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Trademarks, copyrights, patents - The IP thread - Upd p6 - EU music copyright.

124»

Posts

  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    kildy wrote: »
    Novel file compression forms (as in, not just slightly more advanced X, but a new way to accomplish the same task), UIs, filesystems, overall kernel arch, these are all valid things to patent how you did them.

    File systems and kernel architecture I could almost buy your point with - but UI's? Are you kidding me? UI patents are one of the keystones of bad software patents.

    Even then, patents aren't for designs or architectures anyway. They're for processes. Unless you're patenting file system or kernel 'creation', then it's not a valid patent.

    Data flow methodology is patentable. You patent the method for the kernel to function/method for the filesystem to store data, and copyright the implemented product.

    The PTO already upheld those as valid patents, the fight that solidified it was the patent on FAT.

    UIs I half agree with, half disagree with. User flow within an application is Very marketable and one of the keys to making an application click with a userbase. Finding a novel way to navigate an application should be protected and rewarded.

  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    kildy wrote: »
    Novel file compression forms (as in, not just slightly more advanced X, but a new way to accomplish the same task), UIs, filesystems, overall kernel arch, these are all valid things to patent how you did them.

    File systems and kernel architecture I could almost buy your point with - but UI's? Are you kidding me? UI patents are one of the keystones of bad software patents.

    Even then, patents aren't for designs or architectures anyway. They're for processes. Unless you're patenting file system or kernel 'creation', then it's not a valid patent.

    Well, I think that's a falsity. Computer architecture is very different from any other type architecture whereas you're trying to get hardware and software talking together in a meaningful way, thus a process. GUI patents are akin to architecture patents whereas kernel patents are more akin to, say, a new way to refine steel to work with your specific wonky building type.

  • SageinaRageSageinaRage Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    kildy wrote: »
    kildy wrote: »
    Novel file compression forms (as in, not just slightly more advanced X, but a new way to accomplish the same task), UIs, filesystems, overall kernel arch, these are all valid things to patent how you did them.

    File systems and kernel architecture I could almost buy your point with - but UI's? Are you kidding me? UI patents are one of the keystones of bad software patents.

    Even then, patents aren't for designs or architectures anyway. They're for processes. Unless you're patenting file system or kernel 'creation', then it's not a valid patent.

    Data flow methodology is patentable. You patent the method for the kernel to function/method for the filesystem to store data, and copyright the implemented product.

    The PTO already upheld those as valid patents, the fight that solidified it was the patent on FAT.

    And this is where you stop patenting actual goods, and start patenting theoretical architectures and ideas. This is the problem with software patents. You've now patented the actions that a kernel can take, which depending on the level of abstraction you look at, are used by every kernel, since they have to interact with the same hardware.

    The fact that the PTO upheld them as valid doesn't add to your argument in the slightest. I'm arguing that the entire notion of software patents is invalid, which is of course at odds to the USPTO's position.
    UIs I half agree with, half disagree with. User flow within an application is Very marketable and one of the keys to making an application click with a userbase. Finding a novel way to navigate an application should be protected and rewarded.

    Even beyond the fact that your argument has no basis in what a patent even 'is', it's bad for the reason that patenting UI's is the death of interoperability and consistency. It's like patenting a doorknob. It's horrible for the consumer, because now every door has a different mechanism of opening.

  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    kildy wrote: »
    kildy wrote: »
    Novel file compression forms (as in, not just slightly more advanced X, but a new way to accomplish the same task), UIs, filesystems, overall kernel arch, these are all valid things to patent how you did them.

    File systems and kernel architecture I could almost buy your point with - but UI's? Are you kidding me? UI patents are one of the keystones of bad software patents.

    Even then, patents aren't for designs or architectures anyway. They're for processes. Unless you're patenting file system or kernel 'creation', then it's not a valid patent.

    Data flow methodology is patentable. You patent the method for the kernel to function/method for the filesystem to store data, and copyright the implemented product.

    The PTO already upheld those as valid patents, the fight that solidified it was the patent on FAT.

