copyright discussion

Mon Sep 10 19:54:51 UTC 2001

I see that there has been some discussion and assertion about the powers 
bestowed by copyright. The focus has been on what it apparently allows the 
owner to prevent 'legitimate' users to do. I do not know which jurisdiction 
allows the copyright holder to prevent the public reading of a book. If such 
reading is a performance due to the artisitic input of the performer then the 
performer needs the consent of the copyright holder. And rightly so since can 
you imagine how much of an affront to your personhood would result if someone 
destroyed the essence of the meaning of your work through an unauthorised 

Don't look at copyright as a restrictive thing. Think of all the cultural 
property that we enjoy by virtue of our IP laws. We experience the work of 
others that we would not have were it not for the power of IP. Don't think of 
IP as a noose around your neck but as a source of empowerment. And remember 
that examples can be provided of outrageous uses of IP for frivilous 
purposes, but that is not the fault of IP as such, but is the problem of the 
use by others of the system. 

I'd be interested to know what others make of this. Contrary to the norm, I 
am an IP lawyer who actually appreciates IP. 

Praveen Jeetun

Copyright law empowers an author to restrict others from copying the
> > > work.  A user therefore wants the license to allow the user to copy
> > > the work.  In software terms, copying occurs when the user's hard
> > > drive or RAM receives or records the software, for example.
> >
> >Copyright law *does* specify that such copying essential to use is not
> >considered copying, and is not a reserved right. We've had this out on
> >list before.
> >
> U.S. and a number of other countries' copyright law indeed permits as an
> exception the limited ability of making of a copy in the utilization of
> program on a machine. See section 117 of the U.S. Copyright Act. Laws of
> many other countries do not provide such an explicit exception. Moreover,
> most countries in the world do not provide as wide a fair use privilege as
> the U.S or recognize implied license (or if so, an express license likely
> trumps).
> ><SNIP>
> >
> >Copyright law does state that the copyright holder does not perforce
> >reserve
> >the right to "use" the work, however that may apply to the work. They may
> >not forbid people to read a book, but they may forbid them to read it in
> >public. They may not forbid people to *privately* perform a play, or
> >rehearse it, but they may forbid them from performing in public. Get the
> >idea.
> >
> AFAIK in almost all countries making copies has no "public" limitation -
> whether the copy is "private" or "public" is irrelevant.
> >IANAL, but I have had definite answers on these areas...
> >
> >

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