JKR/WB vs. RDR Books Trial: Opinions

113

Apr 26, 2008

Posted by KristinTLC
Uncategorized

Several public figures have voiced their opinions on the JKR/WB vs. RDR Books court case:

Hugo and Nebula award-winning writer Orson Scott Card claims that J.K. Rowling’s “hypocrisy is so thick” that he “can hardly breathe”.

He goes on to say:

“Once you publish fiction, Ms. Rowling, anybody is free to write about it, to comment on it, and to quote liberally from it, as long as the source is cited.”

He predicts the outcome of the case:

“1. Publication of Lexicon will go on without any problem or prejudice, because it clearly falls within the copyright law’s provision for scholarly work, commentary and review.

2. Rowling will be forced to pay Steven Vander Ark’s legal fees, since her suit was utterly without merit from the start.

3. People who hear about this suit will have a sour taste in their mouth about Rowling from now on. Her Cinderella story once charmed us. Her greedy evil-witch behavior now disgusts us. And her next book will be perceived as the work of that evil witch.”

(EDITOR’S NOTE: With regard to Mr. Card’s statement that a published work of fiction may be written about or quoted “as long as the source is cited”, note that plaintiffs JKR/WB’s claim that the Lexicon book fails to properly quote or cite Ms. Rowling’s works. Exact testimony regarding such is available here in the trial transcripts).

Game show Jeopardy! wiz Ken Jennings writes about the trial on his blog in an entry entitled “Harry Potter and the Glossary of Doom”. He says:

“Books like The Harry Potter Lexicon are nothing new. When I was a kid, I had a bunch of unlicensed glossaries like these on my shelves: Robert Foster’s Complete Guide to Middle-Earth, Bjo Trimble’s Star Trek Concordance, etc. (Both of these books may later have been approved by their respective marketing empires, I’m not sure, but they were strictly fan-pub back then.) Even today, you can walk up to the TV/Movies shelf in a Barnes & Noble and find cash-in essay collections and reference works analyzing Lost, Firefly, The West Wing, and other hits. All these books profit by putting the Big Media Brand Name front and center on their covers’without the pop-culture teat, they wouldn’t sell a single copy. Profiteers, right, “Jo”? Burn them all!”

Jennings also notes:

”…the plagiarism claims are silly. Direct quotes from the books are rare, and are used only in epigrammatic fashion. Rowling may be referring to the fact that the Lexicon does faithfully describe facts and events from her series, and at length, but that’s an inevitable feature of any reference book. The literary references all look legitimate to me, as if due care has been taken to rephrase them away from Rowling’s language.”

On the subject of companion books, he says:

“In a free society, it’s good that people can talk and write freely about art. Good things come out of a society being able to talk and write freely about art’whether the artist likes it or not. Fan-published “derivative works” are a tiny legal niche, but they’re not an entirely unimportant one. Maybe you’re a Gilmore Girls fan who’d love to see an index annotating and explaining the show’s dense web of cultural references, or a U2 fan working on a complete concordance to their lyrics, or a Spider-Man fan with an issue-by-issue chronology of his Marvel Comics-owned “life” on your website. This stuff is going to keep disappearing if the legal precedents keep following the Twin Peaks and Castle Rock path.”

(EDITOR’S NOTE: With regard to Mr. Jennings’ statement that literary references are legitimate if “due care has been taken to rephrase them away from Rowling’s language”, note plaintiffs JKR/WB’s claim that the Lexicon book too frequently uses JKR‘s exact language. Exact testimony regarding such is available here in the trial transcripts).

Finally, author Neil Gaiman follows up on his post from the 19th regarding the trial and fair use with two additional entries:

On the 24th, Mr. Gaiman’s clarifies fair use for a reader of his blog with:

“As far as I can see it’s only about a couple of really grey areas of copyright law—I suspect, and I am SO not a lawyer, that it will come down to whether or not what Mr Vander Ark had done to Ms Rowling’s work in his Lexicon was sufficiently “transformative” as to render it a new work.”

He offers as an example:

“If someone did a website in which everything in Sandman is listed in alphabetical order, as a concordance or lexicon… whether or not I was going to do one doesn’t matter. Whether or not someone else is making money off my work and words and ideas doesn’t matter. Whether it’s a good lexicon or a bad lexicon doesn’t matter. Whether it quotes me extensively may or may not matter (how extensively I’m quoted is a matter of Fair Use, but paraphrase me and you are home and dry on that count). What matters is whether it sufficiently transforms what I’ve done into something else by taking those entries and putting them into alphabetical order. “

Today, Mr. Gaiman writes a follow up on copyright, in which he posts a letter sent to him by one of his readers, a lawyer who co-authored a paper on fair use for the Journal of the Copyright Society of the United States. Leaky readers may find the letter informative.

Thanks as always to our readers who have emailed or posted links to articles or editorials on the trial.

Complete Leaky trial coverage can be found here.





384 Responses to JKR/WB vs. RDR Books Trial: Opinions

Avatar Image says:

Wow… that seemed unnecessarily harsh.

Avatar Image says:

I agree Justin the Mighty. Jo should win! She worked for SEVENTEEN YEARS on the HP series, when someone (SVA) just slammed her work altogether and decided ‘there’ and that he was ‘done’

Avatar Image says:

interesting.

Avatar Image says:

well, everybody has the right to have an opinion

i’m sorry to be rude to mr. card, but why do i sense, that he has been waiting for this time to come to jk rowling.. he sounds really bitter

my question: are these people experts on copyright laws etc?

Avatar Image says:

I agree with Justin the Mighty. Orson Scott Card has every right to express his opinion, but when he starts using terms like “evil witch”, even in his own blog, he sounds more like a grumpy old warlock (to use a phrase it seems Mr. Card would find appropriate) than an intelligent author of speculative fiction.

Avatar Image says:

Mr. Card’s comments were very harsh. I disagree with his predicted outcomes. JK Rowling has no problem with other books being written like the ones by John Granger so, obivously something is wrong with this book. She created this world so, it is her right to protect it.

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Any why do we care what these people think? I’m more interested in what the judge or a real copyright lawyer has to say. Not really interested in what some very bias people like this Card guy or that MSNBC people has to say.

