The five copyrights are: the right to reproduce the work, to
prepare derivative works, to distribute copies, to perform publicly,
and to display publicly. I don't see how any of that has to do with
the term "organic" as defined by the NOP draft rule or anybody else.
Copyright is not a matter of common law. It's a form of protection
for creators of art, literature, and other information, laid out in
Title 17 of the U.S. Code. In addition, the U.S. is a co-signer of
international treaties on copyright, to ensure that our laws are in
line with an international community's.
Even if this *were* a copyright-related issue, repeated use of a
copyrighted work does not take the place of adhering to the law. In
other words, it doesn't matter whether a bunch of people ignore the
law; it's still a prosecutable violation.
Say a person decides to set up a stereo in his or her restaurant and
play copyrighted CDs for fun or profit (covered by the public
performance right) or burn copies of that CD on their home computer
and give them for gifts (covered by the reproduction and
distribution rights). If the person hasn't secured permission from
the copyright holder to do that, it's a violation of those rights.
It doesn't matter whether one or a billion people do it, once or a
trillion times. It's a violation of the rights of the holder/s of
the copyright, and subject to prosecution.
There've been significant changes in copyright law in the past ten
years, but nothing that would "grandfather in" violating the rights
of copyright holders. The five basic rights have stood since the
late 18th century, though changes in communications technology in
the late 19th and the 20th centuries have made copyright law much
more complex than the original, print-based, form.
I'd be glad to have any errors in my i-prop thinking pointed out by
folks with more expertise than me. Thanks for listening. Oh, and
please note that I have expressed an opinion in only one small issue
in this message. I have certain problems with the recent evolution
in intellectual property law...and with the draft standards...but
this isn't the time or place for that.
Michele Gale-Sinex, communications manager
Center for Integrated Ag Systems
UW-Madison College of Ag and Life Sciences
Voice: (608) 262-8018 FAX: (608) 265-3020
In the end, they will lay their freedom at our feet
and say to us, 'Make us your slaves, but feed us.'
--the Grand Inquisitor
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