Today a brief report from our Shitty But True newsdesk.
The place: Seattle, Washington. The story: The owners of a smallish (relatively speaking) landmark that mars and/or has intercourse with the city’s skyline are harassing people who take pictures of said skyline and use the photographs in their POD (Print On Demand) projects.
We’re talking about, of course, the Space Needle. Can you think of any other landmarks in the Seattle skyline besides Courtney Love’s medicine cabinet?
Yes, the same Space Needle as seen in the opening sequence of the television show Fraiser and in the compelling crime drama The Killing. Those people must have paid big bucks.
The crux of the argument is this: The owners of the Space Needle structure claim ownership and copyright of the structure’s design. This includes it’s shape for usage on things like t-shirts, scale replica pieces of crap, key fobs, mugs, shot glasses, commemorative plates, post cards, calendars, mud flaps, and, of course, Ol’ Spacey (an intimate bedroom device but we won’t be mentioning that on this here quality blog).
If you take a picture of the Seattle skyline for your POD project and, like a damn fool, think to yourself: “Hey, it’s Seattle. Maybe I should point in the general direction of the downtown area and include that abomination thingy with the shittiest restaurant in town?” you just violated copyright law.
Personally I say, if you want to protect your precious copyright don’t do things with it like stick it in the city’s fucking skyline, eh? Kind of makes it hard to avoid, eh? Keep it in private (always good advice for large probes) or be a tad reasonable about enforcing your claim.
I think the question is one of intent. Is someone out to steal and profit from their awesome design? Or are they merely taking a picture of a city where someone decided to jam a giant probe? “Sorry, we’re greedy assholes. You are no longer allowed to take pictures of Seattle. This is not a Kodak moment.” It’s not like a skyline picture is the same as a project like, “The 12 Sexy Sides Of Seattle’s Space Needle 2014 Calendar.”
My friend was recently impacted by their copyright hyperactivity so I decided to honor her sweet, innocent, babe in the woods photograph with the following Photoshop project:
As you can clearly see, she really zoomed in on that sucker, eh? Imagine the photograph without the obelisk. That would really scream Seattle, right?
Who “owns” a city’s skyline? Personally I vote they blast it into orbit and then charge a fee to anyone who wants to gaze upon the stars. That sounds reasonable to me.
For more about her story please read this excellent post:
Caught in a Copyright Net
Google and Bing agree. X is for Xbox. Boring! YouTube came up with xjawz.
Relying on the auto-complete features in these search engines, I then tried “X” followed by all of the vowels.
xem phim tren mang
From these results I deduce that Bing is more international than Google and Google is more commercial than Bing. And YouTube is just weird. 🙂
The X-Files: The Strange Case of the Trumpers
Proving the old adage that “it takes one to know one,” Robin Williams had Donald Trump pegged long before the rest of us:
He wants to see Obama’s birth certificate? I want to see his hairline. I mean, my theory is the hair is actually The Donald. That it’s like some alien creature that landed years ago.
Interesting. Is it the hair itself which is the alien, and Trump merely some sort of host? Or is the relationship more symbiotic than that?
I have no doubt that Mulder and Scully will get to the bottom of this.
There are several critical components to wonky beliefs like conspiracy theories: an overactive imagination, an element of doubt, and a steadfast stubbornness and determination to dismiss facts that contradict the belief. In my opinion, ignoring facts that don’t fit is the key ingredient. And I’ve seen this sort of thing time and time again in my travels.
Of course, in Trump’s situation, it’s hard to know if he seriously believed the sewage that came out of his mouth or if it was all just opportunistic entrepreneurship. “Hey, look,” he probably said. “Polls show increasing numbers – mostly Republicans – who doubt if Obama was born in America. I can use that. Yes, I shall cash in on that.”
Now that Obama has produced his birth certificate, something he decidedly didn’t have to do, one thing is now certain: We can expect the focus of the birthers to shift. They will change the conversation. They’ve already proven they are unwilling to accept facts that challenge their beliefs. I highly doubt the document distributed by Obama will change that much.
Of course Trump, the classy guy that he is, had something extremely pithy to say about it during a press conference he called to discuss his reaction:
I am really honored, frankly, to have played such a big role in hopefully, hopefully, getting rid of this issue.
–Donald Trump and/or his alien hair (it’s unknown which was speaking)
Speaking of “natural born” qualifications to be president, I would very much like to see Trump’s birth certificate from Planet X.
And now, only because I personally thought it was funny, is my tweet from Wednesday morning regarding the Birther issue and Obama producing his birth certificate:
Tom B. Taker
Birthers: Please report to the nearest empty field to wait for relocation by spaceship. Don’t forget your Nike footwear.
April 27, 2011 via web
And, just in case the reference to Nike footwear is too obtuse, check out the Wikipedia page on Heaven’s Gate. One thing about us humans seems certain: We’ll never have a shortage of Trumpers.
This is my “X” post for the A-Z Blogger Challenge.