I Don’t Know What I Know…

But I know that it’s big.

Either a line from a Mel Gibson movie that nobody really saw, or, my actual feelings at the moment. You may decide at the end, and comment. Of course, that might require that you read all the way to the end, so, you’ve been warned.

In an effort to gather thoughts for another blog post at a different site that nobody reads either, I’ve come to the following conclusions, in no particular order….

Of course, I should probably put a list in here, so that Guy Kawasaki will read further, however, that’s not the point of this rambling that may have a point to it, either.

Mark Cuban has a blog, where he wrote something about Fakebook privacy. That may or may not be what this is about. I’m actually more concerned with his copyright notice at the bottom, which reads, “All contents copyright © 2010, Mark Cuban. All rights reserved.” Therefore, if I comment on his blog, he owns it? I don’t think so, Tim.

It’s my understanding of copyright law, that when I put something in a fixed form, like this blog entry, or a comment on another blog, that I indeed own it. Of course, it could be argued that anything posted online is inherently fluent, and therefore, not fixed, as it can be edited by whomever has permission. The DMCA was written to prevent just this, in reality, of course, The Law!!! being what it is, affected this attempt to bend the will of copyright law to those who would claim ownership of all things ‘net, (Read, Disney, et al), and created new categories heretofore unforeseen of intellectual property.

Which may allow Mark Cuban to own my comments. It will probably never be tested in court, however, it would be fun to try. Of course, he has more money than I will ever have, so, he’d win. Does that matter to me? Yes!!! I don’t think he can own my thoughts in this way, however, the legal system being what it is, at least in this country that I love, would allow him to stifle any opinion contrary to his, simply because he has more money. Fair? No, of course not.

But it is what it is, and it beats whatever system is in second place by far. I’m thinking that I should like the fact that Mark Cuban feels he has to own my comments on his site, because it means he feels that they’re important. Which they are of course, or else, I wouldn’t be making them there, or anywhere else for that matter.

Have we in Web 2.93 terms, advanced to the point where nobody owns anything? I know that nobody knows anything, but of course, William Goldman said that first. And he was right. But he may also have been wrong. Unless it’s the Universal Nobody. Because clearly there are many nobodies who do indeed know a lot of things. But none of them are in power.

Like Mark Cuban.

Who needs to own the comments I make on his site.

Adjust Your Expectations Accordingly.

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4 thoughts on “I Don’t Know What I Know…

  1. I’ve often wondered this myself, what with the book deals the rare blogger manages — some of those books must include the comments.

    It doesn’t look like there’s a clear cut case either way.

    I just read this other day:
    http://www.eff.org/issues/bloggers/legal/liability/IP

    The page says:

    [quote]If a reader comments on my blog, does she license the rights to me?

    When a person enters comments on a blog for the purpose of public display, he is probably giving an implied license at least for that display and the incidental copying that goes along with it. If you want to make things clearer, you can add a Creative Commons license to your blog’s comment post page and a statement that by posting comments, writers agree to license them under it. [/quote]

    • From what a friend of mine who is a writer of note says, CC license isn’t worth the virtual paper it’s printed on, although, I don’t believe anything has been challenged in court yet….

  2. More importantly:

    “Who needs to own the comments I make on his site.”

    I like the fact that there’s no question mark.

    Somehow, people still made art before the DMCA.

    • Yes, and it was being ripped off, copied, parodied, and satirized, too. All the DMCA really did was create a new category of IP labeled oxymoronically, original derivative work.

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