Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Seen something interesting in the news or on the intertubes? Discuss it here.

Moderators: Hawknc, Zamfir, Prelates, Moderators General

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Ghostbear » Fri Feb 03, 2012 7:14 am UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:But your argument is entirely reliant on the current status quo of computers and the current state of technology.

No, my argument is not! Hence:
Ghostbear wrote:One limitation is an inherent physical property- you automatically have exclusivity for a unique, tangible object- and the other is a legal property- there is nothing inherent about an idea that permits exclusivity unless you willfully opt not to share it with others.

Not all ideas are tied to computers, not all ideas will be digital or mechanical or stored. Ideas are not limited to computers, and focusing in on the artificial limitations that they can attach to digital files does not change that creative works are inherently not capable of the same exclusivity that physical objects are. Even with all the copy protection in the world, 100% uncrackable and everything-proof, your idea, your work, is still no longer exclusive to you once you sell a copy of that to someone else, once you let them watch it, read it, play it, listen to it. You lose the inherent exclusivity over that idea once you do that. You do not lose the inherent exclusivity over an object if you show it to someone. Physical property and intellectual property occupy different spaces, and while they both intersect at "property" the manners and means of them is quite different.
Ghostbear
 
Posts: 1764
Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:06 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Feb 03, 2012 2:05 pm UTC

Ghostbear wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:But your argument is entirely reliant on the current status quo of computers and the current state of technology.

No, my argument is not! Hence:
Ghostbear wrote:One limitation is an inherent physical property- you automatically have exclusivity for a unique, tangible object- and the other is a legal property- there is nothing inherent about an idea that permits exclusivity unless you willfully opt not to share it with others.

Not all ideas are tied to computers, not all ideas will be digital or mechanical or stored. Ideas are not limited to computers, and focusing in on the artificial limitations that they can attach to digital files does not change that creative works are inherently not capable of the same exclusivity that physical objects are. Even with all the copy protection in the world, 100% uncrackable and everything-proof, your idea, your work, is still no longer exclusive to you once you sell a copy of that to someone else, once you let them watch it, read it, play it, listen to it. You lose the inherent exclusivity over that idea once you do that. You do not lose the inherent exclusivity over an object if you show it to someone. Physical property and intellectual property occupy different spaces, and while they both intersect at "property" the manners and means of them is quite different.


First, copyrights do not apply to "ideas". (That would be patents... but those are strange and another can of worms that I'd rather not discuss...)

For example, I can tell you that Luke Skywalker blows up the Death Star, trains to become a Jedi and then blows up the Death Star again. I have not committed copyright infringement, despite retelling you the story right here. (I may have committed trademark infringement, but this is a copyright discussion. :-p). A more practical example would be Sparknotes, and all of their "recreations" that aren't "copies".

Again, Copyright is not over the "idea", just simply copies. And derivative works. Its why DnD can use Halflings. (FTW: "Hobbit" is trademarked by Tolken... not "copyrighted"). Sparknotescan recreate stories.

Copyrights extend over (more or less) "copies" of the original. If there exists technology to enforce copyright perfectly. (The hypothetical 3D anti-camera monitor that prevents the analog loophole, and then perfect software encryption at every level), your argument would become obsolete with regards to copyright. Why? Because it would become impossible to copy the material without the original author's permission. And the author would have arbitrary control over where, when, how you would be able to watch his work.

(Mind you, I've stated my anti-DRM stance earlier in this thread. So we may be splitting hairs on this idea... since I don't really like the idea of DRM.)
First Strike +1/+1 and Indestructible.
KnightExemplar
 
Posts: 2469
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 1:58 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Ghostbear » Fri Feb 03, 2012 3:18 pm UTC

I'll admit "idea" was a poor choice of words, but I think you're zeroing in on and nitpicking that and missing the broad point I was making. You are assuming that all, every last one, copyrighted works will fall under a situation where they can be DRM'd. This is, for all practical purposes, completely impossible. You can't close the analog hole on a book, or a written play, or anything where the idea is written; people will be able to take it elsewhere, even if it is painstakingly slow for them to do so. You can't stop that with a written work. You can protect software, and possibly / probably video. Audio I don't think you could make immune to it. Not all works can be placed under your hypothetical DRM scheme, no matter how capable you assume them to be capable of making that DRM.

The point is that physical property has exclusivity automatically and irrevocably. Intellectual property- especially copyrighted works- does not have that. Nothing about it inherently gives you exclusivity to it, nothing about it has that as a natural property of it. Sure, you can add that artificially, and potentially completely successfully to some of them, but it has to be added in, and will never work 100% for all works. And you do lose that exclusivity when you sell it to someone, even with your perfect DRM- you can gain some of that control back, but not all (people wouldn't buy a work they could never access). You don't think that's a rather fundamental difference between physical property and intellectual property?
Ghostbear
 
Posts: 1764
Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:06 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:19 pm UTC

Ghostbear wrote:To me, this indicates that we each place far more importance on one aspect of copyright. I won't deny that there is some benefit to allowing people to have some control over their creations, but even that was done with the intention of encouraging works...


