Patterico's Pontifications

1/21/2012

Chris Dodd intimidating lawmakers on SOPA, PIPA

Filed under: General — Karl @ 12:00 pm



[Posted by Karl]

Consumer group Public Knowledge makes the accusation about the former Senator-turned-MPAA head’s activities on behalf of the controversial anti-piracy bills:

“Those who count on quote ‘Hollywood’ for support need to understand that this industry is watching very carefully who’s going to stand up for them when their job is at stake. Don’t ask me to write a check for you when you think your job is at risk and then don’t pay any attention to me when my job is at stake,” Dodd said on Fox News on Thursday.

Hollywood moguls are also pulling out of Obama fundraisers over the issue.

In general (unlike many), I do not have a big issue with lobbyists; I have a problem with a government large enough to make them a virtual necessity.  However, after Dodd announced his retirement from the US Senate (rather than face a campaign centered on his involvement in the subprime mortgage crisis), he promised, “No lobbying, no lobbying,” as if there was something wrong with it.  He became head of the MPAA — the Hollywood lobby — weeks after retiring.   But openly issuing veiled threats on national television probably doesn’t count as “lobbying,” so this is really more about Dodd’s general sliminess and hypocrisy than a legal problem.

Now that widespread opposition from the tech sector and the public has forced Congress to table SOPA and PIPA, Dodd has regrets.  He regrets they didn’t ram these bills into law before the opposition grew, that the debate was focused on Hollywood and… that his own lobbying efforts were hampered by the law he backed.  Dodd previously voted for the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2007, which among other things increased the “cooling off” period for Senators lobbying their former colleagues from one to two years. 

–Karl

52 Responses to “Chris Dodd intimidating lawmakers on SOPA, PIPA”

  1. Ding!

    Leviticus (dd1d7b)

  2. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    Leviticus (dd1d7b)

  3. Hey Karl he stole your ding.

    Chris Dodd loves him some waitress sandwich.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  4. Seriously, though, I saw Chris Dodd whoring SOPA on the tube the other day. It was a stark reminder of what an unrepentant corporate shill that guy really is. I mean, I know he’s explicitly paid for it now, but I’m sure it was a far-smoother-than-usual-transition.

    At least, I would like to think it was…

    Leviticus (dd1d7b)

  5. This issue is not going to go away for some time.

    I don’t think it’s overstating it to say that both the entertainment industry and the internet industry view this law as a life-or-death issue. Neither will go quietly into the night.

    aphrael (1fc48e)

  6. I get so happy remembering Chris Dodd was Jane Hamsher and Glenn Greenwald’s candidate of choice.

    MayBee (081489)

  7. Intellectual copyright is one of those things that I’m constantly waffling on. We just read a case – INS v. AP – that threw me back into the tailspin. It’s that seemingly insoluble tension between the right of a creator to profit from his innovation and the right of a purchaser to do with his purchase what he sees fit. I suppose it comes back down to the “one man’s right ends where another man’s begins” thing…

    Leviticus (dd1d7b)

  8. aphrael, Leviticus:

    Intellectual Property was one of my favorite classes and I think most reasonable people recognize both sides of the debate have legitimate points. Indeed, while some have pointed to Dodd’s past positive comments on fair use, I didn’t highlight it because it seems to me that he was in a more middle position about it than some want to admit.

    I also think there is also a comparison to be made to the campaign finance debate that may be the subject of a future post.

    Karl (8cdbad)

  9. right of a purchaser to do with his purchase what he sees fit.

    I don’t think you necessarily have a right to do with your purchase as you see fit. Your purchase is like a contract, the terms are usually right on the packaging.

    Also, Hollywood has a big problem in people who did not purchase an item distributing it. Fashion has the same problem.

    MayBee (081489)

  10. “Intellectual copyright”… I mean “intellectual property” or, alternatively, “copyright.” Yikes.

    But I’m only in regular ole Property right now, and we’ve only just begun at that.

    Leviticus (dd1d7b)

  11. I hope Chris Dodd gets recalled but hey the useful idiots will vote Obama if Gingrich or Santorum wins.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  12. Leviticus, I missed the news that you were in law school. May you find it enjoyable and make the most of it. :)

    aphrael (1fc48e)

  13. Wow levitcus heres hoping your not like some lawyers.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  14. Karl, I really don’t think there’s a middle ground, because at the end of the day it’s a debate about cost allocation. Who should bear the cost of preventing the use of the internet to distribute copyrighted material? DMCA allocates the cost of finding the material and complaining about it to the content providers. SOPA would allocate it, in essence, to site owners, and to the hosts of open sites.

