Jay Taylor | programmer notes

Archive for February 2010

Comments found in article “Statistical Analysis of U of Chicago Graffiti“:

Re:License? (Score:3, Interesting)

by Hurricane78 (562437) writes: on Monday February 08, @12:11AM (#31058658)

Well, what did you expect, from a mindset is not attached to physical reality?
That it would make any sense at all?

The wall with the graffiti is a physical object.
A paper photo in your hand would be a physical object.

But neither the graffiti itself, nor a photo of it, are physical works.
They are ideas/information. Other rules apply.

“Licensing”/“copyright“ is a concept, based on the misconception that ideas/information would be physical objects, and the false need of some people, to control that information.
Trying to argue with it, using logic, is (because of that false base assumption) by definition impossible.

The real physical rules for information are: If it’s out there, it’s out. Period.
So you either never give it out, and won’t be able to prove that it exists at all. Or you give it out to your chosen group.
Which can for example be people that you trust. Or, as in this case, everybody.
In case you gave it to everybody who wants it… well, you should have thought earlier about that everybody could store and copy it at will. (Just like looking at the physical wall and then telling someone, or drawing it from memory, is storing and copying.)

It does not matter if people want to accept that. Just as it does not matter if people want to accept gravity.
You can try to enforce weird rules of behavior onto people, trough mental tricks of psychology. And it may be easier to do in this case, than it is for gravity. But in the end it’s futile. Because you can’t control the whole world. Even with ACTA.
If nothing else, you will end up banning the ability to look at it, because some people became really good at memorizing and reproducing it later. And everybody who can’t remember it, will by definition not remember that it existed.

Whenever anyone mentions “facts”, you know he tries to shove his dogmas down your throat.

by ericvids (227598) writes: on Monday February 08, @03:46AM (#31059328)

This may be the BEST counterargument ever to “all information should be free”. Bravo!

However, while I genuinely want to mod you up, I do believe that CURRENT laws to control information are stupid. Similar to how laws can sometimes be unfairly and maliciously used to allow known murderers to remain innocent and walk freely, many patents and copyrights are unfairly and maliciously used to prevent people from contributing to the greater good of humanity. Patents in particular are a minefield — something’s clearly wrong with a system that encourages trolls to cripple the true innovators.

Back to the topic, I believe what the researcher did, copyrighting her photographs, is all right, regardless of whether she released it under Creative Commons. I don’t believe she was copyrighting the actual message on the graffiti anyway, just the expression of it on photograph. (Of course properly the copyright should be attributed to both HER and whoever made the graffiti, but then I would suppose THAT’s public domain since the original author didn’t stake a claim to it…)

Pet peeve: Profane people propagating perfunctory pedantry.

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