“Intellectual Property Should Be Respectedâ€â€”But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Oct 9, 2010.

  1. One of the ironies of the whole “intellectual property†circus is that those
    who thump their chests most loudly about “respecting†it and not “stealingâ€
    often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what they preach.

    Look at this report
    <http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/10/copied-pleadings-show-theres-no-honor-among-antipiracy-lawyers.ars>
    (I don’t think it’s even the first such one I’ve read) showing lawyers
    sending out copyright infringement notices often indiscriminately copy from
    each other.

    So whatever happened to the “respect for copyright†that they keep exhorting
    others to obey? Do they know what the term is for people who say one thing
    and do another?
    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Oct 9, 2010
    #1
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  2. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Sweetpea Guest

    Re: ´Intellectual Property Should BeRespected”—But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Sat, 09 Oct 2010 21:51:43 +1300, Lawrence D'Oliveiro wrote:

    > One of the ironies of the whole “intellectual property†circus is that


    .... there is no such a thing as "intellectual property".

    There are:

    copyrights - rights (that expire after 50 years) to make copies of
    artistic works, and

    Patents - donations of inventions to the public domain in return for a
    time-limited (20 years) monopoly over using those inventions.

    That is all. Both are quite different in scope and in purpose.


    --
    "Filtering the Internet is like trying to boil the ocean"
    Sweetpea, Oct 9, 2010
    #2
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  3. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    peterwn Guest

    Re: “Intellectual Property Should Be Respected”—But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Oct 10, 9:14 am, Sweetpea <> wrote:
    > On Sat, 09 Oct 2010 21:51:43 +1300, Lawrence D'Oliveiro wrote:
    > > One of the ironies of the whole “intellectual property” circus is that

    >
    > ... there is no such a thing as "intellectual property".
    >
    > There are:
    >
    > copyrights - rights (that expire after 50 years) to make copies of
    > artistic works, and
    >
    > Patents - donations of inventions to the public domain in return for a
    > time-limited (20 years) monopoly over using those inventions.
    >
    > That is all. Both are quite different in scope and in purpose.
    >


    There are also trademarks, registered designs (called design patents
    in USA) trade secrets (protected via 'breach of confidence',
    employment law and 'restraint of trade') and common law protection of
    a brand against 'passing off' (the Advocaat case, or in NZ the
    Klissers bakery case).

    'Intellecual property' is a commonly accepted term for all these
    classes of property.
    peterwn, Oct 10, 2010
    #3
  4. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Sweetpea Guest

    Re: ´Intellectual Property Should BeRespected”—But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Sat, 09 Oct 2010 16:57:01 -0700, peterwn wrote:

    >> ... there is no such a thing as "intellectual property".
    >>
    >> There are:
    >>
    >> copyrights - rights (that expire after 50 years) to make copies of
    >> artistic works, and
    >>
    >> Patents - donations of inventions to the public domain in return for a
    >> time-limited (20 years) monopoly over using those inventions.
    >>
    >> That is all. Both are quite different in scope and in purpose.
    >>
    >>

    > There are also trademarks, registered designs (called design patents in
    > USA) trade secrets (protected via 'breach of confidence', employment law
    > and 'restraint of trade') and common law protection of a brand against
    > 'passing off' (the Advocaat case, or in NZ the Klissers bakery case).


    Yeah - sorry forgot about trademarks. Brands are trademarks.

    Trade secrets? What can those possibly be if they're not capable of being
    protected by copyright or by patent?


    > 'Intellecual property' is a commonly accepted term for all these classes
    > of property.


    Common it may be, Universally accepted it is not.


    --
    "Filtering the Internet is like trying to boil the ocean"
    Sweetpea, Oct 10, 2010
    #4
  5. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    victor Guest

    Re: “Intellectual Property Should Be Respectedâ€---But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On 10/10/2010 2:38 p.m., Sweetpea wrote:
    ..
    >
    > Trade secrets? What can those possibly be if they're not capable of being
    > protected by copyright or by patent?
    >
    >

    Information protected by non-disclosure agreements.
    victor, Oct 10, 2010
    #5
  6. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Sweetpea Guest

    Re: ´Intellectual Property Should BeRespected¡---But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 18:21:12 +1300, victor wrote:

    >> Trade secrets? What can those possibly be if they're not capable of
    >> being protected by copyright or by patent?

    >
    > Information protected by non-disclosure agreements.


    That doesn't make it "property" - just makes it information that someone
    has agreed to not share with someone else.


    --
    "Filtering the Internet is like trying to boil the ocean"
    Sweetpea, Oct 10, 2010
    #6
  7. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Gordon Guest

    Re: ?Intellectual Property Should Be Respected??But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On 2010-10-09, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <_zealand> wrote:
    > One of the ironies of the whole ?intellectual property? circus is that those
    > who thump their chests most loudly about ?respecting? it and not ?stealing?
    > often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what they preach.


    Yep, the most conservative staes in the good old U S of A have the highest
    abortion rate. Applies to countries too.

    One sees faults in others one has ones self.

    Etc
    Gordon, Oct 10, 2010
    #7
  8. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Ted Guest

    Re: ?Intellectual Property Should Be Respected??But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 09:17:39 -0500, "impossible"
    <> wrote:

    >
    >
    >"Gordon" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> On 2010-10-09, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <_zealand>
    >> wrote:
    >>> One of the ironies of the whole ?intellectual property? circus is that
    >>> those
    >>> who thump their chests most loudly about ?respecting? it and not
    >>> ?stealing?
    >>> often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what they
    >>> preach.

    >>
    >> Yep, the most conservative staes in the good old U S of A have the highest
    >> abortion rate. Applies to countries too.
    >>
    >> One sees faults in others one has ones self.
    >>

    >
    >So are you for or against theft of intellectual property?


    "Theft" is the wrong word.

    From Wikipedia ("Copyright infringement"):

    "Copyright owners frequently refer to copyright infringement as
    "theft". In law copyright infringement does not refer to actual theft,
    but an instance where a person exercises one of the exclusive rights
    of the copyright owner without authorisation. Courts have
    distinguished between copyright infringement and theft, holding, for
    instance, in the United States Supreme Court case Dowling v. United
    States (1985) that bootleg phonorecords did not constitute stolen
    property and that "...interference with copyright does not easily
    equate with theft, conversion, or fraud. The Copyright Act even
    employs a separate term of art to define one who misappropriates a
    copyright... 'an infringer of the copyright.'" In the case of
    copyright infringement the province guaranteed to the copyright owner
    by copyright law is invaded, i.e. exclusive rights, but no control,
    physical or otherwise, is taken over the copyright, nor is the
    copyright owner wholly deprive of using the copyrighted work or
    exercising the exclusive rights owned.
    Ted, Oct 10, 2010
    #8
  9. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Ted Guest

    Re: ?Intellectual Property Should Be Respected??But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 20:02:21 -0500, "impossible"
    <> wrote:

    >
    >
    >"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 09:17:39 -0500, "impossible"
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>"Gordon" <> wrote in message
    >>>news:...
    >>>> On 2010-10-09, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <_zealand>
    >>>> wrote:
    >>>>> One of the ironies of the whole ?intellectual property? circus is that
    >>>>> those
    >>>>> who thump their chests most loudly about ?respecting? it and not
    >>>>> ?stealing?
    >>>>> often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what they
    >>>>> preach.
    >>>>
    >>>> Yep, the most conservative staes in the good old U S of A have the
    >>>> highest
    >>>> abortion rate. Applies to countries too.
    >>>>
    >>>> One sees faults in others one has ones self.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>So are you for or against theft of intellectual property?

    >>
    >> "Theft" is the wrong word.
    >>

    >
    >Not at all. If you infringe on someone's intellectual property, you have
    >taken away from that person the benefit of their exclusive right to dispose
    >of that property as they see fit.


    They still retain the legal exclusive right to dispose of that
    property though, even though the exclusive right has been violated in
    the one instance. That's materially different from theft. For
    "theft" to apply in the traditional sense, they would have had to lose
    the actual monopoly itself.

    It's a different concept, and a different word or phrase, for example
    "copyright infringement", should be used.
    Ted, Oct 11, 2010
    #9
  10. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Ted Guest

    Re: ?Intellectual Property Should Be Respected??But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 06:39:18 -0500, "impossible"
    <> wrote:

    >
    >"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 20:02:21 -0500, "impossible"
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>news:...
    >>>> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 09:17:39 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>"Gordon" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>news:...
    >>>>>> On 2010-10-09, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <_zealand>
    >>>>>> wrote:
    >>>>>>> One of the ironies of the whole ?intellectual property? circus is
    >>>>>>> that
    >>>>>>> those
    >>>>>>> who thump their chests most loudly about ?respecting? it and not
    >>>>>>> ?stealing?
    >>>>>>> often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what they
    >>>>>>> preach.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> Yep, the most conservative staes in the good old U S of A have the
    >>>>>> highest
    >>>>>> abortion rate. Applies to countries too.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> One sees faults in others one has ones self.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>So are you for or against theft of intellectual property?
    >>>>
    >>>> "Theft" is the wrong word.
    >>>>
    >>>Not at all. If you infringe on someone's intellectual property, you have
    >>>taken away from that person the benefit of their exclusive right to
    >>>dispose
    >>> of that property as they see fit. In the case of copyrighted works that
    >>> are
    >>> distributed without the permission of the copyright holder (for example,
    >>> music, videos, software distributed posted on unauthorized online sites),
    >>> then the thievery is compounded by everyone who downloads the bootlegged
    >>> copies.
    >>>

    >
    >[Hmmm...deleting the parts of your previous posts that were crucial to your
    >original argument isn't cool. Let's restore all of that here, along with the
    >parts of my post that you deleted where I crush your arguiment. You
    >wouldn't want to be mistaken for some kind of Larry D'Loserite sock puppet,
    >would you?]
    >
    >>>> From Wikipedia ("Copyright infringement"):
    >>>>
    >>>> "Copyright owners frequently refer to copyright infringement as
    >>>> "theft". In law copyright infringement does not refer to actual theft,
    >>>> but an instance where a person exercises one of the exclusive rights
    >>>> of the copyright owner without authorisation. Courts have
    >>>> distinguished between copyright infringement and theft, holding, for
    >>>> instance, in the United States Supreme Court case Dowling v. United
    >>>> States (1985) that bootleg phonorecords did not constitute stolen
    >>>> property and that "...interference with copyright does not easily
    >>>> equate with theft, conversion, or fraud. The Copyright Act even
    >>>> employs a separate term of art to define one who misappropriates a
    >>>> copyright... 'an infringer of the copyright.'" In the case of
    >>>> copyright infringement the province guaranteed to the copyright owner
    >>>> by copyright law is invaded, i.e. exclusive rights, but no control,
    >>>> physical or otherwise, is taken over the copyright, nor is the
    >>>> copyright owner wholly deprive of using the copyrighted work or
    >>>> exercising the exclusive rights owned.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>> That's Wikipedia for you -- one person's opinion, referencing a
    >>> 35-year-old
    >>> court ruling that pre-dates the (public) internet and has been
    >>> subsequently
    >>> rendered obsolete.
    >>>
    >>> See, for example the US No Electronic Theft Act of 1997, which makes it a
    >>> federal crime to engage in copyright infringement, even where there is no
    >>> monetary profit or other commercial gain from the infringement. Maximum
    >>> penalties under this law are 5 years in prison and up to $250,000 in
    >>> fines.
    >>>
    >>> http://www.copyright.gov/docs/2265_stat.html
    >>>
    >>> Or, if you prefer the Wikipedia summary:
    >>>
    >>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NET_Act
    >>>

    >>

    >
    >[Done. You can continue now].


