Monthly Archives: February 2018

Fantasy Author Terry Goodkind Wants Everyone to Know How Much He Hates His New Novel’s Cover Art

27 February 2018

From i09:

Terry Goodkind—best known for The Sword of Truth series—has publicly apologized after posting scathing criticism of the cover art for his latest book, Shroud of Eternity. The author eventually laid the blame on his publisher, Tor Books, but the artist who created the cover says it’s not good enough.

Goodkind recently wrote a post on Facebook calling his latest fantasy novel, “a great book with a very bad cover. Laughably bad.” In the post, Goodkind invited his readers to share their thoughts about the cover in a poll (which currently has almost 14,000 responses), saying he’d pick 10 random commenters to receive a signed copy.

. . . .

Part of the Sister of Darkness: The Nicci Chronicles seriesthe cover art Goodkind criticized shares a similar look to the series debut, Death’s Mistress—no surprise, as they both share the same artist, Bastien Lecouffe Deharme. He’s a notable artist known for his work on Magic: The Gathering, but he’s also created book covers for several publishing houses, including Tor Books, Random House, Del Rey, and Orbit Books. Deharme said he was shocked when he found out what Goodkind had said about his latest work.

“[A friend] sent me a message that I found in the morning when I woke up, telling me that Terry Goodkind was using bad words to describe my artwork,” Deharme told io9. “I am a very confident person. I have had a long career, long enough for me to be able to take that… but this behavior is just not acceptable. Not only for me, but for all the artists that could be in the same situation.”

Link to the rest at i09 and thanks to R. for the tip.

Here’s the cover mentioned in the OP.

Here’s the cover for the first book in the series.
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Life has meaning

27 February 2018

Life has meaning with responsibility. The more responsibility you take on, the more meaning your life has. The higher degree of responsibility that you agree voluntarily to try to bear, the richer your life will be.

Jordan B. Peterson

Disney’s lawsuit against Redbox may have backfired

27 February 2018

From Engadget:

Disney’s attempt to prevent Redbox from buying its discs for rental and resale may have blown up in the House of Mouse’s face. The Hollywood Reporter describes how District Court Judge Dean Pregerson sided with Redbox to shoot down a Disney-mandated injunction. In addition, Pregerson contended that Disney may itself be misusing copyright law to protect its interests and its own forthcoming streaming service.

If you’re unfamiliar with the backstory, Redbox didn’t have a deal in place to procure Disney DVDs and Blu-rays for its disc rental kiosks. So, the company simply bought the discs at retail, often snagging combo packs that include a DVD, Blu-ray and a download code for the movie as well. Redbox would then offer up the discs for rental, and sell on the codes at its kiosks for between $8 and $15.

Such a move enraged Disney, which includes language in its packaging and on the website demanding that users must own the disc if they download a copy. But this is where Pregerson began to disagree, saying that Disney cannot dictate what people do with copyrighted media after they have bought it. Specifically, that there’s no law, or explicit contract term, that prevents folks from doing what Redbox did with Disney discs. Although it’s possible that Disney can amend the wording on its packaging in future to make its objection to reselling legally binding.

Link to the rest at Engadget and thanks to Felix for the tip.

PG thinks a lot of overreaching contract language printed on product packaging or popped up on a computer screen on a click-to-accept basis may be difficult to enforce if such language goes very far beyond what the copyright laws protect.

While he does not advise anyone to violate the rights of a copyright owner or any other owner or licensor of intellectual property, PG suspects a rule of reasonability will be applied more liberally by most judges to shrinkwrap and fine print contracts included as part of a product’s packaging, click-to-accept agreements or website terms and conditions referenced in a small-print link at the bottom of a computer screen.

PG suggests that customers/visitors, etc., read and understand such documents, but observes that a great many IP owners rightly hesitate before applying sanctions to violators more serious than terminating customer access to the protected material.

At least in the United States, if a judge sees anything resembling a trap for the unwary, particularly an unwary consumer, that judge will seek and find a reason to avoid enforcing provisions that overreach. Of course, most individuals are not anxious to be the test case under which the agreement is voided in whole or in part.

Google Changes Images Policy

27 February 2018

From Nicholas C. Rossis:

As Shannon Connellan explains on Mashable, Google recently made a subtle change to its image search — but one that may have big repercussions for copyright. The company has now removed the “view image” button from image search, which will make it trickier to save copyrighted images directly. Once a direct link to a high-resolution version of your chosen image, the “view image” button was a concern for photographers, publishers and stock image sites alike, as it allowed people to access a high-res version of the image without visiting the source site.

With Google’s elimination of the tool, you’ll still be able to visit the source of the image with the remaining “visit” button, but it’s this additional step that’s hopefully meant to make people less likely to steal copyrighted material — seeing images in their original context could be a red flag for users.

