for nothing. When George Gershwin wrote "Rhapsody in Blue" he was relying on a maximum 56-year copyright term. He thought that term was sufficient protection to make it profitable for him to pursue a writing career. Gershwin died in 1937. In 1976 the copyright term was extended by 19 years. Gershwin was still dead; the extra 19 years can't possibly have encouraged him to write anything. In 1998, partly at the urging of the Gershwin Trust, the term of copyright was extended yet again for another 20 years. George Gershwin was just as dead in 1998 as he was in 1976 and 1938. He still hasn't pulled himself out of his grave to write any more songs. Gershwin's nephews, meanwhile, have already gotten a fortune from the extra 19 years. Now they'll get another fortune from the additional 20 years. So far as I know they have never written a note of music. Just who, then is getting "something for nothing" ?

Indeed, the copyright barons partly sold the term extension to Congress as a way the United States could get something for nothing. The NMPA claimed that the term could be extended "without causing harm to the interest of any person or entity" (NMPA Comment, Sept 22, 1993, Copyright Office Docket # RM 93-8). A group called the "Coalition of Creators and Copyright Owners" stated that "we can obtain 20 years of protection in the EC at virtually no cost to ourselves." (The same.) These robber-barons who trumpeted "something for nothing" as an advantage of the copyright term extension now condemn teenagers for wanting the same thing they tried to induce Congress to want. To me, their complaints sound hollow.

As for the individual artists whose works are being posted to the web without permission: where were they in 1998 ? If they aren't part of the solution to copyright maximalist extremism, then they are part of the problem.

T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: mousethief
Date: 21 Nov 00 - 11:54 PM

T. in OK (welcome to Mudcat, by the way!) says: "Works of human hands are sold once, for a fixed price, passing forever from their makers' control."

This is disanalagous. Say I make a pottery bowl. If I then sell it, it doesn't become public domain, it becomes the property of its new owner, and he is able to do with it as he wishes: keep it, sell it, pass it on to his heirs. There is never a point at which the bowl ceases to be public property and becomes the property of mankind as a whole.

The analogue in the world of music is not publishing, but selling your copyright rights entirely.

Look. Let's say I buy a piece of land and some timber and wires and pipes, and make a house. 75 years after I die, it will still belong to my heirs, or the person I (or they) sold it to. It does not become Public Domain or public property just because I've been dead 75 years, or it's been a certain number of years since I built it.

So there is a HUGE difference between the works of human hands and the works of human minds, on your view.

Why? On what grounds? Give us some arguments, man. Your constant "you're just harping on the maximalist theme" crap is getting thin. Time to pay the piper. Why should the works of the mind be any different from the works of the hands?

Alex
O..O
=o=


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: mousethief
Date: 22 Nov 00 - 12:01 AM

Sorry; there is never a point at which the bowl ceases to be PRIVATE property.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Wolfgang
Date: 22 Nov 00 - 05:18 AM

Alex,
Okiemockbird is in Mudcat much longer than many others (since 1998), only posting less and with breaks, but well known to seasoned Mudcatters.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: John P
Date: 22 Nov 00 - 08:40 AM

Okiemockbird, I have a challenge for you. Tell me where you work, and who your boss is. I would like to call him or her and explain that you think anything you do at work that requires thought, knowledge, or creativity does not need to be paid for. It belongs to all of us, and your boss is spending a lot of money paying for it in error.

I agree that the terms of copyrights are too long. But to say that all music belongs in the public domain means that you expect a lot of people to work for no compensation. What is the address of the public domain? I need to send it a bill for my next CD. Or am I supposed to pay for it out of the proceeds of live shows? If so, ticket prices are now $250 per ticket, and you better guarantee me a full house every night. And every member of every audience had better buy that $45 CD.

Or should we, by extension, expect the recording studio to give me time? Shouldn't the work the engineer does be in the public domain as well? Since we need to make music available to the public for free, I guess the CD duplication houses shouldn't be charging anything for their services, either. Or the retail store that sells the CD to the geek who copies it to the web. This means that the property owner who rents space to the retail shop shouldn't do that -- he ought to provide the space for free, so music can be available to the public. We'll have to get the public utilities to provide electricity and water for free to musicians, recording studios, and retail stores. Surely the public is willing to foot this bill so that music can be free?

The whole arugment that people who download music will be more likely to buy the CD is one I have often heard put forth by serious CD collectors. Most people are not in that camp. Most people just want music, and don't want ot pay for it. I have actually had people call me and ask for the J-card to my cassettes, because they copied their friend's copy of my album and they want the liner notes. Arrgghh! The fact is, most people are clueless about stuff like this. It doesn't help having people like you saying that it's all O.K., since the public ought to own all that music anyway.

