free speech requires the right to quote from ALL media -- not just text 01.04.2007, 9:35 AM
posted by bob stein
Mike Stark, writing in the The Daily Kos provides a wonderfully detailed account of one man's heroic effort to do battle with Disney as one of the principal purveyors of hate radio. In his own blog, Spocko wrote beautifully crafted pieces alerting advertisers of the vile things that were being said in their name and attached short audio clips to illustrate the point. Several advertisers pulled their ads from KSFO and Disney hit back by contacting Spocko's ISP and his blog is now down. This is one of the clearest examples I've seen of why we need to establish legal precedents for the quotation of audio and video. How can we have a comprehensive and crucial discussion about our culture if we can't quote from it.
Georgia Harper on January 4, 2007 3:33 PM:
Without all the facts, it's not possible to run through the fair use analysis for Mike's use of the clips, but assuming that they were short, only so long as needed to make his point, done for a nonprofit purpose, in the service of criticism or commentary, there is a process contained in 17 U.S.C. 512(g) that enables someone whose ISP has wrongly terminated access to materials in response to an allegation of infringement to dispute the characterization. Mike should be able to assert that the clips are fair use and the ISP must put them back up within 10 - 14 days or face liability to Mike for wrongfully taking his blog down. Most people don't know about the right to dispute that the allegation of infringement is accurate. If Mike does this, Disney will have to get a court order to keep the clips down.
Unfortunately, in the long run, that's what the problem with fair use is: it's just a right to defend yourself in court, at incredible expense, time and effort.
On the other hand, if these clips really do fit the classic fair use, Disney is not likely to win. The recent Diebold fiasco is instructive in this regard. It took a lot of courage on the part of Swarthmore (I believe) students challenging their ISP (their college), as well as copyright law, to right the wrong alleged against them.
Ripley on January 5, 2007 10:17 PM:
My colleagues and I have posted Spocko's story and some of the infamous audio clips at our group-site, Blog Integrity.
Thanks for helping to keep the story alive!
Blogical Thought on January 6, 2007 1:42 AM:
There is nothing heroic about an individual who anonymously spams unfounded allegations over the internet in an attempt to thwart the free speech of others.
The issue is an anonymous blogger who illegally gleaned protected property of another upon his website and distributed it into the public domain.
The blogger was advised by his ISP that he had seven days to remove the protected property or his account would be closed. The blogger refused to do so, thus the account was closed. He made the choice and the responsibility of the account closing was a result of that choice.
The tactics employed by the blogger were those utilized in extremist societies. In example, when a broadcaster stated they had a bulls eye on a legislator, the anonymous blogger immediately made accusations that there was a physical threat to the legislator. Clearly, the blogger was irresponsible in not even knowing the definition of "bulls eye" which is defined as being the center of a target. Moreso, the individual did not know the definition of target, which is
a. An object, such as a padded disk with a marked surface, that is shot at to test accuracy in rifle or archery practice.
b. Something aimed or fired at.
2. AN OBJECT OF CRITICISM OR ATTACK.
3. One to be influenced or changed by an action or event.
4. A DESIRED GOAL.
5. A railroad signal that indicates the position of a switch by its color, position, and shape.
6. The sliding sight on a surveyor's leveling rod.
7. A small round shield.
a. A structure in a television camera tube with a storage surface that is scanned by an electron beam to generate a signal output current similar to the charge-density pattern stored on the surface.
b. A usually metal part in an x-ray tube on which a beam of electrons is focused and from which x-rays are emitted.
The blogger's own perception only allowed him to view it in a negative manner, upon which he based his allegations.
His extremist actions, coupled with stealing private property belonging to others are not only unethical, but put a black mar on bloggers, who, like it or not, are journalists in their own right and have a moral and ethical standing to uphold.
His attempts at thwarting the free speech of others through extortion type actions are offensive at best and facist tactics at the worst.
I feel no sympathy for him for he is responsible for his own actions. It is irresponsible blogging such as his which affect the credibility of other bloggers.