. . . .

This change was probably at the behest of Getty Images, as it comes in the wake of Google’s new multi-year global licensing partnership with the company, enabling Google to use Getty’s content within its various products and services. Interestingly enough, the partnership was developed after Getty filed a complaint against Google in 2016, accusing the company of anti-competitive practices within Google Images and “distorting search results in favour of its own services” — thus creating less of a need to visit source stock websites likes Getty to download the original image.

“Because image consumption [in Google Images] is immediate, once an image is displayed in high-resolution, large format, there is little impetus to view the image on the original source site,” Getty’s press statement read.

Link to the rest at Nicholas C. Rossis and thanks to Suzie for the tip.

PG says one if the distinctions in fair use between text and a photo is that a text excerpt that includes some of the interesting/relevant points in the OP like PG uses for most of his posts that reference of other sites is much easier to create than using an excerpt from a photo.

For example, here is the left foot of Michaelangelo’s famous sculpture of David:

It’s a very nice foot, but doesn’t convey either a sense of the entire work or its emotional impact. In fact, PG has not seen any photograph with the impact of the original statue.

The entire statue can be viewed at the Accademia Gallery in Florence, Italy (and is worth the trip by itself). As of the date of this post, you can take non-flash photos of the statue.

As an alternative to attempting to use copywrite-protected photos on your website, here are some alternatives, including one included in the OP.

Websites with Royalty-Free Images:

Here are the four big sources of royalty-free images of which PG is aware:

While PG has found excellent images on each site, the capabilities of the search engines varies from site to site. He suggests trying all four to see which one(s) suit you the best.

Each of these websites has terms of service, however, which you will want to quickly scan before including an image in a commercial product such as a book. For example, here’s a link to Pixabay’s Terms.

You find lots of reference to Creative Commons licenses. Creative Commons is an organization that has created a series of IP licenses that creators can use to control the use of their creations with licenses that include standard terms and are relatively easy to understand. The licenses have numbers to clearly distinguish between one another.

In fact, you can perform searches on Google for images that are free for use under Creative Commons Licenses – See https://support.google.com/websearch/answer/29508?hl=en  In PG’s experience, you’ll find the largest number of total images via Google, but you may end up with a lot of amateur quality which is much less common in Unsplash, Pexels and Pixabay.

Here are features of each Creative Commons License regardless of other terms in the license:

  • Every Creative Commons license requires giving appropriate credit. It’s important to understand this, and to also know what this phrase “appropriate credit” means.
  • A Creative Commons licensor (the person granting you the license) may not revoke your license so long as you are following the terms of the license. This is often a sticking point because many do not provide credit as required.
  • There are 6 Creative Commons license and they apply worldwide.
  • The license, once granted, lasts as long as the copyright on the work so long as the license is used properly.

Here’s an example of a broad Creative Commons License

For example,

CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) 

Public Domain Dedication

No Copyright

The person who associated a work with this deed has dedicated the work to the public domain by waiving all of his or her rights to the work worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.

You can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission. See Other Information below.

Other Information:

  • In no way are the patent or trademark rights of any person affected by CC0, nor are the rights that other persons may have in the work or in how the work is used, such as publicity or privacy rights.
  • Unless expressly stated otherwise, the person who associated a work with this deed makes no warranties about the work, and disclaims liability for all uses of the work, to the fullest extent permitted by applicable law.
  • When using or citing the work, you should not imply endorsement by the author or the affirmer.

 

Here’s a different Creative Commons License with some additional conditions:

(CC BY-NC 3.0 US)

Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 United States

You are free to:

  • Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material

Under the following terms:

  • Attribution — You must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use.
  • NonCommercial — You may not use the material for commercial purposes.
  • No additional restrictions — You may not apply legal terms or technological measures that legally restrict others from doing anything the license permits.

Following is a more-detailed description of each of the main license types that demonstrates some of the differences between them.

Licensing types

The following is the Creative Commons description of each of the six main licenses offered when you choose to publish your work with a Creative Commons license. We have listed them starting with the most accommodating license type you can choose and ending with the most restrictive license type you can choose.

  • The Licenses

    Attribution
    CC BY

    This license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon your work, even commercially, as long as they credit you for the original creation. This is the most accommodating of licenses offered. Recommended for maximum dissemination and use of licensed materials.

    View License Deed | View Legal Code

    Attribution-ShareAlike
    CC BY-SA

    This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work even for commercial purposes, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms. This license is often compared to “copyleft” free and open source software licenses. All new works based on yours will carry the same license, so any derivatives will also allow commercial use. This is the license used by Wikipedia, and is recommended for materials that would benefit from incorporating content from Wikipedia and similarly licensed projects.

