Thursday, August 17, 2017
Sunday, August 13, 2017
And EBAY and PAYPAL are just fine with it, because THEY profit from the theft.
Bootleggers on eBay are SO brazen, they steal from SENATORS.
Here's a different parasite pickpocketing Al Franken, with EBAY and PAYPAL acting as pimps, looking out and guarding the crook and taking a percentage:
What if Al Franken called up eBay (1-866-540-3229) and said, "Somebody is bootlegging my book. Take the auction off."
He'd be speaking to a sing-song cheerful voice from Pakistan, perhaps. "Oh dear," sings the voice, "my goodness! Well, you'll have to contact email@example.com, fill out some forms, and report the auction number!"
Senator Franken says:
"Why don't you contact the seller and ask him to show you proof of licensing...not only from ME and my publisher, but for the other FIFTEEN authors he's bootlegging?"
"Sorry," sings the voice, "as a United States Senator, you should know about the weak DMCA rules that have not changed in all these years. Over the past 15 years or more, eBay's become the 9th biggest Internet company in the world, and Amazon's Jeff Bezos the 2nd richest man IN THE WORLD. And many entertainment companies have been swallowed up by Internet giants!
"We are under NO legal obligation to ask a seller to prove he has licensing. HOWEVER, we will force YOU to give us all the proof. Otherwise, go fuck yourself."
Oh, the sing-song voice in Pakistan might not say "go fuck yourself." One of eBay's charmers who work the phones in some other part of the world would. Like Ireland. If you hear an Irish accent when you dial up phone support, be polite. He might get testy REAL fast and start cursing.
PS, as far as eBay is concerned, even though it is technically against their rules to offer digital books, they do NOT make it easy for anyone to file a report. There is NO drop-down menu for "report seller." You are expected to spend a half hour tediously reporting EACH...AUCTION...NUMBER.
Back to our story of PAYPAL AND EBAY stealing and cheating authors (and other copyright owners).
The playing field not only isn't LEVEL, it's SLANTED toward the thieves.
Some jerk on eBay can even say "I own the rights" or "I am licensed" and this PERJURY is not questioned.
Like THIS bastard, who gets a fresh identity every other week:
Harper Lee's book is copyrighted. Her publisher HAS a VeRO rep who shuts down liars and cheats. But THIS prick still has the nerve to write:
Guess what. If caught, eBay and Paypal do NOT automatically suspend the seller.
They often give a slap on the wrist, and tell the seller not to sell bootlegs. The seller, of course, will continue a few more times, then abandon the seller ID for a new one.
If a VeRO rep points out, "This seller has a dozen accounts," the VeRO department will play STUPID.
No kidding. Either that, or offer a form paragraph, something like, "We have sent your concern along (to who, they never tell you). VeRO can not take further action. We can not advise on what action, if any, has been taken against the seller, due to privacy concerns."
In other words, this is collusion. This is aiding and abetting criminal activity. This is eBay making money with a criminal, and their twisted step-sister Paypal gets a cut, too.
Senator Franken might want to consider "playing by the rules," stacked against him and all copyright owners, and simply figure, "OK, I'm NOT smart enough to outwit the system...and doggone it, not me, not Senator Leahy, not anyone can get a DMCA law passed. And Paypal is NOT going to suck back the money in this bootlegger's bank account and give it to me. But surely, Paypal will make it as easy for ME to file a complaint as it they make it for a BOOTLEGGER to get an account and start selling."
NO, Senator Franken. NOT AT ALL.
The playing field is not level. PAYPAL makes it crooked, and in favor of the criminals. A criminal gets a Paypal account in a minute, gets an eBay account in a minute, and can make hundreds of dollars in an hour, just by STEALING FROM COPYRIGHT OWNERS. All the money HE KEEPS.
You, Senator Franken, had better sharpen your pencil and send in the PAYPAL form.
Yes, contact firstname.lastname@example.org, and they will send you THIS form, which you better fill out to their liking:
Is that clear?
The CRIMINAL does NOT have to prove he owns copyright or is licensed.
The COPYRIGHT OWNER has to.
PAYPAL is on the side of the CRIMINAL because they are getting a percentage.
When, Senator Franken, is the copyright owner in America going to have the same rights as a THIEF?
Can you imagine this going on in the REAL WORLD?
"Excuse me, there seem to be a dozen roach parts in every brand of peanut butter. Isn't the FDA supposed to do something about this?"
"Er, no, we trust the companies to keep roach parts out of the peanut butter. And we have no idea if those are roach parts you are seeing. Hire a lab, pay for the analysis of 50 jars of peanut butter in various states and factories, and have it certified that you found roach parts. We will then warn the sellers not to keep doing this. However if they change the name on the label, start over again."
