In message <199907100030 .
com>, you wrote:
>As I mentioned before, I tried subscr|bing to the list-managers list
>at eGroups and got this welcome message. As you can see, it's marked
>as being at eGroups but it is without a doubt the
>Did I miss something where eGroups made a pact with thousands of existing
>lists or are they hijacking lists?
>> From list-managers-return- @
com Fri Jul 9 19:16:29 1999
>> Message-Id: <199907100016 .
>> Date: Fri, 09 Jul 1999 19:58:31 -0000
>> From: "eGroups.com Manager" <list-managers-help @
>> Subject: eGroups.com: You have been added to the list-managers eGroup.
This is really rather disgusting. They don't own this mailing list, and
as far as I know, they didn't do any of the work necessary to create it
or build it up.
I realize that these people believe that they are trying to provide some
sort of value-added service, but...
If you go down to Kinko's, make a color photocopy of an Andy Warhol painting,
slap a new frame around it, SIGN YOUR NAME TO IT, and then go out and sell
it, ain't that copyright infringement? (The part about signing your own
name to it just adds insult to injury.)
Of course the same question applies to USENET news postings and DejaNews,
but I think that it could be argued that nobody really owns those. Well,
if someone wanted to do so, they _could_ go into court and sue DejaNews
for archiving their USENET news postings, but that would be a lot like
suing someone for handing out photocopies of a political leaflet that
you yourself were handing out copies of on the streetcorner the day before,
i.e. not a very sensible thing to sue someone over.
I am not a lawyer, and I don't even play one on the Interent, but it seems
to me that there must be a certain set of things which a "creator" might do
which would, under the law (Berne convention?), put his/her creations into
the public domain, and that handing out leaflets on a streetcorner and/or
posting one's thoughts to USENET news might both be among that set of acts
which renders these creations into the public domain.
But even if that all is true, that still leaves the question, ``Is posting
to an E-mail mailing list which happens to be open to the public one of the
acts which renders one's thoughts into the public domain?''
I suppose that we won't know the answer to that until someone gets really
ticked off enough and decides to sue either eGroups or Topica.
I gotta say though that I question the wisdom of building a long-term business
plan around a practice which could be legally ruled to be equivalent to theft
at essentially any moment.
(I suspect that the founders hope to take the these companies public... and
to then quickly cash themselves out... before that actually happens.)
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