INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY IN CYBERSPACE
CHAT SESSION LOG
Monday, April 13, 1998

Mon Apr 13, 1998 06:56:36 PM moderator_michelle_s:. . .

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:04:02 PM moderator_michelle_s:Hi. Iím Michelle Spaulding, your moderator for this evening. Tonight we will be discussing the issue of respect and integrity vis a vis the moral rights of an author and how the Internet challenges this. Please feel free to join in the discussion.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:04:09 PM ashok:Hi. Just logged in from Melbourne

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:04:27 PM moderator_michelle_s:Hi Ashok! How's life down under? (that was trite, I know!)

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:04:59 PM ashok:Getting cooler. Call me Ash. Carol Daniels also from Melbourne is about to join us.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:05:21 PM moderator_michelle_s:Wonderful. Were you two automatically sent to the Plenary Discussion area?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:05:53 PM ashok:Re the discussion topic, is the public discussion of an author the same thing?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:05:55 PM johnsonrmarshalled:Just followed you.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:06:22 PM moderator_michelle_s:No. This has to do with visual alterations or reproductions of an author's work.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:06:34 PM ashok:Michelle - no, someone popped up and asked me to go to this area. Can't remember if it was a human or a robot.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:07:22 PM moderator_michelle_s:I asked you both to come in here -- I was just wondering how you wound up in Plenary Discussions when IP Lobby is supposed to be the default -- possible technology glitch for the evening.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:08:02 PM johnsonrmarshalled:I couldn't log into the chat. So, did the html.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:08:20 PM ashok:Michelle (I'm still thinking about the subject - inspiration is not forthcoming)

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:08:40 PM moderator_michelle_s:Well, I'm glad you're here. Please post questions or comments. I'm going into the other room for a second to see if anyone's there.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:09:54 PM ashok:Who is "johnsonmarshalled"?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:10:28 PM moderator_michelle_s:Another participant who followed me in from plenary discussions. For some reason, we are now attached for a while.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:10:41 PM johnsonrmarshalled:I'm Rebecca Johnson.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:10:52 PM johnsonrmarshalled:I'm Rebecca Johnson.How do I unattach.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:10:57 PM moderator_michelle_s:Oh, hi Rebecca -- your username changed.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:11:07 PM moderator_michelle_s:let me check . . .

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:11:43 PM ashok:Is a caricature photograph, e.g. Cream Bill Gates - an example of the photographer's rights violated because someone used his original photo to create the caricature? Any better examples?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:11:55 PM johnsonrmarshalled:I've been Rebecca during earlier weeks. Why I'm I johnsonrmarshalled tonight?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:12:20 PM moderator_michelle_s:I don't know what's going on, Rebecca! In response to Ash's question, I would say that's a very good example.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:12:50 PM moderator_michelle_s:Now this happens in the real world quite a bit. Do you think the Internet makes it easier?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:12:56 PM ashok:(I was asking about johnson etc because she followed Michelle automatically when she left the room and came back - is that a n option?)

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:13:45 PM johnsonrmarshalled:I am particularly interested in tonight's topic as I teach photojournalism and we are incorporating the "new media" into more courses.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:14:12 PM moderator_michelle_s:Let's hear your thoughts on this, Rebecca

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:14:49 PM johnsonrmarshalled:The internet makes it easier for sure.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:15:59 PM ashok:The photographer or artist runs the risk if her photo is hijacked and altered to the extent that most people see the amended version and form an opinion of the author that was not intended. Digital watermarks are a way to avoid it but I am told that technology is still evolving.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:18:14 PM moderator_michelle_s:Just so you all know, I plan to sit back and let you talk. If you have a question for me, please direct it to me. Otherwise, talk amongst yourselves, and I'll step in wherever necessary.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:20:23 PM ashok:The challenge is for the author to become aware of her works spreading across the Internet, and using a smart search tool is one way. There is an experimental tool at Darthmouth called the Informant, which monitors keywords for you and sends you an email if it finds those words on various search engines. Naturally, it is not all-inclusive.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:21:06 PM moderator_michelle_s:Doesn't that sound like it could also be a bit overwhelming?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:22:22 PM ashok:Yes, hence using search agents is better than trying a raw search yourself and getting overwhelmed. Finding such search agents is a simpler task. :-)

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:22:48 PM ashok:How do we bring in "respect and integrity" into this discussion?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:23:16 PM moderator_michelle_s:What I meant was this: If Gary Larson (see readings for this week) wanted to know when he was being altered . . .

