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Re: the truth which dare not speak it's name

From: Tab Atkins Jr. <jackalmage@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 8 Jul 2009 10:45:27 -0500
Message-ID: <dd0fbad0907080845x74641693i216db58b0d5ef260@mail.gmail.com>
To: Tal Leming <tal@typesupply.com>
Cc: John Hudson <tiro@tiro.com>, Thomas Lord <lord@emf.net>, www-font <www-font@w3.org>
On Wed, Jul 8, 2009 at 9:50 AM, Tal Leming<tal@typesupply.com> wrote:
> On Jul 8, 2009, at 9:53 AM, Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
>> Speaking purely for myself, the idea that the purchasers of digital
>> content somehow value the 'exclusivity' of their purchase seems...
>> strange.
>
> Really? It's pretty simple. When someone licenses a font, either a publicly
> available font or a custom font, they are doing it because *they* want to
> use the font. They aren't doing it because they want *everyone* to use the
> font.

Oh, I understand that.  I just find the entire concept strange.  I
mean, when I purchase a physical object sharing it with someone else
means that I don't have use of it in the meantime, and it may be
returned to me worse for wear.  Digital objects can be shared without
inconveniencing me in any way, however.  So the whole idea that
somehow I have a moral right to keep people from sharing digital
things that I own is mysterious to me.  (I ran into this issue as a
kid, actually, and came to see the wisdom that digital and physical
objects are simply *different*.)

Note, though, that Hudson was talking about people who *commissioned*
fonts for their own use, rather than just ones who bought a license on
an existing font.  The latter situation is actually more
understandable, from a "well if I have to pay for it, you should too"
eye-for-an-eye perspective.  Having a font commissioned, though, is
something different.  There's an obvious asymmetry between the
creation and the sharing of an object.

Basically, the fact that the 'public' is still thinking of digital
objects as if they were discrete physical objects, and applying
invalid prejudices from the latter to the former, trips me up
sometimes.

~TJ
Received on Wednesday, 8 July 2009 15:46:22 GMT

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