    The content industry rightly claims that allocating the cost to it puts a high burden on it and ensures that huge quantities of content won’t get detected.

    The internet industry rightly claims that allocating the cost to it puts a high burden on it and will likely shut down sites like reddit (and possibly comments sections on blogs depending on how extreme the law is).

    I think both sides are right to see it as a mortal conflict, alas.

    aphrael (1fc48e)

  15. “I missed the news that you were in law school. May you find it enjoyable and make the most of it.”

    – aphrael

    Thanks. Finished my first semester in December and just started my second last week. I’m liking it a lot.

    Leviticus (dd1d7b)

  16. I knew you were in law school, but congratulations on completing you first semester and exams. The worst is over!

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  17. aphrael,

    Agreed on the cost allocation. Again, I could do a whole post on this as one example of post-debt bomb mandate politics, in which progs must offload costs onto the private sector. May do that yet.

    Leviticus,

    Glad you’re enjoying law school. Knew more than a few who seemed to be more interested in the money. They dropped out or were unsuccessful, generally.

    Karl (8cdbad)

  18. Thanks a bunch.

    Leviticus (dd1d7b)

  19. Your welcome.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  20. And why are Republicans worried about Hollywood money drying up? Gingrich was right about that in the last debate.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  21. I don’t think it’s overstating it to say that both the entertainment industry and the internet industry view this law as a life-or-death issue. Neither will go quietly into the night.

    Well, the music industry found a way to deal with it, why can’t they. What I see is a bunch of folks with a buggy-whip business model trying to stop technological innovation. They have to make piracy not worth the bother, like the music folks did.

    Case in point: There are some studios pricing 4-year-old TV episodes for $2 and $3. Others just license them to Netflix or Amazon Prime for a fixed fee. Even if I’m a pirate, I’m not going to steal something I can get easier for free. Even if I’m not a pirate, I’m probably not going to pay $3 for a 6 year old TV episode.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  22. Yes, I recognize that there needs to be something to deal with copies of new movies available overnight, as opposed to copies of I Love Lucy, which are a lesser concern. Whatever laws we eventually do develop need to be proportional to the crime, and not threaten every blogger with petty criminality over some commenter’s post, or have armies of takedown-order clerks working for every politician with a thin skin. And we surely don’t need any copyright holder having authority to order the DNS system to unlink domains without due process. That’s a power I would not give government, let alone modern Pinkertons.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  23. Given how high the quality is for Netflix and Amazon VOD, why would someone want to obtain a movie illegitimately, with more hassle, risk, and inferior quality?

    I think much of the problem is availability. You can’t get the newest films this way. You have to leave your awesome TV and sound system and drive to a cinema to wait through twenty minutes of commercials and hope you got a decent seat (which is hard if the movie is new and popular).

    I don’t want to do that. I like going to a theater nearby that offers a great experience, but I usually watch 1980s films there.

    The fact is that the movie theater concept is outdated. Let people pay $20 to watch the newest film at home, and most theaters would have to come up with a better model than monopoly.

    The stakes for SOPA are so high considering the problem is not really a problem if rights holders accept what their customers want. Yes, people will still illegally download files if there is a $20 option at much higher quality and convenience. Most of these guys had no intention of buying a movie ticket anyway. It’s like the bozos buying bootleg VHS tapes in years past.

    Dustin (7362cd)

  24. I’m ignorant of all but the basics of IP law and video technology, but history suggests this is Hollywood fighting to stop technological change. We all know who wins that battle.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  25. Back in the day when I lived in West Texas, the theaters in Lubbock would often have film arrivals delayed to space out the hits. If other towns got two hits at the same time, Lubbock would get one hit, and then the second hit a week later. They burned up a lot of customers’ good will over that.

    People resent that sort of thing. There was, however, a drive-in up there with great corn fritters, and I’d go there to watch movies I owned at home.

    Make the product enjoyable and try your best to give the customer an option he or she wants.