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:23:29 PM moderator_michelle_s:this search would do one of two things:

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:23:48 PM moderator_michelle_s:It wouldn't return any information, because keywords are buried in source code, not images, and

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:24:16 PM moderator_michelle_s:or, it would e-mail him a thousand times a day when anyone put Far Side or any other descriptive keyword in their site

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:24:55 PM moderator_michelle_s:Should an author have to deal with this?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:25:51 PM ashok:I agree that scanning an image and reposting it or an alteration thereof is hard for the owner to detect, but once digital communications becomes the norm, we can expect to see digital signatures in images all the time, when it would be easier to search for such signatures that would be hard to alter by the copiers.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:26:31 PM ashok:Sorry I was typing... Carol?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:26:50 PM moderator_michelle_s:What about the argument that if someone posts on the Internet, they should expect it to be copied? What are your thoughts on this, Ash and Carol?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:27:37 PM ashok:Michelle - Good point. I guess, we need a search agent that downloads images and analyses them for digital watermarks?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:28:59 PM ashok:Yes, the WWW newsgroups are always answering this question -- the Web requires the viewer to "copy" the image locally, but reposting it on another web site is the breach of the owner's rights if permission is not obtained.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:30:17 PM moderator_michelle_s:And that's what we're talking about tonight -- the rights of the original author. Not just copyrights, but the right an author has to not have her work misattributed, distorted, etc.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:30:49 PM ashok:No, I don't expect to be copied, but I should not be surprised. That is the main change in expectation.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:31:13 PM moderator_michelle_s:But what if you put up a picture and someone else copies it, then alters it?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:32:34 PM ashok:I don't know enough about the legalities of when a "close copy" i.e. an alteration can become a free-standing image. What is the story here?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:32:50 PM carol_d:One there is only one copy of something, and it is highly valued. There is an expectation of respect. That s why I think, it s easier to recognise traditional rights, and understand the issues of respect.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:33:20 PM moderator_michelle_s:Well, just back up a step and think about it this way, without worrying about the legal definition of say, a derivative work (we can go into that in a few minutes) . . .

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:33:42 PM moderator_michelle_s:Think about what your rights should be as an author of a photograph. Shouldn't you control how it is used?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:34:26 PM carol_d:With the internet and the general ease of copying with modern technology, the issue of value is less obvious. Education is key in raising people s awareness and creating a similar level of expectation for works which exist electronically

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:35:05 PM Rebecca:The photographer should have some control over how a photo is used.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:36:15 PM ashok:I am an editor and would answer the question differently as an author. I would expect a photo-editor to alter my work prior to publication, but I would not want some third party to alter it without permission.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:36:16 PM Rebecca:I think "level of expectation" is important.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:36:36 PM carol_d:Michelle, that issue of control is an important one. I ve found that almost everyone is happy for their work to be reused, if they are asked, they know why it s being used and are assured that the work will be correctly attributed.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:37:19 PM moderator_michelle_s:But if the author has no control?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:38:29 PM ashok:I suspect we are seeing en erosion of an author's rights, not unlike the days when the photocopier was a novelty in offices.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:38:32 PM carol_d:Michelle, yes that s where the internet is making things especially hard, the ability to control has shifted greatly, while the expectation remains unchanged. In fact developments in real world work have even heightened expectations.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:39:06 PM moderator_michelle_s:Have you all done enough of this week's reading to be aware of the VARA?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:39:19 PM ashok:No.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:39:28 PM moderator_michelle_s:Ok -- let me try it in a nutshell . . .

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:39:50 PM Rebecca:I still have a problem trying to download and read the same day as class.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:40:27 PM moderator_michelle_s:Moral rights, not copyrights, are protected on a limited basis in the U.S. by the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (VARA) . . .

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:41:04 PM moderator_michelle_s:VARA applies to visual art (paintings, drawings, sculpture, photographs, prints)

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:41:10 PM carol_d:Michelle, that s what I was alluding to in my comments about developments in real world works

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:41:23 PM moderator_michelle_s:VARA grants two rights: attribution and integrity

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:41:44 PM moderator_michelle_s:Attribution -- protects an author from misattribution of her work

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:42:07 PM moderator_michelle_s:Integrity -- protects against distortion, mutilation, and destruction.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:42:29 PM moderator_michelle_s:VARA is the U.S.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:42:32 PM moderator_michelle_s:sorry

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:43:12 PM moderator_michelle_s:VARA is the U.S.'s attempt to protect an author's moral rights. How do you think this plays out in our photograph scenario?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:43:16 PM carol_d:In the US yes, but under consideration I believe in the EU, and whither the US goes, the world watches

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:43:51 PM moderator_michelle_s:Actually -- moral rights protection is much stronger in other countries than in the U.S. We're behind.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:45:08 PM ashok:(Comment: Sorry, got bumped off when I tried to call up the Modules page - I just realised we entered a new week and the new topic is up. Yes, it will be hard to do the reading and attend a Tuesday morning seminar (Mon evening to you))

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:45:58 PM moderator_michelle_s:I just let Rebecca know this also: we will have the modules active by Sunday noon from now on. Unfortunately there was a server access problem yesterday and we couldn't get it fixed until this morning!

