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The MTA Is Going After an Etsy Artist Over a New York Subway Map It Didnít Make
Vice.com ^ | 9 Jan 2020 | Aaron Gordon

Posted on 01/09/2020 9:44:43 AM PST by DUMBGRUNT

Jake Berman spent more than 300 hours making his own subway map because he didn't like the MTA's. Now the MTA says he can't sell it.

...What is not protected work under copyright law, Kjellberg said, are facts. For example, the MTA cannot copyright the fact that there is a transit station at Union Square and that the 4,5,6,N,Q,R,W and L lines stop there. Nor can it copyright the general location of a stop when plotted on a map, the direction in which it runs, geographic entities like the island of Manhattan, or the names of streets.

...After more than 300 hours of work and 15 or 20 different iterations, Berman finished the map and shared it online for others who might find it useful. But he didn’t sell it until about a year and a half ago, when he noticed, in what is now almost too ironic, that someone else had copied-and-pasted his map and was selling it on Etsy.

...But there is a potentially critical flaw in that logic. The MTA created The Weekender in 2011, two years after Berman created his map, which he uploaded to Wikipedia in 2009.

...That article also claimed the MTA received $500,000 a year in licensing revenue, a whopping .003 percent of the agency’s 2013 revenue. In fact, two Long Island Railroad foreman—an agency within the MTA—made more than that in overtime pay.

...The MTA may have thought it could scare off one independent artist from selling a subway map on a popular platform, but it may have miscalculated. In yet another ironic twist, the MTA picked the wrong artist. He has a day job.

“I'm an attorney by trade,” he said. “So this is something I know something about.”

(Excerpt) Read more at vice.com ...


TOPICS: Chit/Chat; Humor; Local News; Travel
KEYWORDS: akadeblasio; billdeblasio; jakeberman; newyork; newyorkcity
Government attorneys hard at work.

Or maybe, hardly working.

1 posted on 01/09/2020 9:44:43 AM PST by DUMBGRUNT
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To: dp0622

Ping.


2 posted on 01/09/2020 9:46:19 AM PST by Army Air Corps (Four Fried Chickens and a Coke)
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To: DUMBGRUNT

Bullsh1t. Any roadmap can be copyrighted.

And ever since the London tube subway maps aren’t to scale.


3 posted on 01/09/2020 9:49:07 AM PST by a fool in paradise (Decade of decision for America)
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To: DUMBGRUNT

This really isn’t how copyrights were intended to function.

They were meant to keep people from copying and selling someone else’s hard work. Your writing, your brush strokes, you photograph, it belongs to you because you made it. So if someone goes out and paints the same field and trees that Monet painted, Monet cannot claim that it’s a duplication. The trees don’t belong to the trees, his painting does, and the other man’s painting does not.

But of course, we all know in this modern age of digital copyright acts and all these other farce laws that the whole point of “intellectual property” is to create false scarcity for the sake of distributors NOT FOR THE SAKE OF ARTISTS AND CREATORS


4 posted on 01/09/2020 9:52:20 AM PST by z3n
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To: a fool in paradise

Bullsh1t. Any roadmap can be copyrighted.


Yes, the map as a product can be copyrighted.

But that’s not what he did. He drew up his own map using the ‘fact’ that what trains use what stations and go where.

No different than Rand-McNally trying to copyright the route between Houston and Dallas and no one else can produce a map showing that route.

To quote you, BS!

He did not make a copy of the MTA map and sell it as his own. In fact, apparently someone made a copy of ‘his’ map and was selling it online.


5 posted on 01/09/2020 10:37:38 AM PST by chaosagent (Remember, no matter how you slice it, forbidden fruit still tastes the sweetest!)
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To: DUMBGRUNT
"Government attorneys hard at work.

Or maybe, hardly working."

Attorneys who fail at the courthouse go to work for the government and if they fail there they go into politics (Adam Schiff is an example).

6 posted on 01/09/2020 11:49:14 AM PST by fella ("As it was before Noah so shall it be again,")
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To: a fool in paradise

A map can be copyrighted, but another person can create and copyright their own map.

That’s why maps will (or used to) have fake features, like non-existent roads or streams - so proof of copying can be established.


7 posted on 01/09/2020 1:10:12 PM PST by lepton ("It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into"--Jonathan Swift)
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To: a fool in paradise

The MAP can be copyrighted. The DATA on the map cannot. Just because you’ve made a map of a city doesn’t mean somebody else can’t.


8 posted on 01/09/2020 1:19:03 PM PST by discostu (I know that's a bummer baby, but it's got precious little to do with me)
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To: cann

THE MTA SAYS JAKE BERMAN'S MAP (LEFT) IS TOO SIMILAR TO THE VIGNELLI MAP (RIGHT).
9 posted on 01/09/2020 1:43:01 PM PST by cann
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To: discostu

Do they map it out themselves or do they simply redraw your map?

Some map companies deliberately include some errors (naming etc) to catch misappropriation.

The same is true of music and film index information (label stock number etc or all the movies someone has been in).

You can’t simply good to discogs or imdb and lift that information to source your own commercial website.


10 posted on 01/09/2020 1:48:11 PM PST by a fool in paradise (Decade of decision for America)
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To: cann

Just a few more turns and bends and they will never know the difference. More importantly we will probably find out later. The artist was either a trump supporter, a white male or not diverse enough and had nothing to do with the map sketch


11 posted on 01/10/2020 3:49:28 AM PST by ronnie raygun (nick dip .com)
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To: a fool in paradise

That’s always the question, which is why the fake towns exist on maps.

And actually you CAN lift the information from IMDB, you just need to rewrite it. Facts are not copywritable in America. Sentences are.


12 posted on 01/10/2020 6:37:29 AM PST by discostu (I know that's a bummer baby, but it's got precious little to do with me)
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To: discostu
You can be sued for plagiarizing if you rewrite/stage the instructions of how to do something. The steps don’t change. They are facts too.
13 posted on 01/10/2020 6:40:34 AM PST by a fool in paradise (Decade of decision for America)
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To: a fool in paradise

Depends on what you’re rewriting. Are you rewriting the instructions for how to paint a deck? That’s fine. Rewrite the instructions for how to work with a Black and Decker belt sander? You run into the issue of not owning the IP of the tool you are talking about.


14 posted on 01/10/2020 9:05:47 AM PST by discostu (I know that's a bummer baby, but it's got precious little to do with me)
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