30 October 2012

Day 127: Copyright Scam

There is currently a court case going on concerning a man from Thailand who went to go study in the US, and to be able to pay for his studies and other living expenses, he asked his friends and family to send him foreign editions of textbooks, which he would then sell in the US, as they can be bought cheaper there.

So now this guy has been sued for copyright infringement and lost, though the decision was appealed and is now being heard in the Supreme Court.

The point which is being debated is whether copyrighted stuff which was made and created aborad can be bought and then sold in the US without requires the copyright owner's decision.

This whole care opens up a whole can of worms on the whole 'copyright ordeal':

the stakes could prove enormous for those who buy and sell books, movies, music, artwork, perhaps even furniture, electronics, automobiles, and clothing -- anything that may be considered "intellectual property."

"The idea -- upheld by the Supreme Court since 1908 -- is that once a copyright holder legally sells a product initially, the ownership claim is then exhausted, giving the buyer the power to resell, destroy, donate, whatever. It's a limited idea -- involving only a buyer's distribution right, not the power to reproduce that DVD or designer dress for sale."

"We're going to help the global economy with this," said Theodore Olson, an attorney with Gibson Dunn hired by the publisher. "The whole idea of the copyright laws is to provide people with an incentive to create books, movies, or other works of art. If you take away that incentive, you're not going to have creators out there doing things that give us pleasure or educate us."

"--Libraries would have to either purge their stacks of every foreign-printed work, pay a royalty, or essentially go out of the public lending service."

I mean, the whole textbook business is such a scam -- where people are forced to buy very expensive textbooks for school, which sometimes -- you do not even really need. Or where you have to buy a book, and you want to save yourself some money because hey, school's already so expensive -- and you want to buy it second-hand -- but then it turns out that you need the 9th Edition, which juuuuust got out this year, and you can only find the 8th edition version -- and then when you compare them, there's only a few sentences added and some punctuation corrected.

So now this guy is getting sued, for buying cheaper textbooks overseas and selling them in the US. The issue isn't even 'who owns what' -- but what profit was made and 'that profit should have been mine'. There's a general mentality that everyone has the 'right to make profit' in the liberal economic and democratic system -- that's exactly what this guy is doing. He's playing the Game we've all accepted and agreed upon to play: He saw an opportunity to make money and he took it -- isn't that what all the textbook companies do? They see they can make a lot of money and then they do it?

The whole point of 'incentive' that if this copyright points goes down the toilet, that people won't create 'art' and 'entertainment' anymore is such BS. Yes, everyone should have access to basic necessities to be able to live a life of comfort -- there's no reason why people should not do something simply because they are not getting a grotesque amount of money. There's lots of people creating 'free stuff' simply because they enjoy doing it and want to share what they create with everyone else without expecting anything in return.

If everyone has equal access to resources to live a life of comfort and explore career possibilities without monetary restrictions such as in the Equal Money System -- people would still create art and entertainment and do it because they like doing it -- and without going into Greed of wanting a shitload of money just because you can.

Investigate Equal Money -- we can make a better version of this reality.

Also check out the College Conspiracy documentary to get some perspective on our current educational system of a scam.

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1 comment:

  1. Yes - and the point of people creating things only if there's 'incentive' means that the things are beings created for profit/to make money, and not as actual expression because it's what they'd really like to do or really care about. Imagine what art and entertainment would be like if the survival/money point was taken out of the picture by having everyone supported in the first place, not using money as a carrot on a stick as if we are slave-drivers of each other - "make art for me or you won't get paid" is essentially what's going on.
    Thanks for sharing this news & common sense perspectives for consideration.