Richard Black wrote:Whatever you say. But I _have_ got some experience of working in businesses, over the years, and I just think you guys are being unnecessarily paranoid, and unprepared to admit to simple lack of experience in general. Doesn't really show the Public Domain advocates in a very good light to the rest of the world, seems to me.
This is outright insulting.
It is true that advocates of the public domain have been loosing terrain to the greed of corporations, who have invested in buying copyright extensions. I believe Disney invested a million or so in getting the Sonny Bono act past congress, but has a return of several billions in additional revenues. A factor 1000 returns... From a business sense not a bad investment, from a social point of few, it is legalized piracy of the PD.
The problem here is that this additional income comes at an insane cost to society -- another factor 1000 maybe -- in lost opportunities, in access to cultural heritage and so on, but, whereas the profits are collected by a few rent-seeking corporations, the costs are carried by every member society, who often isn't even aware -- as you cannot see the works suppressed by this legislation, and the additional costs of Disney's cut of a mickey mouse t-shirt is just a fraction of its price.
I hope this point will start to drive home with the public and responsible politicians, and will result in a global revision of copyright laws, such that the balance is restored, and the original purpose of copyright, that is, to have more works available to the public (not less) is achieved.
In the mean time, anybody promoting this point of view should do anything to abide to the letter of copyright law (but nothing more), grudgingly and protesting, and making clear that we do this only to avoid prosecution.