    OK

    >
    >> They still retain the legal exclusive right to dispose of that
    >> property though, even though the exclusive right has been violated in
    >> the one instance. That's materially different from theft. For
    >> "theft" to apply in the traditional sense, they would have had to lose
    >> the actual monopoly itself.
    >>

    >
    >When music/video/software pirates post copyrighted works on the internet,
    >the copyright holders have lost their exclusive right to dispose of that
    >property as they see fit.


    They still have it, and they can still dispose of it. This is
    different from theft, where the thieved-from lose altogether what is
    taken.

    > Their monopoly of distribution, if you will, has
    >been stolen from them -- by thieves.


    No. They still have the monopoly. It has been broken - they did not
    get paid for the infringement - but they still hold the monopoly.

    Another way of putting it is that with property like a car, say, you
    can only get it thieved from you once. After the theft, you don't have
    the car any more. But with copyright, you can be thieved from again
    and again. The two concepts of "theft" are different, and need to
    described by different words to prevent being confused for each other.

    >
    >> It's a different concept, and a different word or phrase, for example
    >> "copyright infringement", should be used.

    >
    >Why?


    I've said why at exhaustive length above.

    > So the parents of cyber-thieves can feel better about the crimes
    >committed by their offspring?


    No. It's so we are clear about the distinction.

    > It's no different than stealing any other
    >property.


    Yes it is.

    > If something doesn't belong to you, you either get the permission
    >of the owners to use it or you leave it alone.


    The thing that doesn't belong to the infringer is the monopoly. The
    infringer violates the monopoly; he does not "use" it. To "use" it,
    he would need to impose the monopoly conditions on others. This is not
    "theft" as it's usually understood.

    > Why is this concept so
    >difficult for you to grasp?


    I don't agree that it is a single concept. My opinion is that either
    you are confused, or that you are trying to confuse others.
    Ted, Oct 11, 2010
    #10
  11. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Ted Guest

    Re: ?Intellectual Property Should Be Respected??But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 19:36:25 -0500, "impossible"
    <> wrote:

    >
    >
    >"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 06:39:18 -0500, "impossible"
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >>>
    >>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>news:...
    >>>> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 20:02:21 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>news:...
    >>>>>> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 09:17:39 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>"Gordon" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>> On 2010-10-09, Lawrence D'Oliveiro
    >>>>>>>> <_zealand>
    >>>>>>>> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>> One of the ironies of the whole ?intellectual property? circus is
    >>>>>>>>> that
    >>>>>>>>> those
    >>>>>>>>> who thump their chests most loudly about ?respecting? it and not
    >>>>>>>>> ?stealing?
    >>>>>>>>> often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what they
    >>>>>>>>> preach.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> Yep, the most conservative staes in the good old U S of A have the
    >>>>>>>> highest
    >>>>>>>> abortion rate. Applies to countries too.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> One sees faults in others one has ones self.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>So are you for or against theft of intellectual property?
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> "Theft" is the wrong word.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>Not at all. If you infringe on someone's intellectual property, you have
    >>>>>taken away from that person the benefit of their exclusive right to
    >>>>>dispose
    >>>>> of that property as they see fit. In the case of copyrighted works
    >>>>> that
    >>>>> are
    >>>>> distributed without the permission of the copyright holder (for
    >>>>> example,
    >>>>> music, videos, software distributed posted on unauthorized online
    >>>>> sites),
    >>>>> then the thievery is compounded by everyone who downloads the
    >>>>> bootlegged
    >>>>> copies.
    >>>>>
    >>>
    >>>[Hmmm...deleting the parts of your previous posts that were crucial to
    >>>your
    >>>original argument isn't cool. Let's restore all of that here, along with
    >>>the
    >>>parts of my post that you deleted where I crush your arguiment. You
    >>>wouldn't want to be mistaken for some kind of Larry D'Loserite sock
    >>>puppet,
    >>>would you?]
    >>>
    >>>>>> From Wikipedia ("Copyright infringement"):
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> "Copyright owners frequently refer to copyright infringement as
    >>>>>> "theft". In law copyright infringement does not refer to actual theft,
    >>>>>> but an instance where a person exercises one of the exclusive rights
    >>>>>> of the copyright owner without authorisation. Courts have
    >>>>>> distinguished between copyright infringement and theft, holding, for
    >>>>>> instance, in the United States Supreme Court case Dowling v. United
    >>>>>> States (1985) that bootleg phonorecords did not constitute stolen
    >>>>>> property and that "...interference with copyright does not easily
    >>>>>> equate with theft, conversion, or fraud. The Copyright Act even
    >>>>>> employs a separate term of art to define one who misappropriates a
    >>>>>> copyright... 'an infringer of the copyright.'" In the case of
    >>>>>> copyright infringement the province guaranteed to the copyright owner
    >>>>>> by copyright law is invaded, i.e. exclusive rights, but no control,
    >>>>>> physical or otherwise, is taken over the copyright, nor is the
    >>>>>> copyright owner wholly deprive of using the copyrighted work or
    >>>>>> exercising the exclusive rights owned.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>> That's Wikipedia for you -- one person's opinion, referencing a
    >>>>> 35-year-old
    >>>>> court ruling that pre-dates the (public) internet and has been
    >>>>> subsequently
    >>>>> rendered obsolete.
    >>>>>
    >>>>> See, for example the US No Electronic Theft Act of 1997, which makes it
    >>>>> a
    >>>>> federal crime to engage in copyright infringement, even where there is
    >>>>> no
    >>>>> monetary profit or other commercial gain from the infringement. Maximum
    >>>>> penalties under this law are 5 years in prison and up to $250,000 in
    >>>>> fines.
    >>>>>
    >>>>> http://www.copyright.gov/docs/2265_stat.html
    >>>>>
    >>>>> Or, if you prefer the Wikipedia summary:
    >>>>>
    >>>>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NET_Act
    >>>>>
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>[Done. You can continue now].

    >>
    >> OK
    >>
    >>>
    >>>> They still retain the legal exclusive right to dispose of that
    >>>> property though, even though the exclusive right has been violated in
    >>>> the one instance. That's materially different from theft. For
    >>>> "theft" to apply in the traditional sense, they would have had to lose
    >>>> the actual monopoly itself.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>When music/video/software pirates post copyrighted works on the internet,
    >>>the copyright holders have lost their exclusive right to dispose of that
    >>>property as they see fit.

    >>
    >> They still have it, and they can still dispose of it.

    >
    >Don't be ridiculous! How can someone exercise exclusive rights over their
    >copyrighted works if countless others can do with those works whatever they
    >please?


    "Countless others" is your supposition. It may or may not be true.

    Suppose only one person violates the copyright. It should be clear to
    you that the position of the copyright holder is not much changed. He
    has lost a potential sale (maybe not even an actual sale) but he can
    still use the monopoly to try to persuade others to buy only through
    him.

    I agree, however, that if no-one used the copyright holder's services,
    and instead everyone freely took copies, then in that case the
    copyright holder would get no benefit from having the monopoly. In
    that case, "theft" would have much the same meaning as it usually
    does.

    >
    >> This is
    >> different from theft, where the thieved-from lose altogether what is
    >> taken.
    >>

    >
    >You're just playing with words. Theft is theft.


    I think rather that you are playing with words. You are trying to
    make copyright infringement sound more serious than it is.

    >
    >>>When music/video/software pirates post copyrighted works on the internet,
    >>>the copyright holders have lost their exclusive right to dispose of that
    >>>property as they see fit.

    >
    >>> Their monopoly of distribution, if you will, has
    >>>been stolen from them -- by thieves.

    >>
    >> No. They still have the monopoly. It has been broken - they did not
    >> get paid for the infringement - but they still hold the monopoly.
    >>

    >
    ><sigh> A monopoly that is broken ceases to be a monopoly.


    No, it becomes an infringed-on monopoly. It still exists and can
    still be used against others.

    >
    >> Another way of putting it is that with property like a car, say, you
    >> can only get it thieved from you once. After the theft, you don't have
    >> the car any more. But with copyright, you can be thieved from again
    >> and again. The two concepts of "theft" are different, and need to
    >> described by different words to prevent being confused for each other.
    >>

    >
    >A theft -- singular. Many thefts -- plural. I think that should suffice for
    >a distinction.


    So you are making a distinction...

    >
    >>>
    >>>> It's a different concept, and a different word or phrase, for example
    >>>> "copyright infringement", should be used.
    >>>
    >>>Why?

    >>
    >> I've said why at exhaustive length above.
    >>
    >>> So the parents of cyber-thieves can feel better about the crimes
    >>>committed by their offspring?

    >>
    >> No. It's so we are clear about the distinction.
    >>

    >
    >Try again. You have zero support so far for your views.
    >
    >>> It's no different than stealing any other
    >>>property.

