Copyright law and fraternal correction


#1

I have hit quite a problem. The other day I saw a Catholic friend of mine post a youtube video with copyrighted content on facebook. I considered this situation to follow the demanding criteria to call for an act of fraternal correction, as given by the Catholic Encyclopedia.

newadvent.org/cathen/04394a.htm

Although unsure that it was a grave issue, I thought that it could become one if it was not raised. He took it very well.

However, he has since uploaded a picture which I think is subject to copyright restrictions, so I added a note that it applies to images too. This leads me to a position where I am faced with a huge number of copyright violations on facebook, all of which seem to fulfil the criteria for fraternal correction.

Have I got confused somewhere, or should I be messaging people all over the place?


#2

Sharing videos and pictures on Facebook is encouraged by artists/singers because it results in more traffic to their website and more attention for their work. This would not be copyright violation. In fact, YouTube has a Facebook share button, where you can automatically share it after viewing. Many sites, like the Lolcatz and other memes or e-cards, also encourage posting to Facebook. Is this the sort of thing you have been objecting to?


#3

Not quite - it was the reposting of an online cartoon without reference, and the use of images from films as profile pictures, to give the examples which caused concern.


#4

Perhaps a general note - “Hey guys, I love what you’re sharing from your favorite artists and musicians. These are talented folks and I’d like to know who they are. Can you cite any that you post so I can support these musicians? Thanks, I LOVEEEEE YOUS GUYS!!!@!@!!!”


#5

Copyright simply means ‘right to copy.’ If you post your own photos or videos, no problem. However, when a video is lifted from youtube, for example, the person who made the copy has no right to do so. The same with photos from the internet. When in doubt, just ask. It’s that simple. There are usually two excuses - one is definitely wrong.

“Exposure.” Uh uh. If a pro photographer or TV/video producer wants exposure, he can do it himself or hire a professional promotions agency. The same with music. Don’t post a song because you think it’s great. Because if you do, why should anybody buy a copy? If you like a band, you might post a link to their site.

The other is “fair use,” which is not hard to understand but generally falls into scholarly categories, like copying part of a book or magazine at a college library for a term paper or if you’re a film or music critic, or you’re a historian who makes others aware of an image. However, reproducing that image becomes a problem, and the law varies outside the US regarding photographs with historical research value, for example.

This is Fair Use:

copyright.gov/fls/fl102.html

Hope this helps,
Ed


#6

Thank you for the swift responses.

The problem I'm having as that many people reproduce material without citation on facebook an awful lot of the time. It seems unrealistic, and potentially highly self-righteous, to send a private message to any Christian I find doing this.

Actually, a lot of these pictures seem to be shared from other people's pages, which makes it even more confusing as it is nigh impossible to work out what the initial conditions of reproduction were.

As far as I can work it out, there is an obligation to let Catholics (and I'm not sure why not Christians on the whole) know if they a breaking the law and would probably not do so if made aware of it. Do I have this right? In this situation it looks unfeasible.


#7

Just one man's opinion but I think you're taking your scrupulosity and using it try and make your friends feel bad as well. I consider myself very orthodox but I think you are taking things a bit far. If you want to be so rigid about what you link to on facebook feel free, but jumping on everyone else's case about it is a good way to quickly find yourself blocked. There is a very important need for correction (despite the consequences) if your friends are saying something like "I think abortion is a woman's right" but I don't think you need to be out there correcting people for saying "Hey, saw this cool youtube video, check it out." I'd calm down and worry about more important things.


#8

Let it lie. Nobody likes a scolding busy body.


#9

Big difference between a ‘scolding busybody’ and ‘fraternal correction.’ Finding out what is right and wrong in this case is important.

Peace,
Ed


#10

[quote="Perlesvaus, post:3, topic:347840"]
Not quite - it was the reposting of an online cartoon without reference, and the use of images from films as profile pictures, to give the examples which caused concern.

[/quote]

Ah. That makes more sense. You are right, that does violate copyright law.


#11

Streaming copyrighted content (such as YouTube videos embedded into a Facebook wall) is not illegal in the US, AFAIK. Doesn’t necessarily preclude sin, though (I don’t know, but I FEEL that in many cases it’s no sin). I believe SOPPA (which failed) would have made that illegal.


#12

[quote="Farley4334, post:7, topic:347840"]
Just one man's opinion but I think you're taking your scrupulosity and using it try and make your friends feel bad as well.

