Ethics and the Borrowing of Videotapes

General discussions of interest to readers and fans of Harlan Ellison.

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Duane
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Postby Duane » Mon Mar 20, 2006 6:21 pm

ROUGHRIDER ENTER

Done and done. :wink:

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JaySmith
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Postby JaySmith » Mon Mar 20, 2006 6:59 pm

Not sure where you got your source material, DVG, but based on it...

WEBHEADS KNUR
WEBHEAD KNURS
BEWARED HUNKS
KURBASHED NEW
KURBASHED WEN
HUSBANDER EWK
UNBARKED SHEW
UNBARKED HEWS
UNBRAKED SHEW
UNBRAKED HEWS
UNBAKED WERSH
UNBAKED SHREW
HUSBAND KREWE
NEWSBREAK DUH
HAUBERKS WEND
HAUBERK WENDS
BEKAHS UNDREW
KURBASH ENDEW
KURBASH NEWED
BUSHWA KERNED
UNBARKS HEWED
UNBARK SHEWED
SWAB HUNKERED
WABS HUNKERED
WASHERED BUNK
WASHERED KNUB
REWASHED BUNK
REWASHED KNUB
WAKENED SHRUB
WAKENED BRUSH
WAKENED BUHRS
UNSHAKED BREW
HARDNEWS BUKE
SWANHERD BUKE
UNWASHED KERB
UNWASHED BERK
SHAWED BUNKER
WASHED BUNKER
HAWSED BUNKER
HAWED BUNKERS
UNWAKED HERBS
WANKED BUSHER
DRAWN BUKSHEE
HARKEN SUBDEW
HANKER SUBDEW
HAWKERS UNBED
HAWKER SUNBED
HAWKER UNBEDS
WASHEN BURKED
WHENAS BURKED
WHARES BUNKED
WHARES DEBUNK
REWASH BUNKED
REWASH DEBUNK
WASHER BUNKED
WASHER DEBUNK
HAWSER BUNKED
HAWSER DEBUNK
WHEAR DEBUNKS
WHARE DEBUNKS
WANKER BUSHED
WAKEN BRUSHED
KNAWE BRUSHED
HANK BURWEEDS
ANKH BURWEEDS
KHAN BURWEEDS
ANKHS BURWEED
SHANK BURWEED
HANKS BURWEED
KHANS BURWEED
ANKUSH BREWED
SHAWN REBUKED
WASH DEBUNKER
WASH BUNKERED
HAWS DEBUNKER
HAWS BUNKERED
SHAW DEBUNKER
SHAW BUNKERED
SHWA DEBUNKER
SHWA BUNKERED
HAW DEBUNKERS
WHA DEBUNKERS

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Rudiger Treehorn
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Postby Rudiger Treehorn » Mon Mar 20, 2006 7:11 pm

Jeez, Jay, you put a lot more thought into that than you did into copy-editing your self-published grand opus, didn't ya? Was that bad spellling or bad editing on the part of you and your chums who went over it with a fine-toothed comb? Fanboy Hacks R Us.

I can just see the off-board betting process in relation to Eric...Jay and Doug and Amy and DVG hangin' out by the ant-hill, picking lice out of one another's fur and eating them, havin' a good larf, telling warm stories about their imaginary husbands, wives, girlfriends, children, jobs...

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JaySmith
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Postby JaySmith » Mon Mar 20, 2006 7:37 pm

I was wondering when you'd stoop to that, Paula. In fact, when Doug, Amy and Brian were giving me shit about the typos in the first edition, we all agreed that if I pissed you off, it would be the first thing you'd pull out of your ass.

I'm only mad because now I owe them, and Bern, dinner at Maggiano's in November. Fuck me for believing you were too big for that.

Glad you finally came out of hiding. Although I'm surprised to hear a teacher make light of school shootings in such a way.

You have a nice life molding the minds of our youth, now.

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JaySmith
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Postby JaySmith » Mon Mar 20, 2006 7:47 pm

>havin' a good larf, telling warm stories about their imaginary husbands, wives, girlfriends, children, jobs...

WTF?

Eric Martin
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Postby Eric Martin » Mon Mar 20, 2006 8:59 pm

A pall settles over the thread. Dinner bells ring. Children need tending.

"Some small storm of hysteria seemed to have worked itself out of the van."

Norman Mailer, Armies of the Night, p146.

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Postby DVG » Mon Mar 20, 2006 10:05 pm

To this "Paula" person:

I have not had, nor am likely in the near future to have, the pleasure of making the personal aquaintance of Mr. Smith, his friends Brian and Amy, or any head lice that may follow in their wake. Suffice to say that the very tiniest of any such lice would be preferable company to someone of your stripe, who seems, judging from your less than firm grasp on the modicums of etiquette, more than a single rung below Miss Mincer on the social ladder.

As to "kids" or "husbands" or "wives," imaginary or non, I am afraid I ain't the marryin' type, scandalous as that may be in your preschool district.