It bears repeating:
COPYRIGHT OWNER IS THE NIGGER OF THE WORLD.
You can be white or black, Christian or Jew, you WILL be stolen from on EBAY and with PAYPAL. You will be a slave. Your complaints will get you hostile stares, incredulous glares, and a lot of apathy. Like the bullies they are, EBAY and PAYPAL (and GOOGLE and the rest) will say, "Dance, Nigger, Dance. Right through this hoop, Nigger. Now THIS hoop, Nigger. Now any time you have a problem you Dance Nigger. And if you do it just right, we MIGHT take action. Or ignore it for a while longer if you ain't polite enough, Nigger. And then you'll do it all over again."
How long before these two bootleggers are suspended?
How much money do they, eBay and Paypal make and keep before the hoop-jumping is considered JUST RIGHT?
When do the two bootlegger come back under fresh aliases?
The answer is simple enough.
NO FASCISTS SHOULD HAVE THE POWER TO BULLY.
In this case, the law should be on the side of the copyright owners. Ebay should be required to make sure their sellers are NOT engaging in perjury. Ebay should be required, in cases where bootlegging or other crimes are very likely going on, to make sure the sellers have PROOF of licensing.
PAYPAL should hold onto money on any seller involved in such things as PDF and EPUB copies of books, and KEEP the money on a new eBay account for 60 days until the seller proves honesty and does not have a VeRO complaint.
PAYPAL should return all questionable money to the publisher or to a designated charity.
There is no excuse, NONE, for some prick in Estonia or some twat in California to be tossing Senator Al Franken's book or Harper Lee's book around and keeping ALL THE ROYALTIES.
BOOTLEGGING is ILLEGAL. BOOTLEGGERS should not be CODDLED by arrogant FASCISTS.
Senator Franken, you want to talk this over with Senator Leahy and your pal Senator Warren, and a few others?
Ever hear of David Maslanka? No.
But, take a look at the photo. He looks pretty happy. Or rather, looked. He died the other day. Let's say he died comfortably, in terms of his finances and his fame. He did pretty much what he wanted, even if you never heard of him. He fulfilled what mattered to him most, I would assume, which is creating. How many people enjoyed his work? Enough. When you work in certain fields, enough IS enough.
Maslanka just missed his birthday (August 30, 1943-August 6, 2017). Colon cancer, any cancer, will take you out no matter how much you "battle." The obits, of course, will tell you that people "battle" cancer. Which is like saying the Japanese in Nagasaki and Hiroshima "battled" the bomb.
The important thing for this composer, was to be able to compose. To be free to do his work and not starve. He didn't "pay to play" in small clubs. He didn't put his stuff on YouTube and hope for the best. He disappeared into the arms of Academia, and was nurtured, petted, and rewarded:
He enjoyed five residency fellowships at the MacDowell Colony in Peterborough, New Hampshire. He recieved grants from the University of Connecticut Research Foundation, the American Music Center, the Martha Baird Rockefeller Fund for Music, the State University of New York Research Foundation, and even ASCAP, the bunch who don't do anything about piracy but Tweet to a half-dozen people some congratulations when some Latino goes "Platino" with an album of dance music.
As you've guessed by now, David Maslanka was a classical American composer, which means he created symphonies, concertos, even choir pieces. Whether this was avant-garde stuff that everyone hates, or just imitative variations on something out of the Elgar playbook or Vaughn Williams or John Rutter or Kabalevsky...who knows. Nobody said, "Dave, boy, we've got Beethoven and Mozart, we don't need YOU." Or, "Dave, boy, you ain't gonna rival Stravinsky, and we've heard electronic stuff and even silence. Go teach flute playing to grade schoolers."
Academia gave him room and board. And awards. You need awards to feel good about yourself, when the Grammy bunch don't even mention Classical on their telecast, and nobody can name a classical conductor or opera singer, as they could when Leonard Bernstein and Luciano Pavarotti were alive. He recorded mostly for Albany Records, which you never heard of. He could sign a copy if you bought one, but he signed his name on checks much more often, getting the grants, getting the honorariums which is what playing the Academia game is all about. Need a classical composition for a a bunch of trombones, or even flutes or marimbas or a euphonium, and you could ask David. You'd end up with "Montana Music: Three Dances for Percussion" or "Arcadia II: Concerto for Marimba and Percussion Ensemble." Your small circle of friends would be impressed. Somebody's budget paid for it.
Maslanka won the National Endowment for the Arts Composer Award two years in a row (1974 and 1975) and made a comeback to win it again in 1989. Ten years later, the durable Dave won the National Symphony Orchestra regional composer-in-residence award. Over the past 37 years, he was a guest composer all over Academia...at college and university music festivals and conferences.
