September 06, 2007

I'm with Jerry Pournelle

Pournelle's latest Chaos Manor review details the recent dustup between the SWFA and the EFF. What do I think of the whole thing? This:

  • Writers make their living from, duh, selling their writing.
  • If someone wants to read their stuff, they should have to pay for it so that the authors will be properly compensated for their effort.
  • Illegally uploading someone else's work to your site just to drive up your traffic numbers is immoral and, being redundant here to make a point, illegal.
  • If some authors want to allow their works to be given away for free, that is, of course, their right. They don't have to right to inflict that opinion on others.

Now the not-a-pirate-site Scribd often uploads material to which they neither own the copyright nor been given permission to do so. And their response is that they will only response to a legally crafted letter demanding that they remove such material? I'm usually in favor of big brass balls, but not in this case. I consider theft, intellectual or monetary, to be wrong. I never jumped on the music sharing theft bandwagon because, well, you're benefitting from someone's labor without properly compensating them. It seems like an easy call. But too many people these days think that there is such a thing as a free lunch and that laws don't apply to them. In the immortal words of Kos, Screw Them.

Posted by Physics Geek at September 6, 2007 10:41 AM | TrackBack StumbleUpon Toolbar Stumble It!

from what I can tell scribd doesn't upload anything, their users do. which means under the DMCA scribd can't do anything until they get a DMCA notice. pournelle's a don quixote who doesn't understand shifting economics.

Posted by: Thor Heijk at September 6, 2007 06:58 PM