web analytics
The Standard
Advertising

Copying is not theft

Written By: - Date published: 8:33 am, April 19th, 2010 - 24 comments
Categories: humour, interweb, music, youtube - Tags: , , ,

Here’s a catchy tune for all you pirates out there.

Get your kids to sing along!

24 comments on “Copying is not theft”

  1. lprent 1

    I was wondering if you’d move that post forward.

  2. felix 2

    Cute but simplistic. Works well as a cartoon though.

    • yes wonderfully simplistic. and catchy.

      • felix 2.1.1

        I was thinking more along the lines of “misleadingly simplistic”.

        • the sprout 2.1.1.1

          I would like to think of it more as ‘discussion initiatingly’ simplistic :)
          But yes… can’t deny it is very simplistic. Perhaps it’s aimed at pre-schoolers? Encourage them to think about what copyright is – can’t start these things too early, especially if they already have solid brand recognition of Macdonalds.
          The artwork reminds me of early Mickey Mouse.

          • Ted Appleby 2.1.1.1.1

            > can’t deny it is very simplistic.

            I expect it’s done to counter the typically equally simplistic (and factually incorrect) “copying is theft” (or words to that effect) propaganda packs being sent to your children’s schools. Okay maybe not your children’s schools in NZ as yet (I don’t know, not in NZ right now). In my experience today’s kids are quite cynical and intelligent enough to see straight through them, but still, not a bad video to show if they come home from school with one of the “educational” leaflets from the clearly-not-quite-dead-enough-yet-unfortunately record/movie industry.

  3. Misleadingly simplistic is right.

    “Copy­ing is not theft,’ you say?

    Well, if you’re copying someone else’s creations without permission, yes it is.

    My ideas are my prop­erty. Steal the form in which my ideas are expressed or made con­crete, and you’re a thief.

    Since creation is a livelihood for artists, writers and inventors, stealing the form in which their creations are made is theft of their intel­lec­tual prop­erty–which means a theft of their livelihood. And since intellectual property rightsare at the heart of all prop­erty rights, the pop­ulist attack on intel­lec­tual prop­erty rights is just the most fun­da­men­tal front in the attack on all prop­erty rights.

    Abol­ish­ing copy­right pro­tec­tion favours theft over thought.

    You say no-one is worse off if copy­ing is allowed?

    Well yes, we all are. We are worse off by the lack of new ideas pro­duced and made con­crete in the form of a book, or a CD, or a patentable invention.

    With­out copy­right pro­tec­tion, you load the cost of pro­duc­tion onto musi­cians, writ­ers, artists and inven­tors, while all the ben­e­fits that would have and should have accrued to these pro­duc­ers go to instead to the thieves.

    Copy my new kind of bicy­cle with­out my per­mis­sion, and you take away from me all the ben­e­fits I’d hoped to derive from the inven­tion of my new bicy­cle. Take away all the ben­e­fits that all the inven­tors of new bicy­cles hoped to derive from their inven­tion, and pretty soon you have no new types of bicycleand, if the process con­tin­ues across all fields of endeav­our, even­tu­ally no new inven­tion at all.

    Why would any­one con­tinue to pro­duce new music, write new books or invent new things under such a set-up? Why would any­one sup­port such a set-upunless they wished them­selves to steal?

    Lud­wig von Mises explained this point:

    [I]t is obvi­ous that hand­ing down knowl­edge to the ris­ing gen­er­a­tion and famil­iar­iz­ing the act­ing indi­vid­u­als with the amount of knowl­edge they need for the real­iza­tion of their plans require text­books, man­u­als, hand­books, and other non­fic­tion works. It is unlikely that peo­ple would under­take the labo­ri­ous task of writ­ing such pub­li­ca­tions if every­one were free to repro­duce them. This is still more man­i­fest in the field of tech­no­log­i­cal inven­tion and dis­cov­ery. The exten­sive exper­i­men­ta­tion nec­es­sary for such achieve­ments is often very expen­sive. It is very prob­a­ble that tech­no­log­i­cal progress would be seri­ously retarded if, for the inven­tor and for those who defray the expenses incurred by his exper­i­men­ta­tion, the results obtained were noth­ing but [gifting benefits to others while earning nothing oneself for one’s creations].’

    Make no mis­take, copy­ing with­out the per­mis­sion of the owner is theftno mat­ter how many sappy sugar-coated dit­ties you hear to the contrary.

    • I’m not saying saying that Peter, the video is.
      The points you make are valid and eloquently made.