    And this is where you stop patenting actual goods, and start patenting theoretical architectures and ideas. This is the problem with software patents. You've now patented the actions that a kernel can take, which depending on the level of abstraction you look at, are used by every kernel, since they have to interact with the same hardware.

    The fact that the PTO upheld them as valid doesn't add to your argument in the slightest. I'm arguing that the entire notion of software patents is invalid, which is of course at odds to the USPTO's position.
    UIs I half agree with, half disagree with. User flow within an application is Very marketable and one of the keys to making an application click with a userbase. Finding a novel way to navigate an application should be protected and rewarded.

    Even beyond the fact that your argument has no basis in what a patent even 'is', it's bad for the reason that patenting UI's is the death of interoperability and consistency. It's like patenting a doorknob. It's horrible for the consumer, because now every door has a different mechanism of opening.

    http://www.patentstorm.us/patents/6390521/claims.html
    http://www.patentstorm.us/patents/6993945.html
    http://www.patentstorm.us/patents/4435967.html

    Man, that's fucked the consumers so much. I mean, damn.

    Patent: Novel method of doing something. NOVEL. This is where software patents get stuck in the mud. Some things are novel and interesting advancements. Others are abstracted out. Kernel loadable modules on a running kernel? Novel implementation on a process flow to allow it to change live. Kernel method of getting time from the system clock? Not novel unless the system clock happens to exist in another space-time. Ability to click on something in a UI? Not novel. Specific method of user interface used by, say, a blackberry? Possibly novel.

    The more vague a patent the worse it is. If you're very specific in it and not patenting some very low level building block of code, it's fine.

    Anyways, interoperability isn't dead due to patents. Consistency is ruled by the company owning the patent, but interoperability is entirely up to the two groups that want to inter operate. Either you provide an SDK or a roadmap, you simply allow people to reverse engineer the communications, or you actively try to sabotage interoperability attempts. But hey, the doorknob is patented, and we still have lots of different doorknobs. And we're rarely confused by them.

    Patents CAN be bad. They can also be good. The system needs reforming, and I think most people will agree to that.

  • SageinaRageSageinaRage Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    kildy wrote: »

    Wow, it's almost like those are patents for actual doorknobs, and not the design of having a doorknob in a door. Do you understand what a 'ui patent' means or implies?
    Patent: Novel method of doing something. NOVEL. This is where software patents get stuck in the mud. Some things are novel and interesting advancements. Others are abstracted out. Kernel loadable modules on a running kernel? Novel implementation on a process flow to allow it to change live. Kernel method of getting time from the system clock? Not novel unless the system clock happens to exist in another space-time. Ability to click on something in a UI? Not novel. Specific method of user interface used by, say, a blackberry? Possibly novel.

    You forgot non-obvious. That's the stopper for most UI patents, considering that most UI improvements are made by asking average users what they'd change.
    The more vague a patent the worse it is. If you're very specific in it and not patenting some very low level building block of code, it's fine.

    Here's the thing - all software patents are by necessity vague. If they were specific as to the actual procedures inherent in the code, then the protection of the patent would be duplicated by the inherent copyright on the code. In order for the patent to be useful, it has to be a vague abstraction of the functionality. There's no way around this. Your 'Kernel loadable modules on a running kernel' from above? The PTO may think you're patenting an implementation of it, and hell, you may even think it - but you're actually patenting just that - the sentence 'kernel loadable modules on a running kernel'.
    Anyways, interoperability isn't dead due to patents. Consistency is ruled by the company owning the patent, but interoperability is entirely up to the two groups that want to inter operate. Either you provide an SDK or a roadmap, you simply allow people to reverse engineer the communications, or you actively try to sabotage interoperability attempts. But hey, the doorknob is patented, and we still have lots of different doorknobs. And we're rarely confused by them.

    Right, so consistency is only achieved once the owner of the patent has been paid. And no, reverse engineering is illegal in this case - they own the patent on the implementation.
    Patents CAN be bad. They can also be good. The system needs reforming, and I think most people will agree to that.

