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What - Copyright infringement or violation is the use of an artists work that violates intellectual property rights laws.
Why - The copyright law is an element of property right laws. Property right laws are a necessary component of a capitalists and democratic environment, they protect creators and innovators giving them an incentive to continue discovering and improving ways of doing things. This collectively enables a capitalists society to keep advancing and simultaneously protecting the rights of the citizenry within a democratic society.
Who - Governements are responsible for putting these laws into place, in the US the congress with enormous amounts of lobbying done by corporations makes sure property rights laws are in place and enforced.
How - The law is a fierce force when it comes to the war against copyright infringement. Copyright infringement is also conducted through surveillance specifically searching up ISP numbers and monitoring freeloaders; that download high volumes of records and movies.

Viacom Sues Google - This Week in Northern CA:

Guest Lecture 2: A breakdown of the lecture hosted by Prof Mike Jones

Guest 1: Paul Tackaberry
- Paul Tackaberry the first guest explored copyright law drawing on one of the greatest and most popular copyright disputes in the 21st century; Viacom's billion dollar lawsuit against Google and youtube who are accused of allegedly causing Viacom damages by freely distributing 160,000 unauthorized clips of Viacom's programming. Viacom alleges that this has been viewed by 1.5 billion viewers which has caused them enormous losses.
- Main purpose of copyright is to protect user rights and enabling the creation of new materials and ideas. Unauthorized reproduction/destribution of any sort will defeat the purpose of copyright laws therefore equating to copyright infringement.
-There is no exception according to Mr. Tackaberry to online content which takes equally as much effort and devotion of creators to bring about new ideas and innovations.
-"copyright is not about ethics and business" Tackaberry explains "it is about economics and business". Mr Tackaberry, tries to explain that creators are not the real benefitors here nor do they loose out the most when copyright laws are weak, but rather the corporations and businesses who mass produce the creators work. They are the ones who profit when arbitrage of any sort or cheaper copycats are non-existent. Then again Mr Tackaberry phrase also drew on the point that without the protection and certainty of profit, companies will be unwilling to produce new ideas therefore stagnating the economy.
- Mr Tackaberry remains firm and re-iterates that copyright infringement contributes very little to the protection of the artists but rather the protection of big business. "Even starving artist will create" he says, supporting his point by explaining that most artist create due to love of their work as opposed to business who do it for personal gain. "creators create usually out of passion, Dissemenators do it for profit".

Guest 2: Donna Braggins(Art Director)
- Donna an art director takes on copyright infringement from her experience as an art director first explaining that her job as an art director is to mediate between a creator and dissemenator. Based on her experience, she generalizes by saying their is often a feudal relationship between dissemenators and creators; creators want to create for the market for the highest paid price and dissemenators want to produce at the least costs to maximize profit. This creates a conflict and often needs a mediator, this is were Donna is utilised as an art director.
- According to Donna the internet is volatile and is also changing rapidly. Understanding the basic relationship between changes is pivotal for the ability to manage the internet.Donna also mentions that online rights are limited in the world of publishing.
- Unlike the first speaker Paul, Donna surprisingly not, is not skewed towards neither the creators nor the dissemenators. She presents both as having interests that need to be protected and that, that is the balance one in her field of work seeks to accomplish.

Guest 3: Bruno DeGazio
- Bruno agrees with speaker 1(Mr Tackaberry), that copyright laws serve the needs of corporate shareholders rather than the content creators.
- Bruno further goes into the specifics of copyright laws both in the US and Canada;
1) Extension of copyright right in the US has been increased from 28yrs from death of creator, to 50yrs and now to 70yrs of death of creator. (this supports his claim that the creator no longer benefits since he is dead).
2) Lobbying by major companies in congress is mostly responsible for the 70yr after death law in 1998. disney is well none for this and the act has been nicknamed the mickey mouse act.
3) The blank tape act added in 1997 to the canadian copyright act is also a classic canadian example. This act protects the record industry by taxing consumers who buy blank tapes and are likely to make copies of songs through them. Proceeds are distributed to copyright holders of sound recordings; the record company not the artist:

  • Blank CD-R Audio $0.77(CD price+ Tax)
  • Blank CD-R non-audio $ 0.22

- According to Bruno, a sort of double-standard in laws is created wherein people are protected of civil right laws to be able to burn CD's for convenience but on the other hand are also taxed(violated) on top of this for this convenience.
- Bruno's four abuses of Copyright Infringement;
1) Inhibits freedom to innovate
  • Patents obvious and unoriginal inventions
2) Threatens free speech and Academic freedom
  • Corporations and political interest use threat of copyright enforcement to effectively "ban" the use of excerpts in research reports, editorial.
3) Stifles Creative freedom
  • Copyright holders lobby for extension of ownership(ideally, Indefinitely), preventing work from entering the creative field of the public domain.
  • Powerful interests use copyright law to threaten artists using parody(protected by US copyright Act).
4) Ignores Consumer Rights
  • Digital rights management systems prevent consumers from exercising legitimate "fair-use" rights(apple, microsoft, sony).
  • DVD's cannot be copied, despite their unreliability.

Guest 4: Anthony Wensley
- Mr Wensley seems to agree Both with Mr Tackaberry and Bruno that lobbying is a major element of copyright laws. He takes us back in time to shows us the power of censorship juxtaposed with copyright laws. Copyright was first used to protect people in printing presses. They lobbied to legitimate authorities in the hopes of fully gaining control of their publishing.
- According to Mr Wensley, even the monarchy of England had used it to censor unfavourable publishers. They did this by issuing liscenses. It has not change today, corporations use it today to control what is circulating in the public.
- Power relations have changed and will continue to change according to Anthony due to the millions spent in lobbying by corporations.

Related links:
CCT205- Guest Lec 2(March 20th 2007)