    Dustin (7362cd)

  26. Here is the statement put out this week by Rep. Tim Johnson (IL 15). I thought it was an excellent description/recognition of the piracy problem –but why sopa-pipa is not the answer:

    “Online piracy is a legitimate threat to American jobs as well American consumers who knowingly or unknowing participate in it. However, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and its companion bill, the PROTECT IP Act (PIPA), while well intentioned, are not the solution to the issue of piracy. The precedent that would be set by these bills creates undue regulation, the potential for abuse of our legal system, and treads on the slippery slope of censorship.

    “It is the right of every American to be compensated and receive payment for their efforts, whether they are artists, manufacturers, or any other type of business. While the protection of intellectual property in any form is a necessary function of government, these bills do not solve the problem of privacy, do not fully address the issue, and are not supported by the American public or the majority of stake holders in this issue. Simply put, these measures add unnecessary regulators to the federal bureaucracy and in the long-run, don’t solve the problem.”

    As someone pointed out to me this week, “piracy” is the perfect word for it and pirates from the beginning of time have operated outside the law and in contempt of jurisdictional boundaries. That’s just what they do. So an intellectual property pirate (especially a foreign one) will always find a way no matter how many new laws lobbyist Dodd tries to pass to try to thwart him, and no matter how much the lst Amendment to the US constitution gets trashed or the free and open internet gets broken for us regular folks in the process.

    elissa (28c05d)

  27. Having the drunk thieving Chris Dodd as your spokesman-no wonder these guys are losing money.Good luck with that. OJ Simpson gets out in 2014, and while he is merely a murderous scumbag as opposed to a drunking thieving scumbag, he is more personable than drunk ass Dodd.

    Also, they could stream 1st run movies over cable boxes and the internet. Instead they expect adults to spend $15 and more on overpriced stale popcorn to go to a smelly crowded theater with idiots talking to the screen.No wonder Hollywood supports Obama; they continue to support an outdated business plan when other profitable options are right here. Steve Jobs showed them how to do it with music, and instead they pretend it’s still 1972.

    Bugg (ea1809)

  28. The movie industry is trying to figure out how to work with technology. They aren’t just trying to keep it from happening. They have figured out how to make money working with iTunes, Netflix, Amazon, etc. But it is very difficult to make money if someone in China will mass-produce DVDs and create livestreamable files from screening copies or movies filmed by someone at actual screenings.

    They will watermark copies or do things to screeners like throw in a black and white scene here and there. But a lot of people who watch black market copies will put up with stuff like that.

    MayBee (081489)

  29. For anyone who’s interested here’s a list some body compiled of a few impacts PIPA SOPA would have just on small American internet entrepreneurs/bloggers and those of us who regularly patronize them. I am assuming this woman knows what she is talking about.

    1. Guilty until proven innocent. One huge issue with the ways these bills are written is that you don’t necessarily have to be a proven violator of copyright infringement, all you have to do is be accused. An accusation alone is enough to cause detrimental harm to your business. You could lose your domain, have your website sht down and even be sued. All with no warning.

    2. You’re held responsible for your user content. If you have any part of a website, blog or social networking page that allows for users to submit content, you will be responsible for what they submit. For example, if you have a blog and allow comments, you’ll be responsible for monitoring them to make sure you don’t have any pirated content submitted or links provided to sites that contain pirated content. Or, if you are on Facebook or Twitter, you’ll be responsible for monitoring your followers’ posts on your page to make sure they don’t have forbidden content. Can you imagine how difficult this will be?

    3. Social networking as we know it will change. We all use social networking to build our businesses, but if these bills are passed, social networking sites will be forced to drastically censor their sites, limiting the content that can be shared and changing the way we use them for our businesses.

    4. Where to sell your items? If you rely on sites like Etsy, Ebay or even Facebook to sell your items, you’ll be up a creek as they’ll be forced to shut down to avoid prosecution. Each of these sites contain photos submitted by users, the problem is, there would be no way for them to inspect every single photo uploaded to their sites to make sure it has the appropriate copyrights./

    http://businessamongmoms.com/blog/2012/01/18/how-sopa-affects-mompreneursimportant/

    elissa (28c05d)

  30. The fundamental problem is that “intellectual property” isn’t. It’s a convenient term of art, but unfortunately people take it too seriously and pretend that it really is a kind of property, and thus that breaking a copyright is a kind of theft, and that is just not true. Breach of copyright is malum prohibitum; it’s not wrong, and it’s only illegal because Congress said so.