    >>
    >> Yes it is.
    >>
    >>> If something doesn't belong to you, you either get the permission
    >>>of the owners to use it or you leave it alone.

    >>
    >> The thing that doesn't belong to the infringer is the monopoly.

    >
    >
    >The "thing" that doesn't belong to the infringer is the copy of the
    >copyrighted work they have made. Without the express permission of the
    >copyright holder, no one has any right to possess, use, or distribute it.
    >Certain "fair use" provisions allow for copying small portions of
    >copyrighted works -- like a few pages from a book. But that is clearly not
    >what motivates pirates.
    >
    >> The infringer violates the monopoly; he does not "use" it. To "use" it,
    >> he would need to impose the monopoly conditions on others. This is not
    >> "theft" as it's usually understood.
    >>

    >
    >What on earth are you on about!?!


    If I steal a car, I have it to use. I can drive it around myself. If
    I steal a monopoly, I have it to use. I can insist that customers can
    buy only from me. This is not what the copyright infringe does,
    though.

    A company which challenges the patent of another company and gets it
    transferred to themselves would be a closer example.
    >
    >>> Why is this concept so
    >>>difficult for you to grasp?

    >>
    >> I don't agree that it is a single concept. My opinion is that either
    >> you are confused, or that you are trying to confuse others.

    >
    >Are you for or against what you call "infringements" of intellectual
    >property rights?


    I am for a system that rewards the original producers for their work.

    > Is it merely the word "theft" embedded in the laws of
    >countries like the US that you object to?


    Copyright infringement is not a new phenomenon, but various new
    technologies have made it much more of an issue now. We need to deal
    with that, and it helps to be as clear as we can be as to what is
    going on. Conflating it with the traditional notion of "theft"
    doesn't help, in my opinion.

    > Or do you take the view that
    >downloading copyrighted works from the internet without the permission of
    >the copyright holder is perfectly ok -- legally,


    "OK" and "legal" are two different concepts too.

    > and perhaps even morally?


    The moral position is unclear. The original producers of a work often
    do not benefit from the workings of the system. The free market is
    often distorted by the manipulations of interested parties.

    >In other words, quit weaseling around with the issue.


    Take a clear look at what actually goes on.
    Ted, Oct 12, 2010
    #11
  12. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Ted Guest

    Re: ?Intellectual Property Should Be Respected??But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Tue, 12 Oct 2010 16:19:46 +1300, "WorkHard" <>
    wrote:

    >impossible wrote:
    >> "Ted" <> wrote in message

    >
    >>> This is
    >>> different from theft, where the thieved-from lose altogether
    >>> what is
    >>> taken.
    >>>

    >>
    >> You're just playing with words. Theft is theft.

    >
    >Ted's one of those people who'd take the air from your lungs if
    >it would benefit him.


    Thinking of selling your air, WorkHard?

    > He'd claim he never stole anything.


    I don't think I'd give you much for it.
    Ted, Oct 12, 2010
    #12
  13. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Ted Guest

    Re: ?Intellectual Property Should Be Respected??But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 23:57:48 -0500, "impossible"
    <> wrote:

    >
    >
    >"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 19:36:25 -0500, "impossible"
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>news:...
    >>>> On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 06:39:18 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>news:...
    >>>>>> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 20:02:21 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 09:17:39 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>"Gordon" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>>>> On 2010-10-09, Lawrence D'Oliveiro
    >>>>>>>>>> <_zealand>
    >>>>>>>>>> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>>>> One of the ironies of the whole ?intellectual property? circus is
    >>>>>>>>>>> that
    >>>>>>>>>>> those
    >>>>>>>>>>> who thump their chests most loudly about ?respecting? it and not
    >>>>>>>>>>> ?stealing?
    >>>>>>>>>>> often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what
    >>>>>>>>>>> they
    >>>>>>>>>>> preach.
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>> Yep, the most conservative staes in the good old U S of A have the
    >>>>>>>>>> highest
    >>>>>>>>>> abortion rate. Applies to countries too.
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>> One sees faults in others one has ones self.
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>So are you for or against theft of intellectual property?
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> "Theft" is the wrong word.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>Not at all. If you infringe on someone's intellectual property, you
    >>>>>>>have
    >>>>>>>taken away from that person the benefit of their exclusive right to
    >>>>>>>dispose
    >>>>>>> of that property as they see fit. In the case of copyrighted works
    >>>>>>> that
    >>>>>>> are
    >>>>>>> distributed without the permission of the copyright holder (for
    >>>>>>> example,
    >>>>>>> music, videos, software distributed posted on unauthorized online
    >>>>>>> sites),
    >>>>>>> then the thievery is compounded by everyone who downloads the
    >>>>>>> bootlegged
    >>>>>>> copies.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>[Hmmm...deleting the parts of your previous posts that were crucial to
    >>>>>your
    >>>>>original argument isn't cool. Let's restore all of that here, along with
    >>>>>the
    >>>>>parts of my post that you deleted where I crush your arguiment. You
    >>>>>wouldn't want to be mistaken for some kind of Larry D'Loserite sock
    >>>>>puppet,
    >>>>>would you?]
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>>> From Wikipedia ("Copyright infringement"):
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> "Copyright owners frequently refer to copyright infringement as
    >>>>>>>> "theft". In law copyright infringement does not refer to actual
    >>>>>>>> theft,
    >>>>>>>> but an instance where a person exercises one of the exclusive rights
    >>>>>>>> of the copyright owner without authorisation. Courts have
    >>>>>>>> distinguished between copyright infringement and theft, holding, for
    >>>>>>>> instance, in the United States Supreme Court case Dowling v. United
    >>>>>>>> States (1985) that bootleg phonorecords did not constitute stolen
    >>>>>>>> property and that "...interference with copyright does not easily
    >>>>>>>> equate with theft, conversion, or fraud. The Copyright Act even
    >>>>>>>> employs a separate term of art to define one who misappropriates a
    >>>>>>>> copyright... 'an infringer of the copyright.'" In the case of
    >>>>>>>> copyright infringement the province guaranteed to the copyright
    >>>>>>>> owner
    >>>>>>>> by copyright law is invaded, i.e. exclusive rights, but no control,
    >>>>>>>> physical or otherwise, is taken over the copyright, nor is the
    >>>>>>>> copyright owner wholly deprive of using the copyrighted work or
    >>>>>>>> exercising the exclusive rights owned.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>> That's Wikipedia for you -- one person's opinion, referencing a
    >>>>>>> 35-year-old
    >>>>>>> court ruling that pre-dates the (public) internet and has been
    >>>>>>> subsequently
    >>>>>>> rendered obsolete.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>> See, for example the US No Electronic Theft Act of 1997, which makes
    >>>>>>> it
    >>>>>>> a
    >>>>>>> federal crime to engage in copyright infringement, even where there
    >>>>>>> is
    >>>>>>> no
    >>>>>>> monetary profit or other commercial gain from the infringement.
    >>>>>>> Maximum
    >>>>>>> penalties under this law are 5 years in prison and up to $250,000 in
    >>>>>>> fines.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>> http://www.copyright.gov/docs/2265_stat.html
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>> Or, if you prefer the Wikipedia summary:
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NET_Act
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>[Done. You can continue now].
    >>>>
    >>>> OK
    >>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>> They still retain the legal exclusive right to dispose of that
    >>>>>> property though, even though the exclusive right has been violated in
    >>>>>> the one instance. That's materially different from theft. For
    >>>>>> "theft" to apply in the traditional sense, they would have had to lose
    >>>>>> the actual monopoly itself.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>When music/video/software pirates post copyrighted works on the
    >>>>>internet,
    >>>>>the copyright holders have lost their exclusive right to dispose of that
    >>>>>property as they see fit.
    >>>>
    >>>> They still have it, and they can still dispose of it.
    >>>
    >>>Don't be ridiculous! How can someone exercise exclusive rights over their
    >>>copyrighted works if countless others can do with those works whatever
    >>>they
    >>>please?

    >>
    >> "Countless others" is your supposition. It may or may not be true.
    >>
    >> Suppose only one person violates the copyright. It should be clear to
    >> you that the position of the copyright holder is not much changed. He
    >> has lost a potential sale (maybe not even an actual sale) but he can
    >> still use the monopoly to try to persuade others to buy only through
    >> him.
    >>

    >
    >It should be clear to you that if the exclusive rights of a copyright holder
    >are compromised in any way -- whether by a single pirate or by millions --
    >then the copyright holder no longer has exclusive control over their
    >property.


    Yep. He didn't have exclusive control in that case. That's not the
    same as theft.

    > This is what makes copyright infringement a crime.


    The legal system defines what is and is not a crime. It also defines
    various sorts of crimes. They are not all the same.

    >
    >> I agree, however, that if no-one used the copyright holder's services,
    >> and instead everyone freely took copies, then in that case the
    >> copyright holder would get no benefit from having the monopoly. In
    >> that case, "theft" would have much the same meaning as it usually
    >> does.
    >>

    >
    >It's completely irrelevant whether or not the pirates "used the copyright
    >holder's services".


    Sorry for expressing myself poorly. Rather than writing that they
    "used the copyright holder's services", I should have written "bought
    from the copyright holder." I hope you will see that that's not
    completely irrelevant.

    > If they infringed on the copyright holder's intellectual
    >property by distributing/downloading unauthorized copies of original works,
    >then they committed a crime under the law. Do you dispute that?


    That depends entirely on the law. The use of the term "copyright
    infringement" implies that something got infringed. I see that you
    used "infringed" rather than "thieved" in what you just wrote.

    >
    >>>
    >>>> This is
    >>>> different from theft, where the thieved-from lose altogether what is
    >>>> taken.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>You're just playing with words. Theft is theft.

    >>
    >> I think rather that you are playing with words. You are trying to
    >> make copyright infringement sound more serious than it is.
    >>

    >
    >In exactly what sense, if any, do you take copyright infringement seriously?


    To the extent of the loss it causes. In decreasing order of
    seriousness:

    If a pirate is copying works and selling them himself, he probably
    takes away customers from the copyright holder. The loss is
    relatively great.

    If an individual copies something for his own use, and does not try to
    sell it to others, then that is much less of a loss.

