Previous threads being used in a discussion? September 12, 2003 4:54 AM   Subscribe

Today I posted a small amount of Johnny Cash music from my personal FTP server in rememberance of Johnny Cash. Since I could find no information about the use of FTP's in a threads discussion, I am trying to understand the context of it being wrong or right. Either way: Please dont delete the post until later today. Please?
posted by Keyser Soze to Bugs at 4:54 AM (42 comments total)

Gone already? :(
posted by Space Coyote at 6:00 AM on September 12, 2003

Translated as:
"Hi. I'm self-linking to illegal music downloads *and* making death threats against the president. Please cast a blind eye."
posted by y6y6y6 at 7:12 AM on September 12, 2003

What is it with you and your ftp server? Ever heard of Kazaa?
posted by carfilhiot at 7:24 AM on September 12, 2003

Yes, let us honor Cash by stealing his music.
posted by keswick at 10:39 AM on September 12, 2003

Thanks Keyser, despite what the MeFi police say I think it's a nice idea.

I'm not going to play legal beagle, and as far as I'm concerned it's your FTP and you can do whatever you want with it. If a few people get to listen to an important artist who they might not have listened to before, you've done a good thing.

keswick: Mr. Cash don't care, he's dead you know.
posted by cedar at 10:59 AM on September 12, 2003

making death threats against the president

go do your duty, patriot.
posted by quonsar at 12:13 PM on September 12, 2003

Your FTP site's offline, probably because you radically underestimated the amount of traffic that Metafilter gets.
posted by waxpancake at 1:46 PM on September 12, 2003

FTP is back up for the rest of today. "Yes, let us honor Cash by stealing his music." - Uh... Johnny Cash is dead. Hes not gonna need the money! Duh!
posted by Keyser Soze at 2:34 PM on September 12, 2003

The music is still somebody's property.
posted by JanetLand at 2:39 PM on September 12, 2003

I said right on the post that if you don't own the music, then you cant download. Im doing this for people who lost their original albums, cause god knows it happens all the time.

If someone downloads an album and never owned it, I wont know BUT I will have to say that you need to delete it within 24 hours!
posted by Keyser Soze at 2:45 PM on September 12, 2003

The music is still somebody's property.

and it remains that person's property no matter how many times it's downloaded.
posted by mcsweetie at 2:59 PM on September 12, 2003

"rik nik nik nik", said rikki tikki tavi.
posted by quonsar at 3:16 PM on September 12, 2003

This is going to be interesting when we read about the RIAA going after one of MeFi's very own.
posted by thirteen at 3:45 PM on September 12, 2003

if you don't own the music, then you cant download

You sophist fuck. Either play by the rules or don't, but don't piss in the air and try to sell umbrellas.
posted by gleuschk at 3:45 PM on September 12, 2003

"don't piss in the air and try to sell umbrellas"

That's an excellent idea.

*wanders off to find a wholesale umbrella distributor*
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:48 PM on September 12, 2003

Uh... Johnny Cash is dead. Hes not gonna need the money! Duh!

You may want to consult your local trusts and estates lawyer on that one, Keyser.
posted by PrinceValium at 3:50 PM on September 12, 2003

Hey, Keyser, do you have a dead grandma buried somewhere? I want to dig her up and get her jewelry. She's dead, so she won't care.

posted by keswick at 4:28 PM on September 12, 2003

"if you don't own the music, then you cant download

You sophist fuck."

Im pissing on you, don't you want an umbrella?
posted by Keyser Soze at 4:30 PM on September 12, 2003

And keswick: Sure. Its not like she needs the jewelry anymore. Cmon, think of a better argument because the dead grandmother arguments are so elementary, such as your style of writing.


soph·ist ( P ) Pronunciation Key (sfst)

One skilled in elaborate and devious argumentation.
A scholar or thinker.

Um... I dont know what to say... Except that im confused. You said something nice about me and then called me a fuck. Oh well.