Perhaps the public would like to support artists out of their tax dollars? How about an army of musicians living at public expense instead of an army of soldiers?

I don't think there is ever any way to put the genie back in the bottle once technological advances have made something possible. Digital copying of music is not going to go away. Fortunately, there are still a lot of people around , especially in the folk music world, who understand that just because it is possible to do something, and regardless of whether it is legal or not, it is not necessarily right. We can't prevent assholes from copying music, and getting something for nothing. But we shouldn't pretend they are not assholes, or dress their actions up in a cloak of respectability.

You need to come up with a different way for me to get paid before you can say it is acceptable for people to copy my CDs without giving me any money. You need to explain to me why it should be possible for someone to enjoy the fruits of my labor without me getting anything in return. And you need to explain the same thing to your own employer.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 22 Nov 00 - 09:11 AM

All works of the human mind belong in the public domain. All works of the human mind reside there by default. These are basic principles. The words "by default" leave plenty of room for overrides and adjustments. Why do so many seem to assume that the only policy implementation of these principles that I will accept is the abolition of all copyright ?

T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 22 Nov 00 - 09:34 AM

Wow, this Mudcat is an amazing place! I have seen serious threads turned into joking threads before, but never anything like a light hearted post from a Dilbert cartoon turning into a serious copyright debate! Interesting one though.

Jon


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 22 Nov 00 - 10:11 AM

"McGrath, that last paragraph just doesn't fly. Why the hell would anyone spend the $4,000 to $7,000 US it requires in the hopes that they get more bookings? And why would anyone purchase the CD at the live show if they knew they could go home and download it for free?"

Well I suppose I'm not thinking in terms recordings that take thousands of dollars on making a recording. With modern technology brilliant quality recordings are cheap and easy to make. All right, they don't have the clever siound engineers making it sound better than it does in real life, and cleaning up the bum notes and so forth. But that's not what I want.

I'm thinking of the kind of recordings that most singers I see at folk clubs and so forth sell at the end of the evening, and which I buy because I've enjoyed them, and I'd sooner have it on their CD or tape then and there to take home. It's a supplement to the payment for the gig, from musicians who are trying to make a living, not businessmen who are trying to make a killing.

As I indicated, what I want to see is that kind of music made available by the people who make it through the net, and that's where MP3's and so forth come in. All right, the same technology can be used to get hold of music from people who don't want to make it available. The same way you can use guns to kill people as well as squirrels. (So far as I'm concerned I'm for the squirrels as well, so I'm against the guns anyway, but I accept the point that tools shouldn't be dismissed out of hand because they can be misused. And please don't let's drift into talking about gun control on this thread.)

As for property right - I think as a moral thing, personal property rights extend to what you can use personally. Over and above that it's a question of maybe you have a stewardship authority over something, like a forest or stretch of country or a city block, but it's to be exercised on behalf of a wider community than you personally or even your family. If you write a song or a story it falls somewhere in betweeen - for example I don't think anyone would have a right to say noone else could sing their song, and they weren't going to either.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 22 Nov 00 - 10:22 AM

Some of the articles MMario mentioned, which refer at least in passing to Disney's involvement in the 1998 copyright term extension, can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Additional information can be found here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: Mary in Kentucky
Date: 23 Nov 00 - 12:04 AM

As Wolfgang said...T has been around here for awhile. I've enjoyed his posts so much that many are bookmarked, and I even referred a newspaper feature article writer to T's posts. The references are quite timely and provide lots of information and primary references for anyone trying to understand this field. As I said once before...keep 'em coming, I'm reading them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: John P
Date: 24 Nov 00 - 09:37 AM

Okiemockbird, O.K., I went back and re-read your posts. I see that you are not saying that copyright should not exist, but rather that it should exist as an encouragement to artists to produce works of art -- not as a way for holder's of copyrights to continue to financially milk those works of art for umpteen years. I can go along with that. Sorry I jumped to conclusions about what you were trying to say. There have been so many people on the newsgroups and elsewhere who want all music to be free that I and many others are sort of touchy on the subject. Especially offensive are the ones who say "If it is folk music, it belongs to the folk" or those who believe that we need to make as many copies as possible to make sure the old songs don't get lost. Of course, most just want something without having to pay for it.