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I have John Granger’s book. There were a couple mistakes I noticed. And ya, Hermione <3 there must be some stuff wrong with this one... I still think she should sue John Granger thought/

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OSC seems to be like the ANTI-JO.

The people who wrote his WIkipedia page either hate him, or he’s just evil and stupid (sorry, OSC. I gotta calls it like I sees it).

Love how the pic on his BLOG page is that of a handsome dashing young man (hot, even!) but he’s ACTUALLY much older and heavier. Why wouldn’t he be using an up-to-date pic? Talk about hypocracy.

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It seems to me that the real issue is if Steve plagiarizes Jo or if he is properly quoting her and “due care has been taken to rephrase them away from Rowling’s language.” We only have WB’s testimony to go by on this case so we don’t have a good idea what is going on. I think all the copyright talk confused me into thinking WB and Jo were claiming that the lexicon infringed on the copyright of the characters or something so I didn’t understand all the support they got but now that I know it’s a question of plagiarism vs fair use the issue is much clearer to me

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This is sad, because I quite like Orson Scott Card and would regard his opinion if he didn’t miss the point completely. I’d even respect his disagreement with Rowling if he exposed his thoughts coherently, but it was as if he was talking about something altogether different.

Avatar Image says:

The part that most of these people in the article seem to be missing is that there were little or no citations in the lexicon. It is one thing to create a book that gives a reference on the Harry Potter series, but you should cite your sources. We don’t get to get away with that in school, why would we get away with it in the real world. Using someone else’s words with out citation or permission is plagiarism pure and simple. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but they should make sure they have all the facts before they decide to malign someone’s character which is what I think Mr. Card has done. Unfortunately for him Harry Potter fans are dedicated enough to know every little bit that is said about Harry or Ms. Rowling.

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I like Orson Scott Card’s books, but frankly his opinion is ridiculous. I think most people who are speaking out against JKR have no concept of what the Lexicon actually is and how much of Rowling’s exact text it copies.

I was also deeply disappointed to see Newsweek brand JKR as a greedy elitist who made a poor, sad little librarian cry on the stand. Their facts were inaccurate and it’s shameful that a magazine I had some respect for would jump on the “let’s-all-bash-the-wealthy-person” bandwagon.

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Those authors don’t know what they are talking about. Have they ever had somebody take their work word-for-word and publish it for profit? Are they even fans of Harry Potter? Maybe they are down-playing HP so they can make more money for their books…

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Card is a mediocre writer with a suspicious obsession with homosexuality. Where he needs to go with his bitter little diatribes is not his blog, but a skilled physician.

Avatar Image says:

Um, Ken Jennings? Why exactly is anyone interested in hearing the opinion of an old Jeopardy contestant from like, what, 3 or 4 years ago? Is Mr. Jennings a lawyer as well? I’m not being sarcastic, I’m actually asking.

I rather hope he is a lawyer, because then it would help me understand why anyone is dying to know what he, of all people, thinks about this trial. Otherwise, I’m going to start thinking that we’ll be hearing from the latest contestant on The Price Is Right next (“Come oooooon down!!!”)

Avatar Image says:

Although I love Mr. Cards work i don’t agree with his opinions .

I would think he would be sympathetic towards Ms.Rowling,

But I will never judge an author by the books they write.

Avatar Image says:

It should come as no surprise that Orson is a homophobe. Indeed, I sense a sexist backlash to this whole case. It is disgusting how many negative comments directed toward JKR refer to her gender.

BTW, either Jennings is a collector of rare editions or he’s stretching the truth. He was born in 1974. That year The Guide to Middle-Earth was published in an official Ballantine edition. And the Star Trek Concordance was published by a mainstream press in 1976, copyright Paramount Pictures & Bjo Trimble.

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Where’s Card’s blog? I want to leave him a nasty comment so I can get banned. I consider being banned from such a man’s website a high honor.

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darn i love that jeopardy guy too bad

and whoever the hell YOU are mr. card, get your facts right

thats about half their case, the fact that it isn’t cited well.

Avatar Image says:

I responded in the comments to Card’s blog with the following. I’m posting it here and in the forum for posterity’s sake as it very well not be accepted by his staff:

“1. Publication of Lexicon will go on without any problem or prejudice, because it clearly falls within the copyright law’s provision for scholarly work, commentary and review.”

It does, does it? Have you read it? It’s available in court documents to do so (see SVA’s declaration, it’s an attachment). I haven’t read all of it (don’t have the patience or time), but I’ve read bits and pieces. As a person who knows the HP universe very well, I can tell you that it is not transformative at all. I can think of many ways to rephrase and elaborate further on things. An example of this would be the entry on Death (which JKR pointed out herself). In the Lexicon it is nothing more than mentioned as a character in the story of the three brothers who met death on a bridge and took three things belonging to him, called the deathly hallows in legend. This would be a prime opportunity to discuss the numerous ways that different characters approach death, from Voldemort who flees it, to Dumbledore who sees it as an adventure to Harry who meets it head on in sacrifice. But, nope, there’s none of that in the book.

As a reference guide, it also fails. Not even the defense’s own lawyer knew what was meant by the citation (HBP10), which means Half Blood Prince, Chapter 10. There’s no page numbers. Why? A more thorough approach would be to have a page number for each time, for example, acromantualas are mentioned in the books. Again, there’s none of that. Not even all terms that should have their origins explained, have that. There’s no sense to it at all. This is just barely touching the surface of the inadequacies of this book.

“2. Rowling will be forced to pay Steven Vander Ark’s legal fees, since her suit was utterly without merit from the start.”

I’m not sure I follow. You do know that SVA is not named in the suit and that he’s merely a witness, do you not? He was in no way forced to acquire legal counsel, he just thought it would be a good idea. Also, the defense’s lawyers are with the Fair Use Project from Stanford and are doing this pro-bono. So, RDR are paying nothing for this case.

“3. People who hear about this suit will have a sour taste in their mouth about Rowling from now on. Her Cinderella story once charmed us. Her greedy evil-witch behavior now disgusts us. And her next book will be perceived as the work of that evil witch.”

