Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Orphan Works = Bad News for Creative Innovation

Seems like any creative website these days is loaded with "act now to stop the Orphan Works bill" and "you're going to lose all rights to your work", etc. I'm sure if you are a designer, illustrator, photographer, or other creative, you've been doing your homework on this potentially devastating legislation.

For those who've been reading and are still a bit hazy or for those who are not creatives, I've done my best to uncomplicated the issue for ya:

Copyrights in of themselves are complicated issues and now the Orphan works bills are even more complicated. So what is all the fuss about? Basically right now anybody who creates anything owns it as soon as it pops out of their head into world. Every piece of art, design, illustration, or any photograph taken in recent times is considered "automatically" copyrighted as soon as it was made by whomever made it. No one is allowed ot

What will happen if the Orphan Works bill passes is that every creative will have to register all of their work in a proprietary database (maybe more than one) in order to keep their work from being used without their permission. If you don't register, or if someone's search is not "diligent" enough, then they can take the artist's work without their permission, alter it, resell it, etc. and make money off of someone else's hard work. Creatives make their money by licensing their intellectual property to clients. We didn't get into this business to sue people, we got into this business to create.

I predict this will kill creative innovation, many creatives will be forced to abandon their true passion in life for a job because it will be far too costly in both dollars and emotions for them to keep creating for a living.

Please, read more about how Orphan Works hurts creatives here (best Q&A I've found on the subject):

And please, if you or someone you love is a creative, tell your representative to stop this legislation now:
(It's super-easy, you fill in your ZIP code and your name on a letter template, takes less than 5 minutes!)

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