    If an individual copies something just because he can, and he would
    not bother if he had to pay anything, then the copyright holder has
    suffered no loss at all. This last example is the furthest away from
    the idea of "theft".

    >
    >>>
    >>>>>When music/video/software pirates post copyrighted works on the
    >>>>>internet,
    >>>>>the copyright holders have lost their exclusive right to dispose of that
    >>>>>property as they see fit.
    >>>
    >>>>> Their monopoly of distribution, if you will, has
    >>>>>been stolen from them -- by thieves.
    >>>>
    >>>> No. They still have the monopoly. It has been broken - they did not
    >>>> get paid for the infringement - but they still hold the monopoly.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>><sigh> A monopoly that is broken ceases to be a monopoly.

    >>
    >> No, it becomes an infringed-on monopoly. It still exists and can
    >> still be used against others.
    >>

    >
    >If someone obtains an unauthorized copy of a copyrighted work, that person
    >has infringed on the exclusive property rights of the copyright holder


    Yes

    > and
    >so has committed a crime.


    But not a crime that should be described as "theft".

    > Full stop.
    >
    >
    >>>
    >>>> Another way of putting it is that with property like a car, say, you
    >>>> can only get it thieved from you once. After the theft, you don't have
    >>>> the car any more. But with copyright, you can be thieved from again
    >>>> and again. The two concepts of "theft" are different, and need to
    >>>> described by different words to prevent being confused for each other.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>A theft -- singular. Many thefts -- plural. I think that should suffice
    >>>for
    >>>a distinction.

    >>
    >> So you are making a distinction...
    >>

    >
    >Yes, as will the judge at time of sentencing. Repeat offenses nearly always
    >attract stiffer penalties.
    >
    >>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>> It's a different concept, and a different word or phrase, for example
    >>>>>> "copyright infringement", should be used.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>Why?
    >>>>
    >>>> I've said why at exhaustive length above.
    >>>>
    >>>>> So the parents of cyber-thieves can feel better about the crimes
    >>>>>committed by their offspring?
    >>>>
    >>>> No. It's so we are clear about the distinction.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>Try again. You have zero support so far for your views.
    >>>
    >>>>> It's no different than stealing any other
    >>>>>property.
    >>>>
    >>>> Yes it is.
    >>>>
    >>>>> If something doesn't belong to you, you either get the permission
    >>>>>of the owners to use it or you leave it alone.
    >>>>
    >>>> The thing that doesn't belong to the infringer is the monopoly.
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>The "thing" that doesn't belong to the infringer is the copy of the
    >>>copyrighted work they have made. Without the express permission of the
    >>>copyright holder, no one has any right to possess, use, or distribute it.
    >>>Certain "fair use" provisions allow for copying small portions of
    >>>copyrighted works -- like a few pages from a book. But that is clearly not
    >>>what motivates pirates.
    >>>
    >>>> The infringer violates the monopoly; he does not "use" it. To "use" it,
    >>>> he would need to impose the monopoly conditions on others. This is not
    >>>> "theft" as it's usually understood.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>What on earth are you on about!?!

    >>
    >> If I steal a car, I have it to use. I can drive it around myself. If
    >> I steal a monopoly, I have it to use. I can insist that customers can
    >> buy only from me. This is not what the copyright infringe does,
    >> though.
    >>
    >> A company which challenges the patent of another company and gets it
    >> transferred to themselves would be a closer example.

    >
    >What on earth are you on about!?!


    Sorry; my expressive powers are unequal to your comprehension.

    >
    >>>
    >>>>> Why is this concept so
    >>>>>difficult for you to grasp?
    >>>>
    >>>> I don't agree that it is a single concept. My opinion is that either
    >>>> you are confused, or that you are trying to confuse others.
    >>>
    >>>Are you for or against what you call "infringements" of intellectual
    >>>property rights?

    >>
    >> I am for a system that rewards the original producers for their work.
    >>

    >
    >That could be anything at all -- or absolutely nothing. Do you, or do you
    >not support enforcement of intellectual property laws against infringement?


    It depends on the law. Not if the effect is to deprive the original
    producers. Not if the penalty is disproportionate to the loss.

    >
    >>> Is it merely the word "theft" embedded in the laws of
    >>>countries like the US that you object to?

    >>
    >> Copyright infringement is not a new phenomenon, but various new
    >> technologies have made it much more of an issue now. We need to deal
    >> with that, and it helps to be as clear as we can be as to what is
    >> going on.

    >
    >So stop talking gibberish and answer the question. Do you, or do you not
    >support enforcement of intellectual property laws against infringement?
    >
    >> Conflating it with the traditional notion of "theft"
    >> doesn't help, in my opinion.
    >>

    >
    >Why? Because you don't take the theft of intellectual property seriously?


    Because they are two different concepts.

    >
    >>> Or do you take the view that
    >>>downloading copyrighted works from the internet without the permission of
    >>>the copyright holder is perfectly ok -- legally, and perhaps even
    >>>morally?

    >>
    >> "OK" and "legal" are two different concepts too.
    >>

    >
    >Your attempts to duck the issue are getting lamer and lamer.


    Is everything legal OK for you?

    In Ohio, it is illegal to get a fish drunk.

    In Texas, it is illegal to take more than three sips of beer whilst
    standing.

    In Hartford, it is considered an offense to cross the road on your
    hands.

    When you pass a cow in Pine Island, Minnesota it is illegal not to tip
    your hat.

    And so on...

    >>
    >> The moral position is unclear. The original producers of a work often
    >> do not benefit from the workings of the system. The free market is
    >> often distorted by the manipulations of interested parties.
    >>
    >>>In other words, quit weaseling around with the issue.

    >>
    >> Take a clear look at what actually goes on.
    >>

    >
    >You've got nothing to say, is that it? I think we're done here.
    Ted, Oct 12, 2010
    #13
  14. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Ted Guest

    Re: ?Intellectual Property Should Be Respected??But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Tue, 12 Oct 2010 06:51:19 -0500, "impossible"
    <> wrote:

    >
    >
    >"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 23:57:48 -0500, "impossible"
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>news:...
    >>>> On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 19:36:25 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>news:...
    >>>>>> On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 06:39:18 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 20:02:21 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>>>> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 09:17:39 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>"Gordon" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>>>>>> On 2010-10-09, Lawrence D'Oliveiro
    >>>>>>>>>>>> <_zealand>
    >>>>>>>>>>>> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> One of the ironies of the whole ?intellectual property? circus
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> is
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> that
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> those
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> who thump their chests most loudly about ?respecting? it and
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> not
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> ?stealing?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> they
    >>>>>>>>>>>>> preach.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>> Yep, the most conservative staes in the good old U S of A have
    >>>>>>>>>>>> the
    >>>>>>>>>>>> highest
    >>>>>>>>>>>> abortion rate. Applies to countries too.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>> One sees faults in others one has ones self.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>So are you for or against theft of intellectual property?
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>> "Theft" is the wrong word.
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>Not at all. If you infringe on someone's intellectual property, you
    >>>>>>>>>have
    >>>>>>>>>taken away from that person the benefit of their exclusive right to
    >>>>>>>>>dispose
    >>>>>>>>> of that property as they see fit. In the case of copyrighted works
    >>>>>>>>> that
    >>>>>>>>> are
    >>>>>>>>> distributed without the permission of the copyright holder (for
    >>>>>>>>> example,
    >>>>>>>>> music, videos, software distributed posted on unauthorized online
    >>>>>>>>> sites),
    >>>>>>>>> then the thievery is compounded by everyone who downloads the
    >>>>>>>>> bootlegged
    >>>>>>>>> copies.
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>[Hmmm...deleting the parts of your previous posts that were crucial to
    >>>>>>>your
    >>>>>>>original argument isn't cool. Let's restore all of that here, along
    >>>>>>>with
    >>>>>>>the
    >>>>>>>parts of my post that you deleted where I crush your arguiment. You
    >>>>>>>wouldn't want to be mistaken for some kind of Larry D'Loserite sock
    >>>>>>>puppet,
    >>>>>>>would you?]
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>> From Wikipedia ("Copyright infringement"):
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>> "Copyright owners frequently refer to copyright infringement as
    >>>>>>>>>> "theft". In law copyright infringement does not refer to actual
    >>>>>>>>>> theft,
    >>>>>>>>>> but an instance where a person exercises one of the exclusive
    >>>>>>>>>> rights
    >>>>>>>>>> of the copyright owner without authorisation. Courts have
    >>>>>>>>>> distinguished between copyright infringement and theft, holding,
    >>>>>>>>>> for
    >>>>>>>>>> instance, in the United States Supreme Court case Dowling v.
    >>>>>>>>>> United
    >>>>>>>>>> States (1985) that bootleg phonorecords did not constitute stolen
    >>>>>>>>>> property and that "...interference with copyright does not easily
    >>>>>>>>>> equate with theft, conversion, or fraud. The Copyright Act even
    >>>>>>>>>> employs a separate term of art to define one who misappropriates a
    >>>>>>>>>> copyright... 'an infringer of the copyright.'" In the case of
    >>>>>>>>>> copyright infringement the province guaranteed to the copyright
    >>>>>>>>>> owner
    >>>>>>>>>> by copyright law is invaded, i.e. exclusive rights, but no
    >>>>>>>>>> control,
    >>>>>>>>>> physical or otherwise, is taken over the copyright, nor is the
    >>>>>>>>>> copyright owner wholly deprive of using the copyrighted work or
    >>>>>>>>>> exercising the exclusive rights owned.
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> That's Wikipedia for you -- one person's opinion, referencing a
    >>>>>>>>> 35-year-old
    >>>>>>>>> court ruling that pre-dates the (public) internet and has been
    >>>>>>>>> subsequently
    >>>>>>>>> rendered obsolete.
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> See, for example the US No Electronic Theft Act of 1997, which
    >>>>>>>>> makes
    >>>>>>>>> it
    >>>>>>>>> a
    >>>>>>>>> federal crime to engage in copyright infringement, even where there
    >>>>>>>>> is
    >>>>>>>>> no
    >>>>>>>>> monetary profit or other commercial gain from the infringement.
    >>>>>>>>> Maximum
    >>>>>>>>> penalties under this law are 5 years in prison and up to $250,000
    >>>>>>>>> in
    >>>>>>>>> fines.
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> http://www.copyright.gov/docs/2265_stat.html
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> Or, if you prefer the Wikipedia summary:
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NET_Act
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>[Done. You can continue now].
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> OK
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> They still retain the legal exclusive right to dispose of that
    >>>>>>>> property though, even though the exclusive right has been violated
    >>>>>>>> in
    >>>>>>>> the one instance. That's materially different from theft. For
    >>>>>>>> "theft" to apply in the traditional sense, they would have had to
    >>>>>>>> lose
    >>>>>>>> the actual monopoly itself.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>When music/video/software pirates post copyrighted works on the
    >>>>>>>internet,
    >>>>>>>the copyright holders have lost their exclusive right to dispose of
    >>>>>>>that
    >>>>>>>property as they see fit.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> They still have it, and they can still dispose of it.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>Don't be ridiculous! How can someone exercise exclusive rights over
    >>>>>their
    >>>>>copyrighted works if countless others can do with those works whatever
    >>>>>they
    >>>>>please?
    >>>>
    >>>> "Countless others" is your supposition. It may or may not be true.
    >>>>
    >>>> Suppose only one person violates the copyright. It should be clear to
    >>>> you that the position of the copyright holder is not much changed. He
    >>>> has lost a potential sale (maybe not even an actual sale) but he can
    >>>> still use the monopoly to try to persuade others to buy only through
    >>>> him.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>It should be clear to you that if the exclusive rights of a copyright
    >>>holder
    >>>are compromised in any way -- whether by a single pirate or by millions --
    >>>then the copyright holder no longer has exclusive control over their
    >>>property.

