[Jandek] Re: jandek Digest, Vol 55, Issue 64

A. Chankin achankin at gmail.com
Tue Mar 27 23:25:02 PDT 2007

There are a handful of consistent defining elements of a Corwood release.
This suggests that they are not accidental.  One of those consistent
elements is the copyright notice on every record thus far.

There's nothing magical about a little (c) or a registration.  When someone
creates something new, it is automatically copyrighted.  They can choose to
forego those rights if they wish, or sell them.  But if you make a record of
a performance without obtaining the rights to do so, you are breaking the
law.  "Theft" is just a metaphor for that.  Whether one makes money off it,
or intends to buy the official release is irrelevant.  If it is really so
harmless, the performer will let it be known that it is acceptable to make
recordings for personal use.  You know that isn't the case here.

Is it murder? No.  But can we morally justify to break the law in this case,
just because we can't wait for the official release?  I am not persuaded
that this is a compelling reason to infringe on someone's right.

It seems to me that the high ground here is to have a little patience.  Or
at least seek the artists permission in advance, and respect those wishes.

Whether one thinks the artist has the moral right to control their work is a
different question, which I don't have the time to discuss.

I don't want people to think I am holier than thou.  In fact I bootlegged a
few live shows, years ago. I knew it was wrong.  I persuaded myself with the
same justifications you always hear, which echo in this place.  It was a
mistake.  If you have to hide what you are doing, that is a reliable sign
that all is not well.  "Daylight is the best disinfectant."

I have not done it since, even though I have opportunity to make much better
ones now.

There have been cases where I had everything set up because one artist gave
me permission to record, and I took it down and turned it off when the other
artists came on, because I didn't have permission from them.
I know, I am terribly uncool.
But I think that respect is important when we go out into the public and
interact with each other.  Unfortunately it is something I feel is more and
more lacking.  It's always strange when it's lacking towards someone people
seem to appreciate in other ways.  To me it's just a misunderstanding of
their relationship to that person, sad but understandable.

No one needs to justify their actions to me.  I am no policeman, judge, or
deity.  And I am not passing a judgement on any of you.  Perhaps it felt
like I did and for that I sincerely apologize for my clumsiness with words
or any hidden motives.  I only meant to suggest that there are alternative
choices which you might prefer if you tried them.  It also makes me sad to
see the list being used in this way, to announce these sort of actions and
to invite participation in them.  If it were harmless it would be permitted,
would it not, but it has been expressly requested that it not be done by
this performer.

I can't continue is some kind of confrontation about this.  I have written
to clarify, because some people seem to feel I have harmed them.

There are actually some more interesting potential branches off this subject
which don't have the appearance of being so confrontational that it would be
interesting to see discussed:

-If it's better to live "in the daylight" (which is actually something which
Jandek's works, in part, taught me), then why does the guy always seem to be
hiding out, obsessed with privacy?

-There is something mysterious about the way Corwood processes Jandek's
copyright registrations which I haven't been able to figure out.
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