Copyright Failure Continues

I’ve touched on copyright issues in the past wrt to the use of photographs, and over the past couple days, an ugly episode has come to light.

The Cooks Source Scandal: How a Magazine Profits on Theft (h/t Geekosystem)

To support the accusatory headline, Edward Champion (@drmabuse) documents several cases of verified and possible copyright infringement.

This may not end well. I use the conditional because the experiences I’ve heard recited by many small content publishers (e.g. photographers, bloggers) lead me to expect that aside from a tempest in a teapot, frequently nothing substantial comes from fighting for copyrights.

The costs are simply too high to pursue legal action, so everyone is just expected to do what’s right.

Or thumb their noses as they garner Facebook friends from bad publicity.




  1. I think you need another diagram like the Privacy and Internet one from October 22nd, but with Copyright replacing Privacy. Internet is “Digitization, Duplication, Distribution.” Copyright is….well the opposite.

  2. Heh, maybe a similar Venn diagram with a microscopic overlap for Creative Commons. I doubt we’ll see any useful advances in copyright happening any time soon, sad really.

  3. Ah Creative Commons. The only copyright the Internet understands is the right to give it away. [But I do like Creative Commons.]
    As for advances in copyright, imagine registering an article with Google (similar to the way you can with Numly). Now when it walks the web, it can look for people violating your copyright. Maybe flag for it for your attention. How much would you pay for that service ? If you think that the offering is unlikely, check out the CODINGHORRROR blog. A couple of months ago, he posted about Youtube and how they are matching clips to copyrighted material to prevent the upload of copyrighted material.
    And who owns Youtube….

  4. Even CC isn’t really understood by much of the interwebs.

    Wow, Atwood is right about the awesome technical guts behind that YouTube system, and I wish I were surprised about the copyright holder squashing what is obviously fair use.

    The problem is that 95% of the intertubes has no understanding of copyright, and even the 5% that understand copyright don’t get how it applies to online content, as demonstrated by the editor of the cooking magazine discussed here.

    So, yeah I might pay for that service, but how can I possibly hope to enforce copyright? The content creators I know who have run into violations all cite the main barrier of educating the violator, followed by the lack of money to enforce the copyright.


  5. That would be the beauty of a Google service. Your subscription could cover ‘Google rights’, that is only pages with permission to use the content would be indexed. Or the others are flagged similar to the ‘potential malicious content’, or simply have their page-ranks reduced.

  6. Ah, now I get it. Very interesting proposal. You should write that up, I’d be interested to read your complete thoughts. That would be a great service, and I know a ton of people who would pay for it.

  7. I did a double-take on this one, my cuz is online manager for a site with a similar name. He has a Masters in science writing, and assuredly knows about online copyright issues.

    In order to have ownership registration, don’t we need better proof of identity? If Steve Jobs emailed or tweeted you and offered you a job writing Apple’s facebook page, would your first thought be a practical joke?

  8. Absolutely. I’d also laugh bc he wouldn’t get a very savvy FB person 🙂

    This was kinda what OpenID hoped to accomplish in addition to providing SSO for the user. Centralized identity and credential management is another area I can see becoming regulated in the not-so-distant future.

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