Tom the Dancing Bug by Ruben Bolling

Tom the Dancing Bug

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  1. Andrew_C

    Andrew_C said, over 2 years ago

    This is a straw man
    The law is an ass but its still the law
    Corporations have to enforce copyright or lose it, but are accused of being thugs when they do.
    Is the term to long? Of course, it’s insanely long, but changing the term to 5 years wouldn’t stop people from warezing brand new movies, songs and video games.
    The only copyrighted work that I can think of that should be out of copyright is “Time Fades Away” by Neil Young, released in 1973, long out of print.

  2. Andrew_C

    Andrew_C said, over 2 years ago

    But then every out of print album that hasn’t been transferred to CD or other format should lose it’s copyrights. Of course then the record companies would destroy the masters.

  3. pschearer

    pschearer GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    This raises an interesting question: Does increasing the copyright interval deny rights to people who had valid reason to expect public domain access to some product as of a certain time? If so, does this violate constitutional due process? And I wonder if there isn’t some element of ex post facto law operating here. I believe in intellectual property rights, but the devil is in the details of how best to protect them.

  4. masterskrain

    masterskrain GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    It sounds rather like the too typical “Let’s use a sledgehammer to kill a mosquito” response to a minor problem that the government is so fond of!

  5. drklassen

    drklassen said, over 2 years ago

    First, there is no such thing as “intellectual property”. There is no property there and the term was invented to create the illusion that copyright infringement was “theft”. It isn’t.

    Second, no, nobody has to protect copyright or loose it, that’s trademark. Copyright was supposed to be the limited time monopoly right to distribute copies of a work in fixed form and to create derivative works from it. Since NOBODY creates in a vacuum, society at large is actually a co-creator of EVERYTHING, it was recognized that eventually society at large should gain copyright (i.e. public domain).

    So, yes, ex post facto changing of the rules is denying the public of their rights. Sadly, copyright law changes are one of the few areas where the SCOTUS votes 8-1 and 9-0 and somehow all of them don’t have a problem with defining 3 to 4 generations as “limited time”.

  6. 3hourtour

    3hourtour GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    ..and according to George Carlin,there are still people in hell for that eating meat on Friday rap…

  7. wcorvi

    wcorvi said, over 2 years ago

    Would this mean the Feds will start enforcing ALL their laws?

  8. Matthew Davis

    Matthew Davis said, over 2 years ago

    The point of this cartoon is cleverly hidden in the background of the first panel in the bottom row. The question of whether the perp’s act was moral or legal (or should be) is ancillary to the innocent bystanders bemoaning the loss of their home.

  9. DroptmaStyx

    DroptmaStyx said, over 2 years ago

    @drklassen – spoken like someone who isn’t trying to make a living as a creative person. If I create something, I own it, and I alone have the right to decide who gets to use it for money, for free, however I choose. Nobody else has that right until I give it up. “Society at large is the co-creator of everything” – the most specious argument for theft EVER.

  10. vanpelt

    vanpelt GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    @drklassen — of course intellectual property exists. Many types of property are not physical objects. Yes, copyright infringement is theft.

    The statement of the man in the comic is factually incorrect; in 1955, when “Lady and the Tramp” came out, the law at the time would have put it in the public domain after 75 years — which would be 2030. If he’d been downloading “Steamboat Willie”, he would have had a point.

    It is true that Disney, using its army of clean-shaven lawyers, its ranks of money-spending lobbyists, and Sonny Bono, got Congress to pass the 1998 Copyright Term Extension Act, and that there are good arguments that that act (CTEA) is unconstitutional. But Disney being greedy has no bearing on the validity and importance of copyright protection and intellectual property rights.

  11. androgenoide

    androgenoide said, over 2 years ago

    I’m pretty sure that the original argument was that a limited time monopoly on creative work would encourage the artists to produce more for the benefit of society. It was meant to be limited because society does not reap the full benefit until it passes into the public domain. One problem is determining what is a reasonable period for the duration of a copyright…. obviously twenty year old software is pretty much useless to the public even though it’s still under copyright while a fifty year old novel may still be of great value to the writer. Another issue is the suitable punishment for infringement. Laws to protect the music industry were written at a time when recording and distribution of music required manufacturing facilities, warehouses and fleets of vehicles for distribution. The recording industry (not the artist) got the lion’s share of the benefits and punishments were intended to be suitable for another company that had similar facilities… not for some kid running a world-wide distribution network from his bedroom.

  12. fritzoid

    fritzoid GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    Everything is free now,
    That’s what they say.
    Everything I ever done,
    Gotta give it away.
    Someone hit the big score.
    They figured it out,
    That we’re gonna do it anyway,
    Even if doesn’t pay.

    - “Everything Is Free”, © Gillian Welch

  13. nighthawks

    nighthawks GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    next mission for Godman: Tim Tebow is on his knees and wants another touchdown.
    Godman to the rescue!

  14. fritzoid

    fritzoid GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    @drklassen

    “First, there is no such thing as ‘intellectual property’… Since NOBODY creates in a vacuum, society at large is actually a co-creator of EVERYTHING…”


    That’s hogwash, pure and simple. My idea is MY idea, until and unless I decide to share it, and then I will dictate the terms under which I will share it. Otherwise, I’ll keep it to myself.


    “It was recognized that eventually society at large should gain copyright (i.e. public domain).”


    The key word is “eventually”, and that’s what the argument is about. “The creator’s lifetime, plus 25 years”, which I think used to be the standard, seems reasonable to me, but of course when you have a potentially-immortal “corporate creator” like Disney, that becomes problematic. I’m not siding with the corporate owners like Disney, but neither do I side with the “information wants to be FREE” dimwits. People who devote their lives to writing and playing music, or writing books, or painting pictures, or whatever, have a reasonable expectation of compensation for that (provided people actually LIKE what they create). Otherwise, go write your OWN songs and books.

  15. aircraft-engineer

    aircraft-engineer said, over 2 years ago

    so then fritz – after the creator dies WHY should a copyright continue? The COPY protection is applicable during the life of the creator but WHY should it continue? I agree with limiting the copy time associated with corporations to perhaps 50 years.

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