In 1985, someone told me I’d never work in this town again.
They were wrong.
It gets better.
So, go make things.
Have a perfect day.
An auction house is selling off a Superman story that artist Al Plastino gave to the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum. He is outraged and needs everyone’s help!
In 1963 DC Comics worked with the White House for a Superman story. In it, JFK asks Superman to encourage America to get fit. The story was pulled when Kennedy was assassinated, but was published in 1964 at the request of the new President and the Kennedy family. The last panel noted that the art was to be donated to the JFK Library.
If you know anything about who misappropriated the art, let Al know!
Please help if you can. The art I donated and thought for all these years was being housed at the Kennedy Library at Harvard is now being auctioned off on the anniversary of Kennedy’s assassination. And now I am finding out that the art may have never made it to the library. The archivists tell me there are no records of it ever being received. I asked for the art back and they will not give it to me. I asked for the consigner’s name and they will not tell me that either. They tell me I have no rights to my work and that it is too late to get it back.
Pretty sad. Spread the word.
In recent months, both Facebook and Instragram were subjected to intense backlash from users when they learned their photos could be turned over to commercial interests without their knowledge or permission.
The UK government takes it one step further with their Instagram Act, which now makes the use of “orphaned works”, for commercial purposes, law.
The Act contains changes to UK copyright law which permit the commercial exploitation of images where information identifying the owner is missing, so-called “orphan works”, by placing the work into what’s known as “extended collective licensing” schemes. Since most digital images on the internet today are orphans – the metadata is missing or has been stripped by a large organisation – millions of photographs and illustrations are swept into such schemes.
The Act also fails to prohibit sub-licensing, meaning that once somebody has your work, they can wholesale it. This gives the green light to a new content-scraping industry, an industry that doesn’t have to pay the originator a penny.
The following comment is sort of cute in its naivete. You can’t remove your work from the internet entirely, and any wahoo with a scanner can orphan your work in two seconds by altering it, or scanning it from a book, original drawing, or photo, and uploading it for you. No pesky metadata to remove!
In practice, you’ll have two stark choices to prevent being ripped off: remove your work from the internet entirely, or opt-out by registering it. And registration will be on a work-by-work basis.
And people wonder why I spent so much damned time in Washington.
Why I bother…
Good luck, creators. You’ll need it.
The original Orphan Works legislation did not make it through the Senate here, but you can bet it will be back. I blogged about it extensively
My old blog was shut down in January 2009, but I was able to recover the original content of my Orphan Works Bill post, dated September 2008. Here it is in its entirety, after the cut. I love you, O My People, but not enough to take the time to restore the links. I’m on deadline.
Read on anyway. ↓ Read the rest of this entry…
So, many years ago, I hired some poor fan on the skids to help me out around the house and office, and what did I get for my pains? Nearly two decades later, he’s claiming he was never paid, which is a big fat lying liars who lie Lie, and that he was SEEEEKRITLY my inker. And for awhile he was also claiming he was SEEEEKRITLY my boyfriend. Ugh. Schmuck. I
whined blogged about it here.
I used to feel really bad when some whack job would run around and pull this sort of number on me, until the day I got over my embarrassment about being a nut magnet and realized EVERYBODY in the creative profession is a nut magnet. Career Conflation and Importance via Proximity is a universally crappy experience we are all forced to endure.
Now that we have social media, we can share these creeptastic stories with our peeps on our private pages. I feel so much better when I know I’m not the only eye in the center of the Stupidstorm.
Name dropping for fun and profit is the primary currency in fandom and if you can’t get cozy with a good story, get cozy with a bad one! Power via proximity makes the fandom go round. Why…it’s just like Hollywood, only without the Louis Vuitton and extraordinarily high maintenance personal hygiene.
LEVEL BLACK: The Delusional Jerk
These people are either lying or exaggerating level green or yellow stories to make them much more interesting than they actually are. They consider themselves in a higher caste than the people they hang out with, and they will drop names like its no tomorrow in order to illustrate just how much better they are from you. However, the secret is out: these folks are full of shit.
Several of my pro peeps shared their tales of woe with me, of jerkasaurus assistants, and other minor functionaries, whose conflations caused drama where’er they did tred.
Thanks to the delightful Cully Hamner, I now share with you this tale of the Art Assistant From Hell, He Who Thinks Spotting Blacks makes him…An INKER.
It’s amazing to have to explain to an assistant that filling in blacks *isn’t* actually inking. I have a similar story with a guy who was interning at Gaijin, filling in the backs and such. He was telling people on some message board that he was my inker on BLUE BEETLE. So I sat him down, poured the pressure on him. He kept trying to tell me that since he was filling in my blacks– putting ink on a page, in other words– that he was actually the inker. He would not hear any logic otherwise.
At a con sometime later, after he was no longer our assistant, he told me he was working for “DC Animation.” When I questioned further, he admitted that he had simply done some unpaid designs for a group of people trying to PITCH a show to WB Animation using DC characters. When I told him this didn’t mean he was “working for DC,” he said that he WAS– he simply hadn’t been hired yet.
Still later, I caught him on another board telling people he was writing the next Superman movie “for DC Comics.” So, I called him out again: DC Comics doesn’t produce the movies, I said. It’s for a different part of DC, he said. Who are you working for, I asked. He gave me a bogus name. When I told him how many DC people I had contact with, and that no one seemed to know the name he gave up, he freaked out, and said he didn’t owe anyone an explanation. Weird thing is that the other posters on this board defended him…!
It was just stunning that this little asshole thought he could bullshit someone who *actually* does many of the things he *claims* to do…
Alas, Cully, I’m sorry you had to endure that. It is almost exactly like what I went through with Doctor Lizardo, and we know many pro peeps who share similar stories. Thanks for sharing yours.
And remember kids: spotting blacks is not inking. You have to earn those chops. You don’t get the pro bucks and the pro respect unless you have the pro skills. There is an order of magnitude between what you are doing as piece work, and actual creative work. The fact that you don’t know that is why you are where you are, and why Cully Hamner is where he is.
Lying will not endear you to your client.
Good luck with that career.
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