Well, at least the right in the UDHR happens to disagree, as it listed a right to control over your work as simply a right, not dependent on any particular benefit to society.

And I can't say that I see it all that differently: I think that it is a basic human right for people to have full control over that which they labored to create. Any benefits that arise are incidental.

Ghostbear wrote:Intellectual property has the difference that it can be just as ingrained in people that do not own it. If I have a physical artistic work and own it, then it is inherently mine, as I can relatively effortlessly deny it to others. An intellectual work can be yours, but you would have no capability to fully deny it to others...


That's not much of a shift from physical property. Or any other rights in general. Rights can be infringed on in all kinds of ways. That's why they need to be protected.

Ghostbear wrote:I don't think it's conflicting rights. The first sentence and the second sentence are intended to be taken together...


All right then -- in that case, I wouldn't mind that context being "people have full rights over their work" and "people have the freedom to engage in whatever cultural or scientific advances that have been made part of the public domain".
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby LaserGuy » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:26 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:All right then -- in that case, I wouldn't mind that context being "people have full rights over their work" and "people have the freedom to engage in whatever cultural or scientific advances that have been made part of the public domain".


So you believe that we can engage in science and culture that was available in 1923 or earlier, and everything else is off-limits for public consumption?

[edit]Also, this position is rather ludicrous. Let's say, for example, that 2000 people worked on the movie "Star Wars". Why don't 1999 of those people get full rights over their work and only George Lucas does?
LaserGuy
 
Posts: 3646
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 5:33 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:33 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:So you believe that we can engage in science and culture that was available in 1923 or earlier, and everything else is off-limits for public consumption?


While I doubt that everything since '23 has been made by individuals that are able to and that have asserted control over their work (and not all intellectual property has a life that long), you also have the option to benefit of such works by actually paying for it.


LaserGuy wrote:[edit]Also, this position is rather ludicrous. Let's say, for example, that 2000 people worked on the movie "Star Wars". Why don't 1999 of those people get full rights over their work and only George Lucas does?


Because those 1999 people sold their work to Lucas.
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby LaserGuy » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:37 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:Because those 1999 people sold their work to Lucas.


So when I buy a DVD, then I've already paid for the work and can do whatever I want with it?
LaserGuy
 
Posts: 3646
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 5:33 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:39 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:So when I buy a DVD, then I've already paid for the work and can do whatever I want with it?


You didn't pay for the work -- you paid for a license to use the work under particular circumstances.

And within those limitations, yes -- you can do whatever you want with it.
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby LaserGuy » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:45 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:
LaserGuy wrote:So when I buy a DVD, then I've already paid for the work and can do whatever I want with it?


You didn't pay for the work -- you paid for a license to use the work under particular circumstances.

And within those limitations, yes -- you can do whatever you want with it.


I don't see how this is any different from the workers above. If I'm an editor paid to compile scene X of Star Wars, Lucas is buying the license to use my work, scene X. That doesn't necessarily mean that he has the right to make an advertisement from a portion scene X without my permission, nor does it mean that they can play a clip of scene X at the Oscars without my permission.
LaserGuy
 
Posts: 3646
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 5:33 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:48 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:
yoni45 wrote:You didn't pay for the work -- you paid for a license to use the work under particular circumstances.

And within those limitations, yes -- you can do whatever you want with it.


I don't see how this is any different from the workers above. If I'm an editor paid to compile scene X of Star Wars, Lucas is buying the license to use my work, scene X...


You'll probably have to take my word for it, but the agreement between the Editor and Lucas was not towards a license of the work, but towards the work itself and all rights towards it.
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby LaserGuy » Fri Feb 03, 2012 5:14 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:
LaserGuy wrote:
yoni45 wrote:You didn't pay for the work -- you paid for a license to use the work under particular circumstances.

And within those limitations, yes -- you can do whatever you want with it.


I don't see how this is any different from the workers above. If I'm an editor paid to compile scene X of Star Wars, Lucas is buying the license to use my work, scene X...


You'll probably have to take my word for it, but the agreement between the Editor and Lucas was not towards a license of the work, but towards the work itself and all rights towards it.


That may be, but regardless, it still makes a difference: George Lucas is not the author of that work (or, at least, not exclusively; it's a compilation work, so it's complicated). The Human Rights declaration that you are quoting from only provides the inherent right to moral and material protection to authors. Such a right is not extended to individuals who purchase the works subsequently.
LaserGuy
 
Posts: 3646
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 5:33 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Zamfir » Fri Feb 03, 2012 5:18 pm UTC

Capitalism alienates the workers from their work.
User avatar
Zamfir
 
Posts: 6328
Joined: Wed Aug 27, 2008 2:43 pm UTC
Location: Nederland

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:03 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:That may be, but regardless, it still makes a difference: George Lucas is not the author of that work (or, at least, not exclusively; it's a compilation work, so it's complicated). The Human Rights declaration that you are quoting from only provides the inherent right to moral and material protection to authors. Such a right is not extended to individuals who purchase the works subsequently.