      There are also the issues raised in lynn’s post next to this one.
      http://www.thestandard.org.nz/bogus-bullshit-on-the-costs-of-copy-and-counterfeit/

      I also think some of the ACTA proposals cloaked in copyright protection rhetoric are trojan horses that aren’t really about small scale non-commercial copyright violation.

      • Hi Sprout,

        Yes, I understand it was the video, not you. Just thought opposition to it should be made explicit.

        That said, yes, you’re right that the way ACTA proposes protecting intellectual property–by going through people’s bags at airports; by holding ISPs responsible for what their customers do; etc.–is hardly in accordance with the principle of property rights they purport to be upholding.

        • Ted Appleby 3.1.1.1

          > is hardly in accordance with the principle of property rights they purport to be upholding.

          Shrug. Imaginary “property” monopolies are known to be fundamentally incompatible with actual property rights. They have been dressed up in pseudocapitalistic rhetoric, to make people think they’re similar when in fact they stand in direct opposition and amount to misappropriation of everyone’s physical property. Sadly, a lot of people still fall for it.

          See Stefan Kinsella or Boldrin and Levine

    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      What if you still got all the benefits?

      Yes, this can be done. What you won’t have, though, is people able to benefit from others work and ideas while paying them SFA if anything.

      Why would any­one con­tinue to pro­duce new music, write new books or invent new things under such a set-up?

      Because otherwise they’d be bored?

    • Jono 3.3

      It is unfortunate I read your post. Now my ideas have been copied to my brain without your express permission. I guess I’m a thief.

      Seriously though. You believe your ideas are your property?

      And Ludwig von Mises sounds like the kind of person who wouldn’t share a subway seat without getting paid to do it. Is she seriously not going to raise her children because it wouldn’t be cost effective? Is money the only motivation to create something new? Most creators, artists & scientists included, don’t do it for the money.

      Ideas are worthless. It is someones blood and effort in realising that idea which makes it valuable. If others also deem it valuable they will pay. I totally agree that people should be compensated for the effort they put into their work but anyone who says “copying is theft” is dead wrong. Copying is not theft. Copying is a natural human act (children do it all the time – it’s how they learn). Copying is how human knowledge is transmitted to our young. You seriously want to hinder that? You want to live in a world deprive of music, literature? All in the name of greed?

      Disgusting!

  4. Pundit X 4

    So let’s hear some coherent argument about about how creative professionals can live and work in a society that steals their ideas and work with impunity… A lot of them are not major corporations who overcharge for their products but people like you who make the world a better place with their music, art and photography. You have the floor…

    • Bill 4.1

      Creative professionals cannot live and work in a society that steals their ideas and work with impunity…if that society is wedded to a market economy.

      But if the market (ie the ‘beggar thy neighbour or starve’) economy is abolished and creative professionals get rewarded for their contributions to society rather than the market. if they do not have to, as is usually the case, prostitute their talent to the advertising ( or other) industry in an attempt to make a buck from it…or relegate the pursuit of their passion to that of a hobby…. or abandon their passion altogether, then maybe the blatant theft of ideas and creativity becomes a historic curiosity.

      Theft of ideas, of creativity only makes sense when the thief can profit from it in some way, say by saving on purchase price or by selling for profit under false pretences etc. But if the market economy is abandoned, then the seeking of competitive advantage…the desperate and endless doing in of all and sundry by all and sundry on an increasingly individualistic basis ceases.

      And that relief of pressure would also free up time for us all to be more creative and so less needy of others’ art and creativity. Perhaps.

      I’m working on the premise that most of our time spent in jobs is unnecessary as far as societies production needs are concerned and that our jobs are largely a waste of time geared to simply generate profit and power for others.

      • James 4.1.1

        Well that is a nice fantasy world that you have conjured up in your mind.

        Now how about answering the question that was posed, this time in the context of reality.

        • uke 4.1.1.1

          “…most of our time spent in jobs is unnecessary as far as societies production needs are concerned and… our jobs are largely a waste of time geared to simply generate profit and power for others.”

          Sounds like reality to me.