    View License Deed | View Legal Code

    Attribution-NoDerivs
    CC BY-ND

    This license allows for redistribution, commercial and non-commercial, as long as it is passed along unchanged and in whole, with credit to you.

    View License Deed | View Legal Code

    Attribution-NonCommercial
    CC BY-NC

    This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work non-commercially, and although their new works must also acknowledge you and be non-commercial, they don’t have to license their derivative works on the same terms.

    View License Deed | View Legal Code

    Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike
    CC BY-NC-SA

    This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work non-commercially, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms.

    View License Deed | View Legal Code

    Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs
    CC BY-NC-ND

    This license is the most restrictive of our six main licenses, only allowing others to download your works and share them with others as long as they credit you, but they can’t change them in any way or use them commercially.

    View License Deed | View Legal Code

    We also provide tools that work in the “all rights granted” space of the public domain. Our CC0 tool allows licensors to waive all rights and place a work in the public domain, and our Public Domain Mark allows any web user to “mark” a work as being in the public domain.

Here are descriptions of the limitations the owners of images can place upon their use under Creative Commons licenses by others:

License Conditions

Creators choose a set of conditions they wish to apply to their work.

Attribution Attribution (by)

All CC licenses require that others who use your work in any way must give you credit the way you request, but not in a way that suggests you endorse them or their use. If they want to use your work without giving you credit or for endorsement purposes, they must get your permission first.

ShareAlike ShareAlike (sa)

You let others copy, distribute, display, perform, and modify your work, as long as they distribute any modified work on the same terms. If they want to distribute modified works under other terms, they must get your permission first.

NonCommercial NonCommercial (nc)

You let others copy, distribute, display, perform, and (unless you have chosen NoDerivatives) modify and use your work for any purpose other than commercially unless they get your permission first.

NoDerivatives NoDerivatives (nd)

You let others copy, distribute, display and perform only original copies of your work. If they want to modify your work, they must get your permission first.

PG says there are lots of ways to find excellent visual content without violating the creator’s rights if you spend a few minutes searching for it.

And here are a few photos available for reuse that PG found using Google Advance Image Search:

A J Butler

Dimitris Kamaras

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Umberto Baldini, Michelangelo scultore, Rizzoli, Milano 1973

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R Barraez D´Lucca

Clayton Tang

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The 15 Most Memorable On-Screen Bookstores

26 February 2018
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From BuzzFeed:

With books and comics drumming up big business on both the small and silver screens, it’s no surprise that Hollywood execs find themselves spending a lot of time in bookstores. And when those bookstores find their way onto celluloid? Pure bibliophile perfection.

. . . .

12. No need to fear in Vertigo‘s classic bookshop

 

Even the boys (formerly) in blue need a hand, now and then. Retired policeman John “Scottie” Ferguson (James Stewart) is brought back into the game when he is hired as a private detective, tasked with following his client’s wife, whose strange behaviour has not gone unnoticed. In the course of his investigation, he is referred to the Argosy Book Shop, where the proprietor is known for his mastery of California history, and is able to provide Ferguson with intel that shines light on the case. Just another friendly neighbourhood bookseller saving the day.

Notable for: non-book inventory, table display mastery, insider info

Want to go to there?: The Argosy lives! While much of Vertigo was shot on-location in San Francisco, the bookstore was filmed on the Paramount lot in Hollywood. You can, however, seek out the shop it was based on, San Francisco’s Argonaut Book Shop. The antiquarian and second-hand shop specializes in American history & geography (with a delightful interest in “railroadiana”). Or: shop online!

Here’s a link to Vertigo

. . . .

6. Antiquarian’s never been better than at 84 Charing Cross Road

 

Based on a play that itself is based on a memoir documenting a 20-year correspondence between writer Helene Hanff and the staff of Marks & Co. antiquarian booksellers, located at 84 Charing Cross Road in London, movies can’t get more bookish than this* real-life story of an enduring love… for books. Come for the transatlantic pen pal letters and capitalistic exchange, stay for the wartime intrigue and bookstore fly-on-the-wall gossip!

Notable for: stiff English upper lips, casual Yankee spitfires, excellent penmanship

Want to go to there?: Though Marks & Co. closed up shop in 1970, shortly after the death of primary Hanff correspondent Frank Doel, there are many opportunities for a touring booklover to revisit its history. After its closure, neighbouring address 24 Cambridge Circus was expanded into the storefront Marks & Co. initially occupied, and the London theatre-district address has since played host to a revolving set of restaurants and bars over the years, currently Léon de Bruxelles. Present-day visitors to the site are treated to a memorial plaque honouring the shop, but literary travelers may want to may homage to the indie bookselling spirit of the neighbourhood by visiting nearby bookseller Book Ends, which once occupied nerby storefronts on Charing Cross Road and is currently a quick 15-minute tube ride from 24 Cambridge Circus.