And a word to all the people who think its wrong to download some Johnny Cash music in rememberance of his death: Explain in further detail as to exactly why its wrong. Your all starting to sound like the counterpoint in this onion article. Not just because it's illegal (if you dont own the album) but the moral standpoint on this, in regards with Mr. Cash's death.
posted by Keyser Soze at 4:42 PM on September 12, 2003

sophistry: a deliberately invalid argument in the hope of deceiving someone.
posted by gleuschk at 4:58 PM on September 12, 2003

An article about stealing.
posted by JanetLand at 5:04 PM on September 12, 2003

Man, it's a good thing online dictionaries are free. Between this thread and the 111 "matrimony/pederast" thread, people around here would be going broke.
posted by jonson at 5:06 PM on September 12, 2003

It's not wrong because you put the files up on your server, Keyser. It's wrong because of the cavalierness with which you did it, and the fact that you used this thread to basically piss in Johnny Cash's coffin. And the fact that you started two Metatalk threads in a row for the sole purpose of talking about yourself. It may be a good idea to take a break from the computer for a while.
posted by PrinceValium at 5:09 PM on September 12, 2003

Oh. I was just commenting on the news....

I actually started this thread because theres no rule in metafilter about FTP's. It turned into a big blown out agenda. But let this be known before I walk away:

I will never believe, in a million years, that releasing said tracks is pissing in Johnny Cash's grave or belittling him in any way, shape or form. That is your opinion.
posted by Keyser Soze at 5:21 PM on September 12, 2003

"... and the fact that you used this thread to basically piss in Johnny Cash's coffin."

How you figure?

Are you aware of Mr. Cash's feelings about file sharing? Are you a copyright owner infringed upon? Have you discussed this with whomever owns the rights? Do you, in fact, have anything to offer besides a statement of opinion?

It's sad that someone trying to share music he feels is important with others becomes the subject of such derision. Keyser, I happen to have the albums you offered (and yes, for you sanctimonious pricks who somehow think this is your business, I bought them all nice and legal) but it was a nice gesture.

Hey, is the RIAA offering a bounty yet, considering the way a few of you are acting they must be, right?
posted by cedar at 5:39 PM on September 12, 2003

threads like this pique my curiosity about the backgrounds of those outraged by file sharing. how many are musicians who are suffering because of file sharing, are any of them actually related to the music industry in any capacity whatsoever. i was raised, sheltered, fed, clothed, educated etc via money made from sound recordings, and as an adult that's how i've continued to support myself. i don't personally know a single musician, singer, voice actor, etc who has a problem with file sharing. i do know a few executives who can get a bit hinkty about it, but you know, screw them.
posted by t r a c y at 6:32 PM on September 12, 2003

I don't oppose file-sharing, and I don't think it's stealing. The fact that the RIAA is serving summonses to 12-year-olds is repugnant, and whatever crime is committed by downloading somebody's album doesn't come close to the injury inflicted by these baseless lawsuits. The lawsuits serve only to intimidate, not to recoup money damages: as such they are morally obscene and probably legally questionable.

What I oppose, actually, is the sense of entitlement. If Kazaa was *poof* gone tomorrow, or only listed music by artists who expressly gave permission for it to be there, I'd be bummed. But I wouldn't feel like I had lost a fundamental right. When you download music you aren't exercising a First Amendment privilege. You're engaging in a commercial transaction - a one-way transaction, at that - and in doing so your rights are quite limited.

Nobody deserves free MP3s. Take them while you can, by all means, go ahead and get back at the RIAA for the crap they are pulling. But don't take it personally when you can't get them anymore. They were never supposed to be downloaded in the first place.
posted by PrinceValium at 7:41 PM on September 12, 2003

t r a c y, my problem with downloading is people who download at the exclusion of ever giving any money back to the industry (that goes for movies, as well). You seem clips of college kids on the news talking about how great it is because it's "free" (fist pump!) and they can't afford to buy music (as they type away on the overpriced Dell they could have put together for half the price). Now, that doesn't mean they couldn't be useful as a means to promote music (especially unsigned music), but I think it should be up to the artist, not someone using it as an excuse to save money.