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:46:02 PM Rebecca:So, does VARA live on the Internet?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:46:06 PM ashok:Michelle - are there some celebrated cases on this?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:47:03 PM moderator_michelle_s:There are no celebrated VARA cases relating to the Internet right now -- but in this week's reading you'll find a lot of interesting talk about it and some situations that have arisen.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:47:27 PM moderator_michelle_s:And, yes, Rebecca. VARA does apply to the Internet (at least in U.S. jurisdictions)

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:49:05 PM Rebecca:Ok, it applies. However, it is unknown or ignored.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:49:54 PM moderator_michelle_s:Should that make it any less applicable?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:50:32 PM Rebecca:No, Michelle, it should be equally applicable.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:50:42 PM carol_d:Well, if our experience (WRT defamation) is any guide, if it applies, it will be persued and jurisdiction is where you want it to be with a global medium such as the Internet.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:50:44 PM ashok:I believe the Internet user community needs to be better educated on VARA and similar concepts. It can begin with web site hosting places and the software vendors. Not forgetting the role user groups can play.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:51:32 PM moderator_michelle_s:So what do you three think? In our photograph scenario, have the author's VARA rights been violated when someone copies her work and changes it?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:51:45 PM ashok:Yes.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:52:04 PM Rebecca:Yes.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:52:10 PM carol_d:Yes, the violation exists

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:52:36 PM ashok:Who is the "champion" of VARA i.e. the public face?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:52:46 PM moderator_michelle_s:That's pretty clear. Now, you can think about the hard cases after the seminar (read about the Distorted Barbie -- not protected by VARA).

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:52:56 PM moderator_michelle_s:Ash, please repeat your question, I don't understand

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:53:26 PM ashok:Who is making an effort to remind the world about this topic?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:53:44 PM moderator_michelle_s:Well, we are right now!

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:53:58 PM ashok:And the law courts :-)

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:54:03 PM moderator_michelle_s:Beyond that -- I don't know of any activist groups, but I assume that coalitions of authors are very well versed in this.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:54:20 PM moderator_michelle_s:I learned about it the same way you have -- Intellectual Property Law class.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:54:40 PM ashok:I think I am going to learn a lot from this course!

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:54:50 PM moderator_michelle_s:Good! That's our hope!

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:54:52 PM carol_d:It s one thing to know that the violation exists, it s another to seek remedies and stop it from continuing or multiplying.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:55:03 PM Rebecca:The Internet is without license. No drivers exam. No pilot training and certification. No course in manners....

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:55:28 PM moderator_michelle_s:That's exactly the point, Carol and Rebecca -- what do we do about applying existing law to the Internet? That's a lot of what this course is about.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:55:41 PM moderator_michelle_s:We've got about two minutes left. Any quick questions?

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:56:08 PM ashok:Governments are taking a keen interest in these topics, some say it is an unhealthy interest.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:56:19 PM ashok:No questions here.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:56:32 PM Rebecca:Lots of questions. And I want to finish the readings before asking.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:56:35 PM carol_d:Well, first we have to raise peoples awareness. Then depending on your POV, you need to demonstrate what happens when people dont play by the rules. Or show them how to obey and expect them to follow

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:57:23 PM moderator_michelle_s:Good points, all.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:57:59 PM moderator_michelle_s:Please do the reading when you can, and participate in the threaded discussion.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:58:07 PM ashok:Will do!

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:58:07 PM Rebecca:My students come into class thinking there are no rules.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:58:22 PM moderator_michelle_s:Post any questions you may have there, or scenarios that you'd like to see someone try to explain . . .

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:58:25 PM carol_d:Rebecca, your students and our members!

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:58:37 PM carol_d:Michelle, will do!

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:58:45 PM Rebecca:They also think there is no accountability.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:59:03 PM moderator_michelle_s:Great! See you all next week -- reading will be available on Sunday noon EDT.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:59:05 PM ashok:Carol and I help to run a huge PC user group.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:59:11 PM moderator_michelle_s:Please feel free to stay and chat with each other!

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:59:12 PM ashok:Bye all

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:59:17 PM moderator_michelle_s:bye

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:59:17 PM Rebecca:Thanks, Michelle.

Mon Apr 13, 1998 08:59:22 PM moderator_michelle_s:thank you!