Re: Google Accused of Copyright Infringement (continued)

Subject: Re: Google Accused of Copyright Infringement (continued)
From: Dennis Bathory-Kitsz (
Date: Wed Sep 21 2005 - 20:03:33 EDT

[Previous message left unfinished]

At 07:37 PM 9/21/05 +0100, Richard Wentk wrote:
>There's nothing big or clever about expecting creative and talented people
>to work for the kind of money that a domestic cleaner or a Far Eastern
>sneaker slave wouldn't touch.

That's just diversionary. Creative and talented people, whether artists or
venture capitalists, cannot expect that others will be limited by the
narrowness of each others' ideas. Neither has a righteous position. There
are plenty of reasons to work for a pittance, especially because ideas,
save for a very few, are the proverbial dime a dozen. So when somebody does
the work and puts up the cash for a large-scale visionary project, it's of
no use whatsoever to insist on a position that will actually maintain that
role of intellectual sneaker slave. Figure out how better to make it work
in a way that rewards the source of the creative material, or expect more
out-of-copyright texts (and, for that matter, music) to retain their
intellectual dominance over the present. Artists and writers are their own
worst enemy sometimes, and this is a textbook (so to speak) example.

>Because in the end he was the one who killed it.

No, the buyers of killed it. Or, going back to the reasons for the
sale, the nibbling attackers began the sequence of events that killed it.
If you follow the history, Robertson's success brought a plague of attacks
and lawsuits in areas of intellectual property that the law had not yet
contemplated. No one of the supposedly aggrieved tried to solve it with
him, though I was one of those who wrote amicus curiae essays for his point
of view. After seeing the total unwillingness to explore possibilities on
the part of the self-appointed offended artists (and their agents,
agencies, and labels) I would have thrown up my hands in disgust as well.
He wasn't about to be a crusader, even if was an experiment whose
results weren't yet determined. He created a terrific framework, offered
*voluntary* pay-for-play pseudo-royalties, and yet he was being eaten up by
the very artists and agents he set out to showcase. It was his baby, and he
was really proud of what he had started. But after that gruesome display,
I'm not surprised he sold it and took the profits.

But the blame for destroying this phenomenal archive belongs with the
buyers. They pushed the 'erase' button.

>He could have put some of his money back into it. It wasn't a money losing
>operation. But instead he treated it as an investment, scammed the
>contributors, 99% of whom contributed music for next to nothing, then took
>the money and ran.


>Can I sell you a bridge while we're here? ;)

Sure. Did the Roeblings build it, or do you want to revise that history, too?


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