I mean, really, are we going to be better off if at some point nobody can actually create something intangible that requires a medium to serve it (literature, film, music) and make any money because we'd rather not spend money on it? Do we really dislike art so much that shelling out the equivalent of half a tank of gas for something is out of hand? I just don't see it.
posted by The God Complex at 10:09 PM on September 12, 2003

keyser, fuck 'em. I think you did a nice thing and if they don't understand, then so be it.
posted by ashbury at 10:46 PM on September 12, 2003

I thought it was a great idea. I own 11 Johnny Cash CDs, but I didn't find out he'd died until I was on my way to work -- too late to go home for music (or to change into a black shirt). If I could have downloaded the music I'd already paid for, I would have appreciated the opportunity to p(l)ay tribute.
posted by subgenius at 11:56 PM on September 12, 2003

whether placing files to download Johnny Cash's music was right or wrong, this whole thread just struck me as very bad taste.

he was a person, not a counter argument.
posted by triv at 3:26 AM on September 13, 2003

(as they type away on the overpriced Dell they could have put together for half the price)

Of course, they'd have to pirate Windows to really save that much; that's running like $300 for the pro version nowadays. :)
posted by boaz at 7:44 AM on September 13, 2003

Keyser Soze, I apologize for calling you a fuck. It was inappropriate, and I regret it.

The rest of my comment, however, stands. (And no, I don't really know what that "umbrella" crack means either.) I care not at all about the RIAA and the legality or ethicality of downloading those files. What pushed my buttons was your attitude.

Your comments in the thread were generally reasonable, in my opinion, and I even think that offering up Cash's songs is a fine way to commemorate him. You conveyed respect, and I respect that.

You could have left it there. But you did two more things: you started this MetaTalk thread about something that you could have just as easily kept quiet, and you did it with a snotty attitude.

This thread was your second in less than an hour. Neither thread has any reason for existence except to draw attention to yourself. This alone should have gotten you flayed, but no one seems to care enough.

The sophistry (and what I'm most embarrassed about in this thread is that I allowed you to goad me into posting a dictionary definition. oh, the shame) was what really killed me. If you're going to post mp3s (of whatever legality, again, I don't care), just do it. And keep your trap shut. Contortions like, "Do not download unless you own the original" may seem cute, and may salve your conscience, and may even make you think your ass is covered, but are in fact just mechanisms to allow you to say one thing and do another, and to divert all questions about your actions into debates about the (eeeeviiilll) RIAA.
posted by gleuschk at 10:04 AM on September 13, 2003

Sorry for calling you elementary glueschk. And I agree that the first post on metatalk was asinine and pointless, but I feel that this post was to see what the facts are about posting ftp's up. I'm not trying to divert attention onto myself at all, and maybe my words could be misconstruted as such. So live and let live, I stand by my convictions, and the ftp is offline.
posted by Keyser Soze at 12:48 PM on September 13, 2003

It boggles my mind that anyone thinks it's a good idea to maintain copyrights after the creator's death, absolutely boggles...

The purpose of copyright is explicitly stated right in the Constitution of the United States of America (Article 1, Section 8): "To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries."

Handy, eh?

Over the centuries since the Constitution was ratified, the courts have affirmed the existence of citizens' rights that form boundaries against the expansion of copyright, including the first sale doctrine (short version: a purchased copy of a copyrighted work is the property of the buyer, who is free to use, lend, give, or re-sell the work at his own discretion) and fair use (short version: copyrighted materials be freely used and reproduced for criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship or research).