    Contrary to Tim Johnson above, it is not “the right of every American to be compensated and receive payment for their efforts”. There is no relation at all between effort and value. Things of value can be created with no effort at all, and great effort can be expended to create no value. If I decide to dig a ditch somewhere, at great effort, nobody has to pay me for it.

    Nor is there any right to be compensated for creating value. If I decide to paint a mural on the side of my building, or to play music where it can be heard from the street, passersby have every right in the world to enjoy my efforts and have no obligation to pay me. I may take efforts to prevent them from enjoying my work, such as soundproofing my music room or building a wall in front of my mural (assuming my building is not right on my property line), but I may not prevent passersby from getting around these efforts, e.g. by having super-hearing or by being very tall.

    Nor may Congress help me in these efforts. Copyright would be unconstitutional if the constitution didn’t explicitly permit it. And the constitution permits it only for a limited time, and only for the purpose of creating an incentive for creators to do their stuff. That means it explicitly rejects any moral right to prevent others from copying ones work. It prohibits any copyright law that does not have the purpose of encouraging the creation of things that wouldn’t be created without it. That means that Congress knows that artists and inventors would create just as much with a copyright of 14 years it has no right to extend it to 21 years just to be nice to them, let alone to life plus 90 years. To do so it must conclude that there are significant and useful works that would not be created without the extension.

    Now the world around us tells us that there are no works of art that are being made today that would not be made if DMCA were repealed. And no additional works will be made if SOPA/PIPA passes. Therefore they are unconstitutional. No court can reach that conclusion, because courts can’t second-guess Congress’s “findings of fact”; but Congress itself knows it’s lying, and has an independent duty to uphold the constitution by not passing such laws. When a congressman votes for a law that he knows is unconstitutional, supported by a “finding of fact” that he knows is not true, not only is he forsworn and a man of no honour, but he is ultra vires and the law he makes is no law, even if no court has the standing to say so.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  31. Milhouse–apparently you take issue with Rep Johnson’s short 2 paragraph statement to his constituents on why he thought sopa pipa was a mess and why he would not be supporting it. Perhaps you could do a better job writing (out of necessity) a couple short, simple, easy to understand paragraphs that also manage to show an element of respect and understanding for constituents on both sides of the issue. Perhaps you could. But I doubt it. :)

    elissa (28c05d)

  32. Bush was an amnesty shill lets not put an amnesty shill RINO into office.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  33. Dodd’s general sliminess

    I hear the next Ghostbusters sequel is going to use him as the central monster-villain.

    I Got Bupkis, Agoggle with Lefty Obfuscatory Efforts (8e2a3d)

  34. I don’t think it’s overstating it to say that both the entertainment industry and the internet industry view this law as a life-or-death issue. Neither will go quietly into the night.

    The entertainment industry will survive. The fatassed middlemen who don’t produce anything, don’t create anything, they just stand there, hand out, demanding their cut, are what are endangered.

    They did serve a sort of purpose prior to the internet. Now, they’re just greedy scumbags differing from OWS assholes only in the fact that they bathe more often and are already wealthy.

    I Got Bupkis, Agoggle with Lefty Obfuscatory Efforts (8e2a3d)

  35. Intellectual copyright is one of those things that I’m constantly waffling on. We just read a case – INS v. AP – that threw me back into the tailspin. It’s that seemingly insoluble tension between the right of a creator to profit from his innovation and the right of a purchaser to do with his purchase what he sees fit. I suppose it comes back down to the “one man’s right ends where another man’s begins” thing…

    Leviticus, I’ll repeat my own treatise on this matter once more. I’ve been working with computers since the dawn of “microcomputing” and was a software pirate in my early 20s on the Appl ][ platform. They had far more capacity to make copying difficult than modern IP producers do, and they pretty much failed. They failed because you are attempting to fight thousands of possible pirates for every one or two employees devoted to securing your “stuff”. You can’t match that kind of brainpower and ingenuity. You just cant.

    1) It is very much worth it to read the aging but still very accurate Wired piece by John Perry Barlow:

    The Economy of Ideas

    It doesn’t solve the problem, but it does detail the main issues with it fairly effectively, as well as briefly discuss the history of IP protection. It suggests a direction for at least some of the solutions, and Barlow isn’t talking through his hat — he and his band members got quite rich doing exactly what he says.