Really, is all this ad hominem necessary? It’s rather childish, don’t you think? If she was a poor author who was protecting her rights, you wouldn’t say a darn thing about it. If you did, you’d probably support her. Just because she has money, does not mean she cannot protect her copyright. You fail to realize that numerous companion books have been published under fair use and with her permission. She allows fan fiction, fan art, and wizard rock, with no problem whatsoever. The profits from her encyclopedia will go to charity. Eighty percent of her last charity books’ profits went to Comic Relief. I imagine it will be about the same percentage for the encyclopedia.

“Litterateurs sneer at her work as a kind of subliterature, not really worth discussing.”

Yes, that’s why Harry Potter conferences are considered work-enhancing seminars for teachers and more and more universities are offering literature courses that use HP as a basis.

Perhaps only bitter authors like you are doing the sneering because you’re envious. You’re so upset that a “children’s book series” gets more attention and acclaim than your books that you lash out at the author in a vain attempt to help you look down on her. How about you instead concentrate on writing your own stuff. I’m not saying something has to be successful to be good. I know very well that the opposite is often true when it comes to literature. But, then Shakespeare’s plays were incredibly popular and incredibly good and have stood the test of time.

She hasn’t done anything to you. All she has done is write her books, been good to her fans, and protected her right to her work in an effort to protect her fans and authors who can’t afford to protect their rights like she can.

Also, as for the material being on the website, the site also has essays, which considerably ups the ante of fair use. Why couldn’t they be published? They’d no doubt be considered fair use. Fans can access the website for free. That’s not so with the Lexicon book.

Anyway, all this information about the case is available to the public. I suggest you read it before you decide to give your opinion on it. Looks like you fell for the media’s propaganda. “Rowling sues fan”? No. One look at the lawsuit says that RDR is the defendant and not SVA.

And if you’re going to make fun of Jo for crying, play fair and do the same for SVA. Or don’t do it at all. It’s your choice of whether you want to seem like an ass or not.

I doubt this will be allowed through by your staff. I’ll be surprised if it is.

Avatar Image says:

Posted by mollwobbles23 on April 25, 2008 @ 11:40 PM

I am very proud to be the first to commend you, Mollywobbles.

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i’m suprised by all the negativity towards Jo about this. and the fact that people are being sexist makes no sense either. is it just because she’s a girl she can’t keep someone else from making money off of what she’s spent her life on for almost 20 years? i support Jo.

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mollywobbles23, I want to be you when I grow up.

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I’d just like to say that while I found Card’s uninformed opinions and his oafish means of expressing them dismaying, and the importance of Ken Jennings’ equally uninformed opinions inexplicable (who is this guy, and why should we care what he thinks?) it does my black little heart good to see that everyone who has posted in the comments here so far does, in fact, know what they are talking about, rather than taking OSC’s word for it. Thank you guys for restoring a little bit of my (admittedly meager) faith in fandom.

Avatar Image says:

A part of me died when I read Orson Scott Card’s insults to our beloved Jo. I read his Ender series in the weeks before DH. I bought The Great Snape Debate largely because of his contribution. I listened to SnapeCast interview him on the way to the release party. Basically, he has been linked with Potter, for me and especially with the Potter summer. To hear him so brutally and hatefully tear Jo down wounded me. More than that, his disloyalty-cruelty, even-”disgusts” me. I won’t be able to read his books again for a very long time, if ever.

This case sure seems to be revealing the best and worst in people. Unfortunately for Card, or rather, for me and fans like me, his grotesque side has been shown. I’ve lost all respect for him. No one calls Jo an “evil witch” and earns me as a fan. End of story.

Avatar Image says:

Orson, Orson, Orson – It’s more complicated than that. Get yo’ facts before you go around calling her a “greedy evil witch” based on the information you read one morning off of AOL.

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It’s kind of unreasonable to judge the Lexicon if we haven’t even read it yet.

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More than that, his disloyalty-cruelty, even-”disgusts” me.

Yes, that’s what I find so repugnant about his comments as well. I have no problem with people disagreeing with Jo’s actions and saying so (though I myself fully agree with and support her, make no mistake), but the way Orson Scott Card expressed himself was cruel, and very mean-spirited.

I haven’t read any of his Ender books, so I have no opinion of him as an author. But reading his little rant has left me with a very low opinion of him as a person. His remarks reveal him to be childish, petulant, petty, and yes, very very bitter. Oh, and “evil witch”? Really, Mr. Card, how old are you?

Avatar Image says:

@ Owen

Actually, a lot of people HAVE read it, or read most of it. The whole manuscript is online now, on Justia.com, I believe.

I haven’t read the whole thing myself, but I’ve read enough bits and pieces of it to make me strongly agree with JKR/WB’s assessment that it infringes on their copyright.

So no, we’re not being so unreasonable as you might think. ;)

Avatar Image says:

Ken Jennings holds the record for the most Jepardy wins (74) with winnings of more that $2 million. As Jepardy is a game show for brainiacs, he is sort of the quintessential brainiac. I’ve seen a few interviews with him and he seems to be a pretty nice guy.

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kelly Krels:

I don’t believe anyone is calling Orson Scott Card a Harry Potter hater. I believe they’re calling him a bitter, misinformed ass. Which he is. Just read his comments.

Avatar Image says:

Card contributed to The Great Snape Debate? Oh man! I wish I had remembered that before I wrote that comment!

“i’m suprised by all the negativity towards Jo about this. and the fact that people are being sexist makes no sense either. is it just because she’s a girl she can’t keep someone else from making money off of what she’s spent her life on for almost 20 years? i support Jo.”

Posted by maryhappyface on April 25, 2008 @ 11:44 PM

I think you’ve hit on a very relevant point. If she was a man, he wouldn’t be calling the man “evil.” When woman stands up for herself in the business world, she’s a word that rhymes with “witch.” When a man does it, he’s dynamic and strong.

I guess I’ll read Jenning’s blog now. I’ve read the other two. I had take a break from the crazy.