    Patents are good. Software patents are not patents.

  • Alkey42Alkey42 Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    The problem isn't with software patents themselves. Software can be novel and deserving of a patent. Software patents were not allowed when software was in its infancy. It was allowed to mature for a few decades then suddenly the floodgates opened. It's every programmer for himself, patent the basics before somebody else beats you too the punch and shuts your product down. The PTO doesn't have decades of software patents to rely on for prior art. Software patents are not inherently any worse than any other patents. Patents on processes or methods are as old as patents themselves.

  • SageinaRageSageinaRage Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Alkey42 wrote: »
    The problem isn't with software patents themselves. Software can be novel and deserving of a patent. Software patents were not allowed when software was in its infancy. It was allowed to mature for a few decades then suddenly the floodgates opened. It's every programmer for himself, patent the basics before somebody else beats you too the punch and shuts your product down. The PTO doesn't have decades of software patents to rely on for prior art. Software patents are not inherently any worse than any other patents.

    ARGH. The reason software patents were not allowed in their infancy was because they were considered mathematical algorithms, which are not patentable. The reason why software patents were allowed to exist, was because companies were pushing through lots of OTHER shitty patents, which basically consisted of 'take process x, add computerization'. BAM, new patent. So, the judges decided that software was patentable as long as the data it manipulated was relatable to real world values.

    The fact is, plenty of prior art exists for lots of software patents, it's just that they spent zero time cracking a damn textbook to find them.
    Patents on processes or methods are as old as patents themselves.

    Congratulations, you just recited the definition of a patent.

  • Apothe0sisApothe0sis Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    http://techdirt.com/articles/20080601/1532341280.shtml

    Yet another fantastic use of the patent system.

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  • Apothe0sisApothe0sis Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    oldsak wrote: »
    Apothe0sis, correct me if I misunderstand, but you favor encouraging IP producers to adopt business models that take advantage the infinite "supply" of IP rather than rely on artificial scarcity which I suppose IP laws create.

    I believe your example was a musician releasing free music and thereby increasing the fanbase (and I'm assuming make more revenue through increased ticket sales and sales of other merchandise).

    That works and is something musicians have been willing to try because the cost of actually recording a song is relatively low and there are alternative sources of income. Does your approach also hold where the cost of development and production is high and there are less alternative sources of income?

    Well, there are a number of different options currently in use for utilising infinite goods and the power of free to makesome other scarce good more valuable and capitalise on that. I am however neither a business consultant nor entrepreneur so it's not like my suggestions should be viewed as exhaustive.

    However, yes, there are at least four models I can think of which currently use high initial cost infinite goods to make use of scarce goods and produce the money.


    The Old Ones

    Broadcast teevee, producing (or buying the rights to them) television shows, which are high cost to gather the scarce good of people's attention. This attention is then sold in blocks to companies who want their products advertised. Not working QUITE as well as it once did because we aren't the captive audiences we one were, so they're facing competition from internest downloading. However, they maintain the advantages of certain kinds of convenience (it's easier, it happens whether you look for it or not, you can't run out of hard drive space), higher quality media, cultural and traditional establishment and a uniform schedule (making it a social experience for some).

    Movie Theatres, they infinite goods which bring them their business are available freely (if illegally) on the internet and yet ticket sales are booming! Why? Because they aren't selling the infinite good, they're selling the scarce good of seats in a movie theatre for a social experience and a bigger screen and better sound system to the internet option. The fact that it is again a social establishment and ingrained within our society as a "thing to do" doesn't hurt either - let it be known, reputation, identification and consumer trust are scarce and highly valuable commodities. In order to stay relevant they need to make sure that theatres provide a unique and desirable experience (make the seats comfortable, the previews fun, let the tickets provide some other benefit - codes that can be redeemed or given to other people).

    The New Ones

    Redhat Corporation. Redhat spends a huge amount of time and money developing the Redhat and Fedora operating systems. Which is open source and thus freely available. They also spend a lot of time cultivating community support and ensuring they have good reputation. They make money by selling their expertise to their users - fixing things, consulting things, designing their network, configuring the servers to their needs, developing new features and so on and so forth. This is a perfect example of using the free infinite good (the operating system) to make their finite goods - their time, expertise and community influence - more valuable.