    2) The problem here is not copyright at all. It’s copyright-as-control. The historical method of producing copyright-as-reward (which is mostly, though not completely, what you want) is to provide the creators with control over the containers in which copies are distributed. But the internet shatters that — it provides copies without containers. So all efforts to control copies involve some unlikely method of creating “digital containers” (i.e., DRM) which essentially wind up punishing the lawful and not really punishing the violators. If you play a legal DVD, it will take you a good 2-5 minutes to get through all the dreck to the movie, usually. If you pirate it instead, you can have it up and running 20 seconds after you stick it in the player. There’s perverse incentives for you.

    3) Consider the following:
    It is generally considered to be a truism that “The internet treats censorship as noise and routes around it.”
    What is censorship? I would suggest censorship can accurately be defined as:
    “Censorship is someone telling you ‘This we deem dangerous, therefore, you may not access it.‘”
    Now, we have already mentioned copyright-as-control. What, then, is this form of copyright?
    “Copyright is someone telling you ‘This you have not paid for, therefore, you may not access it.‘”

    Right: they’re both about controlling access.

    Now, if the internet treats censorship — efforts to restrict access — as noise, and routes around it, what does this mean for copyright-as-control?

    Right: It’s going to treat copyright-as-control as noise, and route around it.

    *Note*: this most emphatically does NOT equate to a moral equivalence between copyright and censorship! Only to a mechanical equivalence.

    4) “3” above suggests that to fully enable copyright-as-control is to also fully enable censorship. This is like throwing the cat into a blast furnace because it’s got fleas. Yeah, the heat will get rid of the fleas, but it’s not gonna do the cat a good turn, either.

    Some adult-looking juveniles whine “Information should be free”. No, this is not the least true. Data should be free, perhaps. Information is someone’s hard work and time spent constructing a unique world-view of some data — be that data musical notes, pixels, successive images, or mathematical concepts… or anything else. It took time to create it, and it probably took more time to make it comprehensible and “followable” by others than the creator. If society does not reward creators for taking that time, then creators won’t produce anywhere near as much, and they certainly won’t spend any time or effort to make them accessible to others.

    ====

    The end result of this argument/discussion is that Copyright needs to make a radical shift in purposing and form. No longer can it be copyright-as-control, but must surrender to being merely copyright-as-reward. If a creator demands control over their creation, they can take it and stuff it in a closet and enjoy the power they have over it. For the most part, society will soldier on, not noticing and largely unconcerned. It is long past time when we should have become a part of that transitioning process — both its description and a set of definitions for how rewards are to be collected from the users and then disbursed to those who create.

    As a trivial proposal, obviously begging to be gamed, a blank media tax (DVDs, CDs, thumbdrives, hard drives, memory cards) combined with a metric to distribute it to registered creators would be a first-draft idea.

    I Got Bupkis, Arrrr!! Avast There, Ye Scurvy bit-twiddlers!! (8e2a3d)

  36. Perhaps you could do a better job writing (out of necessity) a couple short, simple, easy to understand paragraphs that also manage to show an element of respect and understanding for constituents on both sides of the issue.

    I see no need to show respect or understanding for would-be totalitarians.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  37. As a trivial proposal, obviously begging to be gamed, a blank media tax (DVDs, CDs, thumbdrives, hard drives, memory cards) combined with a metric to distribute it to registered creators would be a first-draft idea.

    Why should people who use these things for their own creations pay the tax? They will surely never see a penny of the distribution.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  38. Romney should come out for a flat tax now. S.C. proves once again it’s a swamp of ignorance. Romney’s no conservative, but neither is Newt. At least one’s a straight shooter. Newt is a great debater, but Romney is good enought, and Newt’s baggage is too heavy to win Florida. Fannie and Freddie cash???? Come on. Obama will tear Newt a new one.

    DV1252x (045cef)

  39. I don’t think you necessarily have a right to do with your purchase as you see fit. Your purchase is like a contract, the terms are usually right on the packaging.

    Some of us flat out disagree with this concept. You can either have an underlying system that pays you quietly for everyone that might be using it, or you can have a one-time fee. And if you can single-handedly ENFORCE a rental-style agreement (good luck with that), then more power to you. Getting the government to do it is bovine excreta.

    Given how high the quality is for Netflix and Amazon VOD, why would someone want to obtain a movie illegitimately, with more hassle, risk, and inferior quality?

    It’s quite satisfactory if your internet connection can handle it. The biggest issue I see is that you get to see what THEY select, not what you WANT to see. That’s non-trivial, as, even though they have a couple hundred movies available OD, a good chunk (not the majority, no) of those are pretty much garbage, and there are a hell of a lot of movies i might feel like watching at any given time. The real fact is, they probably should have a two or three tier system that puts almost everything ever digitized into the bottom tier, and mildly aged movies in the second tier, with recent releases in the top tier. Then let people pay slightly more for the level they want.You could probably have another one or two tiers for BR grade HD, assuming the OD distro net can handle it.

    While the protection of intellectual property in any form is a necessary function of government

    Necessary? No. Useful and potentially reasonable, yes. Define “protection”. If it involves “control”, no, not in the least. If it involves rewarding creators and producers, then yes. If it involves giving the majority of the reward to fatcat rectums who produce nothing of value but have succeeded in hijacking the legal system, no.

    When they pushed for, and got passed, the Bono Bill, they lost almost all possible moral claim on this issue. As far as I am concerned, Disney, and anyone else whose copyright has expired according to the law in place as of the date of its production/release has no claim of any kind to it morally, no matter what they’ve succeeded in perverting The Law to say. Stuff under proper copyright is debatable, but they can osculate my posterior. Not on the left side, not on the right side, but in the middle.

    I Got Bupkis, Arrrr!! Avast There, Ye Scurvy bit-twiddlers!! (8e2a3d)

  40. But it is very difficult to make money if someone in China will mass-produce DVDs and create livestreamable files from screening copies or movies filmed by someone at actual screenings.

    First off, this is commercial piracy, not individual piracy, and the vast majority of the laws passed in the last two decades on the matter have nothing whatsoever to do with the former (or, at most, encompass it as a subset) while very definitely aimed at the latter.

    Laws inside the USA are not going to do much to deter commercial piracy outside of the USA. This seems rather blatantly self-evident.

    And you won’t find a lot of Americans having issues with shutting down commercial piracy inside the USA, nor Americans having issues with shutting it down outside the USA.

    That’s not what SOPA and PIPA are about.

    I Got Bupkis, Arrrr!! Avast There, Ye Scurvy bit-twiddlers!! (8e2a3d)

  41. Why should people who use these things for their own creations pay the tax? They will surely never see a penny of the distribution.

    Milhouse, ideally, we’re talking about a system that is built from scratch from the ground up, not something that works like many existing laws.

    Now, I’m going to just speculate here:
    When you “register a creation”, you should, for example, express any derivative works used as a basis. So if I create a new Mickey Mouse cartoon, then Disney would also get a piece of my remuneration.

    But All — and I do mean ALL — of whatever moneys handed out would go directly to the registered creators (and their “derivees”), and not to anyone in the middle.

    Yes, you still need promoters and editors, and so forth. You would also have “corporate” authorship (though I suspect an entirely unrelated type of organizational entity to self-design in the long run which has less of a hierarchical form and more of a distributed network as its base model — call it a “kith”, for the purposes of this discussion)

    Now, the CREATOR would have contractual agreements with both promoters and with editors and so forth, which will resolve the need for them, and paying them for their part in the created works and the social value derived from it.

    Musicians, for example, may pay for mixing pros and other things, out of their copyright payments. And yeah, some people are going to write contracts to pay for such things, but the thing is, the creators won’t be forced to deal with the promoters, if they think they can make it without it.

    This is why the MPAA, etc., is so desperate. The middlemen KNOW they’re going to get cut out substantially if they don’t work the law somehow to their favor.

    ============

    As to “why”? As I cite above — Information is someone’s time spent modifying raw data to produce a unique worldview of that data which no one else can or will produce (yeah, some people will produce similar things, but they aren’t going to be the ones really making a living from this kind of stuff).

    Society will need to provide some form of remuneration to creators, performers, scientists, etc., or else why would they bother?

    No, it’s not “what they demand” — it would be some base amount multiplied by society’s demand. The more useful society finds it, the more they’ll get rewarded. J. K. Rowling, for example, would still be rich as Croesus. But she would not have the capacity to stop anyone from making whatever thing they wanted based on her creations. Fan Fiction, Fan TV Shows, Fan Movies… and yes, Fan PORN — all would be free to make BUT she would get a cut from any rewards derived from them, for a substantial but limited time.