Avatar Image says:

Marlena—You’re telling me that Card used to be such a fan of Harry Potter that he contributed to SnapeCast and The Great Snape Debate (I don’t know what those are, but it says something that he, a famous author, contributed to them)? And now suddenly we have him denouncing JKR as a greedy witch (because founding charities and donating to them is so greedy, isn’t it?). I find this highly suspicious. I believe that he is either a) engaging in a desperate publicity stunt, b) sore that Dumbledore is gay (Mr. Card is outspokenly anti-gay, and has gone so far as to state that homosexuality should be punishable by law), or c) simply jealous of JKR’s superior talent (this would explain his attempt to compare his trivial little tales to Harry Potter). Whatever the case, I find it impossible to believe that a mere copyright lawsuit could by itself move Card to make such venomous, misrepresentative comments about someone whom, as little as a year ago, he apparently quite liked.

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Although I may not agree with everything Card or Kennings said, I have to say I’m a little disappointed in some of the comments I’m reading here on Leaky. The negativity is very off putting. If you feel Card was out of line by calling JKR names then go ahead, express your opinion. (By the way I do think he was a little overzealous with the comparisons but anyone who has read his articles in the past will realize that’s just the way he writes.) But when you start calling him names in return and making over-generalized comments based on a quick google of his name, it doesn’t exactly make you seem much better than him. I’ve always viewed this website as a positive place but lately it’s just been a lot of name calling and whining. I love to read everyone’s opinions but I’m starting to get sick of the bashing. Just remember those two men have access to the same information as everyone else and they came to their own conclusions. They made some of the same fallacies many of the people here have made. I personally think that in this case there is no right or wrong. Both sides have many good points and I honestly wish that a compromise could be made. The only thing I see for sure is a lot of overly eager fans (and, I suppose, non-fans) of the books expressing a lot of polarized opinions without backing them up. When did leaky become a breeding ground for wannabe lawyers and angry fans, who a year ago were impatiently waiting for the last book? I want that leaky back and until this case is over and “resolved” I think I’ll get my HP fix somewhere else.

Avatar Image says:

I have only one thing to say:

Orson Scott Card who?

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@ Cam: Nope, sorry, I’m not going to feel bad for expressing my opinion of Mr. Card’s remarks. He has a right to his opinion, but I also have a right to be disgusted at the childish and vicious way he has chosen to express himself.

And as for Mr. Jennings, I don’t think anyone has insulted him except to say, “Ken Jennings? Who? The Jeopardy guy? And why exactly is a former game show contestant publicly weighing in on this?” I don’t call that bashing. I call it a valid question.

Good luck finding another place for your HP fix, though.

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Mr. Card continues to prove that his arrogance again gets in the way of rational thinking. Sadly, he believes himself to be the most righteous entity in the writing universe. His opinion makes it clear that he knows little about this case. He probably formed it from reading a report on CNN.

This really pains me as Enders Game is one of the greatest novels of all time.

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isnt it amazing how people open their mouths spitting out ignorance? They say ‘shame on Jo’ and state that she’s greedy and wrong to own her work. They make statements such as ‘its free if you quote’, while as noted, the whole issue (and they would have known this had they done the research) is that the book apparently does NOT quote.

At the same time, even if they say it’s fair and can win (and I hope not), it begets a whole host of problems. What right can it be said that music, and movies, are wholly copyrighted, yet books cannot? All are forms of art, and all need to be protected. One cannot discriminate. And if this is deemed fair in relation to books, when can we now see it for movies? Can we look forward to seeing duplicate movies of a subject, using the same lines?

If the current law says its okay to for Steve and RDR to do as they have, and they win, then I hope WB/Jo DO appeal, and make the effort to get the law changed. The law is outdated and in this technological age needs to be updated.

It takes a LONG time to work on art (be it novel, movie, music, etc) and it should not be discounted.

I vote for Jo.

Avatar Image says:

Ah, I read some of the other comments. This seems to be another midlist writer who’s letting his bitterness about Rowling’s success cloud his judgment.

Avatar Image says:

Once again Orson opens mouth and inserts foot. The proposed Lexicon book is NOT about commentary or analysation. The book is nothing more then a dictionary format of Jo’s work. Jo should have the RIGHT to make her own Encyclopedia first and when she wants to. She shouldn’t have to be forced to compete for her own works revelavance.

OSC seems to have a very bad habit of making judgement calls on things he knows very little about.

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It is so tiring to continually read the “fandom” dismissing the intricate dissection of JKR’s world of Harry Potter and then its alphabetical reassortment as nothing but “cut and paste,” which is an uninformed and lazy assessment of the Lexicon book. “Fair Use” under the law allows for a transformative use to be directed toward children – the Harry Potter books are ostensibly marketed as children’s literature, after all – and in such a case, alphabetizing an entire magical world could, in fact, be very transformative, whether you choose to accept that or not.

The “91% plagarism” line is uninformed as well, and a bit of a red herring. Anyone that has actually looked into “fair use” case study knows that the acceptible percentage of materials used in the infriging book refers to the percentage of the original material that is being copied – NOT the percentage of material contained in the infringing book. In other words, the law looks at the amount of Rowling’s material that appears in the Lexicon as compared to the total amount of material Rowling has produced that the Lexicon draws from, not the total number of infriging pages that the Lexicon contains. I’d think that a 400 page book would, by neccessity, contain a limited amount of copyrighted material from the thousands of Potter pages Rowling has published. While the fandom is free to accept the WB argument of “taking too much and doing too little,” there is another valid argument made on RDR’s behalf in their pre-trial filings that says that even 100% of the Lexicon could be infringing and still fall under fair use, if the work is transformative.

Generally speaking, for the “fandom” to speak en masse as if they are so much more intelligent and insightful than the legal minds behind the defense (and the judge, for that matter) in this case is embarrassing.

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“Due care has been taken to rephrase them away from Rowling’s language.”

To bring this statement into the Harry Potter world, if I may, what we need is a Ministry for the Historical Preservation of the Boy Who Lived, and a Minister that has deep connections into the Wizengamut. The bar should be set higher, I’m afraid, than what some of those who have commented, as noted in this article, seem to maintain. There just may be some things in life that don’t need to be transformed; there needs to be a Harry Potter historical district. And, although the gentleman lawyer that submitted a letter to Mr. Gaiman suggests such a thing as a “weak” copyright, does that apply to the case at hand, where the defendants are re-presenting copyrighted material and has yet to establish that there is an “original work” somewhere of his own to hold onto? That same letter suggests that creativity might be stifled, but again, I suggest that J. K. Rowling has covered that one too, and you, sir, are looking right at it; you are looking out at all of us. Creativity abounds, and we fans have yet to lock up the Harry Potter series into a brick and barred book depository, to charge for the storage of books on shelves, only to require another token for admission. We save those kinds of capitalist ideas for theme parks like “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter!”