    And finally, the giant - Google. Google spent an enormous amount of time and money developing and maintaining a whole host of free services to support their advertising platform. People flock to google because they provide excellent products and their entire business philosophy revolves around making the entire experience as useful and non-intrusive as possible to the user. They make their money exploiting the finite good of people's attention and limited screen space to provide an advertising platform and collecting on money selling that space and platform to advertisers. They also make the advertising relevant to the user experience. Users then want to use the service, users find the ads more useful and click through making the advertising more successful and leading to more revenue to the advertisers, more advertisers want to use google and and more consumers want to use google. In the end, everybody wins (especially google).

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  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    kildy wrote: »

    Wow, it's almost like those are patents for actual doorknobs, and not the design of having a doorknob in a door. Do you understand what a 'ui patent' means or implies?
    Patent: Novel method of doing something. NOVEL. This is where software patents get stuck in the mud. Some things are novel and interesting advancements. Others are abstracted out. Kernel loadable modules on a running kernel? Novel implementation on a process flow to allow it to change live. Kernel method of getting time from the system clock? Not novel unless the system clock happens to exist in another space-time. Ability to click on something in a UI? Not novel. Specific method of user interface used by, say, a blackberry? Possibly novel.

    You forgot non-obvious. That's the stopper for most UI patents, considering that most UI improvements are made by asking average users what they'd change.
    The more vague a patent the worse it is. If you're very specific in it and not patenting some very low level building block of code, it's fine.

    Here's the thing - all software patents are by necessity vague. If they were specific as to the actual procedures inherent in the code, then the protection of the patent would be duplicated by the inherent copyright on the code. In order for the patent to be useful, it has to be a vague abstraction of the functionality. There's no way around this. Your 'Kernel loadable modules on a running kernel' from above? The PTO may think you're patenting an implementation of it, and hell, you may even think it - but you're actually patenting just that - the sentence 'kernel loadable modules on a running kernel'.
    Anyways, interoperability isn't dead due to patents. Consistency is ruled by the company owning the patent, but interoperability is entirely up to the two groups that want to inter operate. Either you provide an SDK or a roadmap, you simply allow people to reverse engineer the communications, or you actively try to sabotage interoperability attempts. But hey, the doorknob is patented, and we still have lots of different doorknobs. And we're rarely confused by them.

    Right, so consistency is only achieved once the owner of the patent has been paid. And no, reverse engineering is illegal in this case - they own the patent on the implementation.
    Patents CAN be bad. They can also be good. The system needs reforming, and I think most people will agree to that.

    Patents are good. Software patents are not patents.

    A) Reverse Engineering is not illegal. Using their code to actually provide your code is illegal. Breaking encryption is illegal. Sniffing an SMB packet and figuring out what the bits do? Not illegal. Making your own implementation of software that pretends it talks SMB? Not illegal. The only time you get busted on reverse engineering is when you make something identical (at which point it's copyright infringement on the implementation), or use inside information to get it (I can has source copy?)

    B) You're being needlessly silly. Vague = using a lawyer to make the actual scope of the patent indecipherable. Non Vague = actually describing the scope of the patent in useful language so everyone knows who has what patented.

    C) UI Design != I HAVE A MOUSE, Doorknob design != I HAVE A DOORKNOB. If the actual design of the handle and bolt mechanism is patentable, the actual layout and methodology of your UI is. Same. Fucking. Thing. You are not having a patent on "making a user interface", you're having a patent on "this SPECIFIC user interface"

    And software patents are patents. You may dislike them, hate them, or whatever, but it doesn't stop them from being patents any more than my hatred of the MFC stops it from existing. But I think you've already covered that your position is "fuck the patent system lalala", and you have no intention of budging from that.

