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Upon Revisionism Part Two (Read 6728 times)
yates
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Upon Revisionism Part Two
08/09/07 at 2:32pm
 
Goddamn I am so sick of this map shit.  It never seems to end.

"From :       <-----@hedbergmaps.com>
Sent :      Thursday, August 9, 2007 3:40 AM
To :      superyates@hotmail.com
Subject :      Interstate map
     
     |            |            |      Inbox

As you probably know, your Interstate image got a fair amount of play in
map circles. It got me thinking of how _I_ would "rationalize" the system
if I could. So I did.

http://www.hedbergmaps.com/store/catalog/10667
http://www.cartotalk.com/index.php?act=attach&type=post&id=715

Thanks for the inspiration.

Nat Case
Hedberg Maps
Minneapolis"


I am not even sure how to respond to this.  Should I be flattered?  Should I be angry?  I know there are fucking holes in my map I made that very clear.  And I don't mind people telling me about that, I expect that on the internet.  And yes, Case's map is more accurate than mine - but it appears he flat-out copied the basic structure of my diagram and expanded upon it.  Inspiration or plagarism?  I don't know.

And he's fucking selling the thing.

I don't know what to make of all this.  Just had to vent somewhere.
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felix


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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #1 - 08/09/07 at 10:38pm
 
He is copying your intellectual property. If it were for dissemination amongst his friends, fine.

If he's selling it, he's breaking the law.

I wouldn't roll over on this one, Chris.

Send him a strongly worded letter. If that fails, call him.

If that fails, get a cease and desist order.

Perhaps these are new apprentice tasks?  Cool
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felix


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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #2 - 08/09/07 at 11:16pm
 
Similarly -- well, perhaps not really -- all the Stone Brewing beers are on sale at Liquor Mart for $6.99

Cheers!   Cheesy
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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #3 - 08/10/07 at 1:25am
 
Wow.  I don't think that's fair at all.  "Hi I liked what you did so I copied it and sell it for exorbitant prices."
I don't know anything about intellectual property law, but it might be something you want to look in to.

"The immediate inspiration for this map was a graphic image created in 2006 by Chris Yates, laying out a simplified interstate system as a cartogram, a form similar to mass-transit users, squaring off and simplifying routes. As was noted by many on its release (myself among them), the image is full of faults, not least the elimination of Wisconsin. Nevertheless, it was intriguing."
This totally does not make up for it either.

Plus, why would you e-mail someone saying, "Hi I liked what you did so I blatantly copied it but fixed all of  the flaws you had"?
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Give me a voice so strong
I can question what I have seen
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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #4 - 08/10/07 at 1:32am
 
Chris I would like to buy one of your maps.  Would you recommend USPS Priority Mail or USPS Media Mail?  (And already my address will be different from the one I gave you earlier this summer Tongue)

P.S.: I think I will be ordering magnets as well, because I have a fridge now.

P.P.S.: I totally forgot to mention this earlier (~three weeks ago), but I love the "Lovey Dovey" bonsai baffler.  My boyfriend gave it to me for my birthday Grin.  (See Rabbit's avatar, left)
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felix


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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #5 - 08/10/07 at 1:54am
 
Rabbit wrote on 08/10/07 at 1:25am:
I don't know anything about intellectual property law, but it might be something you want to look in to.



Basically, instead of Chris owning a parcel of land, or a particular patent on motorcycle drive-trains, he owns an idea. No matter what this manifestation is, the rights to how it is proliferated (through print, web, or magical bean-stalks) are exclusively his.

In this case, the idea is a simplified interstate map. Asshat here likely assumed Chris' map is only copyrighted insofar as his specific version (three colors, lines on X,Y axis in specific directions with specific names) informs whatever knock-offs come along.

As long as Asshat didn't copy Chris' design exactly, he was free to Shanghai the principle idea and sell it down the river.

Unfortunately, legally speaking, Asshat is wrong. Intellectual copyright protects an artist from the reproduction -- including adaptation -- of his/her work by others. You can't Photoshop a Picasso into grayscale, add a few Pokemon,  and sell it as your own, Asshat. Sorry.

The easiest solution, in my opinion, is for you good Repro fans to order these knock-off maps. When you receive them, make note of the return address and graciously supply the sender with a pallet of past-due pickles. Signature required, of course.