Without sounding obtuse, I have yet to see anyone believeably argue that any published material, beyond what J. K. Rowling has done, including already published materials, fall into a protected “scholarly” category. Not being obtuse as it sounds, I know that those things are out there, or could be out there, however, it is hard to imagine something like that when one takes time to realize that the “academic” material is stemming from a work of fiction as colorful as “Dobby wearing knitted clothes.” One could go back in time, like I did this week, while watching a History Channel program about the Philosopher’s Stone (and Harry Potter), and find that Nicolas Flamel was a storied French alchemist. Yet, on the other hand, it is alphabetized in the Lexicon, under “F,” where one finds the Lexicon “said that” J. K. Rowling “said that” Nicolas Flamel lived in France and was supposed to have discovered something. Did Harry Potter culminate from literary works about Nicolas Flamel? Or are the character’s Harry, Ron, and Hermione trademarkable, as suggested within Neil Gaiman’s blog? Oh, the confusion, until one proposes something such as this: What if J. K. Rowling’s work on Harry Potter is actually her own scholarly work based upon an assortment of historical and literary “items,” the very purpose of which is to make all of those things digestible to all readers alike? In that case the actual documented history about Nicolas Flamel was very interesting to hear about, and J. K. Rowling’s perspective was “creative” and “transformative.” I wonder if Mr. Flamel, may he rest in peace, would Google through the Lexicon to find things that are written under “F.”

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I wish Jo and Steve could settle out of court and collaborate on a really great HP lexicon… that would really be something. This being said… poor Steve is just an enthusiastic HP fan like us… I’m sure RDR is actually the one on whom we should be placing any blame.

I’m sick of this. Why does something so good have to be the center of such nastiness? I’ll be back one day.

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And generally speaking, for the “SVA supporters” to speak en masse as if they are so much more intelligent and insightful than the legal minds behind the prosecution (and the judge, for that matter) in this case is embarrassing.

SVA may have put a lot of time and effort into alphabetizing Jo’s work, but it does not make his book transformative, whether you choose to accept that or not.

(It’s annoying when someone paraphrases you, isn’t it?)

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Ken Jennings says: “crummy $10,000 advance” and crosses it out. Um, what? That’s really, really good for an unknown with a manuscript that has a very small market (HP is huge, but companion books are not). Wasn’t Jo’s advance from Bloomsbury 3,000 pounds? That’s about $6,000 today. She had worked on it for seven years. SVA had worked on the manuscript for two weeks. I don’t include work on the website in this as even Steve says that the book is of lesser quality.

I think I may have to blog about this whole mess. My poor f-list who hasn’t been following this case at all or not as much as me…. If I do, I’ll link it here and refer people to the forums here and the documents and Leaky’s archive of articles on it.

I am getting so fed up with people constantly pointing out Jo crying, but not saying a word about SVA doing so. So, her crying is just an act and his is heartfelt? What? I thinnk they were both sincere. I’d cry too. I’m a crier anyway (I cry at Hallmark commercials for goodness’s sakes).

I need blood pressure medication just to read Jenning’s blahg (intentional).

As for us here at Leaky being angry at SVA, apparently he hasn’t read that deeply or he’d have realized how much we feel betrayed by him as well and how much he has lied. There’s not a comment place either. Maybe he’ll read this since his name is in the article:

Mr. Jennings,

For me, and I’m sure for others here, the reason we are so angry with Steve goes far beyond him trying to publish this book. He lied to us and talked about the fandom as if he knew what was best for us. We feel just as betrayed by him as Jo does. Most of us here who are on Jo’s side have read about all the events that lead up to the lawsuit and how RDR evaded. Why? Because he knew what he was doing was wrong and illegal, probably. He got lucky that the people at Stanford with the Fair Use Project stepped in to further their own agenda. We have read court documents. Some of us have already read the manuscript as well. We’ve read or are reading the court transcripts. We had three people present at the trial for all three days, while most media outlets got out of there as soon as Jo had finished her testimony.

I agree that people should be able to talk about art. SVA doesn’t talk about Harry Potter. He restates it. That’s all. There’s little to no commentary and no anaylsis. The citation system is very poor and confusing. In short, it’s not fair use.

Sincerely, Katie

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Posted by Cam: “Just remember those two men have access to the same information as everyone else and they came to their own conclusions. “

Yes, they have access to it, but by reading some of their comments, they obviously havent looked. You cant have read any part of the LexiBook and then call it a critical/analytical/critique book. There’s nothing critical or analytical in it.

Posted by Cam: “When did leaky become a breeding ground for wannabe lawyers and angry fans, who a year ago were impatiently waiting for the last book?”

Um… about the time that SVA tried to turn his online lexicon into a money generator by publishing. You’ve got to expect it in this case. JKR is LOVED by those of us who enjoy her world (especially those of us who enjoyed her world enough to spend time online on sites like Leaky). You’ve got to expect most fans to side with Jo on an argument like this.

Here’s part of my problem with the whole thing. SVA knew ahead of time that publishing the LexiBook would infringe copyright, as evidenced by emails shown in court. He changed his mind for some reason (perhaps RDR pushed him, who knows). BUT… he was still so worried about it that he had it written into his contract that RDR would take the heat if JKR/WB sued.

If he had that much forethought about the problems the book would encounter, and if he really were a true fan of the author and the books (God, I hate that phrase “true fan”, but it fits), shouldnt he have instead insisted on stating in that contract that if JKR/WB objected legally to the book (ie: C&D letters (which they sent many) or lawsuits) that the book itself should be shelved???? Seems he was more worried about his own neck then the fandom/community that he now cries over being less then welcome in.

My opinion: SVA became so caught up in his “place” in the fandom that it soon became not enough. I think he had a bit of a “rock star” mentality in the fandom, and it went to his head. Being part of the fandom wasnt enough, he thought he deserved to be part of the phenomenon. sorry, Steve, it doesnt work like that.

ps: I highly recommend that you follow that link above to the site of the person who blogged about transformative work. it’s very interesting. Go down to the part labeled “The concept of “transformative” works as applicable to the “Harry Potter” works. Very interesting.