  • SageinaRageSageinaRage Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    kildy wrote: »
    A) Reverse Engineering is not illegal. Using their code to actually provide your code is illegal. Breaking encryption is illegal. Sniffing an SMB packet and figuring out what the bits do? Not illegal. Making your own implementation of software that pretends it talks SMB? Not illegal. The only time you get busted on reverse engineering is when you make something identical (at which point it's copyright infringement on the implementation), or use inside information to get it (I can has source copy?)

    That's great and all, but what I SAID was, that it's illegal IN THIS CASE. The reason for this is because with interfaces, there is no real such thing as 'reverse engineering', it's more 'looking at it and copying'. It's not like there's a hidden mechanism that you'd need to discover, you're just looking at layouts and things and then copying them - which, if someone holds a patent on that interface, is illegal. The problem is you used the term 'reverse engineering' like it meant something more than that - in this case, it doesn't.
    B) You're being needlessly silly. Vague = using a lawyer to make the actual scope of the patent indecipherable. Non Vague = actually describing the scope of the patent in useful language so everyone knows who has what patented.

    Nay. I just proved that BY THEIR VERY NATURE, software patents have to have vague descriptions that depend on interpretation. If you were patenting the specific code, then the copyright is sufficient. Because it's not, you're patenting a more general version. From that point on, the scope of the patent depends on the judge who tries the case.
    C) UI Design != I HAVE A MOUSE, Doorknob design != I HAVE A DOORKNOB. If the actual design of the handle and bolt mechanism is patentable, the actual layout and methodology of your UI is. Same. Fucking. Thing. You are not having a patent on "making a user interface", you're having a patent on "this SPECIFIC user interface"

    Right, but if your UI involves 'clicking on things using a mouse', then you've effectively patented a mouse. In a good interface, objects imply their use - so by patenting the use, you've effectively patented the object.
    And software patents are patents. You may dislike them, hate them, or whatever, but it doesn't stop them from being patents any more than my hatred of the MFC stops it from existing. But I think you've already covered that your position is "fuck the patent system lalala", and you have no intention of budging from that.

    Huh? I love patents. That's exactly why I want software patents eliminated, they're a blight on an otherwise good and useful system. Besides which, opinions like mine are exactly what WOULD stop them from being patents - the entire system is an arbitrary construct, which we've devised because it's a net gain for society as opposed to a loss. The thing that decides what's a 'patent' is the opinions of the people in charge.

  • Apothe0sisApothe0sis Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    This is the very best thing.

    Story here

    tl;dr: DCMA takedown notices are sent regardless of whether any infringement has occurred.

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  • Alkey42Alkey42 Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Just so I understand you Apothe0sis. Are you against all IP rights as a mater of principle? You seem to be suggesting we would be better off without IP legislation. There are abuses, but then there are times when it does work.

  • zeenyzeeny Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Alkey42 wrote: »
    Just so I understand you Apothe0sis. Are you against all IP rights as a mater of principle? You seem to be suggesting we would be better off without IP legislation. There are abuses, but then there are times when it does work.

    I was the one who pretty much was against all forms of IP, apothe0sis was providing an economical and intuitive argument why the whole abstraction around IP was unnecessary in many cases(especially where infinite goods with easy supply were concenred). At least that was 3 pages ago.
    I want to apologize if I haven't replied to somebody over the last pages, but I kind of gave up on the thread after the fifth time a poster choose to ignore arguments and continued using bad analogies.

    Also, I saw the DMCA study yesterday(or was it on Wednesday?) on /.. Read through the faq section and downloaded the tech paper, but haven't read it yet. If the techincal part of provoking copyright infringement notices or a C&D letter is really as easy as the FAQ claims, I'd be very interested in the possible impact the story could have in court.(if any)

  • Phoenix-DPhoenix-D Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Ok, reading through the prior linked article. I have a question for them and you zeeny.

    Say I'm an author looking for a publisher for my new book. Now, currently I can show the entire manuscript to them, and if they decide not to agree that's fine; legally they can't do jack shit with it.

