(Introduction).Today I will be talking about copyright and how the Internet is changing out perception of if.
First I’ll answer the question: what is copyright?Copyright , together with industrial property, make up the main components of intellectual property.Copyright is also known as author’s rights.
Author’s rights refers to the laws that are in place in order to protect the creators rights with regard to a work they have created.Examples of things protected by copyright are music, films, books and paintings.
The owner of the work has a numberof rights protected by copyright. These include the ability to authorise or prohibit the reproduction, distribution, public performance and translation or adaptation of his/her work.
In recent years on the Internet, it has become increasingly difficult to enforce copyright laws. This is because of piracy, which is the illegal distribution or acquisition of copyrighted materials. This is most often done through the download of music, movies etc.
Many people argue for piracy by claiming that it isn’t stealing. While this is technically true, piracy is still illegal because it breaks copyright law through the creation of unauthorised copies. Another common argument is that if everyone pirates, why should one refrain?
There also seems to be a separation between tangible and intangible objects in many peoples minds. This means that they think it’s alright because there is no physical object being pirated, only a “less-valuable” digital copy.
What can be done against piracy? The answer is: very little. Because it is so rampant and because Internet Service Providers (ISPs) don’t usually divulge customer information, small acts of piracy are largely ignored by the law.
Streaming is one method of consuming media over the internet. It involves sending data to the user with no download being kept. Streaming has become popular in recent years due to high speed broadband. Examples of streaming services include Spotify and Netflix.
Streaming is not without its own problems, however. Streaming works by temporarily storing chunks of data on the users computer, which violates the reproduction clause. The public performance clause is also infringed due to the work being streamed to the public.
Another problem with streaming is the cost. Thestreaming service is required to buy various licenses for every song, film or TV show they want to stream. This may dissuade many sites from setting up streaming services, which means there is not a lot of choice.
Despite it’s apparent flaws, streaming has had a huge impact in reducing online piracy because it has given people a cheap way of accessing a wide range of copyrighted materials. I’m sure that the next few years will see a rise in the number of steaming sites available to the public.
This brings me onto the topic of licenses. Licensing is when the author allows a third party to use their work in some way for a certain length of time. This includes the reproduction and distribution of the work.
The Creative Commons licence, which we have looked at in class, is a special license that allows the author to grant certain rights to the public. Examples of these rights include the ability to use and change the work. The author may also ask to be attributed when the work is used.
There are three parts to the CC license: the common deed, which is a summary of what can be done with the license, the legal code, which is a formal definition, and the digital code, which contains the metadata and digital signature of the work.
There are some problems with the digital code of the license, however. It is often difficult to embed the code into binary files. These difficulties are increased when we consider the fact that search engines cannot search inside these binary files.
This leads onto the ambiguous nature of copyright on the Internet. Due the fact that search engines cannot properly read the digital code, they cannot tell if an item is copyrighted or not, which can cause users to unwittingly use copyrighted materials without the proper license.
One method that has been suggested to fix some of the flaws of the CC license is the CC file extension. What this would mean is that, using a number of different abbreviations, the information would be included in the file extension of the work.
This cc file extension would have many benefits, the main one being that search engines could tell what license a work has. The user would also be able to, if they know the abbreviations. Unfortunately, this has not been widely implemented, but it’s advantages are clear.
Thank you for listening etc.
Copyright & the Internet
Copyright & the InternetNathan Flynn @NFlynn231 #CT231