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Re: [OT] Droit d'auteur vs. free software?

Edmund GRIMLEY EVANS wrote:
> Arnoud Galactus Engelfriet <galactus@stack.nl>:
> > So what you do to works I created could harm my reputation.
> I could make a silly modificaton to your painting and avoid mentioning
> that you created the original. This wouldn't harm your reputation.

Possible, unless I'm so famous that people would recognize
the painting as being from me anyway. Or the painting has
been on display as being "mine" for some time. Or whatever.

I'm sure it's quite possible to make modifications that
destroy the integrity of the work and yet do not harm the
author's reputation. Those are fine. The law simply forbids
such bad modifications *if* they harm my reputation. 

> Alternatively I could create a totally original silly painting and
> claim you created it. This would harm your reputation.

Correct. I could sue you for defamation or whatever though. And 
yes, I could do the same if you harmed my reputation by mutilating
my picture. The law just gave me an extra tool in the form of
my moral rights on the picture.

> So the concept of droit d'auteur being discussed seems nicely
> orthogonal to the question of harming reputations. Perhaps this
> "reputation" business is a red herring.

It's quite possible the concept has outlived its usefulness.
Keep in mind these things started out in the 19th century.
And European copyright law in particular still has many 
romantic ideas about authors and other creators. It's always
the starving musician with the ten hungry children in the
basement who needs more and longer protection. And of course
this genius also should be protected against unscrupulous
businesses that will make stupid changes to his work and
totally destroy his reputation.


Arnoud Engelfriet, Dutch patent attorney - Speaking only for myself
Patents, copyright and IPR explained for techies: http://www.iusmentis.com/

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