    In the absence of copyright law, what is there to stop them from simply saying "No, we won't take this." sending me on my way, then publishing the book anyway? I'd have to work by sending them descriptions or small samples only...not an ideal situation, and in the case of some other industries, not even possible.

    Or take their example of the Segway. The inventor is supposed to take his idea to Ford and show them the blueprints. In return for not showing the blueprints to their competitors, they're supposed to grant him stock.

    The idealist notion says Ford goes "OK!" and does just that. The cynical notion says Ford goes "OK!"...at first. Then makes copies, says "Oh, something came up." backs out, and proceeds to make the thing. They still have a first-to-market advantage, being the first ones to see it. They don't have to pay him shit. And he won't be able to get much from the competitors for the same reason.

  • peterdevorepeterdevore Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    My guess is the zero IP law crowd just wants the protections to be opt-in instead of opt-out. You could still make a contract with a company not to steal your ideas if you want to show them.

  • Phoenix-DPhoenix-D Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    My guess is the zero IP law crowd just wants the protections to be opt-in instead of opt-out. You could still make a contract with a company not to steal your ideas if you want to show them.

    Not sure such a contract would be enforceable in the absence of IP law, but its a start.

  • zeenyzeeny Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Phoenix-D wrote: »
    Ok, reading through the prior linked article. I have a question for them and you zeeny.

    Say I'm an author looking for a publisher for my new book. Now, currently I can show the entire manuscript to them, and if they decide not to agree that's fine; legally they can't do jack shit with it.

    In the absence of copyright law, what is there to stop them from simply saying "No, we won't take this." sending me on my way, then publishing the book anyway? I'd have to work by sending them descriptions or small samples only...not an ideal situation, and in the case of some other industries, not even possible.

    First off, I'm going on an idealistic/unrealistic spin and saying that I'd like to see more and more books be distributed under a CC or a similar license in their digital form. However, that is not going to happen.
    I understand that many authors would like to profit from their work and they do not believe that offering a product without expecting payment may actually provide income.
    In an era of digital distribution, I hold a firm belief that the profits would become more and more centralized and sooner or later the business model would change enough to make publishers obsolete in their current form.

    Regarding the specific issue of how do you protect your work, I really don't know enough about the whole business of publishing, so take the following with a grain of salt and feel free to correct me if you know better.
    First off, I'm not actually sure, that reading the whole book is necessary before signing the publishing contract. Assuming it is so:
    My guess is, if you are a known author you'd have no problem signing a contract with enough protective clauses(something similar to a NDA?) that will forbid the publishing house to use the work if you don't reach a publishing deal.
    If you're a new author though, it could indeed be more difficult, but you know what? The best way of making a name is releasing something for free. Assuming you don't want to do that, I'd say again that contract arrangements are the way to go.


    Or take their example of the Segway. The inventor is supposed to take his idea to Ford and show them the blueprints. In return for not showing the blueprints to their competitors, they're supposed to grant him stock.
    The idealist notion says Ford goes "OK!" and does just that. The cynical notion says Ford goes "OK!"...at first. Then makes copies, says "Oh, something came up." backs out, and proceeds to make the thing. They still have a first-to-market advantage, being the first ones to see it. They don't have to pay him shit. And he won't be able to get much from the competitors for the same reason.

    Contracts is the short answer for patents too.

    However, in your example I don't believe that any first to market advantage coming from the moments between seeing the blueprints and accepting the offer with a binding contract would be enough for Ford to capitalize on. Making the prints public knowledge/Giving them to the competition will be a very effective counter move, especially when the "CHEAPER real soon now!" campaign is on even before the product hits the market.
    However, I have a reason to support you that this example is one of the weakest in their paper.
    What I don't like in it is the following phrase:
    As long as Mr. Kamen
    asked for less than the full value of the invention to Ford, they
    would be happy to pay,

    I find the assumption that the value of an invention can be determined that easily just a bit too idealistic. The process won't be that simple at all, and more often than not there would be a huge disagreement on the value of a discovery and one of the two sides would be wrong and lose on the eventual deal(in profit for seller, in capital for the buyer).
    Still, what they call "the first mover advantage" in many cases would be enough to capitalize on inventions and at the same time the lack of patents would provide possibility for huge propagation and innovation shortly after. All in all, economics will work, with most likely smaller direct renumeration for the first inventor and bigger cuts for the following improvements.
    In the end, I believe that society will benefit from the ensuing competition in any popular field and that alone makes it worth it.