      • Jono 4.1.2

        Oh the dream. Wouldn’t it be wonderful it our society was set up in such a way as to reward somebody for what they loved doing, regardless of what it is they love doing? Rewards for intangible benefits to society, not just the tangible ones…

        This is typically called a service business. Hint, there’s something about technology that is quickly making what was once tangible goods into intangibles. Hmm…

    • Kerry Thomas 4.2

      Hi
      This is actually not about protecting creative people, but large recording companies who have made me pay for the same piece of music many times in different formats. If you create a new design or idea you find the rights you have expire after a certain number of years. Not so with music. Now I am having to spend time hacking DRM on CD’s I own so I can make a compilation for my car of music I have paid for at least once. Some several times as it has come out in different formats from tape,records, CD’s and Mobile phone.
      I am not sure how we protect creatives as I have had a blatant rip off of one of my designs subject by another to a US patent.
      However increasing state surveillance on individuals to suit large American corporates whose business model is outdated is not the answer.

  5. Descendant Of Smith 5

    You could take advantage of internet models for payment.

    I have a mate who started putting up MP3 files of his hypnosis sessions on to the internet and selling them that way. He has recently released a small selection on iTunes and is making further sales using that model.

    He gleefully talks about working only a few hours per week now. He has however taken many years and much effort to reach that point and it isn’t a quick fix.

    We’ve seen artists release their music online in various ways and be quite successful. Sometimes cause it’s good, sometimes cause it’s clever marketing.

    With music it was pretty hard to get a recording contract anyway.

    There’s new opportunities with music such as music for games – course if you see this as a sell out then you’ll never make money from it but it’s an emerging source of income. Gaming now is bigger than the movie industry in terms of turnover.

    Music traditionally meant a lot of live work and that probably still hasn’t changed that much.

    Sell your music on MP3 sticks rather than on a CD.

    There are art opportunities in web-design or gaming as well.

    There’s the ability to sell over the internet from little towns in New Zealand.

    With writing there are new roles in supporting web design, in scripting for gaming – anyone who has recently played Mass Effect or Dragon Age Origins will tell you how great the scripting is in those games – a little corny at time but great story lines with drama and humour and plot twists.

    There’s the opportunity for added value art products – TShirts, playing cards, prints.

    I was in Sydney recently and came across a shop that had employed an artist to design limited runs of T-Shirts. The designs were great and they had no shortage of sales at very reasonable prices.

    You can argue that these opportunities are limited but they didn’t exist until recently. Some people take advantage of them to generate income – others do not and simply moan about how the Internet has ruined their traditional income streams.

    I’m not at all artistic but would love to be to take advantage of some of these new opportunities.

  6. Descendant Of Smith 6

    Couldn’t resist this creative opportunity:

    I’d be interested too in whether you consider corporate theft as larger or smaller than citizen theft.

    There’s plenty of stories of artists who made very little from their works and die in poverty while the corporates made and continue to make plenty.

  7. Pundit X 7

    Most of the evidence is anecdotal and speculative. The large music corporations claim falling sales which could just as easily be down to an overpriced product as to consumers file sharing. I do know of significant numbers of photographers who have been ripped of by corporations, SME’s and bloggers who simply want to liven up the page. By ripped of I mean having the work used without permission being sought when it was possible to contact the photographer. The UK government under pressure from publishers such as Rupert Murdoch came close to codifying corporate theft into law with Clause 43 the just passed Digital Economy Bill. It would have enabled the use of orphan works without payment to the photographer. An orphan work is a photograph that cannot be attributed to an author. For example any image uploaded to Facebook automatically becomes an orphan work because Facebook automatically stripped out any meta data identifying the author. Only a vigorous and concerted campaign by editorial photographers prevented that section of the bill becoming law. http://www.stop43.org.uk

    • James 7.1

      You have no idea what you are talking about.

      Please stop doling out such dangerously incorrect information.

  8. Song writers only have one form of income, artists may have varies ways of an income, but songwriters dont, they are the ones that miss out when people illegally copy cd’s, if your a fan or an artist you wouldnt copy their cds.

  9. Mike Simpson 9

    Rand was wrong on this one. You can rightly assume that what resides in your own brain is your property, whether or not you’re an inventor, composer, or author—just as the rest of your body is your property. Clearly, someone would have to trespass on your property and do a coercive brain scan in order to gather this decidedly private information. But only by keeping information to oneself, that is, in private form and shielded from the marketplace can one declare conceptual information to be one’s own.

    The notion of property of the intellect existing in the marketplace, however, is basically a contradiction in terms. Property is something that’s claimed, used, and possessed as an extension of self-ownership. Property rights ultimately mean the freedom of action to use and/or dispose of certain owned items and to do various things in relation to them. Property rights do not mean the freedom to prevent others from duplicating what you own, unless that duplication creates conflict of usage and possession of your property, as in identity theft.