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felix


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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #6 - 08/10/07 at 2:06am
 
In retrospect, the logical first contact would be:

"Hey, cool. Glad you liked my design. I will take 15% of future sales. Thanks!"

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felix


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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #7 - 08/10/07 at 2:07am
 
If they don't respond...

Pickles.
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yates
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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #8 - 08/10/07 at 1:54pm
 
Thanks for the support guys.

Still figuring out how to respond to this pickle-face.  I had to simmer down yesterday and cut lots of pieces of wood into smaller pieces of wood to vent it all out.  I'll let you know how it goes with pickle-face.



Felix- haha I want a grayscale Picasso with Pokemon!!

Rabbit- awesome glad you like the little LoveyDovey!  I thought you would.  Uh, Priority will get the maps to you in about 2-3 days, and Media Mail (actually I found out I can do 1st class Pkg. rate now) will take about 4-8 days.
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felix


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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #9 - 08/10/07 at 2:02pm
 
I sent him an anonymous email.

His response:


"Thank you for your email. I was in fact inspired by Chris Yates' image, but I think it's pretty clear there is no copyright violation: I did not copy any of his artwork, layout, look-and-feel, etc. The idea of a cartogram of interstates is not, I believe copyrightable. And there are plenty of examples of similar maps (see http://www.motorwaymap.co.uk/old/faq_nf.htm for an example). If I stole an idea, then Yates stole it from Mr Beck of the London Underground, and so did pretty much every transit system map on earth.

Also, if you read my explanation of the poster at http://www.hedbergmaps.com/assets/documents/title_related_files/interstate_topol... (which does credit Yates with the inspiration), you will see that while my intent was to do a cartographically better job than Yates, I ended up with a piece with an entirely different take on the system, sorting numerically and emphasizing the griddedness of the system and the inherent absurdity of creating a square grid to organize an inherently un-square territory.

Anyway, I begrudge Yates no sales of his title. We are a small business too (two of the four employees are here inthe office now), and do not expect to make back the time I spent making the piece. But it was fun, and I hope you enjoy it in the spirit it was made in."

--

Nat Case
Hedberg Maps, Inc
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yates
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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #10 - 08/10/07 at 2:10pm
 
Yeah, that's pretty much what I would expect.

And I appreciate your support on this, Flexmaster G - but please let me handle future communication with this dude.  


On an unrelated note, we're playing poker down in Westminister tonight!  Wanna come on down?
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felix


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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #11 - 08/10/07 at 3:47pm
 
yates wrote on 08/10/07 at 2:10pm:
On an unrelated note, we're playing poker down in Westminister tonight!  Wanna come on down?


But you're too nice. You need a thuggish brute to play the accordion with his spine. Perhaps we can enlist Dan Israel?  Cool

Is it a Westminster sleepover? I'd like to make it back to Boulder...

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yates
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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #12 - 08/10/07 at 4:21pm
 
I just don't want to think that email was from me, trying to be all-squirrely-like.
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felix


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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #13 - 08/10/07 at 4:42pm
 
yates wrote on 08/10/07 at 4:21pm:
I just don't want to think that email was from me, trying to be all-squirrely-like.


Don't worry, I signed it "Kris Gates"

He'll never know!   Grin
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Re: Upon Revisionism Part Two
Reply #14 - 08/10/07 at 6:21pm
 
Just want to butt in here.  Felix, while your enthusiasm is great, I'm afraid you're on the wrong side of the law.  Copyright law expressly does NOT apply to "ideas", only to the execution of ideas.  If this dude had copied the colors, font, or any other specific element from Chris' map, then it would be a different story (and "straight lines" isn't quite a specific element).  If he had made his own map look like a subway map, even then it might have been a fuzzy area.  

But, what seems to have happened was that he looked at Chris' map, then started from scratch creating his own expression of a similar idea.  While it may have been courteous for him to credit Chris for the inspiration more obviously than he did, he certainly isn't legally required to do so.  In fact, this very process of re-interpreting others' work is basically how art progresses in society in general.  To use your analogy, I think this guy looked at a Picasso, said, "Hmm, cubism is cool," and painted his own cubist painting of the same model that Picasso used.

Chris I'm on your side all the way, but I think the most satisfying result you're likely to get is if you just chalk it up to "imitation is the sincerest form etc".  
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Here's my poetic license, officer -- I'm sure you'll find everything in order.
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