[Jandek] Re: jandek Digest, Vol 55, Issue 36

Matt Love matt.mattlove1 at gmail.com
Sat Feb 24 06:46:35 PST 2007

A couple of observations...

1.  When Janky [ARFCI], writes to a totally anonymous stranger, this
is of course highly personal and confidential. (this observation was
plagerized from a friend's private email to me).

2.  Your rights of ownership to your own intellectual property is
wholly dependent on your own ability to protect it.  This generally
means how much money and political clout you have.  If you've ever
sent somebody a private e-mail and had them post it to public list,
you probably know what I'm talking about. Even if in addition to it
being your intellectual property, it's highly embarrassing to you, try
to collect damages. Go ahead.

3.  Intellectual property laws in this country are completely
wrong-headed at this point in history.  While they were originally
intended to encourage an accumulation of knowledge and resources in
the public domain (encouraging creators to create by insuring they
made a reasonable amount of money on their work before it becomes
public property), because of the influence of corporations (Disney,
primarily) the laws now discourage innovation by allowing ideas (and
anything that resembles those ideas) to stay in the hands of
corporations virtually forever.  I say corporations, because they are
the entities that are able to enforce their ownership rights over
intellectual property, not you.

Because the laws are so messed up, and discourage the natural flow of
intellectual transmission and innovation through adaptation and
modification, as has been practiced by the human race since cave days,
I would argue people have a moral right and responsibility to violate
copyright laws early and often.

To mangle (and perhaps misunderstand) Bob Dylan, to be honest, you
must live outside the law.  Bob is a flagrant and serial theft of
intellectual property.

"When you live outside the law, you have to eliminate dishonesty." The
line comes from Don Siegel's 1958 film noir, The Lineup, written by
Stirling Silliphant. The film still haunts revival houses, likely
thanks to Eli Wallach's blazing portrayal of a sociopathic hit man and
to Siegel's long, sturdy auteurist career. Yet what were those words
worth—to Siegel, or Silliphant, or their audience—in 1958? And again:
what was the line worth when Bob Dylan heard it (presumably in some
Greenwich Village repertory cinema), cleaned it up a little, and
inserted it into "Absolutely Sweet Marie"? What are they worth now, to
the culture at large?

The above paragraph was stolen from "The Ecstasy of Influence: A
plagiarism" By Jonathan Lethem, posted online at
http://www.harpers.org/TheEcstasyOfInfluence.html. This content  was
(along with most of the rest of the article) stolen from other
sources. As Negativland says, "Copyright violation: your best
entertainment value."

  If you disagree, you must be for the deletion of all Jandek cover
songs or tributes using samples;  removal from the archives of this
list all citation of Jandek lyrics from live performance - perhaps the
obliteration of Seth's website (perhaps explicit permission has been
granted to publish each lyrics and album cover, but I doubt it). In
fact, it's not just a good idea, it's the law, so c'mon people now,
smile on your brother, stop copyright violation... right now.

On 2/23/07, A. Chankin <achankin at gmail.com> wrote:
> Ah, come on guys.  You know better, or you really ought to.
> "a letter is not actually a copyrighted statement, and in fact can said to
> be "owned" by its recipient. So it's on the recipient's shoulders."
> Sorry, but no, what you stated there is totally incorrect.
>   A letter absolutely is a copyright protected from the moment the pen hits
> the page.  It is NOT on the recipients shoulders whether to publish it.  The
> recipient has zero legal right to publish a letter from someone else without
> permission, and is breaking the law if they do so.
> If you don't believe me, look up the law for yourself; I'll make it easy for
> you to do so:
> http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap2.html
> 202. Ownership of copyright as distinct from ownership of material object
> Ownership of a copyright, or of any of the exclusive rights under a
> copyright, is distinct from ownership of any material object in which the
> work is embodied. Transfer of ownership of any material object, including
> the copy or phonorecord in which the work is first fixed, does not of itself
> convey any rights in the copyrighted work embodied in the object; nor, in
> the absence of an agreement, does transfer of ownership of a copyright or of
> any exclusive rights under a copyright convey property rights in any
> material object.
> As I mentioned the respect issue is separate, that is more of a personal
> ethical question, to which I personally believe the answer there supports
> the legal answer.
> As for the "poor man's copyright" someone mentioned, that is again not quite
> spot on.  A work is copyrighted from the instant you create it.  You do not
> have to register it in any way for copyright to exist.  The poor mans
> copyright refers to how one registers a copyright.  The only way to
> officially register it in the US is to mail it in with the proper forms and
> fees to the US copyright office.  Poor mans copyright refers to the idea
> some people have that they can mail a work or document to themselves and
> thus provide some evidence that they created it and when they did, and of
> course the US copyright office wants to discourage you from doing that for a
> lot of good reasons.  But the work is copyrighted whether it is registered
> or not, or even if it is incorrectly registered.
> http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap4.html#408
> 408. Copyright registration in general 8
> (a) Registration Permissive. — At any time during the subsistence of the
> first term of copyright in any published or unpublished work in which the
> copyright was secured before January 1, 1978, and during the subsistence of
> any copyright secured on or after that date, the owner of copyright or of
> any exclusive right in the work may obtain registration of the copyright
> claim by delivering to the Copyright Office the deposit specified by this
> section, together with the application and fee specified by sections 409 and
> 708. Such registration is not a condition of copyright protection.
> Again, all of this is not to say that the correspondence can never be
> published.  It is all just to say that it is Corwood's decision as to if and
> when that correspondence is published, even if they sent it to other people.
>  (Unless you are talking about some time in the future when the copyright
> has expired, which is likely to be at least the 22nd century.)
> It could be all public domain, right now, but only if Corwood chose to make
> it so.  I haven't seen anything suggesting that has taken place, so in the
> absence of any permission, people really shouldn't be posting bits of their
> correspondence here or elsewhere on the internet.  I personally think it's
> disrespectful, but that is besides the point, it is actually illegal.
> Art C.
> P.S. Lauren, again I agree it has nothing to do with the veil of secrecy or
> anything.  This protection applies when you or I or Grandma Smith writes a
> letter too, it really has nothing to do with Jandek per se.
>  I also have to object to the distinction you draw between "letters" and
> "notes."  There is no such distinction in copyright law.  Brief notes are
> equally protected as correspondence.  I'm glad you feel it wise not to share
> things out of courtesy, but you should extend that courtesy to everything
> you recieve from anyone, even if it's brief, and keep in mind that not just
> your courtesy, but awareness of people's rights is a factor to consider.
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