Op-ed: What Wikipedia Won’t Tell You


On popular Web sites, misinformation about antipiracy legislation amounted to an abuse of trust and a misuse of power.

Opinion piece here.


Ignore the rubbish the RIIA etc tell you about piracy being the reason sales are down and look simply at the copyright issues. People are continuously breaking copyright ALL the time and they shouldn't be. I'm talking reusing photos especially.
We have got away and got used to it because at no point over the years has thre ever been a clampdown. I bet the majority of people don't realise they are acting illegally when sharing photos, reusing photos etc, but they are. They know they are breaking the law when downloading a movie, but it's not that that is the problem, it's everything else.

They bemoan the fact that they wouldn't be allowed to have other peoples photos on their websites after SOPA. Well you're not supposed to have them now!

Well, that was a load of misleading nonsense from the RIAA. It completely missed the reasons why people were upset about SOPA/PIPA. It creates straw men of the opposition. Most (granted, not all) people have no problem with cracking down on piracy or intellectual property violations. They do (correctly, I believe) have a problem with creating a system of "summary justice" wherein a simple complaint, without any proof or evidence, can cause an entire site to be taken down. This is anti-intellectual freedom, and the worst kind of overkill. It would have the effect of stifling speech, expression, and the ability for those to be able to synthesize information. By this approach, even musical artists like Franz Liszt would have been in violation, simply because he sampled some popular music (well, close anyway... much of those folks songs would have been public domain, but I think my point stands).

I think what really upset people is that to a small extent, we all swipe images from websites, and to be punished for that would seem harsh. C'mon--tell the truth. We laugh at images we see on Facebook that may not have been taken by whoever shared it. Is that so wrong?

Who does it hurt? It may hurt the pocket of the photographer, yes. On the other hand, information is shared much further than it ever could otherwise. What's more important?

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