Erm, it does inasmuch as Western society tends to recognize people's ability to sell their rights towards something whether in whole or in part (with some restrictions of course -- this not being one of them).

'Full rights' towards something generally includes the 'right' to transfer any rights one has towards that something.

Edit: or even more succinctly, 'full rights' towards something generally includes the right to transfer or sell that something (in this case, 'something' being full control of the work in question).
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Qaanol » Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:24 pm UTC

Hey everybody, I just came up with some new works, that are hereby protected as my own. So, here’s what I came up with: each pattern of 1’s and 0’s that is at least 224 digits long and no more than 248 digits long. I know some of these already exist as prior art, but most of them do not. And all those ones that were never made before, now belong to me. I created them today.

I made a super-compressed format to store them, that works by cycling through each of them in turn and writing it out to its own file. Everytime I learn of one of these that is already prior art, I will update my compressed file so it does not output that one. But to prove one of them is prior art, you need to show you owned it, or it was in the public domain, before the 3rd of February, 2012. All the ones for which that cannot be proved, are mine. Each of them is a creative work in its own right, and I own them from now until 70 years after I die.

So, anytime you have a file or storage device that is between 2 megabytes and 32 terabytes in size, if it did not exist in that exact form—identical down to the bit-level—before today, then you are infringing on my copyrights. And now that you know about it, any future infringement of this is willful, and you will then be criminally liable for every single instance of my works that you have illegally and maliciously copied.

I will sue you for every file on your hard drive with a “date modified” after today and size at least 2 MB, and I will sue you for every hard drive, flash drive, and optical disk of size no more than 32 TB, that has any file modified after today. I will file charges to have all your digital media seized so that all of your disks can be scanned for any additional illegal copies of my work, and those assets will not be returned regardless of the outcome of the court case.

I will also lobby for legislation that will allow me to perform those searches and seizures on my own, without involving the courts whatsoever. I will shut down any website that sends any amount of data between 2 MB and 32 TB, and it will be up to that website’s operator to prove it owned the exact bit-sequence it distributes, prior to 3 Feb, 2012. While they are trying to prove that, the website will remain offline.

Furthermore, I will lobby for legislation that extends the term of exclusivity for copyrights up to 1000 years after the death of the author. And I will have my body placed in low-temperature stasis so that I remain technically alive for hundreds of years. And I will have my stasis-frozen body placed on a spaceship that will accelerate up to 0.94c so that time passes much more slowly on the spaceship, and a very long time passes on earth before I die—and even more time passes before the message saying I died gets transmitted all the way back to earth.

And of course, I am already working on another batch of works, also to be stored in highly-compressed format that outputs each of them one at a time, so I will soon be owner of all patterns of bits that are between 248 and 296 digits long as well.
Small Government Liberal
User avatar
Qaanol
 
Posts: 2551
Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 11:55 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:34 pm UTC

Qaanol wrote: <<snip>>


Sounds good; good luck convincing the courts that you've created original creative works when it comes to enforcement.
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Ghostbear » Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:42 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:That's not much of a shift from physical property. Or any other rights in general. Rights can be infringed on in all kinds of ways. That's why they need to be protected.

Infringement has absolutely nothing to do with it. It is a fairly significant shift from physical property. See my replies to KnightExemplar.

yoni45 wrote:All right then -- in that case, I wouldn't mind that context being "people have full rights over their work" and "people have the freedom to engage in whatever cultural or scientific advances that have been made part of the public domain".

"Full" rights would indicate that those works never enter the public domain, which would essentially nullify the entire purpose of the first part, as they would only ever be able to participate in works that have already been allowed to enter the public domain. This isn't anything near a balance at all. A limited time right to protection is fine, and even good. Making it shorter does not violate that right, because the context of the section very clearly indicates it is not meant to be absolute and full protection; there is intended to be a balance. If you accept the document as a significant support for your argument, you can't cherry pick one part of a right and hold it up so high that it violates another right enshrined in that same document document, in the same section, in the exact preceding sentence.
Ghostbear
 
Posts: 1764
Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:06 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:50 pm UTC

Ghostbear wrote:Infringement has absolutely nothing to do with it. It is a fairly significant shift from physical property. See my replies to KnightExemplar...


All I saw was that intellectual property rights are much easier to infringe than physical property rights. Did I miss something?

Ghostbear wrote:"Full" rights would indicate that those works never enter the public domain, which would essentially nullify the entire purpose of the first part...


Not necessarily -- works can be voluntarily given to the public, contractually given to the public (i.e. the government pays people a certain sum for them to make it freely available), or created by public institutions.
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Qaanol » Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:55 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:
Qaanol wrote: <<snip>>


Sounds good; good luck convincing the courts that you've created original creative works when it comes to enforcement.

