Posts Tagged ‘copyright’

All Your Holmes Belong To Us

January 13, 2014

Well, most of them, anyway. This popped up a few days ago and I never got a chance to say anything about it, so I’m saying something now. A judge recently declared that a big chunk of Conan Doyle’s work is, in fact, part of public domain. Though, not all of it. There were ten stories published after 1922 and those are still verboten to anyone out there who wants to write about Sherlock, who wants to pump out some fiction of their own. Now, I think this is the stuff that you can’t use. If there is something mentioned in them, and only in them, you can’t use it for your own stuff. Though it’s probably easier to just consult this list of things that you can use.

So, why do I make a post about this? Have I written some kick ass Holmesian story that I can now flog to every mystery mag I can find? No, not really. It’s more that I just hate copyright law in the US. I hate that Mickey Mouse still can’t be touched by anyone. It’s bullshit. This stuff is put out there, and part of a healthy artistic society is re-appropriating stuff that is old and putting a new spin on it. Making it breath again. When was the last time Disney did anything with Mickey Mouse that was worth the five minutes it took to look at it and realize it wasn’t worth your time?  Maybe Epic Mickey, but I don’t think so. It was sort of fun, but also sloppy and with some serious control/camera issues. So, not even Epic Mickey. Has Mickey even done anything in the past twenty years? Has he had a movie? I can’t think of anything big and Mickey. So why does Disney cling so desperately to it just to put college kids into those god awful foam suits every summer and threaten to kill’em should they rip off their mouse heads within view of the public?

At least Holmes has the movies lately. The television shows. And they do something different with it. I’m not a fan of the two modernized television shows, but it’s something different.

Anyway. So, this is sort of big news. what I find most interesting about this whole sordid affair is that while his estate has zealously protected copyright, Doyle didn’t seem to be nearly as fervent about it in his life time. A ton of Holmes stuff was done in his lifetime, from movies to stage plays. Maybe letting it drift into the public domain, and allowing the public to finally take it and run with it is just the right thing to do. as for if I’m looking forward to more Holmes stuff…I’ll have to see what the Holmes stuff is. But at least folks have a chance now.

Daily Book Links 10-26-12

October 26, 2012

a letter from Charles Bukowski. Have to admit, I like Bulowski’s writing. I’m never sure what to say or write about it, but I enjoy reading it. All of it. The novels. The newspaper articles. The poems. It’s all good. This letter is just more Bukowski. Enjoy.

Here’s an article on zdnet by Eileen Brown defending Amazon’s right to wipe your Kindle. The bad thing is that she has a point about their EULA, and it’s nothing new since software companies have been doing it for years now with things like MS Office, Windows, etc. The whole idea that you don’t actually buy something when you “buy” it at Amazon, but are really just buying the right to access it (which, to me, sounds a lot like renting rather than buying) and not the actual whatever it is itself.  This is something I have long complained about in those venues, too. You “buy” something, you “own” it. And I don’t understand why any consumer willingly takes a stance that opposes this. You’re just pointing a gun at your foot and pulling the trigger at that point. Maybe you shouldn’t own the car you paid for, but just the license to insure it, drive it, park it, maintain it, etc. But if you do something that Saab isn’t happy about, they should just take their car back, keep your money, and leave you hanging out to dry. Does that sound fair? Does that sound right? Of course not. And using the boogeyman of fighting media pirates and protecting copyrights is just bull. If someone rally wants to steal your stuff, DRM is not stopping them. It has never stopped them. It never will stop them. Know why? This is why. And I support Ars Technica in this because you should have that copy for yourself, even if you have to break a ridiculously unfair and likely illegal EULA agreement to get it. Or maybe no one will listen to us until we chuck a few barrels of Kindles into Boston Harbor.

Here you can download a short Halloween themed recipe book. It’s a quick download, the recipes look alright, if you don’t mind baking some cookies or making a cosmo, might be worth your time.

I really don’t know what to make of, but they have their second tiny book coming out and JGL’s web site just interests the hell out of me. If anyone has any experience with them, or just an opinion to share, hit up at the bottom. Just wondering what some other’s thoughts are on it.

Alright, that’s all for today.