    >>
    >> Yep. He didn't have exclusive control in that case.

    >
    >
    >Exactly. And without the exercise of exclusive control, copyright is
    >rendered meaningless.


    No. One violation of the copyright doesn't make it meaningless. If
    it was totally ignored (that is, every copy made was unauthorised)
    *then* it would be meaningless.

    > That's what makes it a crime.
    >
    >> That's not the same as theft.
    >>

    >
    >In the US, it is **exactly** the same as theft. See US No Electronic Theft
    >Act of 1997, which makes it a crime punishable by up to 5 years in jail and
    >$250,000 in fines. Similar laws are in the process of being enacted
    >throughout the world -- including NZ. '
    >
    >
    >>> This is what makes copyright infringement a crime.

    >>
    >> The legal system defines what is and is not a crime. It also defines
    >> various sorts of crimes. They are not all the same.
    >>

    >
    >Why do you always duck an argument by talking in meaningless generalities?


    What's meaningless about saying that various crimes, as defined by the
    law, are different? I'll go further: various crimes, as seen morally,
    are different, and not necessarily the same as defined by the law.

    >
    >>>
    >>>> I agree, however, that if no-one used the copyright holder's services,
    >>>> and instead everyone freely took copies, then in that case the
    >>>> copyright holder would get no benefit from having the monopoly. In
    >>>> that case, "theft" would have much the same meaning as it usually
    >>>> does.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>It's completely irrelevant whether or not the pirates "used the copyright
    >>>holder's services".

    >>
    >> Sorry for expressing myself poorly. Rather than writing that they
    >> "used the copyright holder's services", I should have written "bought
    >> from the copyright holder." I hope you will see that that's not
    >> completely irrelevant.
    >>

    >
    >It's completely irrelevant whether or not the pirates "bought from the
    >copyright holder",


    If the pirates take free copies, then sell them, they are competing
    with the copyright holder's sales. Therefore the loss to the
    copyright holder is greater than what it would be if the pirates
    didn't sell their copies. So it's not irrelevant.

    > used their services,


    Yes, I shouldn't have described it in those words.

    > donated to their favorite charities,


    Charities? I didn't mention charities. This seems to be irrelevant,
    Impossible.

    >or married their daughters.


    And that's definitely irrelevant.

    > If they infringed on the copyright holder's
    >intellectual property by distributing/downloading unauthorized copies of
    >original works, then they committed a crime under the law.


    A crime of some sort, yes; but not necessarily theft in the
    traditional sense.
    >
    >>> If they infringed on the copyright holder's intellectual
    >>>property by distributing/downloading unauthorized copies of original
    >>>works,
    >>>then they committed a crime under the law. Do you dispute that?

    >>
    >> That depends entirely on the law.

    >
    >In NZ, for example, it is a crime to infringe on a copyright holder's
    >intellectual property by distributing/downloading unauthorized copies of
    >original works. Do you dispute that?


    I've got no grounds for disputing that.

    >
    >> The use of the term "copyright
    >> infringement" implies that something got infringed.

    >
    >It also implies that the thieves stole from the copyright holder something
    >that doesn't belong to them.


    It implies they infringed the copyright.

    >
    >>I see that you
    >> used "infringed" rather than "thieved" in what you just wrote.
    >>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>> This is
    >>>>>> different from theft, where the thieved-from lose altogether what is
    >>>>>> taken.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>You're just playing with words. Theft is theft.
    >>>>
    >>>> I think rather that you are playing with words. You are trying to
    >>>> make copyright infringement sound more serious than it is.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>In exactly what sense, if any, do you take copyright infringement
    >>>seriously?

    >>
    >> To the extent of the loss it causes. In decreasing order of
    >> seriousness:
    >>
    >> If a pirate is copying works and selling them himself, he probably
    >> takes away customers from the copyright holder. The loss is
    >> relatively great.
    >>
    >> If an individual copies something for his own use, and does not try to
    >> sell it to others, then that is much less of a loss.
    >>
    >> If an individual copies something just because he can, and he would
    >> not bother if he had to pay anything, then the copyright holder has
    >> suffered no loss at all. This last example is the furthest away from
    >> the idea of "theft".
    >>

    >
    >Whether or not a thief decides to sell the property he steals is irrelevant.


    No. Any copy the pirate sells potentially competes with a sale from
    the copyright holder.

    >Car thieves, purse snatchers, and internet pirates alike are stealing what
    >doesn't belong to them -- whether or not they choose to make a commercial
    >venture of their activity is neither here nor there for purposes of
    >enforcing property rights.


    A steal-to-order operation run on commercial lines is a lot more
    serious than a one-off purse snatching.

    >
    >>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>>When music/video/software pirates post copyrighted works on the
    >>>>>>>internet,
    >>>>>>>the copyright holders have lost their exclusive right to dispose of
    >>>>>>>that
    >>>>>>>property as they see fit.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>> Their monopoly of distribution, if you will, has
    >>>>>>>been stolen from them -- by thieves.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> No. They still have the monopoly. It has been broken - they did not
    >>>>>> get paid for the infringement - but they still hold the monopoly.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>><sigh> A monopoly that is broken ceases to be a monopoly.
    >>>>
    >>>> No, it becomes an infringed-on monopoly. It still exists and can
    >>>> still be used against others.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>If someone obtains an unauthorized copy of a copyrighted work, that person
    >>>has infringed on the exclusive property rights of the copyright holder

    >>
    >> Yes

    >
    >Finally, a straight answer.


    Finally? It's been nothing but straight answers from me the whole
    time.

    >
    >>
    >>> and
    >>>so has committed a crime.

    >>
    >> But not a crime that should be described as "theft".
    >>

    >
    >If the crime is committed in the US and other jurisdictions, it's described
    >as theft and punished as theft.


    The US? That would be the same country where, in Baltimore, it's
    illegal to throw hay from a second-story window within the city
    limits.

    The existence of a law doesn't mean that it's right. In the case of
    the copyright laws, considerable concentrations of money are held by
    interested parties. Corruption becomes possible, Impossible; the law
    might have been fairly bought and paid for.

    >
    >>> Full stop.
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>> Another way of putting it is that with property like a car, say, you
    >>>>>> can only get it thieved from you once. After the theft, you don't have
    >>>>>> the car any more. But with copyright, you can be thieved from again
    >>>>>> and again. The two concepts of "theft" are different, and need to
    >>>>>> described by different words to prevent being confused for each other.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>A theft -- singular. Many thefts -- plural. I think that should suffice
    >>>>>for
    >>>>>a distinction.
    >>>>
    >>>> So you are making a distinction...
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>Yes, as will the judge at time of sentencing. Repeat offenses nearly
    >>>always
    >>>attract stiffer penalties.
    >>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> It's a different concept, and a different word or phrase, for
    >>>>>>>> example
    >>>>>>>> "copyright infringement", should be used.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>Why?
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> I've said why at exhaustive length above.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>>> So the parents of cyber-thieves can feel better about the crimes
    >>>>>>>committed by their offspring?
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> No. It's so we are clear about the distinction.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>Try again. You have zero support so far for your views.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>> It's no different than stealing any other
    >>>>>>>property.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> Yes it is.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>>> If something doesn't belong to you, you either get the permission
    >>>>>>>of the owners to use it or you leave it alone.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> The thing that doesn't belong to the infringer is the monopoly.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>The "thing" that doesn't belong to the infringer is the copy of the
    >>>>>copyrighted work they have made. Without the express permission of the
    >>>>>copyright holder, no one has any right to possess, use, or distribute
    >>>>>it.
    >>>>>Certain "fair use" provisions allow for copying small portions of
    >>>>>copyrighted works -- like a few pages from a book. But that is clearly
    >>>>>not
    >>>>>what motivates pirates.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>> The infringer violates the monopoly; he does not "use" it. To "use"
    >>>>>> it,
    >>>>>> he would need to impose the monopoly conditions on others. This is not
    >>>>>> "theft" as it's usually understood.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>What on earth are you on about!?!
    >>>>
    >>>> If I steal a car, I have it to use. I can drive it around myself. If
    >>>> I steal a monopoly, I have it to use. I can insist that customers can
    >>>> buy only from me. This is not what the copyright infringe does,
    >>>> though.
    >>>>
    >>>> A company which challenges the patent of another company and gets it
    >>>> transferred to themselves would be a closer example.
    >>>
    >>>What on earth are you on about!?!

    >>
    >> Sorry; my expressive powers are unequal to your comprehension.
    >>

    >
    >Gibberish is an affliction, not a power.


    OK, I'll try again.