    When intellectual information that’s manifested in tangible items and processes makes it to the marketplace, such as a story or song or even mining processes or the sequencing and use of particular genes, it’s quite obviously no longer for the creator’s eyes only, and no longer in the creator’s possession. Others are then exposed to this information via these items and their innumerable uses. One would have to initiate force to dictate to others what they can and cannot do with the intellectual information that’s now in their brains. In other words, because what’s claimed to be intellectual property is simply a pattern of information manifested in a tangible thing—specifically information that can be reproduced by others without conflict—one can’t enforce the terms of its replication and dissemination once it reaches the marketplace, that is, once information has been duplicated by other brains and transformed into tangible expression by them. That would essentially be trying to control the property of others.

    To put it another way, after a person exposes ideas, products, and services to the marketplace, he or she has no right to prevent others from reproducing or duplicating those same things—even if that person was the one who truly created or discovered them. One only has the right to control one’s own particular products and services in which that information is embodied, that is, one’s own capital resources and inventory (rightful property).

    When other minds become aware of information, it basically goes from being private property (because trespass would be required to glean it) to being in the public domain, or marketplace. That’s the way a free market works. No force is initiated by either buyers or sellers. Both realize that property rights apply to all aspects of tangible items they own and the various uses they choose to employ with them.

    Patents, copyrights and trademarks only help to retard the course of progress and human flourishing. Are these needed in order for knowledge to be disseminated? Not in the least: type “wikipedia.org” in your address bar and then type “encyclopedia britannica” and see for yourself.

