10 Oct 2003 @ 11:28 AM 

Suncomm claims shift key violates their intellectual property rights

It’s astounding. Suncomm is going to sue the fellow I mentioned the other day. They claim that telling people to hold the SHIFT key is a violation of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act, and that the perpetrator of this crime has disseminated information which facilitates infringement. Said Suncomm CEO Peter Jacobs, “This cat-and-mouse game that hackers and others like to play with owners of digital property is over.”

Yep, it’s amazing that he wrote this felonious paper which tells people that the Suncomm copy protection system simply doesn’t work. OK. The article also mentions that the author of the article came to false conclusions about the efficacy of the technology. Let me get this straight. It either works, in which case you can’t claim he came to false conclusions. Or it doesn’t work, in which case you can’t claim that it is infringing on any damned thing. You can’t have it both ways, Suncomm.

Posted By: Gary
Last Edit: 26 Jun 2006 @ 07:38 PM

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 22 Jul 2003 @ 2:53 PM 

I can’t believe I agree with Michael Jackson on something.

There apprently is a bill in the House that would make it a federal felony to download copyrighted music off the internet. So, is it a federal felony to steal a CD from the store? Didn’t think so.

Posted By: Gary
Last Edit: 26 Jun 2006 @ 07:38 PM

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 16 Jul 2003 @ 3:23 PM 

Cafepress will soon let you publish books for free (free to the author). This is in contrast to other print-on-demand services such as Xlibris, which costs at least $500 to have your trade paperback or ebook published.
More »

Posted By: Gary
Last Edit: 26 Jun 2006 @ 07:39 PM

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 20 May 2003 @ 3:45 PM 

Cafepress has been told I’m violating the copyrights of Albert Korda with an image of Che Guevara I was using on some products that nobody ever bought. Apparently Señor Korda’s estate is more interested in his intellectual property than he ever was. There are many concepts involved in this case, and I’ll lay them out for you.

  • Korda said specifically that he wanted people to copy and spread the image of Che Guevara, as seen in this quote:

    I am not averse to its reproduction by those who wish to propagate his [Guevara’s] memory and the cause of social justice throughout the world,” Korda said in the autumn of 2000.

  • The concept of benign neglect reigns. If someone does not attempt to defend their copyright, even in the face of many highly public uses of it, the right to defend it is hard to manage. Consider how many times you’ve seen the Che Guevara image on posters, t-shirts, etc.
  • The Berne copyright convention is the means for reciprocity between countries and their varying internal copyright laws. Cuba has never signed the Berne convention, because Castro said it was a tool of the capitalists. Korda lived until his death in 2001 in Cuba, and was a proud Cuban citizen.
  • The image I used was not the photograph of Che that Korda took, but a stylized rendering of that image. It is a unique work. To claim that any image of Guevara infringes on Korda’s copyright implies that Guevara’s likeness is ownable and, further, that it is owned by the estate of Señor Korda.

Of course, none of this matters, because the store has been removed and it never made money anyway. Just another example of lawyers bullying people into doing things that aren’t right, merely expedient.

Posted By: Gary
Last Edit: 26 Jun 2006 @ 07:39 PM

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 30 Sep 2002 @ 1:04 PM 

Did you know that not all books pay royalties to their authors or estates? Public Domain is a great concept, in fact it is the default status for all works. Copyright is an artificial construct intended to encourage artists to publish their works, in exchange for a time-limited monopoly on copies. Gets the authors some money for their work, but the art is eventually free for all. When the USA was founded, copyright was set at 14 years, with an additional 14 year extension possible. Copyright now in the US is set at 70 years after the death of the author. Nuts, eh? How is giving his heirs a monopoly going to encourage the author to produce more work after he’s dead? The logic behind copyright is completely twisted by post-mortem rights, especially on the order of 2 generations.

Anyway, I’ve gotten up to 1995 in downloading the Gutenberg Project, and now I see this new thing. It’s a bookmobile that doesn’t loan books, it gives them out. That’s right, the books cost about one buck each, all nicely bound and laser-printed. The catch – the books are all public domain, which is the only way to afford giving them away, and led to my opening rant. Ta

Posted By: Gary
Last Edit: 26 Jun 2006 @ 07:40 PM

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 23 Apr 2002 @ 9:37 PM 

An anonymous moron recently took me to task for my “trampling on copywrite law” (if you can’t spell it your opinion is pretty worthless anyway) with regard to my Camp Xray Store, which was actually created by request of the sailors at Camp Xray, and was not my idea at all.

Anyway, the image in question follows.

If this is infringing on someone’s copyright, I’d be amazed. The only resemblence to the famous Watterson strip that it is similar to is the kid’s spikey hair. That’s hardly congruent enough to be considered infringement. Different clothes, different face, and all-around different context. I would not attempt to defend this as a parody, because it obviously is not. I didn’t attempt to copy Bill Watterson, I just sketched out a kid peeing. Doesn’t make it a famous Belgian fountain either…

Besides, this is similar to the designs I see on half the pickups in the Southwest. Someone is selling stickers with a kid that looks substantially more like Calvin than this little soldier does. I assume that Mr. Watterson has not gone after the “Piss on Ford” and “Piss on Chevy” stickers because he doesn’t care much and because he’s loathe to associate his life’s work with such insignificance. Considering I’ve not made a dime off any of my Cafepress stores yet, I’m pretty damned insignificant. 🙂
current_mood: curious

Posted By: Gary
Last Edit: 26 Jun 2006 @ 07:40 PM

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 28 Feb 2001 @ 1:40 PM 

Those silly silly people running the music “industry” (like there are factories and stuff?) just can’t figure out how to not blow themselves up. Napster offered them 200 million dollars per year for the next 5 years, if the RIAA would just not try to destroy Napster, and maybe even try to play nice with them.

The RIAA, being the old greybeards they are, couldn’t bring themselves to approve such a scheme, so they’ll probably end up winning the court battle and shutting Napster down. Of course, since Fanning and Co. have a deal with BMG records, they’ll stick around as the front end for ONE record company’s electronic distribution system.

Meanwhile, the other companies in the RIAA are working on their own systems, which they’ll probably screw up royally. Anyone else remember the awesome Personics systems from the 80s? You could go to a record store kiosk, choose your personal favorite songs from the playlist, and have a cassette created with only music you wanted, with a nice laser-printed jacket and labels. The record companies made royalties, and the consumer got a product they truly wanted. Of course, the industry let that system die from lack of attention, and it was too late anyway, with the CD revolution in full swing.

This past week, the RIAA started going after OpenNap servers, which are equivalent to Napster, but without any company to sue. Next, I’m sure they’ll attempt to sue the users of Gnutella, who are individuals operating out of their own homes. This is basically the music companies suing their own customers. I wonder how they justify that business model.

Really should have made that deal with Napster, RIAA. It was the best chance of getting any money at all without suing your own customers. This should be an entertaining year.

current_music: Everclear – Now That It’s Over

Posted By: Gary
Last Edit: 01 Dec 2006 @ 06:44 AM

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