Why, what on earth do you mean? I have just become the single most prolific creator of original works in the entire history of humankind!

But far be it from me to prevent people from using my works. Instead, I hereby announce a default licensing agreement: anyone can use any of my works listed above, as long as they pay me 0.02¢ per bit per copy.
Small Government Liberal
User avatar
Qaanol
 
Posts: 2551
Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 11:55 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:58 pm UTC

Qaanol wrote:Why, what on earth do you mean? I have just become the single most prolific creator of original works in the entire history of humankind!


I'm not the one you'll have to convince... ;)
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Ghostbear » Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:14 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:All I saw was that intellectual property rights are much easier to infringe than physical property rights. Did I miss something?

Yes, because it did not deal with infringement. Even completely legal interactions with protected works make it impossible to maintain that exclusivity.

yoni45 wrote:Not necessarily -- works can be voluntarily given to the public, contractually given to the public (i.e. the government pays people a certain sum for them to make it freely available), or created by public institutions.

That's a pretty hollow, and dare I say bullshit, right you've granted the public, and I truly don't see how you can honestly think it does not violate the "free participation in culture". They didn't say "free participation in charity culture" or "free participation in culture that nobody wanted anymore". Again, if you accept the document as a valid defense of your view, you can't just choose one of those rights to be supremely more important than the other.

They're meant to be taken in a balance, and one group having absolute ironclad control in in perpetuity so long as they wish it, and another group left to fend with the scraps the first group doesn't want... that is nowhere near a balance. It's an insult.
Ghostbear
 
Posts: 1764
Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:06 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:25 pm UTC

Ghostbear wrote:Yes, because it did not deal with infringement. Even completely legal interactions with protected works make it impossible to maintain that exclusivity...


Okay, but then there's no issue...? If you allow interaction with the work, then you're allowing a certain loss of exclusivity...?

Ghostbear wrote:That's a pretty hollow, and dare I say bullshit, right you've granted the public...


Out of curiosity, why exactly should the public be allowed any more than it has produced or been consensually granted access to?
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Ghostbear » Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:34 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:Okay, but then there's no issue...? If you allow interaction with the work, then you're allowing a certain loss of exclusivity...?

The difference is the manner. You still own your intellectual property even after sell reproductions of it, wherein you lose some of that exclusivity. If you still own a physical object, you have absolute, unflinching exclusivity; it is an inherent physical and natural quality of physical property. Exclusivity with intellectual property is entirely artificial (even if it is somewhat beneficial), it is not unflinching, and it is not absolute.

yoni45 wrote:Out of curiosity, why exactly should the public be allowed any more than it has produced or been consensually granted access to?

Using your own argument: because the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says so.

I've brought it up twice, and I'll do it a third time: if you refer to a document as backing up your claim, you can't just cherry pick from it, especially when that very section you are using has a sentence immediately preceding the one you choose that has an obvious impact on the interpretation of your selected piece.
Ghostbear
 
Posts: 1764
Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:06 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:43 pm UTC

Ghostbear wrote:The difference is the manner. You still own your intellectual property even after sell reproductions of it, wherein you lose some of that exclusivity. If you still own a physical object, you have absolute, unflinching exclusivity; it is an inherent physical and natural quality of physical property. Exclusivity with intellectual property is entirely artificial (even if it is somewhat beneficial), it is not unflinching, and it is not absolute.


If you keep either locked up, it'll stay exclusive. If you start leasing them out, then they won't.

Past that though -- yeah, there are inherent differences between the two. I don't see how it relevantly changes much, however.

Ghostbear wrote:Using your own argument: because the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says so.

I've brought it up twice, and I'll do it a third time: if you refer to a document as backing up your claim, you can't just cherry pick from it, especially when that very section you are using has a sentence immediately preceding the one you choose that has an obvious impact on the interpretation of your selected piece.


Except reading the UDHR the way you do leads to relatively absurd consequences, especially since your clause doesn't even delineate physical vs. intellectual property. If we interpret it in your manner, then if I own a painting or statute that can be considered 'cultural', then I'm obligated to share it with everyone in some form.

So I'm reading it in a manner consistent with what otherwise makes sense: that that's a reference to free enjoyment of that which is in the public domain [edit: which, for the record, would also apply to physical objects which makes sense], not that which is private.

In fact, looking back it at, part of it specifically even denotes "Everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community...", which if anything is a reference to that which is in the public domain (i.e. something that belongs to 'the community').
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Qaanol » Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:57 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:Out of curiosity, why exactly should the public be allowed any more than it has produced or been consensually granted access to?

If I own a piece of paper, and I own a pen, then the natural right of property ownership means I can mark the paper with the pen in any way I see fit, and I still own the marked paper, and I can give it away, I can sell it, I can destroy it, I can make more marks on it, it is mine. My paper, my pen, I own them, they are mine.

If I see something, I can use my pen to draw a picture of what I see on my paper. I can use my pen to write a description of what I see on my paper. Those are my rights. My property rights. The pen and the paper are mine, and the things I produce by putting pen to paper are pieces of inky paper, which are also mine.