    The value of a monopoly is that you can make money by selling your
    stuff without any (legal) competition. To have that thieved from you,
    in the traditional sense of the word "theft", you would have to lose
    that right - the right to prevent competition - to someone else. That
    other party would then enjoy the monopoly privilege, and you wouldn't.
    That is the true parallel to "theft", and it's not what happens when
    some guy dowloads your song without paying you for it.


    >>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>> Why is this concept so
    >>>>>>>difficult for you to grasp?
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> I don't agree that it is a single concept. My opinion is that either
    >>>>>> you are confused, or that you are trying to confuse others.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>Are you for or against what you call "infringements" of intellectual
    >>>>>property rights?
    >>>>
    >>>> I am for a system that rewards the original producers for their work.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>That could be anything at all -- or absolutely nothing. Do you, or do you
    >>>not support enforcement of intellectual property laws against
    >>>infringement?

    >>
    >> It depends on the law.

    >


    >How about the NZ copyright Act, weasel?


    I'm not a weasel, Impossible. You seems to be confused again.

    > Do you or do you not support
    >enforcement of the NZ copyright Act.


    I don't know enough about it to say.

    >
    >> Not if the effect is to deprive the original
    >> producers. Not if the penalty is disproportionate to the loss.
    >>
    >>>
    >>>>> Is it merely the word "theft" embedded in the laws of
    >>>>>countries like the US that you object to?
    >>>>
    >>>> Copyright infringement is not a new phenomenon, but various new
    >>>> technologies have made it much more of an issue now. We need to deal
    >>>> with that, and it helps to be as clear as we can be as to what is
    >>>> going on.
    >>>
    >>>So stop talking gibberish and answer the question. Do you, or do you not
    >>>support enforcement of intellectual property laws against infringement?
    >>>
    >>>> Conflating it with the traditional notion of "theft"
    >>>> doesn't help, in my opinion.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>Why? Because you don't take the theft of intellectual property seriously?

    >>
    >> Because they are two different concepts.
    >>
    >>>
    >>>>> Or do you take the view that
    >>>>>downloading copyrighted works from the internet without the permission
    >>>>>of
    >>>>>the copyright holder is perfectly ok -- legally, and perhaps even
    >>>>>morally?
    >>>>
    >>>> "OK" and "legal" are two different concepts too.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>Your attempts to duck the issue are getting lamer and lamer.

    >>
    >> Is everything legal OK for you?
    >>
    >> In Ohio, it is illegal to get a fish drunk.
    >>
    >> In Texas, it is illegal to take more than three sips of beer whilst
    >> standing.
    >>
    >> In Hartford, it is considered an offense to cross the road on your
    >> hands.
    >>
    >> When you pass a cow in Pine Island, Minnesota it is illegal not to tip
    >> your hat.
    >>
    >> And so on...
    >>

    >
    >Googling for trivia won't help your case. In the US, there is one law for
    >everyone when it comes to copyright infringement -- it's called the US No
    >Electronic Theft Act of 1997.


    Wasn't it in the US that they tried to make pi legally equal to 3?

    > Deal with it.


    Fortunately, I do not live in the US.

    >
    >>>>
    >>>> The moral position is unclear. The original producers of a work often
    >>>> do not benefit from the workings of the system. The free market is
    >>>> often distorted by the manipulations of interested parties.
    >>>>
    >>>>>In other words, quit weaseling around with the issue.
    >>>>
    >>>> Take a clear look at what actually goes on.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>You've got nothing to say, is that it? I think we're done here.
    Ted, Oct 12, 2010
    #14
  15. Doesn’t it just get more hilarious when ONE “intellectual propertyâ€
    enforcement group sues ANOTHER one over ... wait for it ... infringement of
    “intellectual property�

    <http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20101012/10515411392/media-copyright-group-sues-us-copyright-group-over-trademark-threat.shtml>
    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Oct 13, 2010
    #15
  16. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Ted Guest

    Re: ?Intellectual Property Should Be Respected??But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Tue, 12 Oct 2010 18:48:43 -0500, "impossible"
    <> wrote:

    >
    >
    >"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> On Tue, 12 Oct 2010 06:51:19 -0500, "impossible"
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>news:...
    >>>> On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 23:57:48 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>news:...
    >>>>>> On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 19:36:25 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>> On Mon, 11 Oct 2010 06:39:18 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>>>> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 20:02:21 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>"Ted" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>>>>>> On Sun, 10 Oct 2010 09:17:39 -0500, "impossible"
    >>>>>>>>>>>> <> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>"Gordon" <> wrote in message
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>news:...
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>> On 2010-10-09, Lawrence D'Oliveiro
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>> <_zealand>
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>> wrote:
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> One of the ironies of the whole ?intellectual property?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> circus
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> is
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> that
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> those
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> who thump their chests most loudly about ?respecting? it and
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> not
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> ?stealing?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> they
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> preach.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>> Yep, the most conservative staes in the good old U S of A have
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>> the
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>> highest
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>> abortion rate. Applies to countries too.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>> One sees faults in others one has ones self.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>So are you for or against theft of intellectual property?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>> "Theft" is the wrong word.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>Not at all. If you infringe on someone's intellectual property,
    >>>>>>>>>>>you
    >>>>>>>>>>>have
    >>>>>>>>>>>taken away from that person the benefit of their exclusive right
    >>>>>>>>>>>to
    >>>>>>>>>>>dispose
    >>>>>>>>>>> of that property as they see fit. In the case of copyrighted
    >>>>>>>>>>> works
    >>>>>>>>>>> that
    >>>>>>>>>>> are
    >>>>>>>>>>> distributed without the permission of the copyright holder (for
    >>>>>>>>>>> example,
    >>>>>>>>>>> music, videos, software distributed posted on unauthorized online
    >>>>>>>>>>> sites),
    >>>>>>>>>>> then the thievery is compounded by everyone who downloads the
    >>>>>>>>>>> bootlegged
    >>>>>>>>>>> copies.
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>[Hmmm...deleting the parts of your previous posts that were crucial
    >>>>>>>>>to
    >>>>>>>>>your
    >>>>>>>>>original argument isn't cool. Let's restore all of that here, along
    >>>>>>>>>with
    >>>>>>>>>the
    >>>>>>>>>parts of my post that you deleted where I crush your arguiment. You
    >>>>>>>>>wouldn't want to be mistaken for some kind of Larry D'Loserite sock
    >>>>>>>>>puppet,
    >>>>>>>>>would you?]
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>> From Wikipedia ("Copyright infringement"):
    >>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>> "Copyright owners frequently refer to copyright infringement as
    >>>>>>>>>>>> "theft". In law copyright infringement does not refer to actual
    >>>>>>>>>>>> theft,
    >>>>>>>>>>>> but an instance where a person exercises one of the exclusive
    >>>>>>>>>>>> rights
    >>>>>>>>>>>> of the copyright owner without authorisation. Courts have
    >>>>>>>>>>>> distinguished between copyright infringement and theft, holding,
    >>>>>>>>>>>> for
    >>>>>>>>>>>> instance, in the United States Supreme Court case Dowling v.
    >>>>>>>>>>>> United
    >>>>>>>>>>>> States (1985) that bootleg phonorecords did not constitute
    >>>>>>>>>>>> stolen
    >>>>>>>>>>>> property and that "...interference with copyright does not
    >>>>>>>>>>>> easily
    >>>>>>>>>>>> equate with theft, conversion, or fraud. The Copyright Act even
    >>>>>>>>>>>> employs a separate term of art to define one who misappropriates
    >>>>>>>>>>>> a
    >>>>>>>>>>>> copyright... 'an infringer of the copyright.'" In the case of
    >>>>>>>>>>>> copyright infringement the province guaranteed to the copyright
    >>>>>>>>>>>> owner
    >>>>>>>>>>>> by copyright law is invaded, i.e. exclusive rights, but no
    >>>>>>>>>>>> control,
    >>>>>>>>>>>> physical or otherwise, is taken over the copyright, nor is the
    >>>>>>>>>>>> copyright owner wholly deprive of using the copyrighted work or
    >>>>>>>>>>>> exercising the exclusive rights owned.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>> That's Wikipedia for you -- one person's opinion, referencing a
    >>>>>>>>>>> 35-year-old
    >>>>>>>>>>> court ruling that pre-dates the (public) internet and has been
    >>>>>>>>>>> subsequently
    >>>>>>>>>>> rendered obsolete.
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>> See, for example the US No Electronic Theft Act of 1997, which
    >>>>>>>>>>> makes
    >>>>>>>>>>> it
    >>>>>>>>>>> a
    >>>>>>>>>>> federal crime to engage in copyright infringement, even where
    >>>>>>>>>>> there
    >>>>>>>>>>> is
    >>>>>>>>>>> no
    >>>>>>>>>>> monetary profit or other commercial gain from the infringement.
    >>>>>>>>>>> Maximum
    >>>>>>>>>>> penalties under this law are 5 years in prison and up to $250,000
    >>>>>>>>>>> in
    >>>>>>>>>>> fines.
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>> http://www.copyright.gov/docs/2265_stat.html
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>> Or, if you prefer the Wikipedia summary:
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NET_Act
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>[Done. You can continue now].
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> OK
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>> They still retain the legal exclusive right to dispose of that
    >>>>>>>>>> property though, even though the exclusive right has been violated
    >>>>>>>>>> in
    >>>>>>>>>> the one instance. That's materially different from theft. For
    >>>>>>>>>> "theft" to apply in the traditional sense, they would have had to
    >>>>>>>>>> lose
    >>>>>>>>>> the actual monopoly itself.
    >>>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>When music/video/software pirates post copyrighted works on the
    >>>>>>>>>internet,
    >>>>>>>>>the copyright holders have lost their exclusive right to dispose of
    >>>>>>>>>that
    >>>>>>>>>property as they see fit.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> They still have it, and they can still dispose of it.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>Don't be ridiculous! How can someone exercise exclusive rights over
    >>>>>>>their
    >>>>>>>copyrighted works if countless others can do with those works whatever
    >>>>>>>they
    >>>>>>>please?
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> "Countless others" is your supposition. It may or may not be true.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> Suppose only one person violates the copyright. It should be clear to
    >>>>>> you that the position of the copyright holder is not much changed. He
    >>>>>> has lost a potential sale (maybe not even an actual sale) but he can
    >>>>>> still use the monopoly to try to persuade others to buy only through
    >>>>>> him.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>It should be clear to you that if the exclusive rights of a copyright
    >>>>>holder
    >>>>>are compromised in any way -- whether by a single pirate or by
    >>>>>millions --
    >>>>>then the copyright holder no longer has exclusive control over their
    >>>>>property.
    >>>>
    >>>> Yep. He didn't have exclusive control in that case.
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>Exactly. And without the exercise of exclusive control, copyright is
    >>>rendered meaningless.