My regards to your India Rubber plant, and perhaps one day I'll tell you how it got that name.

David W. Pareis
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Postby David W. Pareis » Tue Mar 21, 2006 12:54 am

Eric Martin wrote: frankly it's a little tedious that ... b) he comes cadging his fans to mail him VHS tapes, knowing full well that a handful will be stumbling over themselves to do so.

This is a good example of something that I find personally distasteful about Harlan Ellison.Whether it's tapes of the Sopranos ,or looking for inside help dealing with negitive feedback on E-bay H.E. seems to have no quams about using people. Now he's looking for free copies of Rolling Stone so he can read an article that could be easily accessed on his computer.
personally I think you really have to question the integrity of a moocher

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Postby Eric Martin » Tue Mar 21, 2006 7:14 am

I don't think it's mooching...it's more an established part of the relationship HE has built with his fans here. For many Webderlanders, the peak Ellison experience is to be able to send him something he wants or needs...and they often get a gift in return.

Ellison's relationship with these boards is a study unto itself. There are few regulars here that HE would take seriously as friends or as peers, even though some might rival him in professional success or writing ability. Exceptions would be fellow name writers who very occasionally drop in, and they don't really count as "Webderlanders."

"Flying blue monkeys" is a term HE often uses. It kind of sums it all up: a group of lesser creatures who can serve if needed, and will do so with gusto. The master and the maids. Affectionate disdain. And like all masters, his moods are not predictable, and one can be swatted for what seems like nothing...and like all good servants, the swat will be accepted with humility.

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Rudiger Treehorn
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Postby Rudiger Treehorn » Tue Mar 21, 2006 7:35 am

Ah, Jay, old ires confound your aim,
And send your last shot flying wide --
Berman is gone, though hardly tamed --
While board wars past remain your guide.
Not all ghosts return in their previous forms,
And peacemakers sometimes change their stripes:
Catharsis guides this teapot storm,
This clanging in the Webderland pipes.
But as Rick's anger is not the goal,
(Nor endless conflict much desired)
We leave now this acrimonious, shrinking shoal,
For lackwits always make me tired.
'Ad hominem! Ad hominem!' yells the choir,
Their feet firmly set within the mire
And torches held ready to light the fire,
But the smoke, once cleared, shows no one there
No burning flesh, no singing hair,
No nemesis returned, no argument won
(Take heart, dear reader, I'm almost done)
The mote, dear Jay, is in your eye,
Pie Oh My, Pie Oh My:
You must go down to where all the conflicts start,
In the foul comic-book shop of the heart.

rich

Postby rich » Tue Mar 21, 2006 9:25 am

Barber wrote:Jim - Glad to see you asked your question over here. (I was tempted to reply, but I'm beginning to learn that I need to hold my daily post until I'm in a defensive mode.)

This is a more difficult question, in my mind. I have a very good friend who is himself a writer (well, poet, really), as is his wife (a true writer with five books and hundreds of articles to her credit). They have an extensive collection of classical music, almost all of it stolen from the local library. By stolen, I mean checked out and copied.

This is a topic he's learned to avoid in our household. I'm a very strong advocate of copyright laws in general -- though to me, loaning a legally obtained tape/cd/dvd/etc is well within legal and ethical boundaries (had to get that in before someone started hurling rocks). The library is obviously well within its rights to purchase a copy of a work and loan it out. I loan out my dvd collection. I own it, I can do whatever I like with it short of making a duplicate/duplicates and selling them/giving them away.

On the other hand, you're right in your assessment that there's no specific channel of compensation if the property isn't in distribution. But a bootleg is a bootleg. Someone's making money, and that ain't right.

Believe me, I find ASCAP and BMI to be draconian organizations with enforcement methods just this side of street thuggery, but the artists deserve the compensation -- not someone who takes an existing copy and makes money from its duplication.

You can buy the original, used. You can borrow a copy, returned. You can even accept a gift of a copy. To me it comes down to who's making the money -- if anyone. If no one's making a dime the ethics are pretty safe... if you're paying, this is my longwinded way of saying "over the line".



I'm gonna leave the whole quote to just kinda get the air the place out a bit. Ok, breathe that in. Now breathe out. Good. You with me now?

I agree with you, Steve, that your poet-friend is "stealing". I mean, one or two I can probably understand, but using the library to make your collection is, well, it's stealing.

On the other hand you mention that "if no one's making a dime the ethics are pretty safe...". I don't necessarily agree with that.

Here's the thing: When Harlan started his KICK campaign, I don't think there were that many people, if any, making money by posting his stuff to the internet. The point was they were taking away money that could've gone to HE's pockets.

I'm not going to get into whether or not posting HE's stuff to the internet was getting his name out to people that otherwise wouldn't have known who he was. That argument is irrelevant to this discussion and is a thread all its own. (As Harlan said on the Pavilion, it doesn't really matter anyway since it should be the author's decision.)

