On Wed, 25 Apr 2001 08:32:17 -0400
Tom Neff <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> J C Lawrence <email@example.com> wrote:
>> My line is that the poster retains copyright, but not control
>> over the post, due to the fact that he explicitly relinquished
>> those rights for that post when he sent it to the list.
> Copyright without control is a meaningless concept.
Diagreed. Copyright retains the concept of authorship.
> One might argue that this is true for Internet postings in
> general, but no more so than for a poem on a milk carton.
Except that the copying expense for digital works is ~0, and the
copying expense for milk carton poems is several orders of magnitude
> Listowners and digesters commonly assert "compilation copyright"
> over their particular sequences and assemblies of others' writing,
> even where the latter is in the public domain. But they are in no
> position to assert, waive or otherwise mess with the INDIVIDUAL
> copyright each member holds in her or his postings. A listowner
> may say "you own your words," but this is purely informational,
> like saying "the sun came up today," and not a revocable statement
> of policy. The listowner might as well say "Danny DeVito owns
> your words" and it would have the same force and effect,
> i.e. none.
It is perhaps easier to define this in terms of expectations, as we
are discussing digital property rights in a Napster era:
You post to the list.
You can have no reasonable expectation as to the distribution of
your message (the membership database is private (even to me, as
much as I can)) other than that you have no control or effective
rights (ie enforcable) in the area.
You can have no reasonable expectation as to the lifetime of your
message (anybody, anywhere, on the list or off, is technically and
undetectably free to archive/store/cache any message for any
length of time).
You can have no reasonable expectation as to subsequent
presentations of your message (outside of the original venue)
other than the generally reasonable expectation that may request
and expect your message to be subsequently presented in a manner
which is consistent with the original.
You can and should have reasonable expectations as to claims of
authorship, and that you can and will be identified with and
against any such message.
J C Lawrence firstname.lastname@example.org
--=| A man is as sane as he is dangerous to his environment |=--