Here’s a link to 84 Charing Cross Road

. . . .

3. Gilmore Girls‘ Stars Hollow Books

Ah, Stars Hollow Books, the small-town bookshop where Rory Gilmore held a brief part-time job. The importance of this brief period of employment cannot be understated: this fictional bookshop was frequented by one of the most prolific readers ever to appear on television. Rory Gilmore racked up an astonishing 339 titles on her reading list over the duration of the series. Daria’s got nothing on you, girl.

Here’s a link to Gilmore Girls

Link to the rest at BuzzFeed

Censorship

26 February 2018

Censorship is the tool of those who have the need to hide actualities from themselves and from others. Their fear is only their inability to face what is real, and I can’t vent any anger against them. I only feel this appalling sadness. Somewhere, in their upbringing, they were shielded against the total facts of our existence. They were only taught to look one way when many ways exist.

 Charles Bukowski

Jordan Bohannon’s intentionally missed free throw keeps Chris Street record in the books

26 February 2018
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Per PG’s comments in an earlier post today, absolutely nothing to do with books, but a lovely story from flyover country.

From The Des Moines Record:

Jordan Bohannon looked into Section KK at Carver-Hawkeye Arena to make eye contact with his older brother, Zach, to confirm one last time: The plan they had discussed was still in motion.

Iowa’s sophomore guard would intentionally miss a free throw, even with the Hawkeyes nursing a late lead in their regular-season finale against Northwestern.

And with one short-armed attempt, Bohannon’s mission was complete. He had ensured his name would be next to — not in place of — that of Iowa legend Chris Street in the Hawkeye basketball record book.

“It’s been in my mind for a while,” Bohannon said afterward. “I knew I wanted to leave it short a little bit. I didn’t want to make it too obvious.”

Having made 34 consecutive free throws to tie Street’s school record, Bohannon stepped to the foul line with 2 minutes, 15 seconds remaining with Iowa leading, 73-65. He left the shot short, off the front rim, and pointed to the sky.

. . . .

It was a touching tribute from one Iowa-born Hawkeye to another. Street never got a chance to extend his streak to 35. He was killed in a car accident Jan. 19, 1993 — three days after his final game, a 65-56 loss at Duke during Street’s junior season at Iowa in which he made both free throws he tried.

Afterward, Mike and Patty Street — Chris’ parents, who are season-ticket holders — embraced Jordan on the Carver-Hawkeye floor. Patty Street was moved to tears by the gesture.

“What a good kid. He’s so kind,” she said. “That was so special that he thought of Christopher and that record.”

Mike Street had told people who asked leading up to this that he wanted Bohannon, a hard-working player like his son was, to break Chris’ mark. But he understood and treasured the tribute.

“Christopher would want him to do to the best he could do and stay after it. But that was Jordan’s decision, and if that’s what he wanted to do, then we appreciate it,” Mike said. “We certainly in the future want him to get another shot at it.

“I told him, ‘Next time, you need to go right on by.’”

. . . .

“We had an agreement that God’s plan wasn’t going to let that happen. You saw that tonight,” Bohannon said. “I missed it. We got the ball right back. I don’t know if it was really destined to happen, but it worked out like it should have.”

Even though Bohannon was born more than 4 years after Street’s death, his legacy has meant a lot to a kid who grew up in Marion wanting to be a Hawkeye. That’s why this record meant so much. Now the two Hawkeyes share it.

“I know where the record deserves to stand, and that’s in Chris’ name,” Bohannon said. “… It gets me a little emotional, knowing what one player can do for an entire state and entire Midwest and entire country, just to know what type of player he was.”

Link to the rest at The Des Moines Record

The Men Behind the Words

26 February 2018
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From No Shelf Required:

In 1974, a book by Theodore Rosengarten was published and went  on to the win the National Book Award for Contemporary Affairs (a category that later became “Nonfiction”). The work itself was an oral history of a man identified as Nate Shaw (Ned Cobb), a sharecropper in Alabama who stood up against sheriffs who had come to take away a fellow sharecropper’s property.

. . . .

In both print and audio formats, the work has received wide critical praise, and the man underneath the writing and then the performance of the written—Nate Shaw/Ned Cobb—remains alive through these interventions of other men’s voices. In effect, the fact of Nate Shaw can become fixed because his unscripted speaking was heard, recorded in written text, and now heard again through the oral performance of an informed actor. Instead of these interventions diluting the immediate and personal accounting of Mr. Shaw, they serve to extend the reach, and the permanence, of his witnessing to history.

Link to the rest at No Shelf Required

Here’s a link to All God’s Dangers: The Life of Nate Shaw

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