  • zeenyzeeny Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Phoenix-D wrote: »
    My guess is the zero IP law crowd just wants the protections to be opt-in instead of opt-out. You could still make a contract with a company not to steal your ideas if you want to show them.

    Not sure such a contract would be enforceable in the absence of IP law, but its a start.

    I'm not sure either, but I couldn't think of a reason it wouldn't be.
    I kept thinking if it is possible for another publisher to republish the book soon after it hits the market. I'm still not convinced that it would make an economic sense, as first to market advantage in the entertainment industry is a pretty big deal, but it is something worth considering.

  • Phoenix-DPhoenix-D Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Ok, I follow that. I personally don't think contracts alone would work, but its not testable so we're at an impasse there.

    Related question- without IP law, isn't the CC, GPL, etc meaningless? If I have full rights to my copy, you can't very well prevent me from doing what I want with it. Which includes selling it, making changes and NOT sharing them, hiding the source, etc. (and if it becomes an issue of licenses vs copyright, I'll take copyright all day long, thank you. You can do all sorts of sneaky underhanded stuff with licenses)

    Its interesting that they mentioned Baen but NOT the Baen free library. What they do there is put older books up online in a variety of unencrypted formats for free. They also give out CDs with HUGE amounts of books on them with their hardcovers. The CDs are covered under the CC license, basically- you can copy them all day long, but aren't allowed to sell them.

    Interestingly enough, this tends to lead to an increase in the sales of the freely distributed books.

  • zeenyzeeny Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Phoenix-D wrote: »
    Ok, I follow that. I personally don't think contracts alone would work, but its not testable so we're at an impasse there.

    Related question- without IP law, isn't the CC, GPL, etc meaningless? If I have full rights to my copy, you can't very well prevent me from doing what I want with it. Which includes selling it, making changes and NOT sharing them, hiding the source, etc. (and if it becomes an issue of licenses vs copyright, I'll take copyright all day long, thank you. You can do all sorts of sneaky underhanded stuff with licenses)

    As I said, I consider digital goods in the infinite camp of resources. I won't mind people being able to do what you describe with any piece of digital information, but we're coming back to the above, as it's probably possible to protect from such activites with licenses once said license has its day in court.

    So, here is another gem red hot from /.:
    http://www.wikileaks.org/wiki/Proposed_US_ACTA_multi-lateral_intellectual_property_trade_agreement_(2007)

    I'd suggest to anybody to read the documetn(it's very short, 4 pages):
    http://www.wikileaks.org/leak/acta-proposal-2007.pdf

    Personally I find it quiet annoying(especially the first paragraph that puts forward the "facts") and honestly can't believe that the people backing the treaty are able to defend it with a straight face.
    Documents like that were pretty much the reason for the iron curtain comment from the OP. If this gets accepted, it would become a de-facto world practice and close to law.

    Edit: Slashdot discussion as usually slightly out of context as about 0.0001% bother to actually read the linked text.

  • Phoenix-DPhoenix-D Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    First link is dead, just FYI. Once again, copyright > licenses, in general. Copyright has a specific, legal term (which admittedly keeps getting extended to ridiculous lengths) attached to it, and only applies to making copies of the IP in question. Licenses can have any term and any sort of restriction attached.

    You can't use copyright to say "You can't use this software on this machine". You CAN do that with a license.

  • zeenyzeeny Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Phoenix-D wrote: »
    First link is dead, just FYI. Once again, copyright > licenses, in general. Copyright has a specific, legal term (which admittedly keeps getting extended to ridiculous lengths) attached to it, and only applies to making copies of the IP in question. Licenses can have any term and any sort of restriction attached.

    You can't use copyright to say "You can't use this software on this machine". You CAN do that with a license.

