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NOTICE: This correspondence is the intellectual property of… - don't let the bastards grind you down.
NOTICE: This correspondence is the intellectual property of LiveJournal.com and may not be reproduced in any form, electronic or otherwise, without the express written permission of LiveJournal.com. Any reproduction of this correspondence on LiveJournal itself, with or without this notice of copyright, may be grounds for the immediate suspension of the account or accounts used to do so, as well as the account or accounts to which this correspondence was originally sent.

can they even DO that? how can you copyright a fucking email? that's what it was, btw...an email.

9 comments or Leave a comment
qed From: qed Date: September 2nd, 2003 06:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
I... don't know. I don't recall what the copyright laws say about correspondance. I mean, there are some obvious similarities between writing a book and writing an e-mail, but what about verbal correspondance? Can I copyright everything that I say? That's the kind of bizarre situation you create with intellectual property laws.
swolfe From: swolfe Date: September 2nd, 2003 06:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
anything written down is implicitly copyrighted by the author no matter what it is. it doesn't even have to be labeled as being copyrighted in order to receive the protection (although you have to "vigorously" pursue copyright infringement if you don't want to lose that right).
swolfe From: swolfe Date: September 2nd, 2003 06:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
and by "written", i also mean typed...as in e-mails, programs, web pages, etc.
qed From: qed Date: September 2nd, 2003 07:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
Not that I expect anyone to know the answer to this, but to what extent can you pursue copyright infringement with respect to e-mails? If I forward your e-mail, am I automatically violating your copyright? Or can you only reasonably expect to retain your copyrights if you specifically preclude the recipient from distributing it, like LJ did?
taumeson From: taumeson Date: September 2nd, 2003 07:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
well..."distribution" isn't exactly prohibited. 100% legal courses of action include:

1. printing at least one copy of this email. you already have it, so it doesn't matter what media it is in. fair use doctrine.

2. handing that email to as many people as you want. as long as you don't retain posession, you are not copying it, and so it is allowed. first sale doctrine.

so you can show your email to as many people as you like as long as you don't retain possession. same goes to any media you currently possess, in whatever format it's in.

There are also certain things that aren't copyrightable....I might be wrong, but I think warranties, for instance, aren't copyrightable...something to do with the fact that their very nature is to be disseminated....something like that. I don't think you're allowed to copyright Terms of Service either...as in, somebody is allowed to have the same exact boiler plate as you, with the names changed, because you aren't saying anything original anyway. Ooh, and laws and bills aren't copyrightable. There's been some recent snafu where courts and municipalities have contractors draft laws for them, because they don't have the time, and the contractors copyrighted them...well, apparently that was held up in court for a while, but I believe it's recently been struck down...I believe it's because of fourth amendment protections and due process..like, you have to be able to find out what law you're breaking in order for it to be a valid law.

So yeah...I digressed a little there. I don't know if terms of service can be copyrighted, and even if so, they can be disseminated in certain fashions.
swolfe From: swolfe Date: September 2nd, 2003 08:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
here is an interesting discussion that relates.

a quote that specifically addresses your question:

Licenses implied by circumstances.
Fair use is a legal license conferred by the statute. However, licenses may also be implied by context. Writers who post messages to public e-mail lists should contemplate, for example, both forwarding and archiving. It is reasonable to assume that they have given permission unless it is explicitly denied.
taumeson From: taumeson Date: September 3rd, 2003 07:22 am (UTC) (Link)
so our conclusion is: YES.

that seems pretty crappy. if you don't take away all poster's rights, then you have a world of hurt when it comes to archiving and sending out list digests, nto to mention forwarding and replying.

holy shit that sucks.
littlewashu From: littlewashu Date: September 12th, 2003 06:06 am (UTC) (Link)
So what did the email say?
taumeson From: taumeson Date: September 12th, 2003 03:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
to paraphrase:

this community has girls under 18 getting naked. that's against the law, and so we will cancel this community if it keeps happening, even if you did pay money to get it. don't tell anyone we sent this to you.
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