    >>
    >> No. One violation of the copyright doesn't make it meaningless. If
    >> it was totally ignored (that is, every copy made was unauthorised)
    >> *then* it would be meaningless.
    >>

    >
    >Exactly how many times does someone have to break into your house , or take
    >your car for a joy ride, before you realize that you've ceased to have
    >exclusive control over your property? 7 days a weeks? 24 times a day? I
    >meam, really, how "totally" do you your property rights have to be infringed
    >before you'd consider calloing the cops?


    Breaking and entering and stealing cars is not the same as copyright
    infringement.

    >
    >>> That's what makes it a crime.
    >>>
    >>>> That's not the same as theft.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>In the US, it is **exactly** the same as theft. See US No Electronic
    >>>Theft
    >>>Act of 1997, which makes it a crime punishable by up to 5 years in jail
    >>>and
    >>>$250,000 in fines. Similar laws are in the process of being enacted
    >>>throughout the world -- including NZ. '
    >>>

    >
    >No reply. I'll take as meaning you've conceded the point.


    What point have you taken as conceded, Impossible?

    > Under the
    >prevailing law in most jurisdictions, Infringement of intellectual property
    >is considered theft.


    Well it may or may not be, I don't know enough about most
    jurisdictions to say. My assertion is that it isn't the same as
    theft.

    Specifically, it appears to me that your description of it as theft
    is an attempt to make it appear worse than it is.


    >
    >>>
    >>>>> This is what makes copyright infringement a crime.
    >>>>
    >>>> The legal system defines what is and is not a crime. It also defines
    >>>> various sorts of crimes. They are not all the same.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>Why do you always duck an argument by talking in meaningless generalities?

    >>
    >> What's meaningless about saying that various crimes, as defined by the
    >> law, are different?

    >
    >Because we're talking about specific laws (protection of copyright) that
    >bear on specific criminal acts (infringement of copyright).


    Well, I find that statement meaningless. What exactly did you mean?

    >
    >> I'll go further: various crimes, as seen morally,
    >> are different, and not necessarily the same as defined by the law.
    >>

    >
    >Again, you duck an argument by talking in meaningless generalities.


    What, exactly, is the argument that I am ducking?

    Do you or don't you agree that there are different sorts of violations
    of the law, with different levels of seriousness? Or are you saying
    that any violation of the law is equally bad? That's how you sound to
    me.

    It seems that you are saying that theft and copyright infringement are
    the same. To be clear, I am saying that they are not. If there is a
    law which says they are the same, or should be treated the same, then
    in my opinion that is a bad law and should be changed. I have given
    reasons why theft is not the same as copyright infringement and I am
    prepared to restate them if you have not understood.

    >
    >>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>> I agree, however, that if no-one used the copyright holder's services,
    >>>>>> and instead everyone freely took copies, then in that case the
    >>>>>> copyright holder would get no benefit from having the monopoly. In
    >>>>>> that case, "theft" would have much the same meaning as it usually
    >>>>>> does.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>It's completely irrelevant whether or not the pirates "used the
    >>>>>copyright
    >>>>>holder's services".
    >>>>
    >>>> Sorry for expressing myself poorly. Rather than writing that they
    >>>> "used the copyright holder's services", I should have written "bought
    >>>> from the copyright holder." I hope you will see that that's not
    >>>> completely irrelevant.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>> It's completely irrelevant whether or not the pirates "bought from the
    >>> copyright holder", used their services, donated to their favorite
    >>> charities,
    >>> or married their daughters.

    >
    >>
    >> If the pirates take free copies, then sell them, they are competing
    >> with the copyright holder's sales. Therefore the loss to the
    >> copyright holder is greater than what it would be if the pirates
    >> didn't sell their copies. So it's not irrelevant.
    >>

    >
    >It's a crime under the law either way.


    Crimes are not all equivalent.

    > The fact that a pirate web site
    >doesn't make money from distributing its warez has long ceased to be a
    >meaningful defense.


    It means less of a loss for the copyright holder though.

    >
    >
    >>
    >> Yes, I shouldn't have described it in those words.
    >>

    >
    >I'll take that as meaning you've conceded the point.


    What point do you take as conceded, Impossible?

    >
    >> Charities? I didn't mention charities. This seems to be irrelevant,
    >> Impossible.

    >
    >> And that's definitely irrelevant.

    >
    >Stop hacking up my posts and you'll be able to follow along better.


    Well, your posts *are* getting rather long, Impossible.

    >
    >>
    >>> If they infringed on the copyright holder's
    >>>intellectual property by distributing/downloading unauthorized copies of
    >>>original works, then they committed a crime under the law.

    >>
    >> A crime of some sort, yes; but not necessarily theft in the
    >> traditional sense.

    >
    >Traditional sense? What's that? Taking something that doesn't belong to you?


    Taking something that doesn't belong to you, and depriving the victim
    of it. When you copy something, you may be taking something that
    doesn't belong to you, but you haven't deprived the victim of it. The
    victim still has it, and can continue to make money from it. So the
    victim of a copyright infringement is not as much of a victim as the
    victim of a theft - a genuine theft, that is.

    >If you infringe copyright in the jurisdiction of a US court, it's a crime of
    >theft.


    Sounds like a bad law to me.

    > Elsewhere, say in NZ, it's a crime of "infringement" with similar
    >penalties -- a fine not exceeding $150,000 or to imprisonment for a term not
    >exceeding 5 years".
    >
    >http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1994/0143/latest/DLM346602.html
    >
    >
    >>>
    >>>>> If they infringed on the copyright holder's intellectual
    >>>>>property by distributing/downloading unauthorized copies of original
    >>>>>works,
    >>>>>then they committed a crime under the law. Do you dispute that?
    >>>>
    >>>> That depends entirely on the law.
    >>>
    >>>In NZ, for example, it is a crime to infringe on a copyright holder's
    >>>intellectual property by distributing/downloading unauthorized copies of
    >>>original works. Do you dispute that?

    >>
    >> I've got no grounds for disputing that.

    >
    >Good for you.
    >
    >>
    >>>
    >>>> The use of the term "copyright
    >>>> infringement" implies that something got infringed.
    >>>
    >>>It also implies that the thieves stole from the copyright holder something
    >>>that doesn't belong to them.

    >>
    >> It implies they infringed the copyright.

    >
    >Which is a crime no less severe under NZ law than theft. Imagine that!


    It's not the same as theft though. And shouldn't be treated as the
    same.

    >>
    >>>
    >>>>I see that you
    >>>> used "infringed" rather than "thieved" in what you just wrote.
    >>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> This is
    >>>>>>>> different from theft, where the thieved-from lose altogether what is
    >>>>>>>> taken.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>You're just playing with words. Theft is theft.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> I think rather that you are playing with words. You are trying to
    >>>>>> make copyright infringement sound more serious than it is.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>In exactly what sense, if any, do you take copyright infringement
    >>>>>seriously?
    >>>>
    >>>> To the extent of the loss it causes. In decreasing order of
    >>>> seriousness:
    >>>>
    >>>> If a pirate is copying works and selling them himself, he probably
    >>>> takes away customers from the copyright holder. The loss is
    >>>> relatively great.
    >>>>
    >>>> If an individual copies something for his own use, and does not try to
    >>>> sell it to others, then that is much less of a loss.
    >>>>
    >>>> If an individual copies something just because he can, and he would
    >>>> not bother if he had to pay anything, then the copyright holder has
    >>>> suffered no loss at all. This last example is the furthest away from
    >>>> the idea of "theft".
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>Whether or not a thief decides to sell the property he steals is
    >>>irrelevant.

    >>
    >> No. Any copy the pirate sells potentially competes with a sale from
    >> the copyright holder.
    >>
    >>>Car thieves, purse snatchers, and internet pirates alike are stealing what
    >>>doesn't belong to them -- whether or not they choose to make a commercial
    >>>venture of their activity is neither here nor there for purposes of
    >>>enforcing property rights.

    >>
    >> A steal-to-order operation run on commercial lines is a lot more
    >> serious than a one-off purse snatching.
    >>

    >
    >For purposes of enforcing property rights, that's neither here no there.


    Once again, you appear to be saying that all crimes are the same. Do
    you really believe that?

    >Don't tell me you're reneging already on your claim not to dispute the
    >validity of copyright protection laws.


    I am saying that for copyright infringement to be as serious as the
    traditional concept of theft, it has to be copying and selling in
    quantities sufficient to impact the copyright holder's business.
    Otherwise, not.

    >
    >>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>When music/video/software pirates post copyrighted works on the
    >>>>>>>>>internet,
    >>>>>>>>>the copyright holders have lost their exclusive right to dispose of
    >>>>>>>>>that
    >>>>>>>>>property as they see fit.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> Their monopoly of distribution, if you will, has
    >>>>>>>>>been stolen from them -- by thieves.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> No. They still have the monopoly. It has been broken - they did
    >>>>>>>> not
    >>>>>>>> get paid for the infringement - but they still hold the monopoly.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>><sigh> A monopoly that is broken ceases to be a monopoly.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> No, it becomes an infringed-on monopoly. It still exists and can
    >>>>>> still be used against others.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>If someone obtains an unauthorized copy of a copyrighted work, that
    >>>>>person
    >>>>>has infringed on the exclusive property rights of the copyright holder
    >>>>
    >>>> Yes
    >>>
    >>>Finally, a straight answer.

    >>
    >> Finally? It's been nothing but straight answers from me the whole
    >> time.
    >>
    >>>
    >>>>
    >>>>> and
    >>>>>so has committed a crime.
    >>>>
    >>>> But not a crime that should be described as "theft".
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>If the crime is committed in the US and other jurisdictions, it's
    >>>described
    >>>as theft and punished as theft.