You want to know more about a particular Maslanka work, or about his theories? Academia comes to the rescue. Academia Begets Academia. Call it egg-headed exercises if you want to, but there's a reason to hide in a quiet campus library, or find a fine life in dwelling on things that are meaningless to most everyone on the planet. Anselm Hollo, who was perhaps the Allen Ginsberg or Kenneth Rexroth of England, made his way to Academia and taught poetry in Colorado somewhere. It was a nice life. You can buy Anselm's various small-press books. He's well known in that small circle of those who care about fine literature in general, and modern poetry in particular.
Academia is a dream within a dream. You can do a treatise on Maslanka, and who knows, become such an expert, you could teach a course on him. Become a professor, somewhere, of modern American classical composers, based on your dissertation:
There probably isn't a published writer who hasn't thought of hiding in Academia, or a musician who hasn't thought, "Hmmm...I could teach."
What IS obscurity? It's a TV show that was popular 30 years ago. A radio show that was once #1 and is now totally forgotten. A best seller published last year.
Academia isn't really any more of a cop-out than being an accountant.
Who knows what Davey-Boy's private chagrins were. Did he find it a drag to follow directions for taking a bus to a train to a cab to a plane, to waiting for some under-grad to be there in an SUV and drive him to the campus? Did he NOT want to sit at a dinner with a bunch of boring people discussing whether a bookcase fell on Alkan or not? Or what he thought of Procol Harum's concert with the Edmonton Orchestra? Or if anyone makes a quality bassoon? At least he wasn't working 9 to 5 at something outside his area of interest. He could thank Academia for that.
And so it is, that a lot of people consider Academia to be THE PARADIGM. Even radicals and pervs like Allen Ginsberg and Philip Roth were PROFESSORS. As successful as they were, they weren't living off mere royalties. Most any musician, writer, singer or artist has heard it: "Be a teacher. You get a pension. You only teach a few hours a day. It's pretty easy, if you can stand it." Even Mort Sahl tried to teach a few courses a few years ago. Many former stars with nothing to do can get a teaching gig, based not on having a Ph.D., but "life experience."
It's a way not to starve. They threw a benefit to pay Dave Van Ronk's medical bills. I don't think that was the case for David Maslanka.
Friday, August 11, 2017
Thursday, August 10, 2017
So was he. You don't know his name, but it appears under the words "Green Green Grass of Home," one of the great songs of the past century. He also co-wrote what most say is the best country song of all time, "He Stopped Loving Her Today." He wrote Tammy Wynette's "D-I-V-O-R-C-E" and another standard, "My Elusive Dreams." And on the funny side, how about, "You Can't Have Your Kate and Edith Too."
He was born at the right time. He collected royalties all his life, and wasn't quite seeing the effect of piracy that has made it more and more difficult for songwriters to consider that they've built up a pension with hit songs. No, today's middle-aged songwriters, as well as scripwriters and authors, can't count on royalty checks being a great supplement to Social Security. And who is so sure of the future of Social Security, either?
None of this bothers the Millennials, who throw digitized books, movies and music around. Sadly, it doesn't bother Baby Boomers in their 60's and 70's, who have discovered blogs and forums in their old age, and "share" with each other, confident that what they do is NOT "stealing." They'll tell you copyright is "copy wrong," and that it's "silly" that people should get royalties for their work. Oh, it's fine for them to get pensions for 30 years of paving streets or emptying garbage or being a drone at a government job, but if you wrote a book or a hit song, why, you should get a flat fee and be done with it!
And so they rationalize that it's a "kerfuffle" to file takedowns, and that rights owners who dare to do it should be harassed. They have friends in Google, Ebay, Amazon, YouTube (owned by Google) and others, who are under little obligation to remove infringements or see to it that malicious and idiotic "uploaders" cease and desist. Google is much more powerful than Disney and Comcast owns NBC, and the truth is that Internet companies have lobbied to make sure that weak piracy laws stay weak.
Jeff Bezos made sure to put his low-priced Kindle on the opening page of Amazon every day until people bought enough to seriously screw up the publishing world. Now, most any best-seller, and even an obscure textbook can be had as a free download. Or for a few dollars via a bootlegger on eBay. I was surprised to see what I can consider an obscure book, "Horror Stars on Radio," given away in several forums. I wrote that one. I asked my publisher what was being done to remove such piracy and stop RAR files from being tossed around. The reply was, "What's a RAR file?" And, "how does a forum work?" And "what do you do with that link?" But it could just as easily have been what you hear from Scholastic, or the bird-brains at Penguin: "We don't think it's that much of an issue." No, not when they get 90% and the author 10%.
So that brings me to a piece that ran in THE ECONOMIST the other day.