Links to post

Important links

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

1 2 3 7

  • Customs seeks big brother powers
    A proposal giving New Zealand Customs powers to compel anyone to provide passwords and encryption keys to their electronic devices is another step towards a surveillance society and should be strongly resisted, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran said today.  “There… ...
    22 hours ago
  • Playcentre Awareness Week – celebrating an icon!
    It’s not always easy being an icon and Playcentres tell me they are facing big challenges under the current economic and social circumstances. However this week Playcentres are celebrating their proud history and current contribution. Since 1941 the Playcentres have… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    24 hours ago
  • Housing Accord not working – prices continue skyward
      The Government's Auckland Housing Accord isn't working as house prices continue to go through the roof, Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The average Auckland house has gone up by $110,000 since the Accord came into effect 15 months… ...
    2 days ago
  • Justice for Teina Pora long overdue
    The Privy Council’s decision to quash Teina Pora’s convictions for the rape and murder of Susan Burdett could be the final chapter in a case that should have been closed years ago, Labour’s Justice Spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Teina Pora… ...
    2 days ago
  • Ministers must answer questions on IRD blowout
    The current and previous Revenue Ministers must front up and explain how the child support system had a budget blowout from $30 million to $210 million in just four years, says Labour’s Revenue spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “Peter Dunne was Revenue… ...
    3 days ago
  • Curb stratospheric public CEO salaries
    A review of the way MPs’ pay is set should also look at ways to curb excessive rises in the salaries of public service chief executives, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “Some of these CEOs have had stratospheric pay increases… ...
    3 days ago
  • 50 cents? Makes no sense.
    The minimum wage rose by 50 cents this month from 14.25 to 14.75. While it’s a small step towards ensuring minimum workers get a fair share, it’s important to remember that real wages only rose 1.5% while productivity rose by… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    4 days ago
  • The Serco corrections circus
    It should seem obvious to employers, private or public, that it’s important to do what you can to retain your best, most experienced staff. They make life easier for you because they’re effective, attentive and often respected by those around… ...
    GreensBy David Clendon MP
    4 days ago
  • Time for NZ to prohibit the killing of great apes
    That ban was widely hailed, and spurred efforts in other countries to get similar bans. However, apes are still being exploited, abused and killed, both in captivity and in the wild. Examples of cruelty, neglect and abuse abound. Apes are… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    7 days ago
  • Auckland building consents: Tragic
    The only word to describe the latest building consent figures for Auckland is ‘tragic’, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Whatever the Government is doing to address the Auckland housing crisis, it is clearly not working. ...
    7 days ago
  • A whiff of a new biosecurity scandal?
    A pest which could create havoc for New Zealand’s horticulture and agriculture sector must be as much a focus for the Government as hunting out fruit flies, Labour’s Biosecurity spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “While the Ministry for Primary Industries is… ...
    7 days ago
  • Government shrugs off health sector crisis
    Despite new evidence showing that cuts to health spending are costing lives the Government continues to deny the sector is struggling, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Health services in New Zealand are in crisis. ...
    1 week ago
  • Parata lowered the bar for failing charter school
    When Hekia Parata became aware that the Whangaruru charter school was experiencing major problems her first action was to drop standards by reducing the number of qualified teachers they had to employ, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins has revealed. “Hekia… ...
    1 week ago
  • National not being straight about the economy
    John Key and Bill English need to be straight with New Zealanders about the damage their failure to diversify the economy is doing, after new figures show export growth plunged due to a collapse in dairy exports, says Grant Robertson.… ...
    1 week ago
  • Mind the Gap
    This week the International Monetary Fund released a report on the wider economic value in closing the gender pay gap. When even the bastions of free-market economics start to raise concerns about gender pay gaps, we have to realise how… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • Labour will hold National to parental leave promise
    Labour will hold National to its promise to increase the support given to new parents of premature, multiple birth and babies born with disabilities, Labour’s paid parental leave campaigner Sue Moroney says. "I am naturally disappointed that after battling for… ...
    1 week ago
  • It was all just pillar talk
    Steven Joyce’s confession that he can no longer guarantee a pillar-free design for the New Zealand International Convention Centre shows the Government has abandoned its dream of creating an ‘iconic’ ‘world-class’ structure, says Labour Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. “Steven… ...
    1 week ago
  • Australians move on offshore speculators
    John Key might want to have a quiet word with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott about Canberra's just-announced crack down on offshore speculators when he visits New Zealand this week, Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says."Tony Abbott's centre right government… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government at odds on overseas driver crashes
    National backbencher Jacqui Dean has spoken out about overseas driver crashes, putting herself at odds with Prime Minister John Key who is on record as saying it’s not a big issue, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “I’m not surprised… ...
    1 week ago
  • Human Rights and the Palestine Crisis
    Last week I heard two Palestinians speak at Wellington events about the ongoing crisis in their country. Samar Sabawi spoke to a full house about the history of Palestine and gave us a lucid and disturbing account of the situation… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • Time to take real care of our kids
    An Amnesty International report has once again criticised New Zealand’s track record on looking after our kids, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. The annual report, which looks at global human rights abuses highlights not only the fact that high… ...
    1 week ago
  • Manus Island and the New Zealand Government
    This week the Greens have participated in awareness activity about Manus Island, the refugee camp on an island in Papua New Guinea where Australia dumps asylum seekers. John Key says that he has every confidence in the Australian Government’s claim… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Election Inquiry – Getting accessible voting on the agenda
    James Shaw has been doing a series of blogs on the Election Inquiry into last year’s general election.  I thought this was a great opportunity to raise an issue very dear to me – accessible voting. Last year’s general election… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    2 weeks ago
  • RMA changes no solution to Christchurch housing
    Housing will continue to be a big issue in 2015. The latest Consumer Price Index, released last month, shows both good news and bad news on the housing front. After years of being the most expensive place to build a… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Saving kokako in South Auckland’s Hunua Ranges
    It is amazing that you can hear the song of the endangered North Island kokako in South Auckland’s Hunua Ranges, less than 50 kms from the central city. A heavy schedule of policy workshops at the Green Party’s Policy… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    3 weeks ago
  • Let’s not turn a blind eye to human rights
    The Cricket World Cup has just opened in New Zealand, and it’s an opportunity for us to shine on the world stage. International sport can be a chance for us to build relationships with other countries, and examine what it… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    3 weeks ago
  • Its Just Not Cricket
    This week it was my privilege to work with Sri Lankan Tamil communities in this country and host Australian journalist and human rights advocate Trevor Grant. I knew a bit about Trevor from his biography but I didn’t know just… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    3 weeks ago
  • Time for NZ to #BeCrueltyFree
    The Government is about to progress the final stages of the Animal Welfare Amendment bill. This will be our last opportunity to get changes made to improve the bill to ensure a better outcome for animals. I have put forwards… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    3 weeks ago
  • We want access!
    Access to buildings is a big issue for many New Zealanders. It looks like that, due to the hard work and persistence of people in the disability community, the Government may finally be starting to take access to buildings seriously.… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    3 weeks ago
  • Greens call on Super Fund to divest from fossil fuels
    The Green Party today called on the New Zealand Superannuation Fund (the Fund) to divest from fossil fuels, starting immediately with coal. The call was accompanied with a new report, Making money from a climate catastrophe: The case for divesting… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    3 weeks ago

Removed at the request of The Daily Blog.
Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere