[free-sklyarov] Another ebook "processor"

Karsten M. Self kmself at ix.netcom.com
Sat Aug 18 10:56:32 PDT 2001

on Sat, Aug 18, 2001 at 09:32:37AM -0700, Bob Smart (bobds at blorch.org) wrote:
> On Friday 17 August 2001 01:26, you wrote:
> > on Thu, Aug 16, 2001 at 11:04:41AM -0700, Jeme A Brelin (jeme at brelin.net) 
> wrote:
> > > On Thu, 16 Aug 2001, Sonja V. Tideman wrote:
> > > > Copyright is a delicate bargain.  The government creates a
> > > > temporary artificial monopoly on a creative work to allow the
> > > > creator to gain a profit.
> > >
> > > This is the propaganda of the copyright industry and an absolute
> > > lie.
> >
> > It *is* the original intent of copyright.
> Ummm...actually, not it most definitely is NOT the original intent.
> Copyright was established as a mechanism to enrich society, and any
> economic incentives for authors that accompany it are merely the means
> to that end, not the end itself.

Believe me, I understand the concept.  Authors are granted an income
stream so that society may benefit from their writings.  Without the
monopoly-derived profit, no writing.  Without a public benefit, no
justification for the monopoly grant.

> > > The public (through their agency, the government) restricts, for a
> > > limited time, the natural rights of the majority to distribute
> > > copies or derivatives of individual expressions of an idea and
> > > reserves those rights exclusively, for that same limited time, for
> > > the creator of the work AS LONG AS THE CREATOR MAKES THE WORK
> > > PUBLIC.


> > For the author of, say, a serial work, the power to impose a
> > scarcity of competing versions of a work he's created himself can
> > have a significant economic benefit.  Consider, say, the prolific
> > author of our times, Gates.  Continued availability via public
> > publication of earlier versions of his "Windows" saga would likely
> > significantly impact sales of newer releases in the series.
> > Copyright is the right to make, or not to make, copies.
> Yes, let's DO consider Mr. Gates.  He's not an author, he derives his
> living from the intellectual effort of other people--and despite
> creating NOTHING, he winds up with the billions, and the people who
> actually write the software wind up with considerably less.  

I'm not positing Mr. Gates because I'm a champion or fan of his (far
from it).  This *is* however a case of business-via-planned-obsolesence,
facilitated by the fact that copyright law gives him the right to
authorize, or withhold the authorization for, making copies.  The
author's ability to profit may derive either from making, or not making
copies.  So long as this occurs within the normal span of copyright (and
life plus 90 years is completely rediculous, believe you me), this
doesn't concern me.

> This is copyright as a mechanism for enriching speculators and
> merchants--but clearly NOT a mechanism that enriches the creators of
> the works.

You're now on to a different (though interesting in its own way) topic.
Note however that a world in which authors aren't allowed to sell at
least limited rights would be one in which they couldn't profit.  Again,
I agree that present circumstances are often rather unfortunate.

Karsten M. Self <kmself at ix.netcom.com>          http://kmself.home.netcom.com/
 What part of "Gestalt" don't you understand?             There is no K5 cabal
  http://gestalt-system.sourceforge.net/               http://www.kuro5hin.org
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