    I’d also argue that you probably want the rewards to generally not be so great that someone can live off them forever. This is one problem with success — you get fat and lazy and don’t actually create anything new any more because that’s work and you really don’t need to work.

    I Got Bupkis, Arrrr!! Avast There, Ye Scurvy bit-twiddlers!! (8e2a3d)

  42. Also, think about that… which society is going to create more serendipitous wealth — the one that lets anyone try to apply some idea to another idea to create a new thing, or one that only lets “official” releases make it to the market, as according to some coprolyte … sorry, “corporate” attorney body…?

    Which is better, the system that lets the market decide what to reward, or the one that lets some semi-competent asshole?

    More simply put, how many “fabulously successful” ideas were created from scratch by someone who had even the slightest idea it would be that successful? Worse still, how many such were pushed to fruition (by someone other than Steve Jobs), who was not one of the creators themselves?

    Most really successful ideas, in fact, were not believed to be all that viable by these same groups.

    Star Wars barely got made.

    Star Trek got killed after two seasons (yes, two) — if it weren’t for Bjo Trimble, it would not exist at all except as a minor also-ran in TV history. She single-handedly kept it going for that all-important third season that made it strippable and therefore viable for syndication.

    In order to make The Matrix, the Wachovsky brothers had to make “Bound” to show off their skills.

    The number of people who knew, at the start of the creation, that they had a HUGE hit on their hands is marginal at best. Always. Better to let the market pick and choose which ideas it likes.

    I Got Bupkis, Arrrr!! Avast There, Ye Scurvy bit-twiddlers!! (8e2a3d)

  43. Why does Holywood think their product is so damned valuable that the Feds should be their enforcement muscle, anyway?

    I’m pretty sure that according to Hollywood’s own unique accounting practices, no movie made since 1960 — including Avatar, Titanic, Star Wars, Terminator 2, and Raiders of the Lost Ark — has turned a profit.

    As far as “the right of every American to be compensated and receive payment for their efforts” goes, I know of several authors who were conned by Hollywood into selling their works for a percentage of the net from the movie … and got nothing from the studios, because the movies “didn’t turn a profit.” (You want an example? Harry Harrison, Soylent Green. Not. One. Cent.)

    Murgatroyd (e0d30c)

  44. As far as I am concerned, Disney, and anyone else whose copyright has expired according to the law in place as of the date of its production/release has no claim of any kind to it morally, no matter what they’ve succeeded in perverting The Law to say.

    Exactly. The only constitutional purpose for which Congress may legislate copyrights is to give an incentive for people to produce. The very existence of these works proves that the copyright law of the time was enough of an incentive for their production; therefore the public gains nothing from the extension.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  45. #41, suppose I buy a blank tape, disk, or whatever, and use it to record my own creation for my own use. Why on earth should I pay a tax for that? And how would I ever get it back?

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  46. #45 — no system is perfect. You may never use the public library, but you still pay taxes for that. And complaining that you don’t think you should is just dodging the matter. The vast majority of blank media certainly goes to keeping obtained IP, and even more of it would under this kind of system.

    Also, realize, that’s a stab at how a system could work, and as-is is easily gamed.

    Napster would have made a great metric for such disposition, for example, but they killed that so some other has to be developed, probably related to search-engine hits, click-throughs, and stuff

    I Got Bupkis, Election Critic Extraordinaire (a88bfa)

  47. …that the Feds should be their enforcement muscle, anyway?

    Hey, bought and paid for, baybeeee!
    😀

    I Got Bupkis, Election Critic Extraordinaire (a88bfa)

  48. And you won’t find a lot of Americans having issues with shutting down commercial piracy inside the USA, nor Americans having issues with shutting it down outside the USA.

    Actually, I see a lot of people having trouble with the idea of shutting down any kind of piracy inside the US. Piracy is a problem. I was reading people here say they thought Hollywood is just fighting against new technology. I disagree with that.

    SOPA and PIPA are bad laws that dealt with a real problem in the wrong way. They needed to go away. But in seeking anti-piracy laws, the entertainment industry isn’t just a dinosaur fighting against progress.

    MayBee (081489)

  49. He voted for it because he knew it wouldn’t pass.

    Chris Dodd: the poster boy for pay-to-play government.

    mojo (8096f2)

  50. Why do the left hate gays who are catholic?

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  51. It’s all the right’s fault that kids do drugs ot pass time.

    /Leftys

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  52. to*

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)


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