The principle behind so-called “intellectual property” is that you are allowed to stop me from using my pen to make marks on my paper in the manner that I see fit. You are infringing on my right to control the property I own.

This is not a matter for debate, this is not a subject of controversy or disagreement. If someone disbelieves the previous paragraph, they are absolutely, inarguably, objectively, factually wrong. Intellectually property is, in implementation, nothing more nor less than an infringement on the rights of property owners to use their property as they desire.

And we do limit the rights of property owners. I am not allowed to use my pen to stab someone, except in cases of self-defense. I am not allowed to publicize my marked-up paper if the markings include incitement for others to commit acts of violence. I am not allowed to publicize my marked-up paper if the markings include libelous untruths about people. I am not allowed to publicize my marked-up paper if the markings include false claims of medical benefits from a product or service.

The question of “How strong should IP laws be?” is, quite literally, a question of “How much should we restrict the right of people to do what they want with property they own?”

I own a piece of paper and a pen. Do I have the right to make whatever markings I want on it? Well, a priori, yes I do. My property rights and free speech rights guarantee that. Do I have the right to share the marked paper? Again, a priori, yes I do. But if those markings are likely to hurt other people, then my right to share my own property is restricted.

Sharing “intellectual property”, as an act unto itself, cannot ever hurt a person. It cannot ever physically harm them, it cannot ever harm their reputation as libel would, it cannot deprive them of property as incitement to riot could. Whereas every other restriction on free speech is done to protect people from being harmed, IP laws are implemented not to prevent harm, as there was never any risk of harm, but only to encourage creativity.

IP laws represent a trade-off between the rights of property owners to use their property and exercise their speech, and the desire to encourage the creation of new works. And the only reason it is desirable for new works to be created, is so that people can experience them, access them, and use them. Property rights and free speech are among the most important rights of a free people. and to infringe them should never be taken lightly. Those rights should be infringed as little as possible.
Small Government Liberal
User avatar
Qaanol
 
Posts: 2551
Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 11:55 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:03 pm UTC

Qaanol wrote:...Whereas every other restriction on free speech is done to protect people from being harmed, IP laws are implemented not to prevent harm, as there was never any risk of harm, but only to encourage creativity...


Or, perhaps, as the UDHR points out, IP laws are implemented to protect people's ownership of the fruits of their labor.

I mean, heck, what's the harm in me trespassing on your property without touching anything while you're not home, right?
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Griffin » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:21 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:Or, perhaps, as the UDHR points out, IP laws are implemented to protect people's ownership of the fruits of their labor.

Except thats not what they do. "Fruits of their labour" means that when they put effort into making something they get that thing. "Fruits of their labour" means that if they spend a year writing a book, they get a book out of it (same as if I spent a year making a couch or building a statue).

That's covered by very basic property law - people are not allowed to deprive you of the "fruits of your labour", but making copies of it doesn't deprive you of anything.

No, from there where not talking about the fruits of labour, we're talking about business and profit and returns on investment. And no one, anywhere, is guaranteed a return on investment - If you can't convince people to buy what you're selling, that's your problem, not mine. We aren't fucking communists over here. Just because you toil your life away on something does not mean anyone else owes you anything for it.

Your sole guaranteed reward is, and should be, limited to "the fruits of your labour" i.e. the thing that you actually produced.

Meanwhile, IP specifically ROBS people of the "the fruits of their labour" - if I have an awesome idea, spend months developing it, and then build something out of it, someone else who had the same idea before me can come along and /take away/ the fruits of my labour. They can say "this thing that is in your head, it is no longer yours".

You are entitled to the fruits of your labour - you are NOT entitled to profit from those fruits if no one wants to pay you for them. Even if the benefit from them. I'm not allowed to paint someones wall and then demand they pay me money for displaying my art on their wall.

Also,
Qaanol, that was really good. Can I use that elsewhere? I'll cite you as the source.
Bdthemag: "I don't always GM, but when I do I prefer to put my player's in situations that include pain and torture. Stay creative my friends."

Bayobeasts - the Pokemon: Orthoclase project.
User avatar
Griffin
 
Posts: 1364
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2007 7:46 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Malice » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:35 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:
Qaanol wrote:...Whereas every other restriction on free speech is done to protect people from being harmed, IP laws are implemented not to prevent harm, as there was never any risk of harm, but only to encourage creativity...


Or, perhaps, as the UDHR points out, IP laws are implemented to protect people's ownership of the fruits of their labor.


I don't usually ascribe to the whole "but the Founding Fathers" argument; but in questions of the intent behind the law, it sometimes behooves us to check the original source. To wit:

Article I, Section 8 of The United States Constitution wrote:The Congress shall have Power [...] To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;


Note the key phrases: exclusive right, limited times, to promote the Progress of useful arts. The form of the law follows the purpose: we do not protect the right of authors to their writings because it's their right, we protect the right of authors to their writings because we wish to promote the arts. At least that seems to have been the original intention.
Image
User avatar
Malice
 
Posts: 3894
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 5:37 am UTC
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Qaanol » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:36 pm UTC

Griffin wrote:Qaanol, that was really good. Can I use that elsewhere? I'll cite you as the source.