One comment you made needs some response:
"Many of the recent developments in copyright law amount to a brutal rape of the public domain, rather than its cultivation. In light of this brutality, I feel that those who complain about the free circulation of musical recordings on the web are not entitled to any words of support from me. I don't participate in the circulation of unlicensed MP3 recordings of copyrighted music, but I won't be very quick to condemn it until those who speak so piously about artists' rights show more than a perfunctory appreciation of the public's right to a constantly growing public domain in musical and literary expression."
One thing you have to remember is that, in this forum, you are not dealing with big companies who are trying to make a mega-buck. We are small-time folk musicians trying to make a living. Most of us are thrilled when our tunes and songs are mistaken for public domain works, but we are even more thrilled to get a bit of money for them. Fifty people having pirated copies of one of my albums represents a substantial financial loss for me. Yes, I speak piously about artists' rights. This doesn't mean I am brutally raping the public domain, or that I don't deserve support from you in figuring out how to deal with the problem of piracy.

I'm also unsure about the whole concept of the public having a right to a constantly growing public domain. The government supporting the creation of a larger public domain I can go along with, but I don't think I can take it as a given that the public has a right to it. Can you expand on your reasoning here?

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Should Music on the WWW be free? ;-)
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 08 Dec 00 - 08:28 PM

For more copyright humor check out copyrighting fire.

John P., you wrote:

Yes, I speak piously about artists' rights. This doesn't mean I am brutally raping the public domain, or that I don't deserve support from you in figuring out how to deal with the problem of piracy.

If you read carefully the words of mine that you refer to, you'll see that the metaphor of a brutal assault on the public domain is not used as a metaphor for the actions of any human individual, but as a metaphor for the operation of some recently-enacted provisions of the copyright law. It's true, though, that I chose those words to be provocative: I was angry when I wrote them. Like you, I have become touchy about some issues.

I consider what we now call the public domain to be inseparable from freedom of expression. This freedom is unalienable at its core, but partially alienable at its margins. In order to enlarge the public domain we, the public, give up a marginal slice of our freedom of expression temporarily to authors in order to allow them better odds of profiting from their writing than they would otherwise face. Copyright is not an author's inherent right prior to any law: it is a sacrifice by the public of some of the public's rights to the author for a public purpose.

Those who want music to be free may be right in their instincts, since freedom is the proper condition of every human being, and to be freely available to all is the proper condition of all works of the mind. BUT: the public has made a deal with authors, agreeing to refrain from exercising its full rights in the authors' works for a time. If the deal is reasonable and fair, the public needs to hold up its end of the deal. If the deal is not reasonable and fair (as presently in the U.S.), it becomes a matter of individual conscience whether to abide by the copyright law notwithstanding, or conscientiously to disregard it. In those cases where uplinking unauthorized MP3s of copyrighted music to Napster is a mature, well-thought-out act of civil disobedience, I will hesitate to judge those who engage in it, even if I would not have made the same decision.

We might suspect that some users of Napster are not sober conscientious objectors to the copyright law, but mere opportunists. Where the copyright law has become contemptible, however, widespread disregard for it shouldn't surprise us, even if it doesn't please us. In an earlier post I described copyright as "a tax on readers for the benefit of writers." One of my critics thought this a step on the road to "madness", but those who are familiar with the history of copyright in English-speaking countries will have recognized the reference to Thomas Macaulay's speech in the House of Commons on February 5th, 1841, where he said:

 The principle of copyright is this. It is a tax on readers for the purpose of giving a bounty to writers. The tax is an exceedingly bad one; it is a tax on one of the most innocent and most salutary of human pleasures; and never let us forget that a tax on innocent pleasures is a premium on vicious pleasures.   

Macaulay went on to conclude his speech with a warning which I think applies to our present situation here in the U.S.:

  Just as the absurd acts which prohibited the sale of game were virtually repealed by the poacher, just as many absurd revenue acts have been virtually repealed by the smuggler, so will this law be virtually repealed by piratical booksellers. At present the holder of copyright has the public feeling on his side. Those who invade copyright are regarded as knaves who take the bread out of the mouths of deserving men...Pass this law, and this feeling is at an end....On which side, indeed, should the public sympathy be when the question is whether some book as popular as Robinson Crusoe, or the Pilgrim's Progress, shall be in every cottage, or whether it shall be confined to the libraries of the rich for the advantage of the great-grandson of a bookseller who, a hundred years before, drove a hard bargain for the copyright with the author when in great distress ?...The wholesome copyright which now exists will share in the disgrace and danger of the new copyright which you are about to create.  

T.


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Mudcat time: 14 May 1:44 PM EDT

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