It brings me back to Curly Putman. One of the guys who had hits with his songs was George Jones. Only George could get so much mileage out of a deliciously malicious number like "Radio Lover." I mentioned to Curly Putman that this song had to have been a lot of fun to write. Like Alfred Hitchcock plotting the shower scene in "Psycho," Curly had to have enjoyed the set-up and then the perfect O. Henry twist.
Well, George sang the songs but his voice was giving out. Sometimes he wheezed, and was embarrassed to find himself unable to get through an entire set without a problem. Similarly, Glen Campbell had to explain that Alzheimer's was going to make his farewell tour less than perfect. Meanwhile, less high profile, various performers have worn themselves ragged touring small clubs. Various authors have had to be away from friends and family to lecture wherever they can get a paycheck from any small college or library. People who thought they weren't going to have to be under stress are literally killing themselves, and in many cases competing with the armchair pirates who spend the morning uploading discographies, bibliographies, filmographies, and then checking for "nice comments" or how much money Google or Rapidgator has funneled into their bank accounts as a...yes...ROYALTY for the illegal material.
THE ECONOMIST points out that guys who shouldn't even be on the road, or on the road so much, are facing the reality that piracy is making them risk their lives. The thieves who are swiping both money and fame from the artists, sneer, "Sell t-shirts. Tour. Have a day job. If you are a writer, why, go teach or lecture, because all writers are articulate and people certainly want to show up at a library to hear them as long as its free." Meanwhile the pirates are resting comfortably at home "on the government's teat," and often with an extra pension from THEIR job. They hear "thank you for the discography...the filmography...the complete set of books...thank you for YOUR HARD WORK!"
Trying to educate selfish, stubborn, stupid people doesn't work. If you're a rights owner, take the time to file that DMCA, and if you can, get deputized so you can do it for any other intellectual property owners you know. Make the case as often as possible to the lazy bastards at the RIAA, BPI, writers unions, office of Penguin Random House, etc. that they should not ignore ANY violations and use interns and solicit volunteers. Let your politicians know that a result of piracy is a steady diet of crap "reality" shows, dimwit sci-fi and comic book hero movies, awful books by pudgy idiots like E.L. James and George R.R. Martin, and a lack of in-depth reporting from newspapers and non-fiction authors.
The pirates don't care if George Jones died on the road, or if some author or indie singer-songwriter can't stay at home and must instead be under big stress for chump change. All they know is that THEY are siphoning off some fame and some money, via their long-distance blood-letting of creative people via easy Internet "sharing."
Wednesday, August 9, 2017
Saturday, August 5, 2017
With Google, it's a sedentary, GOOGLE-eyed blimp who always has a bowl of potato chips handy.
The subliminal message: if you start some kind blog (COOKBOOK RECIPES, huh???) you will make EASY money. You can type with one hand, and stuff your face with the other. Your pumpkin-like head will have a jack-o-lantern glow every time you get a GOOGLE gmail telling you how much MONEY they've just transferred to your bank account!
That's right. You don't have to waddle over to the bank. It's a direct-deposit. Like your rump.
The woman in the picture is the ONLY one they wanted to use. The only one that would fit in the frame.
She's hugging herself. She's dowdy, dumpy, ALONE, but god DAMN, she's got a bowl of chips, she can work in her KITCHEN, and she's got a laptop. Which can't fit on her gigantic lap.
"A few reasons why almost 2 million people have chosen AdSense." Uh, let's see: 1) Working at home, you can be as unsightly as you want.
We'll stop right there. Besides, the woman is smiling. She knows her role models include Amy Schumer, and that really really fat woman who is always taking her clothes off on a bad HBO sitcom. Oh, and Kardashian's ass, which has its own zip code.
The way ADSENSE works, is that you create CONTENT and GOOGLE does the rest, festooning your blog with hot links that are unavoidable, banner ads, anything to distract people from READING YOUR ACTUAL THOUGHTS. The more they sit there, agog, the better for YOU.
After a while, thanks to GOOGLE's search engine, you won't even have to write new content. Your old crap will bubble up to the top of the search, by coincidence, and people will be reading and re-reading your page, and my GOD how the pennies roll in.
If you do wish to add more to your blog, and you're bored, just take some crap from NEWSER or DECIDER or any of the other sites that make money by re-writing what somebody else wrote. It's legal now. Plagiarism IS LEGAL NOW. Honest. You can't be shamed. If people can't be FAT SHAMED for being unhealthy and disgusting to look at it, don't worry about being a brain-picking bastard. In fact, if you stick download links on your page, giving away FREE music, that's ok, too. GOOGLE has ways of discouraging copyright owners from jumping through their hoops!
Of you go. GOOGLE wants you to start a blog and gain some...weight.
Big Brother GOOGLE knows what's best.
My blog? I don't have ADSENSE on it. Hot links. Banner ads. I'm not making any money off what I write here. It's a shame. It's just not a fat shame.