Against Monopoly

defending the right to innovate

Monopoly corrupts. Absolute monopoly corrupts absolutely.

Copyright Notice: We don't think much of copyright, so you can do what you want with the content on this blog. Of course we are hungry for publicity, so we would be pleased if you avoided plagiarism and gave us credit for what we have written. We encourage you not to impose copyright restrictions on your "derivative" works, but we won't try to stop you. For the legally or statist minded, you can consider yourself subject to a Creative Commons Attribution License.


Talk about long term copyright

(from Akin at Irdial...I think I'll just reproduce the email he got...)

Dear Irdial-Discs,

We have removed your document "An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations" because our text matching system determined that it was very similar to a work that has been marked as copyrighted and not permitted on Scribd.

Like all automated matching systems, our system is not perfect and occasionally makes mistakes. If you believe that your document is not infringing, please contact us at copyright@scribd.com and we will investigate the matter.

As stated in our terms of use, repeated incidents of copyright infringement will result in the deletion of your Scribd.com account and prohibit you from uploading material to Scribd.com in the future. To prevent us from having to take these steps, please delete from scribd.com any material you have uploaded to which you do not own the necessary rights and refrain from uploading any material you are not entitled to upload. For more information about Scribd.com's copyright policy, please read the Terms of Use located at http://www.scribd.com/terms

Jason Bentley

Directory of Community Development


For the record Adam Smith died in 1790 and nothing he wrote is currently under copyright any where in the world.


No, his agent called from the afterlife, and he's really upset. :-)

Just kidding - we restored that document immediately.

This scenario points to a BIG wrong with this whole process. No due process!!!! Your stuff can removed based on some flimsy accusation. Then if you believe that you are somehow injured; you have to prove, on your own time and at your own expense, how the material is legitimate. This is a threat to our entire legal system. (I hope that those who have their stuff improperly take down would sue the offending web site. Now this also gets into how ELUA are really not valid contracts since they "strip" the consumer of their rights.)

Other problems:

1. Suppose a competitor or someone else files a complaint every time you post your item and the website simply removes it. The website isn't going to do any real due diligence, it would be too expensive and time consuming so they will automatically delete it. And through their ELUA they will assert that it is your problem to get the material restored.

2. Getting through to customer service is sometimes a joke. Will a website really devote any staff and computer resources to listen to someone who claims that their stuff was improperly removed and to then restore content that has been taken down?

3. Will the little guy have the same "rights" as the big guys? I am sure that if the RIAA wants something take down, it will be taken down immediately. What happens if Jane Doe feels that she is infringed? Would the website even pay attention?

To be fair to Scribd, @JasonAtScribd just replied to my tweet about this with this:

@glynmoody @owenblacker That was a technical error was corrected almost immediately.
Worse than no due process. It's robot process.
What's wrong with Smith having a 220-year copyright on his writings? Seems fair to me.

But if he tries to extend it even further, then that would be a problem. I think 220 years is long enough (though Big Pharma would likely take issue with such a "short", 220-year limit).

What's wrong with Smith having a 220-year copyright on his writings? Seems fair to me.

Indeed. If we take that away, then what incentive does he have to rise from the grave and write a sequel?

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