But is Jim Davis a hyprocrite? Probably, but then so am I and everyone else on these boards. We've all done borrowing/burning/copying for a friend. And we'll probably all continue to do so.

I would draw the line at what your poet-friend is doing, Steve, and I think Jim is guided by his conscience when he does pay for legitimate copies as they become available. Which is more than what most people would do.

Short answer? I don't know for sure if borrowing/copying for a friend is unethical or not. But I don't feel guilty when I do it, and I'd like to think I have a pretty good moral compass.

Maybe Eric's lawnmower analogy is apt. I'd make a copy of one of Ellison's short stories for one of my good friends, or give him/her the book the story appeared in. I might feel a twinge of guilt, but I'd do it. If the friend came back and asked for another story, I might even hesitate a minute, but I'd probably do the same thing. A third time? Now I'm being taken advantage of, along with a writer I admire, and that's when I would buy a copy of the book and give it to the friend.

Still going round and round with this...rich

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Postby Moderator » Tue Mar 21, 2006 9:27 am

David W. Pareis wrote: This is a good example of something that I find personally distasteful about Harlan Ellison.Whether it's tapes of the Sopranos ,or looking for inside help dealing with negitive feedback on E-bay H.E. seems to have no quams about using people. Now he's looking for free copies of Rolling Stone so he can read an article that could be easily accessed on his computer.


David, I'd be careful about drawing to broad a conclusion. I helped Harlan with both of those issues (pardon the pun). The first was something he genuinely needed some assistance on -- I do, professionally, what needed to be done with eBay and still it took me the better part of a week to get everything straightened out.

Secondly, you may not have caught the irony of Harlan's RS request. I'm sending him the magazine, but the point of the request is very unlikely to be his actual need of the thing and more likely to be a tweaking of the whole Sopranos debate.

And, as Eric quite rightly points out, Harlan was a most gracious and appreciative recipient of my help on the eBay thing. No mooching involved.

If you ever get the chance to do him a favor, do so. He will do you one in return, and that's an attitude sorrowfully lacking these days.
- I love to find adventure. All I need is a change of clothes, my Nikon, an open mind and a strong cup of coffee.

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Postby Moderator » Tue Mar 21, 2006 9:49 am

Rich -
You're right, of course, regarding the small transgressions we all commit and still remain laregly ethical people (I don't buy the "it's a matter of scale" debate, it's more a matter of impact as a whole, and keeping a healthy perspective in life).

My friend knows my opinion, and won't even discuss it or play those particular cds when we're over at their house.

Taken as a general comment, I overspoke with my statement about "nobody making a dime". I meant in that particular context, the context being someone taking a copy and for the nominal fee of $2 making you a dupe. That means someone is making the dime, and is likely making a decent profit. This includes the illicit street copies as well as those turned out in factories in China, f'r instance. People making money off of the work with nothing going to the creators. A single copy for someone, at no charge, of a work that is not in current distribution, doesn't rise to MY level of a heinous act -- unlike the street copies of Sin City.

That said, let me clarify something.

There's a massive difference, and maybe in only my little mind, between this sort of duplication and the posting of items onto a website without permission. Two elements of KICK no one is bringing up here were the fact that some of the posters of copyrighted work refused to pull the work even after being told to do so, and the second element that posting available work -- even if you're not charging for it -- specifically does take the money out of someone else's pockets.

Since everyone is pounding on the KICK campaign as relevant to the copying discussion, let me modify the situation just a bit to make it more of a palatable and appropriate analogy:

Josh, instead of lending a single tape copied from HBO, sits down and makes hundreds of copies of the episode. He then stands at the corner of Highland and Sunset handing these copies out to anyone who wants one. He doesn't charge a penny, but simply hands out the tapes.

The police come by and tell him to stop. He refuses. They then confiscate his copies and tell him to go home. The next day he's back out there with hundreds of more copies for the giving.


That is KICK.
- I love to find adventure. All I need is a change of clothes, my Nikon, an open mind and a strong cup of coffee.

rich

Postby rich » Tue Mar 21, 2006 10:08 am

I agree with everything you said, Steve.

That said, KICK was also about what the limitations are/were for ISPs and access points in policing themselves when notified of a pirated copy being uploaded onto the 'net.

I think the people that Harlan asked to take down the stories did so--and maybe they did so only after being threatened with legal action, which is no small indication of the person's lack of ethics or responsibility, but they did take 'em down.

Though it made fine copy, especially in Harlan's voice, the complaint was more about AOL's perceived indifference than some would-be Brainiac sitting in his parent's basement.

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Postby P.A. Berman » Tue Mar 21, 2006 3:41 pm

Jay Smith, I am not Rudiger Treehorn, and I did not make a comment about your poorly edited tome. Mr. Treehorn ought to pipe up and back me up, though I have no idea who he is.

You finally owe me an apology, though I do not expect to get one. Just leave me out of your bullshit, willya?

Thanks,
PAB
I don't know. I don't care. And it doesn't matter anyway. ~Jack Kerouac


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