Apparently the sagging fortunes of the old media is causing some people at Associated Press (AP) (who see nothing wrong in stealing other people’s content) to think that they can get people to pay them say 20% (which is still zero in my case) for linking or using in any way, any content that AP “created”.
What this is really about is the ability to control information. If you can’t copy the original article without paying a fee, then they can change the article to say something completely different, and the writer (for instance me) is sometimes left looking silly.
Unfortunately information on the internet is sometimes like smoke, it can drift away and leave no traces, web sites can vanish overnight for any number of reasons, and the spam of the major media organizations dominate the conversation. For instance I was trying to find the 2007 video that CNN did on Depleted Uranium and how the Army had made training films warning of the dangers of Depleted Uranium, but all the traces of that video seem to have, err, vanished like smoke.
However, as bad as copyright laws might be, I think the usage of patents in Software is worse…but that is another topic altogether…..