[Wikimedia-l] Copyright on Xrays

Birgitte_sb at yahoo.com Birgitte_sb at yahoo.com
Fri Aug 24 00:44:28 UTC 2012

On Aug 23, 2012, at 8:05 AM, Anthony <wikimail at inbox.org> wrote:

> On Wed, Aug 22, 2012 at 2:49 PM,  <Birgitte_sb at yahoo.com> wrote:
>> To reword what I said before the vast majority of X-ray images in existence are diagnostic
>> images. There is no reason at all to purposefully search out X-rays that might land in some
>> grey area.
> One problem with that is that the X-ray images that you are most
> likely to find are the most likely to have been created with the
> intention of being distributed.

I don't understand why "intention to distribute" would be relevant.

> On the other hand, if "probably no one will sue" is good enough for
> you, then you really don't need to ask the legal question in the first
> place.

That is not at all what I said, but you are quite good at striking down an argument which I did not make and do not support!

Since there is so little left of what I said, I will rephrase: Diagnostic images are not copyrighted and there are lots of interchangeable images that are equally not copyrighted. If one of these interchangeable images credits someone as a creator, and you are worried they "probably will sue", then use another interchangeable image. Unless, of course, one purposefully wishes to be a jerk about their understanding of copyright.  And while I am sure someone will, I wound prefer not to put any more effort in considering the situation. (So please don't misquote me on this issue!)

>> Another rule of thumb: Most images, whatever they depict, are also *designed* to be pleasing
>> to human aesthetics.
> I don't understand that.  What are you using the term "human
> aesthetics" to mean?

I meant when creating a common photo no consideration is given to composition of the infrared wavelengths. However, whether the photographer is very aware of it or not, aesthetic choices are being made as the overall composition is selected. It is really outside this topic, but I think the aesthetics which happen please/disturb us are often evolutionary. I tend to always be connecting things in my thinking, I didn't mean to have it spill over and muddy things here.  Don't read too much into and pretend I just wrote aesthetics.  I doubt any one but me would be reading that sentence and wondering whether non-humans would find most pictures to be pleasing. Sorry for confusing the issue.

> And even if you're truer about most, that still leaves a great number
> which were not.  Many images were in fact designed to be aesthetically
> displeasing.

I also wrote a sentence about copyrightable images being designed for "aesthetic effect". While I think the statement you quoted works as *a rule of thumb*, I purposefully did not limit the statement that followed to only *pleasing* aesthetic effects.

> And many others were designed, like the X-ray image, to objectively
> depict reality.
> _____________________

Yes there are many such images.

These types of images are called utilitarian images. 

Which is what prompted me to write about how copyright hangs upon aesthetic choices. In hopes that it would help people understand why images lacking aesthetic choices also lack copyright. I was very aware there are many such images. I labeled my statement a rule of thumb not a universal rule. 

I know this all sounds like I am very annoyed.  I am really just slightly annoyed ;)

Look copyright is really tough. Really.  And most people, probably everyone to some degree, misunderstands copyright. I honestly am happy to see you smack down some of my statements, like you did about all the international agreements working as bi-lateral treaties. I learned that Berne is different today, and frankly I think that is awesome. I ran out of low hanging fruit wrt to copyright a long time ago. I really appreciate the opportunity this thread has offered me to gain a nuance to my understanding.  Seriously.  

But I don't appreciate the rhetorical twists that, instead of clarifying the discussion, muddy things by making our that a sentence or two that wrote support a position that I never took. Not that it bothers me personally. But it confuses the discussion immensely for people who may have been struggling to follow it in the beginning. A long time ago, when I knew *nothing* of copyright, this list is where I managed to gather most of the low hanging fruit. Eventually I had to search for understanding elsewhere, but I know people making copyright decisions in the wikis may be using this list as a tool for making those decisions. At one time, I was such a person.

So anyways . . . I know it's the internet and all . . . where men are compelled to put on displays of rhetorical prowess as though they were peacocks . . . but please  . . . for the children and all that . . . Can we try to avoid picking out the weakest snippets of writing for rhetorical displays and instead focus on the heart of the positions to explore the issue in way that allows us to both improve our understandings?

At least about copyright? 
Birgitte SB 

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