Thanks, feel free.
Small Government Liberal
User avatar
Qaanol
 
Posts: 2551
Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 11:55 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yurell » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:44 pm UTC

yoni45 wrote:You didn't pay for the work -- you paid for a license to use the work under particular circumstances.


That's one thing that bothers me. They tell you that you are buying it, but in reality you're only purchasing a license to view the work under extremely restricted use. I wish they would be required to say this in their sales pitch (e.g. go to Target and by the home licensed Star Wars DVD), because then people would be more aware of what's going on and able to choose easily those with less restrictions (e.g. 'public license).
cemper93 wrote:Dude, I just presented an elaborate multiple fraction in Comic Sans. Who are you to question me?


Pronouns: Feminine pronouns please!
User avatar
yurell
 
Posts: 2888
Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2010 2:19 am UTC
Location: Australia!

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:56 pm UTC

Griffin wrote:Except thats not what they do. "Fruits of their labour" means that when they put effort into making something they get that thing. "Fruits of their labour" means that if they spend a year writing a book, they get a book out of it (same as if I spent a year making a couch or building a statue)...


This would be true only if you subscribe to a rather primitive view of human labour and the products thereof.

Civilized society has long since moved past that view, as can be seen at least in part by documents like the UDHR.

Griffin wrote:Meanwhile, IP specifically ROBS people of the "the fruits of their labour" - if I have an awesome idea, spend months developing it, and then build something out of it, someone else who had the same idea before me can come along and /take away/ the fruits of my labour. They can say "this thing that is in your head, it is no longer yours"...


This is actually a solid criticism of patent law -- but when it comes to copyright law we haven't really come across to the point where you just happened to write and produce a song that just happens to perfectly match up to Lady Gaga.

Malice wrote:I don't usually ascribe to the whole "but the Founding Fathers" argument...


The basis of my argument is the UDHR specifically for that reason.

yurell wrote:That's one thing that bothers me. They tell you that you are buying it, but in reality you're only purchasing a license to view the work under extremely restricted use. I wish they would be required to say this in their sales pitch (e.g. go to Target and by the home licensed Star Wars DVD), because then people would be more aware of what's going on and able to choose easily those with less restrictions (e.g. 'public license).


This'd be a reasonable point if it wasn't widely known what it is that you're doing when you're buying a DVD.
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby elasto » Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:09 am UTC

yoni45 wrote:This'd be a reasonable point if it wasn't widely known what it is that you're doing when you're buying a DVD.
In some countries perhaps. In other countries they have things like fair-use, the right to make a backup-copy etc as principles in law. They realise that there are more 'rights' involved than simply a right of 'monopoly of control'.
elasto
 
Posts: 1458
Joined: Mon May 10, 2010 1:53 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:28 am UTC

elasto wrote:
yoni45 wrote:This'd be a reasonable point if it wasn't widely known what it is that you're doing when you're buying a DVD.
In some countries perhaps. In other countries they have things like fair-use, the right to make a backup-copy etc as principles in law. They realise that there are more 'rights' involved than simply a right of 'monopoly of control'.


This... wasn't the point.
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Malice » Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:29 am UTC

Why is it acceptable to sell "a license to view this DVD" as opposed to just selling the DVD? Would we accept buying a couch in a furniture store and being told, "You're buying a license to use this couch, but you have to agree to only keep it in the living room, only you and one other designated person can sit in it, and donating it to a friend if you move is illegal under US law"? No, it'd be bullshit--this is my couch, I fucking paid for it, that is the end of your ownership. It should be the same with IP--sure, Mr. Nolan (or Warner Bros. or whoever) owns "Inception", but this is my goddamn copy of it and I can do what I want with it.
Image
User avatar
Malice
 
Posts: 3894
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 5:37 am UTC
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby elasto » Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:41 am UTC

yoni45 wrote:
elasto wrote:
yoni45 wrote:This'd be a reasonable point if it wasn't widely known what it is that you're doing when you're buying a DVD.
In some countries perhaps. In other countries they have things like fair-use, the right to make a backup-copy etc as principles in law. They realise that there are more 'rights' involved than simply a right of 'monopoly of control'.


This... wasn't the point.

I think many if not most people would be quite surprised at how restrictive the law is if taken at face value. Thankfully, in practice, even in the US people are not prosecuted for doing things that are perfectly reasonable but technically illegal - like backing up a DVD.