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I’m glad to see some people swinging out in favor of the Lexicon. I like JKR as much as the next HP fan, but based on my experience dealing with other “fair use” issues (which closely parallel this case), JKR doesn’t have a case.

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I. Want. Some. HBP. Movie. Pics. :D

I know the trial is important, and I’ve been following it as obsessively as the next person. And I do have some substantive opinions on the topic, believe it or not.

But this fandom really needs something new to talk about. Something good and exciting. Something that we can be happy about.

We need some official HBP pics.

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Opinions are like noses, everybody has one. However none of the quoted people are lawyers (nor am I, nor I suppose most of the people commenting here) and none of them are the Judge, whose opinion is the only one that counts at this juncture.

I have read about 75% of the trial transcript (thank you so much for posting it Leaky!!) and I would have to add my lay-opinion on the side of Jo and WB. It seems to me that the RDR side has many small points that they are using for their case (pre-trial they even tried to make it a First Amendment issue, which it is NOT). While the JKR WB side has one big point: The Lexicon does not do enough transformative work to Jo’s canon (which is the correct spelling BTW) to make it Steve’s own work. I think that’s the base of the case and all the bloggers who want to see Jo and her success taken down a bit all sound like envy more than anything else.

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um… i love the Ender series, but Mr. Card is in the wrong here. He has obviously not taken the time to properly familiarize himself with the case and realize that ~90% was directly taken from Jo’s work, and mostly without quotations and proper references. This ticks me off, because its clear that the people who are commenting and making a lot of noise about the case have not read the transcripts, HP books, and the Lexicon. Jo is not saying people can’t analyze her work… look at just how many companion books are out there that she is not suing… she is saying that you cant lift what she spent 17 years to create.

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I’m with you all the way, English Ivy. I am desperate for happy news. I want Rupert to release pics like Emma and Dan did at least. Just think: hopefully we’ll have the trailer on May 16th.

I want Ron/Hermione/Lavender promo pics and one for Harry/Ginny/Dean. Two love triangles is a perfect marketing opportunity. I want a teaser poster too.

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Ok i think what these people are saying is wrong, i mean mr card insulting jk like he did, she spent 17 years with these charcthers and mentioend that she would have an encylopedia to tie up the ends.

as far What “The Great Snape Debate” it was a harry potter unauthorized guide to the books that merited the pros for snape being good and the pros for snape being bad, and it was informative and also though here is an importan part is that even though it was unauthorized when it brought up passages from the books it gave you the page.

I mean the people who want to take shots at jk, should realize that when she started this she was dirt broke, barely got an advance and had many publishing houses pass on the series because it was a children’s book series and the first run had of the first book had about what 500,000 first prints as they had no idea how the series would go

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The Great Snape Debate is one of the best companion books I have for any of my fandoms. I think the best companion books I have are the four Buffy books that contain stories about previous slayers.

It not only cites correctly, but it uses quotes to support analytical arguments and commentary. It’s very transformative.

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Who’s this Orson Scott Card when he’s at home?

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Mr. Card’s blog disgusts me, and I left him a not-very-subtle comment telling him so. What a complete moron. Some of the things he says about JKR just make me want to smack him in the face, hard. He makes such ridiculous assumptions, like “JKR just said Dumbledore was gay for attention, duh, and she has no heart, LYK lol!” What a #%#%#. Obviously if he had done any research, he would have noticed that she released this info while answering a fan’s question. Dumbledore’s sexuality had no place in the books, because no one sees Dumbledore as a sexual being at all, so he has no right to say that she was a coward for not putting it in there. I bet he hasn’t even read the HP books. Ignorant morons like this guy make me want to vomit.

I get the feeling these people haven’t researched the case at all. Anyone can argue a convincing point to people who have no information about the subject. You can’t convince us, you ignorant berks.

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While I understand the need to report on Harry Potter news, I am getting quite over coming to Leaky only finding story after story on the court case. It really seems to be consuming everything about this site over the past month or so. And while it is related to Harry Potter, it really, in my opinion, has been getting covered far more than it should be. I get frustrated seeing so many articles on this one story, and not enough on “general” Potter news.

I appreciate the time and effort that goes into Leaky, and commend the creators of this site, but could they perhaps just “drop” this issue, or at the very least tone it down to a weekly segment?

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Rick:

“This really pains me as Enders Game is one of the greatest novels of all time.”

This is EXACTLY how I felt when reading that Orson Scott Card, of all people, has “gone negative” and denounced JKR in such a nasty, mean-spirited and woefully uninformed manner. This author’s not a slouch or a hack; he’s one of the greatly-recognized science fiction authors of the age, along with Isaac Asimov, Harlan Elison, Ursula K. Le Guin, and other notable greats. I imagine he’s earned a comfortable share of profit from his books, too, and would be just as vigilant in protecting his copyrights if his works were “stolen” as blatantly as Ms. Rowling has been.

I read his entry (more like scanned; reading his words felt like trying to see through a botched Lasik surgery procedure—endlessly painful!!) and just could not believe that these hateful words were coming from such a (formerly) respected author. It truly made me sick.

While I won’t deliberately run from his books in the future, my opinion of him as a person has just gone down about 75%. Needless to say, I totally disagree with his caustic assessment.

As for Mr. Ken Jennings, the highly-overrated Jeopardy champion, and HIS opinions on the case, I have this answer for him: “These four letters are used in ‘Netspeak’ to cloak an expletive along with a command toward the subject to be silent.” What is the question? If you know it, please do it!!

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I would like to echo an earlier sentiment of wanting to vomit.

I don’t care who’s side you are on. Steve’s, Jo’s, Santa Claus’s… the bottom line is, you don’t have to be a jerk about it when you are expressing your opinion. It doesn’t make people want to agree with you. Even if they DO agree with your over all argument, it strays people away from saying they are “with you” if only for the fact that you were so harsh towards the other side. Yelling rude comments at each other doesn’t win arguments. If it did Presidential debates would be a lot more interesting.

