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Wikimedia refuses to remove animal selfie because monkey ‘owns’ the photo

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In the building trade, the problem is 'gentleman's agreements' all the time.
-Fred Nerd (August 10, 2014, 09:54 AM)
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Unfortunately, there are very few 'gentlemen' to be found in the business end of art.

Most who deal in art as a business are has-beens, wannabes, and opportunistic middle-men.

It used to be said that "Those who can - do! Those who can't - teach."

Today it's more and more the case that those who can't simply put themselves in charge - and attempt to license everything. :-\

The problem is that we are a bunch of engineers trying to define art.
Lots of art students spend many years studying this (paid by the government in a lot of places in the world) and none of them know either. (I have spent many hours listening to pretty girls who study art tell me all about it while I study 'natural art')

In the building trade, the problem is 'gentleman's agreements' all the time. If I draw the plans, I keep the copyright, if I design a unique (for example) timber floor artistic pattern which I simply ask "how about this?" and do then do the job, it's not clear. If I had said: "I'll design a custom flooring system" and drawn it up and the client signed that he had selected my design, then I keep it. Even if I was paid for the time I drew it, that's simply the cost of using my design.

However, the question is: did he make the overall finish by choosing the design, or did I design floor to make the overall finish?
Maybe consider the case of someone hanging a Picasso on the wall and that made the room look good. Who is the artist if the room is considered the artwork?

In the case of the holiday photo, if the person asking did not expect the person taking to do any more than just point and shoot (i.e. an amateur under instruction) then the tourist owns the picture. If the tourist asks a professional thinking that he/she is an amateur, then the professional can
a: take the photo and say nothing
b: first warn the people that this is his job and his work is copyright (kind of like if you ask a signed recording artist to play happy birthday and want to record it).
If the professional says nothing and then claims the photo, the tourist could claim that the photographer had the camera under false pretences and that would open up another can of worms.

If there is an accidental historic photobomb, the professional could claim the photo, but the tourist could countersue for lost revenue that the camera was borrowed under false pretences and the tourist could have made the shot and got the royalties.

That's my opinion.

Oh, and as for hobbyists: a lot of that comes back to licencing and liability. You can ask old Jim how to build a shed and he is not licenced to charge for his information, and if it falls down that was your fault. If you ask me, I can charge for it and I have to pay insurance because you can sue me if I told you wrong information.
A professional photographer would be one who could be reasonably expected to charge for such a service. e.g. has a history of working as such, has a lot of images sold under copyright etc.
-Fred Nerd (August 10, 2014, 09:54 AM)
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Again - great points.

I think you've nicely muddied the waters even more! :D

Case A & B above really put forward some good stuff. The question posed there is bang on.

I don't think that we'll ever have copyright that makes sense though. The edge cases just push too hard.

I don't think that we'll ever have copyright that makes sense though. The edge cases just push too hard.
-Renegade (August 10, 2014, 11:25 AM)
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That and the fact that most of human progress (technical and cultural) is the result of creating derivative works or combining multiple works to create synergies. So how we do things as a species runs into direct conflict with the whole notion of ownership of non-physical objects.

Another problem (I think) comes from the belief of many that personal creativity is a finite resource. That you only have so many pictures or songs or whatever in you  - and once they're made pubic, you're somehow "used up." So that's one motivation behind the desire of many to milk every possible penny from everything they do for as long as possible.

I also think the other motivator is that many people simply don't like to work at their art. And don't plan on doing it any longer than absolutely necessary. They want the brass ring - that one song or book or photo that hits the jackpot and sets them up for life.

It's almost like that same short-sighted venture capital goal of an early "cash-out" has come to the art and creative world. That mindset has hurt business. Because there's no longer a long-term goal to actually build sustainable business. Just to get them to where they can be sold. Then, take the money and move on.

Now we have people that call themselves "artists" or "creatives" that have no intention of pursuing a lifetime career in their art for. They're looking for that one thing they can sell over and over so they won't have to work at it any more. Thank goodness they have increasingly insane IP laws and arguments to help them along.

To my mind, our biggest problem with IP is that, in order to have a fair and workable copyright law, we need to apply common sense. And laws and the legal system generally aren't about common sense. They're about complex definitions and tortuous semantic arguments. And an entire professional industry and branch of the government has been built upon it. And they employ tens of thousands of clever well-heeled individuals whose very livelihood is dependent upon things remaining the way they are.

I don't have much hope. :(

I think you meant:

take the money and move on run.
-40hz (August 10, 2014, 11:48 AM)
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 ;)  :Thmbsup:

Incidentally, I'm trying to point out that in a limited number of words, it's only a matter of time before any given set meets an innocent variation or repetition.

And that will just... make my day. :P


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