My personal comments and opinions ONLY.
Phade wrote:Since[...] and the band would like to maintain the enforceability of the copyright on their songs, the lawyer had no choice but to take some kind of action.
Another example of 'losing your rights unless you exercise them' happens when, once every few years a store or a strip mal ropes off some or all of its parking lot for a day or two; often posting a sign marked 'Closed for Cleaning' though not a soul is seen actually sweeping. The reason is that in the past other privately owned parking lots (yes they may be called a 'public accommodation') have passed into public domain because the owners DID NOT enforce their property rights. You lose 'em if you don't use 'em, and as Phade said, it's not because the property owner is stingy or evil. They just don't want to lose what they have created, is all.
Phade wrote:If you would like to preserve or expand the rights that you as a normal citizen have under the law, please write and petition the persons that make the laws (here in the United States, this means Congress). There are powerful and well-funded groups on both sides of the copyright/fair use issues. Please support the groups that you agree with as well as make your views know directly as an individual to lawmakers.
Perfectly writtten, Phade.
We as enjoyers of audio and video and multimedia works, have let others redefine the vocabulary of what we do, and because they have chosen negatively-sounding words that we can be made to look bad to others and made to feel unsure of ourselves. The trick which has been pulled on us was equating 'unathorized' with 'illegal,' or 'criminal,' and so far most of the public has bought into that line of thinking, for now.
One group that has fared much better are gun owners and reloading hobbyists. Example: the press, eager to add hype and sensational-sounding words to a story, will write that "[So-and-so] was found in possession of an unregistered gun." Boy, that sounds criminal and dangerous, right? - but what remains unsaid is that not all states REQUIRE registration of all guns. Although the following example differs from copyright law, a grandpa can give his hunting rifle to his grandkid, and neither the 'original creators' nor any arm of government has a RIGHT to be informed of this, or to limit or the number of trades the piece can undergo before it becomes unusable.
The harder-core gun-nuts are VERY sensitive, defensive and vocal** about their rights to anonymous ownership, unmonitored use, "unregistered" (and yet non-criminal) trades which leave no paper trails, and protecting "unlicensed" possession to be understood as NON-criminal in many cases. They've done a decent job over the past 200 years despite losing ground here and there over time. Every once and a while some ground is gained back though, and as Phade said, this effort best happens AT THE BALLOT BOX.
(**That's why much the rest of the people may view them as extremists.)
Recalling that copyright law is STILL different from firearms laws and governance, a closer parallel to the point of 'remixing' and 'unathorized duplication' remaining NON-CRIMINAL are the reloader hobbyists, who would not BEGIN to think that they need permission of the 'original content creators' when they separate a bullet from a casing, add propellants from a different manufacturer, or re-mount other bullets or even some of their own home-rolled (okay, hand swaged) projectiles, and trade them among friends and acquaintances. A reloading machine can produce several hundred UNAUTHORIZED DUPLICATES of 'original content,' or hybrids.
("Have you tried the Remington/IMR-4198/185gr FMJ REMIX of Peter Paul Mauser's 1898 classic 8mm 'Best of' collection? There's also a guy who makes BOOTLEG .32-40's from original 32 Special brass and SELLS THEM ONLINE.") Just about ANYBODY can make and trade ammunition.
The reloaders would be FIRM about their following 'rights'
- The machines and materials are not registered
- You can make and distribute numerous copies
- You can take apart commercial products and assemble them into different things, and even mix in your own creations
- No one has a RIGHT to be notified about what you do
- You don't need LICENSES or PERMISSIONS
Maybe we can build back to THAT kind of cultural understanding. You can still find 1960'e era paperback books that say "This book is sold on the condition that it shall not be lent..." but in the 70's or 80's th courts tossed that out as bee-ess.