While from the moment I read the LexiBook’s pages I was on Jo’s side (I mean come on, I don’t even have my HP books with me in this State, in fact they are on the other side of the country than I am and yet I knew those were her words) I’ve never felt the need to be as harsh as the individuals who are being printed for all the world to see, and who are supposed to be respected.

I’m currently trudging through the transcripts of the trial (I’m about 1/2 way through day 2…)and its only become more clearer to me that if anything Steve has no defense while Jo is just damn lucky she’s with WB (would you want to be up against a WB lawyer? Cause they scare me). Every time RDR said he didn’t do something it seemed as though the WB lawyer could be like …ah ha! but look at this proof that I have with your signature on it! Do you not remember this?! To me… well that’s just being a killer lawyer. But it’s also a really good case.

It makes me sick to think that “respected” authors and individuals like Ken Jennings who many take as “one of the smartest men there are” (though I’m pretty darn good at Jeopardy! and I’m 21 so…) are still so cruel and ignorant about things.

If you’re going to write an opinion piece about a high profile case. That’s cool with me. But do the readers a favor and get all the facts before rushing to your computer and typing out words like “evil-witch”. Cause the internet is a powerful tool. And once it’s out there—- it will come back to bite you. Hard.

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...Did any of these people even read the details of the case? Cause this makes JK out as greedy AGAIN, and.. ugh. Forget it. rolls eyes

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Christopher Schiller (guy whose email is on Neil Gaiman’s blog) has interesting post discussing what makes a work “transformative”.

http://wise-old-sage.blog-city.com/gaiman_joint_authorship_and_transformative_works.htm

”... The question of transformative works is whether a truly derivative work—one that actually uses an original work as a basis for a new work—has transcended the influence of the original and established a presence and importance all its own, nearly independent of the original work. ,,, It becomes a truly independent work in the minds of the public.

”,,, Therefore it will be interesting to see how “transformative” the new book would be. My suspicion is that the buyers of such a book would be buying them with the intent to get a “Harry Potter” related tome which doesn’t bode well for the defendant.”

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oi temper temper Mr.card and im sorry your wromng Jo is in the right here and has already won the battle inthe court of public opinion. I love Ender’s game but i dun the suthor’s atitude. at this point SVA has so alienated the majority of HP fans he will sell very few copies if he does get to publish which he should not

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I just love how people who are well known think they are at liberty to give their views on things it’s likely they didn’t even research. All they said was that the Lexicon is ok as long as it does it’s cited properly and gives credit to Jo. Obviously, they couldn’t have researched this at all because the whole point of the case is that SVA/RDR didn’t do what they needed to in fairly publishing the Lexicon.

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I will NEVER ever read any of orson scott card’s books after he said that about Jo. He’s dead in my book. This trial makes me so angry sometimes. :[

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i just went in to my brother’s room to ask if i could rip up his orson scott card books. He said no lol.

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@ibelieveinnargles

You never heard about his books? Well, that´s not too important, I assume.

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Go JO! how dare these stupid people be so horrible!!!! I have made a top which i wear non stop(i wash it over night don’t worry!) which says ’ SUPPORT J.K.ROWLING the real H.P. author’! I’m glad neil gaiman seeems to be on her side! xxx

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@ibelieveinnargles and FreyaStorm

There is being a supportive fan and then there is being a fanatic. Fanatics give the HP fandom a really bad name. Just saying.

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Mollywobbles23 I just wanted to say I really respected your reply to OSC (don’t even want to say his full name) and his nasty rant. You did a great job pointing out where he was wrong in facts or over the line without descending to his horrible level. Well done. I agreed with you 100%.

I am still with Jo on this. The book simply is not transformative enough to stand and it makes me really sad that people don’t seem to see that and go for the hateful comments instead. It is a sad day when a person cannot even protect their work and draws nasty condemnation from those who have not looked at the facts. Jo does not sue every book coming out, just this one. She is right. It does not stand.

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Leaky I know this is news (sort of), but it literally made me feel sick to skim just the little bit I did. In the future if you are going to post something like this, can you make sure non of the neg comments are “before the cut.” I’d rather have remained ignorant.

Although to be honest, as far as I’m concerned this is no more valid than any other random blogger’s opinion. And far stupider than most.

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Just sayin’-Card’s a militant homophobe (yes, Orson. You are) and his words about a woman who ‘outed’ the sexuality of a popular character are to be taken with a grain of salt. Just nod and smile and recognize it for what it is-like I do with the Chinese who try to talk about Tibet. :P

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Try again with no strikeouts. ....Just sayin’…Card’s a militant homophobe (yes, Orson. You are) and his words about a woman who ‘outed’ the sexuality of a popular character are to be taken with a grain of salt. Just nod and smile and recognize it for what it is…like I do with the Chinese who try to talk about Tibet. :P

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There’s a really excellent definition of ‘transformative’ work in a link at the bottom of the copyright lawyer’s letter in the Neil Gaiman blog.

Regarding the copyright lawyer’s letter, my first thought was, never mind how much Neil Gaiman quotes from other work such as Kipling, his work is imaginative and original in its own right, so it’s just not the same thing as doing an A-Z index. So I think the argument in the letter is irrelevant to JKs case. The link at the end of the letter includes a definition of ‘transformative’ (as distinct from ‘derivative’): something that takes on an identity independent of the original from which it was derived. The example given is the Andy Warhol ‘Marilyn’ image. I’m glad someone has defined it in this way because that’s how I understand it.

IMHO (I’m not a lawyer though, but I am an academic), academic work such as critical analysis is something completely different from Transformative work because it’s scholarship and not artistic creation. So for me the Transformative argument shouldn’t even apply. But I’m not a lawyer, maybe it counts as the same thing in American law. I just don’t see it as the same thing, so I just can’t see HPL as transformative/creative work at all. Not to mention that I don’t even see it as academic scholarship either! I think it’s purely derivative.

I agree with the thoughts on NG blog that he or someone else? wrote, to the effect that a purely derivative work like HPL should get the author’s permission.