My mother sends me DVDs in the post not realising that I can't play them due to DVD region codes. I have to do something that would be illegal were I in the US and rip them, removing the region restrictions. My mother just can't get her head round the fact that she has only bought a limited licence to use the content of the DVD and that the licence doesn't allow the content to play outside of her geographic region.
Last edited by elasto on Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:46 am UTC, edited 2 times in total.
elasto
 
Posts: 1458
Joined: Mon May 10, 2010 1:53 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:41 am UTC

Malice wrote:Why is it acceptable to sell "a license to view this DVD" as opposed to just selling the DVD? Would we accept buying a couch in a furniture store and being told, "You're buying a license to use this couch, but you have to agree to only keep it in the living room, only you and one other designated person can sit in it, and donating it to a friend if you move is illegal under US law"? No, it'd be bullshit--this is my couch, I fucking paid for it, that is the end of your ownership. It should be the same with IP--sure, Mr. Nolan (or Warner Bros. or whoever) owns "Inception", but this is my goddamn copy of it and I can do what I want with it.


Uh, right. Life would be a lot of fun if you could make up your own rules based on some vague analogues that don't hold up to any scrutiny.

"What do you mean I can't drive more than 300km per day and I have to stay inside the state? Fuck that man, I PAID for this car -- that means I own it now. What do you mean I have to return it because I rented it? Don't you get what PAID and OWN means!?"

No, that doesn't work. It's acceptable to sell a license to view a DVD just like it's acceptable to sell whatever-the-fuck-you-want-under-whatever-terms-you-want (assuming you're not breaking a law by selling something like a banned high powered rifle).

Wanna buy the movie itself with all of its rights included? Sure -- not a problem. Hire a company, pay them the budget required to create their movie, and you get to have full rights to the movie. Oh, what's that? You only want to pay a few bucks for it? Yeah, that gets you a license to use it for personal use. If you buy it from the right people, you can have a pretty container for it too.
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby elasto » Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:49 am UTC

yoni45 wrote:Uh, right. Life would be a lot of fun if you could make up your own rules based on some vague analogues that don't hold up to any scrutiny.

"What do you mean I can't drive more than 300km per day and I have to stay inside the state? Fuck that man, I PAID for this car -- that means I own it now. What do you mean I have to return it because I rented it? Don't you get what PAID and OWN means!?"

No, that doesn't work. It's acceptable to sell a license to view a DVD just like it's acceptable to sell whatever-the-fuck-you-want-under-whatever-terms-you-want (assuming you're not breaking a law by selling something like a banned high powered rifle).

Wanna buy the movie itself with all of its rights included? Sure -- not a problem. Hire a company, pay them the budget required to create their movie, and you get to have full rights to the movie. Oh, what's that? You only want to pay a few bucks for it? Yeah, that gets you a license to use it for personal use. If you buy it from the right people, you can have a pretty container for it too.
Or, belong to a country that says 'it's reasonable to have this restriction on what you're selling, and unreasonable to have that restriction' rather than simply allowing content producers to have whatever arbitrary restrictions they wish.
elasto
 
Posts: 1458
Joined: Mon May 10, 2010 1:53 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Malice » Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:57 am UTC

yoni45 wrote:
Malice wrote:Why is it acceptable to sell "a license to view this DVD" as opposed to just selling the DVD? Would we accept buying a couch in a furniture store and being told, "You're buying a license to use this couch, but you have to agree to only keep it in the living room, only you and one other designated person can sit in it, and donating it to a friend if you move is illegal under US law"? No, it'd be bullshit--this is my couch, I fucking paid for it, that is the end of your ownership. It should be the same with IP--sure, Mr. Nolan (or Warner Bros. or whoever) owns "Inception", but this is my goddamn copy of it and I can do what I want with it.


Uh, right. Life would be a lot of fun if you could make up your own rules based on some vague analogues that don't hold up to any scrutiny.

"What do you mean I can't drive more than 300km per day and I have to stay inside the state? Fuck that man, I PAID for this car -- that means I own it now. What do you mean I have to return it because I rented it? Don't you get what PAID and OWN means!?"


You scrutinized my analogy by changing it completely. I'm not arguing I shouldn't have to abide by legal restrictions instituted by the government; I'm arguing I shouldn't have to abide by personal restrictions instituted by private sellers (and only enforced by the government).

No, that doesn't work. It's acceptable to sell a license to view a DVD just like it's acceptable to sell whatever-the-fuck-you-want-under-whatever-terms-you-want (assuming you're not breaking a law by selling something like a banned high powered rifle).


Would it be acceptable in your mind for Toyota to mandate whether or not car owners can let their friends borrow the car?

Wanna buy the movie itself with all of its rights included? Sure -- not a problem. Hire a company, pay them the budget required to create their movie, and you get to have full rights to the movie. Oh, what's that? You only want to pay a few bucks for it? Yeah, that gets you a license to use it for personal use. If you buy it from the right people, you can have a pretty container for it too.


That's utterly ridiculous. "Are you inordinately wealthy? No? Then you'll take what you get and like it, peasant." Toyota makes you pay for the car, not the hundreds of millions that goes into R&D for that car.
Image
User avatar
Malice
 
Posts: 3894
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 5:37 am UTC
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Ghostbear » Sat Feb 04, 2012 4:06 am UTC

yoni45 wrote:It's acceptable to sell a license to view a DVD just like it's acceptable to sell whatever-the-fuck-you-want-under-whatever-terms-you-want (assuming you're not breaking a law by selling something like a banned high powered rifle).

