As Larrry says, well, they spelled my name right — but otherwise, Neil Turkewitz’s article, Copyright, Fair Use and the Public Interest, largely betrays a failure to appreciate the debate — or, more likely, a desire to debase and confuse the discussion. For example, he starts with an offer to “unmask” a false premise of entirely his own making — and attributes it to Larry and the EFF, rather than acknowledging that it’s merely his own (rather lame) straw man:
Let’s begin by unmasking the false premise underlying the basic anti-copyright position—that is, that the basic strain on the copyright system is to achieve a balance between the “public” on the one hand, and “private copyright owners” on the other. In this formulation, the “public’s” interest is exclusively defined as the ability to get copyrighted materials as cheaply as possible, with free obviously being the best (since it is the cheapest) option.
[…] Folks like Larry Lessig and EFF would have you believe, because it suits their analysis, that copyright protection and the public interest are diametrically opposed. This is merely a rhetorical device, and is a complete fallacy.
Later, we get this bit of historical revisionism:
It is essential that policy makers keep in mind that the copyright system replaced private patronage as the mechanism for permitting creators to live through their craft. By permitting creative genius to be fuelled by market forces, we unleash the cultural power and potential of the public at large, freeing creative impulses from the tyranny of government control and making creative works accessible to the public at large.
Then, the executive vice president of the RIAA decides to get self-righteous about artistic creativity, and then returns to misrepresenting the nature of the debate. Worse, while in the above paragraph he cites that a benefit of the copyright system that it liberates the public at large to create, below he makes it quite clear that creating is something that only “the copyright community” should be allowed to do:
Critics of the copyright system such as Larry Lessig and EFF use emotive rhetoric in an attempt to demonize copyright—or more particularly copyright owners, and to suggest that “copyright” protection is somehow a “special interest.” They say that they care about “creativity,” and that fair use is critical to the interests of society. Copyright owners agree, but unlike Lessig and the EFF, not only do we care about creativity as an abstract concept, but we actually care about creators and preserving the creative process. We care more fundamentally about fair use because we recognize that the creative process indeed is an evolutionary one, and that present creators draw upon past expression for inspiration. The copyright community relies upon the idea/ expression dichotomy, and the concept of fair use. As a consequence, copyright owners have a greater interest in preserving limitations to copyright protection to permit new forms of expression than do general members of the public. Creators need to stand on the shoulders of giants, right? For Lessig and his allies, fair use is little more than a useful slogan.
A sad piece of work, and an ugly smear. Ugh.