The first sale doctrine is an extension of the Founding Father's well deeply held distrust of monopolies and their power to censor. The fair use doctrine is a reinforcement of the core purpose of copyright as stated directly in the text of the constitution, to have the public benefit from the works produced by authors. That's important! The purpose of copyright in the US is NOT to protect authors from having their works "stolen," it is to "To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts." There is no room for interpretation there. In fact, this is the only one of Congress's enumerated constitutional powers that has its purpose specifically laid out. The Founding Fathers made an effort to be MORE explicit about the purpose of this than any other of the powers given to Congress!

Originally in the US, copyrighted materials were protected for 14 years, with an option to renew for another 14. Now it is for the lifetime of the author plus 70 years. Exactly how much extra motivation to create works that will eventually be free to the public do you suppose dead people feel while moldering away in their graves through 70 years after their death? Precious little. These terms are wholly at odds with the express purpose of copyright, to make the maximum amount of creative works and knowledge available to the public. The dead are dead and no amount of money will extract further words from their corpses, but the public that is supposed to be served by copyright law still is not free to access their works! This is a total perversion of everything that motivated the creation and codification of copyright law directly into the US Constitution.
posted by NortonDC at 10:20 AM on September 14, 2003

Norton - true, but I guess that you need a padding time or else it's worth killing the copyright owner for your own financial benifit.
posted by twine42 at 6:34 AM on September 15, 2003

What fuck!? I hope you're kidding, otherwise how the hell do you figure that? Killing the creator would give everyone equal access, hardly a likely motivation for murder, especially since the more someone values the output of a creator the more they'd want the creator alive to keep producing.
posted by NortonDC at 6:48 AM on September 15, 2003

The founders were many people with many opinions. Over time we have disagreed with many of their positions and changed things accordingly. Granted we have an irritating habit of trying to make those changes sound like it is in keeping with their desires, but it really is not true.

Copyright is too narrow for us these days. Myself, I like the current copyright length, and think it could be lengthened. Most of the problems with the current system can be addressed with additional licenses like the Creative Commons people are introducing, which I will happily use as well. Some of my work I wish to own and let fade, other things I give to the world.

I would love to know what Johnny Cash's opinion would have been, and then I would have respected it.
posted by thirteen at 8:48 AM on September 15, 2003

Okay... in the world of make belief for a moment.

Two cartoon makers are involved in a battle for dollars in the cinemas. If Walt Disney suddenly dies then the Warner Bros team suddenly have a massive advantage. The Disney brand is diluted by a sudden influx of copies and at the same time it loses a main source of income. People have been murdered for a hell of a lot less Norton.
posted by twine42 at 9:16 AM on September 15, 2003

twine42, your scenario does not depend on copyright. Stopping someone from producing competition by killing them is not an artifact of copyright, it's an artifact of competition.

thirteen: "Some of my work I wish to own and let fade, other things I give to the world."

Uh, too bad. The sole purpose of copyright is to expand the pool of intellectual and artistic works available to the public. That's it. The monetary benefits that copyright directs to creators is the means of providing motivation, not the end the copyright serves to achieve. That fact is explicitly laid out in the Constitution, and any argument to the contrary is, in fact, unconstitutional.
posted by NortonDC at 10:19 AM on September 15, 2003

Uh, too bad. The sole purpose of copyright is to expand the pool of intellectual and artistic works available to the public.

It seems it is too bad for you more than me since I am not unhappy with the current situation. My life plus 70 years is plenty of time for the majority of what I want to bury to rot. It could be lengthened to my life +200 years before long. Limited time is subjective, and the boundary mark seems to be expanding. As for it being unconstitutional, all that takes is an amendment.

The constitution is old fashioned in this regard, and it makes more sense to embrace new options rather than to cling to the old ways. Government is much more likely to codify new property licenses than they are to release Mickey who does not want to be free anyway.
posted by thirteen at 12:32 PM on September 15, 2003

Norton : It is a copyright issue, although I accept it's an indirect example. If you can force your competitors main product into the public domain then that is a hell of a feat. And that all revolves around breaking their copyright control.
posted by twine42 at 11:37 PM on September 15, 2003

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