    >>
    >> The US? That would be the same country where, in Baltimore, it's
    >> illegal to throw hay from a second-story window within the city
    >> limits.
    >>
    >> The existence of a law doesn't mean that it's right.

    >
    >Right for whom? The property owners or the pirates?


    Right for society as a whole.

    >
    >> In the case of
    >> the copyright laws, considerable concentrations of money are held by
    >> interested parties. Corruption becomes possible, Impossible; the law
    >> might have been fairly bought and paid for.

    >
    >That's true for any law.


    Not an argument for tolerating it though.

    > Which ones exactly are you for enforcing and which
    >ones not? And do you think that everyone should be entitled to draw up their
    >owe private lists of disagreeable laws and simply ignore them?


    We should try to eliminate laws with bad effects. If the copyright
    laws leads to the original producers not being rewarded, and the
    rewards flowing to others, then those laws are bad and should be
    eliminated or changed.

    >
    >>
    >>>
    >>>>> Full stop.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> Another way of putting it is that with property like a car, say, you
    >>>>>>>> can only get it thieved from you once. After the theft, you don't
    >>>>>>>> have
    >>>>>>>> the car any more. But with copyright, you can be thieved from again
    >>>>>>>> and again. The two concepts of "theft" are different, and need to
    >>>>>>>> described by different words to prevent being confused for each
    >>>>>>>> other.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>A theft -- singular. Many thefts -- plural. I think that should
    >>>>>>>suffice
    >>>>>>>for
    >>>>>>>a distinction.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> So you are making a distinction...
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>Yes, as will the judge at time of sentencing. Repeat offenses nearly
    >>>>>always
    >>>>>attract stiffer penalties.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>> It's a different concept, and a different word or phrase, for
    >>>>>>>>>> example
    >>>>>>>>>> "copyright infringement", should be used.
    >>>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>>Why?
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> I've said why at exhaustive length above.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> So the parents of cyber-thieves can feel better about the crimes
    >>>>>>>>>committed by their offspring?
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> No. It's so we are clear about the distinction.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>Try again. You have zero support so far for your views.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> It's no different than stealing any other
    >>>>>>>>>property.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> Yes it is.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> If something doesn't belong to you, you either get the permission
    >>>>>>>>>of the owners to use it or you leave it alone.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> The thing that doesn't belong to the infringer is the monopoly.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>The "thing" that doesn't belong to the infringer is the copy of the
    >>>>>>>copyrighted work they have made. Without the express permission of the
    >>>>>>>copyright holder, no one has any right to possess, use, or distribute
    >>>>>>>it.
    >>>>>>>Certain "fair use" provisions allow for copying small portions of
    >>>>>>>copyrighted works -- like a few pages from a book. But that is clearly
    >>>>>>>not
    >>>>>>>what motivates pirates.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> The infringer violates the monopoly; he does not "use" it. To "use"
    >>>>>>>> it,
    >>>>>>>> he would need to impose the monopoly conditions on others. This is
    >>>>>>>> not
    >>>>>>>> "theft" as it's usually understood.
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>What on earth are you on about!?!
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> If I steal a car, I have it to use. I can drive it around myself. If
    >>>>>> I steal a monopoly, I have it to use. I can insist that customers can
    >>>>>> buy only from me. This is not what the copyright infringe does,
    >>>>>> though.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> A company which challenges the patent of another company and gets it
    >>>>>> transferred to themselves would be a closer example.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>What on earth are you on about!?!
    >>>>
    >>>> Sorry; my expressive powers are unequal to your comprehension.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>Gibberish is an affliction, not a power.

    >>
    >> OK, I'll try again.
    >>
    >> The value of a monopoly is that you can make money by selling your
    >> stuff without any (legal) competition. To have that thieved from you,
    >> in the traditional sense of the word "theft", you would have to lose
    >> that right - the right to prevent competition - to someone else. That
    >> other party would then enjoy the monopoly privilege, and you wouldn't.
    >> That is the true parallel to "theft", and it's not what happens when
    >> some guy dowloads your song without paying you for it.
    >>

    >
    >What happens when some guy downloads your song without paying you for it is
    >that he has committed a crime.


    But not a crime that is equivalent to the traditional idea of theft.

    >
    >>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>>> Why is this concept so
    >>>>>>>>>difficult for you to grasp?
    >>>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>> I don't agree that it is a single concept. My opinion is that
    >>>>>>>> either
    >>>>>>>> you are confused, or that you are trying to confuse others.
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>>>Are you for or against what you call "infringements" of intellectual
    >>>>>>>property rights?
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> I am for a system that rewards the original producers for their work.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>That could be anything at all -- or absolutely nothing. Do you, or do
    >>>>>you
    >>>>>not support enforcement of intellectual property laws against
    >>>>>infringement?
    >>>>
    >>>> It depends on the law.
    >>>

    >>
    >>>How about the NZ copyright Act, weasel?

    >>
    >> I'm not a weasel, Impossible. You seems to be confused again.
    >>

    >
    >And yet you're not going to answer the question, are you, weasel?


    I don't know enough detail on the NZ copyright Act to say whether the
    way it treats copyright infringement is good or bad. If it really
    treats copyright infringement identically to theft, then it is bad.
    >
    >>> Do you or do you not support
    >>>enforcement of the NZ copyright Act.

    >>
    >> I don't know enough about it to say.
    >>

    >
    >http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1994/0143/latest/DLM345634.html
    >
    >It might have been a good idea for you to read up on this several posts ago
    >before sounding off on something you're clueless about..


    Whatever the NZ law says, it is independent of the argument that
    copyright infringement is not equivalent to theft.


    >
    >>>
    >>>> Not if the effect is to deprive the original
    >>>> producers. Not if the penalty is disproportionate to the loss.
    >>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>> Is it merely the word "theft" embedded in the laws of
    >>>>>>>countries like the US that you object to?
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> Copyright infringement is not a new phenomenon, but various new
    >>>>>> technologies have made it much more of an issue now. We need to deal
    >>>>>> with that, and it helps to be as clear as we can be as to what is
    >>>>>> going on.
    >>>>>
    >>>>>So stop talking gibberish and answer the question. Do you, or do you not
    >>>>>support enforcement of intellectual property laws against infringement?
    >>>>>
    >>>>>> Conflating it with the traditional notion of "theft"
    >>>>>> doesn't help, in my opinion.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>Why? Because you don't take the theft of intellectual property
    >>>>>seriously?
    >>>>
    >>>> Because they are two different concepts.
    >>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>>> Or do you take the view that
    >>>>>>>downloading copyrighted works from the internet without the permission
    >>>>>>>of
    >>>>>>>the copyright holder is perfectly ok -- legally, and perhaps even
    >>>>>>>morally?
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> "OK" and "legal" are two different concepts too.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>Your attempts to duck the issue are getting lamer and lamer.
    >>>>
    >>>> Is everything legal OK for you?
    >>>>
    >>>> In Ohio, it is illegal to get a fish drunk.
    >>>>
    >>>> In Texas, it is illegal to take more than three sips of beer whilst
    >>>> standing.
    >>>>
    >>>> In Hartford, it is considered an offense to cross the road on your
    >>>> hands.
    >>>>
    >>>> When you pass a cow in Pine Island, Minnesota it is illegal not to tip
    >>>> your hat.
    >>>>
    >>>> And so on...
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>Googling for trivia won't help your case. In the US, there is one law for
    >>>everyone when it comes to copyright infringement -- it's called the US No
    >>>Electronic Theft Act of 1997.

    >>
    >> Wasn't it in the US that they tried to make pi legally equal to 3?

    >
    >State of Indiana, 1897. And the operative word is "tried". Kind of like
    >what you've been doing with your argument.
    >
    >>
    >> Deal with it.
    >>
    >> Fortunately, I do not live in the US.
    >>

    >
    >And yet you staked your original claim to the proposition that copyright
    >infringement wasn't theft on the recitation of an obsolete US law.


    No. Copyright infringement isn't theft because the copyright holder
    still keeps the copyright after the infringement; but the victim of
    theft loses his property entirely.

    > Go
    >figure!
    >
    >>>
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> The moral position is unclear. The original producers of a work often
    >>>>>> do not benefit from the workings of the system. The free market is
    >>>>>> often distorted by the manipulations of interested parties.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>>>In other words, quit weaseling around with the issue.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> Take a clear look at what actually goes on.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>
    >>>>>You've got nothing to say, is that it? I think we're done here.
    Ted, Oct 13, 2010
    #16
  17. Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Oct 13, 2010
    #17
  18. Lawrence D'Oliveiro

    Ted Guest

    Re: “Intellectual Property Should Be Respected”—But Not, It Seems, By The Lawyers

    On Wed, 13 Oct 2010 23:05:48 +1300, Lawrence D'Oliveiro
    <_zealand> wrote:

    >In message <>, Ted wrote:
    >
    >>>http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1994/0143/latest/DLM346602.html

    >>
    >> It's not the same as theft though. And shouldn't be treated as the
    >> same.

    >
    >Interesting, no mention of “theft” anywhere in that bill that I can see.


    Impossible seems to have an expectation that NZ law, and indeed the
    law of other countries as well, is going to follow the US example.
    Ted, Oct 13, 2010
    #18
  19. In message <>, Ted wrote:

    > On Wed, 13 Oct 2010 23:05:48 +1300, Lawrence D'Oliveiro
    > <_zealand> wrote:
    >
    >>Interesting, no mention of “theft” anywhere in that bill that I can see.

    >
    > Impossible seems to have an expectation that NZ law, and indeed the
    > law of other countries as well, is going to follow the US example.


    The US Supreme Court in Dowling vs US (1985) made it quite clear that
    copyright infringement was not the same as theft
    <http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100913/22513210998.shtml>.
    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Oct 13, 2010
    #19
  20. In message <i8paev$am4$>, Lawrence D'Oliveiro wrote:

    > One of the ironies of the whole “intellectual property†circus is that
    > those who thump their chests most loudly about “respecting†it and not
    > “stealing†often turn out to be among the least willing to practise what
    > they preach.


    More copycat practices among “intellectual property†enforcement groups
    <http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20101014/03220211427/why-do-the-various-copyright-pre-settlement-lawsuit-factories-keep-copying-each-other.shtml>.
    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Oct 15, 2010
    #20
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