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Re: [dvd-discuss] "El Dread" slammed in The Register

Ole Craig wrote:
> Someone from a usually-enlightened paper Just Doesn't Get It:
> http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/6/27687.html

This is a problem that we will continually encounter until
we are explicit about drawing the line between fundamental
rights and creators' rights -- which is actually the most
fundamental political question raised by information and
communications technology.

There is a whole body of activism surrounding the authors
vs. publishers front that is actually being exploited by the
content industries to help rationalize things like content
control.  Witness the Phonograms and Performances Treaty
(WPPT), which raises Berne Convention "moral rights" from
out of the Civil Code tradition (never well supported in
American jurisprudence), to the stature of providing a
foundation for content control, disrupting the
fact/expression dichotomy and violating the intrinsic
freedom of information per se.  The WPPT combines a moral
right to "integrity" with a provision requiring that DRM
metadata be supported.  Proposing that taking away the
public's ability to parse and process information contained
in an expressive work must be done to support a creators'
"moral rights" takes exclusive rights way out of scope. 
Among the consequences that we understand in this forum,
this disrupts the function of the universal logic device,
renders digital information products unuseful for anything
but a very constrained notion of "consumption," and sets the
stage for undermining the fundamental nature and
architecture of the Internet.

The guy is at least being honest about where he's coming
from, the authors vs. publisher struggle, when he says:

>     "The problem is that Eldred simply doesn't understand how
>     publishing works. He's obviously never written a book. He doesn't
>     understand how much time and money goes into producing a book; he
>     doesn't know how authors' rights work; and he doesn't know, or
>     care, that print-on-demand books earn nothing for the author.

< etc. >

Seth Johnson


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