[/quote]

This. When it comes to such things, best to let each tend their own conscience. If you think it is in violation of copyright laws, YouTube will remove videos that violate copyright when they receive notification, or at least I have seen it done. Let them police their site.


#13

Thank you for the advice. I shall let this go.

God bless you all.


#14

[quote="pnewton, post:12, topic:347840"]
This. When it comes to such things, best to let each tend their own conscience. If you think it is in violation of copyright laws, YouTube will remove videos that violate copyright when they receive notification, or at least I have seen it done. Let them police their site.

[/quote]

But under the "Safe Harbor" Law, youtube does not necessarily need to police itself. That's why it has a copyright violation reporting method. And yes, even though the infringing video posted by Benn8766544 is taken down, odds are lIfT_re54 will put it back up again.

Just because we've had crime for so long does not mean we need fewer police officers.

Best,
Ed


#15

[quote="edwest2, post:14, topic:347840"]
But under the "Safe Harbor" Law, youtube does not necessarily need to police itself. That's why it has a copyright violation reporting method. And yes, even though the infringing video posted by Benn8766544 is taken down, odds are lIfT_re54 will put it back up again.

Just because we've had crime for so long does not mean we need fewer police officers.

Best,
Ed

[/quote]

I believe the point is that you can assume that a youtube video has permission, and, if you think it unlikely you can go check into it yourself and then report it, but you shouldn't just see something and assume it is breaking copyrights and then think badly of your friend who posted at and leave it at that. Either determine for sure that it breaks copyright and report it, or assume it does not break copyright and don't worry about it.


#16

[quote="thewanderer, post:15, topic:347840"]
I believe the point is that you can assume that a youtube video has permission, and, if you think it unlikely you can go check into it yourself and then report it, but you shouldn't just see something and assume it is breaking copyrights and then think badly of your friend who posted at and leave it at that. Either determine for sure that it breaks copyright and report it, or assume it does not break copyright and don't worry about it.

[/quote]

I'm always going to assume it breaks copyright, especially when the same video (or whatever) is posted by:

Juliee_4563
MerTonn43x
Dronot8733
M3X3c8ten

Peace,
Ed


#17

[quote="edwest2, post:16, topic:347840"]
I'm always going to assume it breaks copyright, especially when the same video (or whatever) is posted by:

Juliee_4563
MerTonn43x
Dronot8733
M3X3c8ten

Peace,
Ed

[/quote]

Do you mean by this that you will be afraid that it might be breaking copyright and so will check into it and report it if it does or do you mean that even if there is nothing obviously suspicious about it you will assume the worst?

From the CCC

2478 To avoid rash judgment, everyone should be careful to interpret insofar as possible his neighbor's thoughts, words, and deeds in a favorable way:

Unless you have a positive reason to suspect a person is breaking copyright it is considered rash judgement to assume they are. As Catholics we are morally obliged to avoid rash judgement.


#18

[quote="edwest2, post:14, topic:347840"]

Just because we've had crime for so long does not mean we need fewer police officers.

Best,
Ed

[/quote]

I guess I am biased because I do not support copyright laws, at least not in their current rather extreme form. I understand we are obligate not to break the law, but I do not think it theft. If, for example, I was abroad in a country that had more reasonable copyright laws, a law that did not protect for decades and generations, I would have no problem adhering to that law and violating US law, as I do no view that as theft.

In this case, I would be for removing the crime by amending the law.


#19

[quote="pnewton, post:18, topic:347840"]
I guess I am biased because I do not support copyright laws, at least not in their current rather extreme form. I understand we are obligate not to break the law, but I do not think it theft. If, for example, I was abroad in a country that had more reasonable copyright laws, a law that did not protect for decades and generations, I would have no problem adhering to that law and violating US law, as I do no view that as theft.

In this case, I would be for removing the crime by amending the law.

[/quote]

What's extreme about them? As someone who works in a creative industry, I say, create your own Star Wars or Batman or whatever.

Peace,
Ed


#20

[quote="edwest2, post:19, topic:347840"]
What's extreme about them? As someone who works in a creative industry, I say, create your own Star Wars or Batman or whatever.

[/quote]

I can't. It would violate copyright, even after all these decades.

Okay, if you want specifics, a design patent is 14 years. A drug patent is 20 years. A copyright is 120 years or life plus 70 years. Copyright was initial for 14 or 28 years. So yes, I think copyright laws have been driven by corporate greed and stifle the creativity they were supposed to encourage. I also think a new AIDS medication is of greater value then a movie, even though it has one-sixth the protection.


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