Archive for the ‘trademark & copyright’ Category

Copyright as a Fundamentalist Religion

An advantage of doing a lot of original research on copyright, and the history of copyright in particular, is that you start seeing very strong parallels to previous power struggles in society. I frequently say in myAkeynotes that there is nothing new under the sun.

What is happening now with the copyright industry vs. the people is practically identical to what happened when the printing press was introduced and the Catholic Church declared war on the self-educated people. In both cases, it is not really about religion or law, but about the very simple principle that people are people and that powerful people will use their power to keep their power.

What is interesting here, that a senior individual in the Swedish business pointed out to me, is thatAcopyright defenders are acting like religious fundamentalists. They aren't religious in the actual sense of the word, of course. But they areAacting and reacting as if they were religious about copyright, as if it was something that wasn't allowed to be questioned.AEnrique Dans observes that they are attacking not just copyright reformists, but anybody who evenAquestions copyright, with an emotional and aggressive fervor: calling the reformistsApirates,Athieves,Afreetards et cetera. In another time and place,Aheretics would have been the word of choice.

.:falkvinge.net->

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Posted: February 7th, 2011
at 3:15pm by Koookiecrumbles


Categories: trademark & copyright

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China Joins the Patent Trolls

Image source

Steve Lohr claims to examine China’s new push on innovation, but it is really about the policy to promote issuing more patentsAlink here. The government is actually providing incentives to increase the annual patent harvest, including bonuses, better housing, and tax breaks. Finally, it has set yearly targets, currently rising to 1,000,000 by 2015.

As I thought about this, I realized that patents have become a tool of international competition policy. If you are behind in the patent race, file like mad and be prepared to litigate. You may win or you can make it so expensive for others that they will agree to cross license at modest or no cost. Pretty smart, those guys. They have learned the lesson of Microsoft, Intel, Hewlett-Packard, etc. The road to monopoly riches lies through the kingdom of patents.

Sooner or later, this competitive challenge will force the US, as well as other rich developed countries to make a choice. But first we will have to recognize what is happening, Then we can face the need to decide either to abandon patents or see our lead in new technology disappear and with it much of the gains we derive from such monopolies.

I would expect that the existing patent giants will resist abandoning the patent system. They have a huge stake in its continued existence as it protects them from competition for decades and with clever follow-on invention, permanently. And they may finally decide to work with the Chinese patent holders as they feel better off with an oligopoly than with free competitive markets.

It is difficult to feel confident that our government will make the right choice, given the huge political power of the patent giants. If so, so much the worse for the average consumer. One must be particularly pessimistic because of the hold that the concepts of patents as property (even if it is only intellectual property) deserving of the same respect as physical property and of violations as robbery or piracy, to use the current word of choice in the political battle. It is really hard to convince the average consumer of the huge magnitude of the dead-weight loss they all suffer, most especially from the fees of the patent lawyers.

.:againstmonopoly.org->

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Posted: January 2nd, 2011
at 11:22pm by Koookiecrumbles


Categories: trademark & copyright

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Mark Cuban on Patents and College Football Playoffs

There you have it. In this great country of ours some one thinks they can patent a solution to this problem. Mind you, they aren't saying they can do anything about it. They are not saying they even tried. Nor are they saying they are going to try to solve this problem and invest time and money. They are merely saying that they got the patent office to approve their idea and if anyone wants to try to solve this problem they have to go through them and their high powered patent attorneys.

The President of the United States wants a playoff system, and so does almost every college football fan, but forgettaboutit because there is a method patent on it.

.:blogmaverick.com->

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Posted: December 17th, 2010
at 10:38pm by Koookiecrumbles


Categories: games,trademark & copyright

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Latest iPhone Camera Patents

.:patentlyapple.com->

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Posted: December 12th, 2010
at 12:09pm by Koookiecrumbles


Categories: apple,trademark & copyright

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10 Myths About Copyright

11) "So I can’t ever reproduce anything?"

Myth #11 (I didn’t want to change the now-famous title of this article) is actually one sometimes generated in response to this list of 10 myths. No, copyright isn’t an iron-clad lock on what can be published. Indeed, by many arguments, by providing reward to authors, it encourages them to not just allow, but fund the publication and distribution of works so that they reach far more people than they would if they were free or unprotected — and unpromoted. However, it must be remembered that copyright has two main purposes, namely the protection of the author’s right to obtain commercial benefit from valuable work, and more recently the protection of the author’s general right to control how a work is used.

While copyright law makes it technically illegal to reproduce almost any new creative work (other than under fair use) without permission, if the work is unregistered and has no real commercial value, it gets very little protection. The author in this case can sue for an injunction against the publication, actual damages from a violation, and possibly court costs. Actual damages means actual money potentially lost by the author due to publication, plus any money gained by the defendant. But if a work has no commercial value, such as a typical E-mail message or conversational USENET posting, the actual damages will be zero. Only the most vindictive (and rich) author would sue when no damages are possible, and the courts don’t look kindly on vindictive plaintiffs, unless the defendants are even more vindictive.

The author’s right to control what is done with a work, however, has some validity, even if it has no commercial value. If you feel you need to violate a copyright "because you can get away with it because the work has no value" you should ask yourself why you’re doing it. In general, respecting the rights of creators to control their creations is a principle many advocate adhering to.

.:copyrightwar.blogspot.com->

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Posted: November 18th, 2010
at 2:56am by Koookiecrumbles


Categories: law,trademark & copyright

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English Heritage Claims Copyright on Stonehenge

The outfit which appropriates all the best bits of England then charges us Englishmen to get in and see them has been pointing out to photo libraries and owners of image banks that it owns Stonehenge so it should get a cut of any sales made of a picture of the iconic stones. The fotoLibra photo library posted a letter it had received from English Heritage on its blog. In it the organisation says that it, and only it has the right to use images of the six thousand year-old monument for commercial purposes.

"Please be aware that any images of Stonehenge can not be used for any commercial interest," it wrote. "All commercial interest to sell images must be directed to English Heritage." The blogger wonders if there can be "any law that states that it is illegal to use images of Stonehenge for any commercial interest?" Asks: "If an image of Stonehenge is so used, how could they possibly police the usage?" he had a a quick browse through a number of rights-managed and royalty-free online picture libraries and came up with list of half a dozen picture libraries owning hundreds of picture of Stonehenge.

The outfit which appropriates all the best bits of England then charges us Englishmen to get in and see them has been pointing out to photo libraries and owners of image banks that it owns Stonehenge so it should get a cut of any sales made of a picture of the iconic stones.The fotoLibra photo library posted a letter it had received from English Heritage on its blog.In it the organisation says that it, and only it has the right to use images of the six thousand year-old monument for commercial purposes."Please be aware that any images of Stonehenge can not be used for any commercial interest," it wrote.

"All commercial interest to sell images must be directed to English Heritage."The blogger wonders if there can be "any law that states that it is illegal to use images of Stonehenge for any commercial interest?"Asks: "If an image of Stonehenge is so used, how could they possibly police the usage?" he had a a quick browse through a number of rights-managed and royalty-free online picture libraries and came up with list of half a dozen picture libraries owning hundreds of picture of Stonehenge.

.:thinq.co.uk->

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Posted: November 16th, 2010
at 4:45pm by Koookiecrumbles


Categories: architecture,photo,trademark & copyright

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Larry Lessig Calls For Overhaul Of Copyright System

Influential copyright scholar Larry Lessig yesterday issued a call for the World Intellectual Property Organization to lead an overhaul of the copyright system which he says does not and never will make sense in the digital environment. AA functioning copyright system must provide the incentives needed for creative professionals, but must also protect the freedoms necessary for scientific research and amateur creativity to flourish. AIn the digital environment, copyright has failed at both, said Lessig. "And its failure is not an accident," he said. "It's implicit in the architecture of copyright as we inherited it. It does not make sense in a digital environment." AThe copyright system will "never work on the internet. It'll either cause people to stop creating or it'll cause a revolution," said Lessig, citing a growing system of copyright "abolitionism" online in response to a worrying tendency to criminalise the younger generation.

.:ip-watch.org->

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Posted: November 13th, 2010
at 6:53pm by Koookiecrumbles


Categories: trademark & copyright

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UK Copyright Laws to be Reviewed

Britain’s intellectual property laws are to be reviewed to "make them fit for the internet age," Prime Minister David Cameron has announced. AHe said the law could be relaxed to allow greater use of copyright material without the owner’s permission.

.:bbc.co.uk->

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Posted: November 11th, 2010
at 10:40pm by Koookiecrumbles


Categories: trademark & copyright

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It’s On Like Donkey Kong

We could be way off on this one, but the first time we ever heard anyone use the phrase, "It’s on like Donkey Kong" was back in 1992 when Ice Cube spit it as the opening line on Now I Gotta Wet ‘Cha, a track on his album, The Predator. Strange then that Nintendo today announced it’s seeking to trademark the phrase in honor of the upcoming launch of Donkey Kong Country Returns. AIn a brief, trademark-laden statement, Nintendo said it has filed a request with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to take ownership of the "pop-culture phrase."

"For those unfamiliar with the term, ‘It’s on like Donkey Kong’ is an old, popular Nintendo phrase that has a number of possible interpretations depending on how it’s used," Nintendo stated. "In addition to Nintendo’s use, it has been used in popular music, television and film over the years, pointing to Donkey Kong’s status as an enduring pop-culture icon and video game superstar."

The ever-reliable Urban Dictionary credits Ice Cube in one entry and then a Robert Mori of San Francisco, California, some dude who evidently ran an arcade in the 1980s: "Rob would close down his Arcade for the night, he would grab a Colt 45 Tall Can, slam it and scream, ‘It’s on like Donkey Kong!’ He would then proceed to go out and get wasted and try to get laid." (Urban Dictionary everybody!)

.:wii.gamespy.com->

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Posted: November 10th, 2010
at 10:45pm by Koookiecrumbles


Categories: myninjaplease,games,trademark & copyright,americana

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