[Fsfe-ie] Indymedia Centre

Ciaran O'Riordan ciaran at member.fsf.org
Sun Apr 25 15:09:54 CEST 2004

(I'll be at the indymedia centre in about 30 minutes.)

> It looks like people are big fans of the GNU with harp logo. I think we
> might want to get an official okay from FSF / FSFE / the GNU project

I'll ask FSF out of courtesy but I'm sure it'll be grand.

> > On Tuesday at 6pm, there is a Communication Rights in the Information 
> > Society (CRIS) campaign information session.
> I will go along to this. 

I'll be there too.  I haven't met Seán [0] in person before, but he's a
clued in fellow with high level lobbying experience (UN & WIPO level
IIRC), so it should be worth hearing what he's got to say.

> > I was talking to Malcolm and suggested that we hold a workshop on 
> > intelectual property rights and software related issues on Thursday at 
> > 6pm.  I can confirm that this spot is available if IFSO people are up 
> > for it.
> I'll be able to go.

yup, I'll do that too.

> > people from Indymedia Ireland would be very interested in learning more 
> > about the various forms of copyleft licences (eg GPL, LGPL, BSD, 
> > Creative Commons) and issues related to them.
> Can someone tackle this? I don't know much about the BSD and Creative

I can do this one.

[0] In January, Seán Ó Siochrú sent a very interesting quote to the
public wsis-pct list, but due to FSFE's mailman misconfiguration which
doesn't archive Georg's or Seán's mails, it's not available anywhere, so
here it is:

Geoffrey Yu, Assistant DG in charge of Copyright, WIPO. (from 'Public
Awareness of Copyright" paper delivered at European Copyright
Revisited, International Conference, Santiago de Compostela, 16 -18
June 2002)

First the message.  For it to go over well, I recommend downplaying
the reference to 'rights'.  The term itself is perfectly acceptable,
but in daily usage, it has a negative connotation of rights without
corresponding obligations and has a [sic] 'us' against 'them'
implication.  This won't do, therefore, as we want to win the public
and consumer to our side.  Unfortunately, we cannot turn the clock
back and find a new term in place of 'copyright' but we can at least
down-play the term 'rights'.  The WIPO Performance and the Phonograms
Treaty (WPPT) is about the protection of performers and phonogram
producers.  The word 'right' is happily missing in their titles.  And
we should take out cure from them.

Within the copyright community such as we are today in this room, it
is fine to refer to artists, composers, performers and enterprises as
'rights holders'.  But it is poor public relations to employ the same
terms when speaking to politicians, consumers, users and the public.
With them, we must use the terms devoid of legal jargon, terms, which
are at least as neutral or better still, inclusive, conveying meanings
with which the public can identify.  So 'rights holders' should become
painters, writers, sculptors, musicians.  What goes down well today
with general audiences are terms like 'culture', creativity',
'information' , 'entertainment', 'cultural diversity', 'cultural
heritage', 'reward for creativity', ' cultural enrichment'. And when
we talk to youngsters, terms like 'fun', 'hip', and 'cool' will find
an echo.  We must find the right slogans too.  At WIPO we coined a
slogan for a Geneva cultural festival that we sponsored which went
"Soutenons les artistes et respectons leurs creations."

In the same way, in our public outreach messages, it is better to
avoid terms like "copyright industries". To call music making and
movie-making "copyright industries" is to cast a business which is
about people, imagination, fun, and creative energy in a
money-centred, legalistic light.  It is like calling car-making a
patent industry.  If we must use the term "copyright" for brevity's
sake, let us call the industries "copyright-based industries".

To sum up, what I would suggest is we down-play business and economics
when speaking to the public and stress more the human, creative,
inspirational angle.  [unquote]

Ciarán O'Riordan
Irish Free Software Organisation: http://ifso.ie

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