That's not true at all. We have fair use and the doctrine of first sale, among many other things, that limit the terms you can apply to someone.
Ghostbear
 
Posts: 1764
Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:06 pm UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby yoni45 » Sat Feb 04, 2012 4:09 am UTC

Malice wrote:You scrutinized my analogy by changing it completely. I'm not arguing I shouldn't have to abide by legal restrictions instituted by the government; I'm arguing I shouldn't have to abide by personal restrictions instituted by private sellers (and only enforced by the government).


Except you do for both. The restrictions placed on a car rental are placed by the private entity renting you the car. And you damn well should have to abide by those restrictions given that they're clearly stipulated in the contract.

So no, "paying" for something does not give you any more rights than as per the restrictions accompanying the sale. Even if you think that it's "sorta like" buying full rights to the entire production.

Malice wrote:Would it be acceptable in your mind for Toyota to mandate whether or not car owners can let their friends borrow the car?


Owners, no -- but you're not an owner of the movie, are you now?

In circumstances in which you're given the car under a limited-access setup, Toyota and whatever other dealership very much mandate whether or not your friends can borrow your rental car.

Malice wrote:That's utterly ridiculous. "Are you inordinately wealthy? No? Then you'll take what you get and like it, peasant."...


That's not ridiculous -- that's life. If you can't afford something then you don't get it. If all you can afford is a license to watch the movie, then such is life. I'm not sure why you're under the assumption that you're entitled to anything more.

Ghostbear wrote:
yoni45 wrote:It's acceptable to sell a license to view a DVD just like it's acceptable to sell whatever-the-fuck-you-want-under-whatever-terms-you-want (assuming you're not breaking a law by selling something like a banned high powered rifle).

That's not true at all. We have fair use and the doctrine of first sale, among many other things, that limit the terms you can apply to someone.


Correct -- "assuming you're not breaking a law". Selling a banned item is one such example, but there are obviously other restrictions such as the ones you mentioned.
I sell LSAT courses and LSAT course accessories. Admittedly, we're still working on the accessories.
yoni45
 
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:16 am UTC

Re: Major website shutdown by US govt without trial

Postby Malice » Sat Feb 04, 2012 4:20 am UTC

yoni45 wrote:
Malice wrote:You scrutinized my analogy by changing it completely. I'm not arguing I shouldn't have to abide by legal restrictions instituted by the government; I'm arguing I shouldn't have to abide by personal restrictions instituted by private sellers (and only enforced by the government).


Except you do for both. The restrictions placed on a car rental are placed by the private entity renting you the car. And you damn well should have to abide by those restrictions given that they're clearly stipulated in the contract.

So no, "paying" for something does not give you any more rights than as per the restrictions accompanying the sale. Even if you think that it's "sorta like" buying full rights to the entire production.


That's rental, not ownership. I can rent a DVD, which comes with restrictions like "don't destroy this" and "return it in 7 days or a ghost will come out of your TV and murder you", or I can buy a DVD, which should not come with restrictions like "don't lend this to your friend" or "don't have a party and watch this with a bunch of people". The design of the 2012 Camry is IP; I'm buying one of the many copies of the expression of that IP, and when I buy that copy, I can do what I want with it. It should be the same for a DVD.

Malice wrote:That's utterly ridiculous. "Are you inordinately wealthy? No? Then you'll take what you get and like it, peasant."...


That's not ridiculous -- that's life. If you can't afford something then you don't get it. If all you can afford is a license to watch the movie, then such is life. I'm not sure why you're under the assumption that you're entitled to anything more.


I'm not even bothering to make the argument that I'm entitled to something; I'm attempting to make the argument that it would be better for society overall if people could affordably obtain legal, DRM-free entertainment--if there was at least a middle ground between "Here's 10 bucks, give me your shitty restricted copy" and "Here's 100 million dollars, now I can loan this movie to my friend".

yoni45 wrote:
Ghostbear wrote:
yoni45 wrote:It's acceptable to sell a license to view a DVD just like it's acceptable to sell whatever-the-fuck-you-want-under-whatever-terms-you-want (assuming you're not breaking a law by selling something like a banned high powered rifle).

That's not true at all. We have fair use and the doctrine of first sale, among many other things, that limit the terms you can apply to someone.


Correct -- "assuming you're not breaking a law". Selling a banned item is one such example, but there are obviously other restrictions such as the ones you mentioned.


So it's acceptable to put any restrictions you want on a DVD you're selling, so long as those restrictions are acceptable? Circular argument's circumference is 2*pi*r.
Image
User avatar
Malice
 
Posts: 3894
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 5:37 am UTC
Location: Los Angeles, CA

PreviousNext

Return to News & Articles

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests