[rumori] Oh shit! Maggots proliferating!

suzi [rumori] Oh shit! Maggots proliferating!
Sat, 29 May 1999 14:34:32 -0400 (00928002872, 199905291834.OAA11876atweb2.chek.com)

>as a i mentioned before, the Internet would not be where it is today
>without freely exchangable ideas and code.
>Tim Berners-Lee and the rest of the CERN physics geeks who INVENTED the
>web could have *patented* HTML, made it secret (no "view source") and
>tried to sell it. But if they had there would have been no explosion in
>Internet use, no cyberspace, no internet economy, certainly no stupid
>graphic designers making a living off web site development. The whole
>reason the web took off was that it was SO easy, and it didnt require any
>proprietary development kits or what-have-you (and that is precisely why
>something like Java hasnt taken off).

This is the one of the best arguments I have heard so far.

That was a great copyright story btw....
I have some interesting info I'd like to pass on. I work for a university library in the interlibrary loan department, which for those of you who may not know, is a department who searches other libraries for materials our library doesn't own, and tries to obtain it for our patrons. Since our library was hit by a flood 2 years ago, this service has become invaluable.

At any rate, lately it has come to the attention of the American Libraries Association, that members of the American Publisher's Association (bear with me here...) have been sending out people incognito to various libraries to inquire about their photocopying policies. The trick is, they are trying to get people to slip and tell them something that would enable the Publishing Association to come in and tear apart the collections in an investigation for copyright infringement, even if the library in question is above the board on their policies.

Now, the publishing association is mad that people can go in and check out materials without paying a fee (ie with a regular ole library card.) They also believe that interlibrary loan should be illegal. They'd like to charge everytime someone obtains a piece of information, obviously because they are the benefactors. Now in the age of the internet, and free acces to all sorts of information, this mode of thinking is obviously outdated. But that doesn't keep them from trying.

With computers, we have been able to implement all sorts of expediting proceedures that enable our patrons to receive their materials more quickly. Right now, we are emailing our patrons their articles. This has brought up all sorts of conflicts about copyright because theoretically the patron could then go email the article to 20 friends. For free. Nevermind the fact that if we were limited to hard copy, they could just scan it in themselves and do the same thing. Or take it to Kinkos and make 1,000 copies and hand it out on street corners.

My point with this story is to illustrate how tenuous the copyright situation is in some segments of society. The publications of journals online adds to the complication.
So, I applaud everyone's efforts to combat the hysterical rantings of the grey dayers. I do believe that people's work should give them some amount of recompense, but not at the expense of their audience. If we can't access and use their information, and then re-work it into something new that continues to challenge thinking individuals, then why did they bother to write it in the first place?

Anyway, I hope this information has been useful to those of you fighting the good fight.


********Suzi "Challenging the attention span******* ******of mere mortals" Cole***********************
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