    Link fixed. Thanks.

    Well, let's put it that way, if we're going to demolish copyright and not have my crazy word of total digital freedom, but keep some form of licenses(which I'm also not a big fan of), I guess copyleft is as good an idea as any and the GPL is not such a bad implementation.

  • Apothe0sisApothe0sis Registered User regular
    edited June 2008
    Alkey42 wrote: »
    Just so I understand you Apothe0sis. Are you against all IP rights as a mater of principle? You seem to be suggesting we would be better off without IP legislation. There are abuses, but then there are times when it does work.

    I think there are principled objections to both copyright and patents, however, I've not been arguing that for the moment only as zeeny says, the economic and intuittive reasons why copyright is increasingly nothing more than legally protecting an unworkable, out-dated business model.

    Trademarks I am much lesss concerned with provided there are sufficient sanity checks to the whole thing.

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  • MedopineMedopine __BANNED USERS
    edited June 2008
    Copyright started out as a wonderful thing.

    If you hate what it's become, go talk to Disney.

  • zeenyzeeny Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Eu copyright extension on music by another half century considered.

    http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080716-eu-caves-to-aging-rockers-wants-45-year-copyright-extension.html

    Tell me this is a joke
    "The term of protection for performers has not kept up with life expectancy and it is high time it was changed. I played on a couple of very successful tracks, including Lou Reed’s 'Walk On The Wild Side' and David Bowie’s 'Space Oddity,' and it would be unfair for me to stop receiving income for this performance after 50 years—probably just at the time when I will need it the most."

    Are you fucking kidding me?

    also
    Fortunately, the proposal will allow works to enter the public domain if neither a record label nor a performer "shows any interest in marketing the sound recording" in the first year after the extension passes (assuming that it does).

    Yes, fortunately, that would totally happen.

  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    I dislike the wording "shows any interest". I basically feel that if the copyright is X years old and no one's selling it then whoever's claiming it should lose it. Like, this should be a "selling it right now" deal - if you suddenly go "oh wait, we totally were planning to sell it" then it should be legally binding that you do it.

  • DarkWarriorDarkWarrior __BANNED USERS
    edited July 2008
    After 50 years its kinda ridiculous. I can play any music in my head free of charge and after 50 years its either completely forgotten or such a common part of society that they've already been more than compensated. 25 years is too long. I mean if you start work at 16 and work until retirement you'd still only be paid for like 55 years. Being paid for over 50 for one piece of work you did is taking it too far.

    ...it's in the shape of a giant c**k.
  • RandomEngyRandomEngy Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    I agree with the article, this needs to die. The retroactive extension is just garbage. The idea that they think they should be able to do one thing in their twenties, then sit on their ass not saving for retirement and continue to benefit from it more than 50 years later is just abhorrent.

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  • zeenyzeeny Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Guys, did you read the article? They are receiving royalties for 50 years now. With the extension, the copyright term for music becomes 95. NINETY FIVE FUCKING YEARS.

  • peterdevorepeterdevore Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    It will only cement the inevitable insignificance of tightly controlled music in our culture. Everyone knows record companies want to milk their properties until no one buys them anymore. What's less apparent is that even after that has happened, they still have an interest in keeping that music from becoming free, because it could still compete with their non-free music on the virtue of being free.

    Ever wondered why you hear so little of the beatles on the radio and in commercials? Music that defined a generation, maybe even started a cultural revolution? Culturally so significant you'd want to play it in class for modern history lessons? They are one of the most expensive to license on the planet and that's a goddamn shame.

    I think musicians will shortly realize that record companies will abuse laws to their profit regardless of your music's cultural significance. Governments won't reduce copyright laws as long as there is a sizable chunk of people living off of them. The solution is simple: musicians stop being dependent on business models that define music as a property, but instead turn to those that define it as a service.
    When the government stops seeing people living off of music as a property, they will naturally relax the laws around making music a property. While extensions are retarded, forcing the issue by reducing copyright laws prematurely will only make stock values crash and make some people jobless.

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