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Reflections about T-Shirt Slogans //at 09:51 //by abe

from the Wet-me,-I'm-a-t-shirt dept.

During the last days, I saw two people with interesting sayings or slogans on their t-shirts:

At FrOSCon, Petra from Kernel Concepts sold also some t-shirts from the Geekladen collection and so there were people running around with the slogan »Copyright is superstition™« (German: »Copyright ist Aberglaube™«, Picture), on their t-shirt.

First I thought “cool t-shirt” and “yeah, it’s superstitious to believe that copyright is the real solution to everything” and bought one, too. Then I noticed that the slogan “copyright is superstition” could be interpreted in many other ways, e.g. that the existence of “copyright is superstitious”, which is not really what I think about that subject. So what were the t-shirt makers’ intention? To make people think about the subject? To provocate? Or did they just not think long enough about that slogan?

Then yesterday, I saw a girl on the ETH campus wearing a shirt with »I’m smart. That’s why I’m single« written on it. So what do people want to say with this t-shirt? “Don’t date me, I’m smart enough to know that it won’t work”? Or “There are no other smart people out there, I can date”? Or should I read it “Help me, I’m smart, I can’t date”? (And no, I didn’t ask her. ;-)


Re: Reflections about T-Shirt Slogans

Posted by: Dieter Schlabonski
Time: Tue, 27 Jun 2006 14:09

Regarding the »I’m smart. That’s why I’m single« T-shirt, I think it might mean "I finally wised up enough to ditch that asshole. Wanna try your luck? You're welcome, but be forewarned that I still feel pretty smart, so I won't make it easy for you."

That might be a gross misinterpretation, but it's one of the few that allows for finding out more. :-)


Re: Reflections about T-Shirt Slogans

Posted by: garaged
Time: Tue, 27 Jun 2006 15:49

It means they have sense of humor :)

Is not that hard to understand you know ?? you're supposed to laught :)


Re: Reflections about T-Shirt Slogans

Posted by: Sebastian
Time: Tue, 27 Jun 2006 20:32

A different take on "Copyright ist Aberglaube": Perhaps it's meant to express the fact that copyright is not an inalienable right -- like the right to (physical) property, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, etc. The belief that you can have some kind of right to your ideas, once you put them in tangible form, and that you can tell everyone else what they may or may not do with your works, is just that -- a belief, or, more to the point, a superstition.

Take the stance of the US constitution on intellectual property, for example:

"The Congress shall have power [...] To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries;"

In this passage, legal protection for writings and discoveries is a means to a clearly defined end: To promote the progress of science and the arts, by protecting works for a limited time. Contrast this with the position of the copyright holders, for whom copyright is there to allow them to milk their creations (or the ones for which they purchased the rights) for all their worth, for as long as possible (preferably forever), and in as draconian a way as possible. (With this shiny new DRM system, you don't own *anything* of that new piece of music you "bought". We can revoke your access at all times. Don't count on being able to play it anywhere or in any way that we don't explicitly allow.)

So perhaps more people need to realize that copyright law doesn't *have* to be the way it is. That we can change it to suit us better.

Regards, Sebastian


Re: Reflections about T-Shirt Slogans

Posted by: nion
Time: Tue, 27 Jun 2006 21:16

Hehe really nice questions, I am always thinking about them too but it would be possible to ask also for "why do you want to tell someone anything you don't know" :)


Re: Reflections about T-Shirt Slogans

Posted by: elliot tin
Time: Tue, 29 Aug 2006 01:23

you are autistic


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This is the blog or weblog of Axel Stefan Beckert (aka abe or XTaran) who thought, he would never start blogging... (He also once thought, that there is no reason to switch to this new ugly Netscape thing because Mosaïc works fine. That was about 1996.) Well, times change...

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