I’m not sure that the copyright lawyer’s letter was talking about HP or another case but anyway the references in it I found irrelevant. Shakespeare and King James bible were written 16th century and early 17th centuries, long before copyright law was even a glint in the milkman’s eye (it was born in 1710). JK Rowling is a living and still writing author so I don’t see why people keep bringing up long dead writers in their arguments! The idea of copyright to protect publishers (with the knock on effect of protecting and profiting the writers) was born because the spread of the printing press had begun to result in the widespread plundering of texts by pirate printers, sometimes even in the same year as publication of the original, which undercut the original creators and discouraged further creative work. So copyright in itself (even ignoring Fair Use) is not about stifling creativity at all, but it is about preventing pirates from stifling further creativity.

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I’m a big fan of the HP books, but I must say I agree a bit with Card. I wouldn’t go as far as him to call Rowling an evil witch, but hypocritic, yes definitely! If I’m not mistaken, it was Vander Ark that made the HP-time line on his HP-lexicon and it was JK Rowling herself that thought it was a perfect timeline, however she never planned to put some dates in her books, he did a great job. That same timeline is used by WB on the DVD’s as an extra feature. So now is my question: who is the one that makes the mistakes?

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“If I’m not mistaken, it was Vander Ark that made the HP-time line on his HP-lexicon and it was JK Rowling herself that thought it was a perfect timeline, however she never planned to put some dates in her books, he did a great job.”

Yes but her books are fiction, you don’t put exact dates in fiction, that would be completely anal and spoil their flow! Unless your fiction was in the form of a diary like ‘Dracula’.

You would put it in an encyclopedia though. I’d think it’d be pretty important. The question is, as JK created the fiction on which the timeline was built, when she does her own encyclopedia, doesn’t she have the right to include a timeline of her own? I’m not sure that WB had the right to use SVAs timeline, but has it been proven that they did copy it as opposed to creating their own? I don’t know because I’ve never seen either of them. Obviously if SVAs timeline was pretty accurate from the start then another timeline will look similar but that doesn’t prove it’s a copy, unless it was identical wording. It’s be like creating a timeline of some period in history; the end results of different people’s efforts will be largely the same, but phrased slightly differently and some more detailed than others.

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Everyone has a right to voice their opinion. Damn democracy. This really should be restricted to only Jo supporters having this right…

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I’m puzzled, why does TLC even bother to give homophobic creeps like OSC space on their front page?

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Thanks again to the Leaky Team for covering those comments on the case in trial. I am glad you do so.

In terms of Jungian psychology, JKR and SVA could be seen as pretty well matched, an animus driven woman vs an anima fixated man (no wonder they’ve got themselves entangled in a legal procedure).

Aside from Jungian psychology, intellectual property is an issue big corporations are pursuing strategically. Otoh, authors and journos, well: writers, will be sensitive about anything related to free speech – they have to be. And fair use relies on free speech, as for instance the admiringly never tiring Elizabeth pointed out to the legally more experienced as well as to the legally less experienced here. To put in a cautious way, WB should have expected that, when giving JKR a prominent place in their procedural tactics (a place she took), at least some of their performance before court would backfire not on them but on JKR (no, I must not indulge in remarks about senior tutor Johnson and her expert opinion).

Although JKR said she had nothing with censorship in mind, well, some in the audience would or could not take her by those very words. What she said about “then we don’t own our work any more” (sorry, don’t remember the exact wording), sounded incredibly pompous and condescending; that sentence in the pluralis majestatis seemed more suitable to a speech before the House of Lords than in a Manhattan courthouse. Alas ‘t was a Manhattan courthouse, and so, her peer audience have been all the other famous and infamous (sic!) writers wanting to have their say as well. Simply because it is their job.

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I forgot to point out that with a timeline from history, noone owns the history itself so it’s a free for all, facts are in ‘public domain’. The HPL timeline is still based on a creative work that is owned by someone else and isn’t in the public domain. Although IMO the timeline is one of the more original bits of SVAs work and if it is true that WB took it then they were being cheeky. On the other hand, doesn’t SVA acknowledge WB as copyright owners on his website?? I can’t remember…

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Card’s vitriol has little to do with the court case or the legalities of copyright as he got practically all of those wrong. (He doesn’t even know who the defendant is, for goodness sake!) He has used this case deceitfully, to launch a vicious attack on JKR’s character. He has neither right nor reason to do this, and frankly, it makes him sound like a deranged mysoginist with a hang up about money.

For a man who claims to care about morality, he surely displays a complete lack of it in his shameful public vilification of JKR. Personally, I think he should withdraw his scandalous statements and issue a profound public apology to her, beg her forgiveness and offer 10% of all his worldy wealth to a charity of her choosing to show his contrition

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sorry, my post of 6.10 am should have followed immediately on from me previous one a few posts before. It doesn’t make sense otherwise!

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Steve Vander Ark must be very proud to be a devoted fan of Jo. Apart from lovingly publishing a book against her wishes, he now has great intellectuals speaking highly of Jo, honouring her with flowering descriptives such as Evil Witch and Thick with Hyprocracy. Wonderful. I salute you SVA, biggest fan of Jo. Can I have your autograph?

I think my dog has more intellect than this Orson whatshisname. Actually, I dont have a dog. In fact, I dont even have a goldfish. Mum, can I have a dog?

Boy, my sarcasm is on riot today, sorry folks. The 2nd paragraph had put me in a bad mood…

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Steve Vander Ark must be very proud to be a devoted fan of Jo. Apart from lovingly publishing a book against her wishes, he now has great intellectuals speaking highly of Jo, honouring her with flowering descriptives such as Evil Witch and Thick with Hyprocracy. Wonderful. I salute you SVA, biggest fan of Jo. Can I have your autograph?

I think my dog has more intellect than this Orson whatshisname. Actually, I dont have a dog. In fact, I dont even have a goldfish. Mum, can I have a dog?

Boy, my sarcasm is on riot today, sorry folks. The 2nd paragraph of the article had put me in a bad mood…

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OMG! How Mr. Orson can even say something like that about Jo!? He pissed me off! I agree that HP lexicon cant do any harm but if Jo doesn’t want it and she’s writing her own lexicon then people should support her. I’m with her!

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Mr. Card needs to get his nose out of her butt… sorry if that sounds a bit much, but honestly, he is so smug that he must like the smell of his own gas. this is A.S. bryantt, a author who has not come anywhere close to the sucess of even the first harry potter book on its own, nor has she won nearly as many awards as jo, attacking jo claiming her books are stupid and vapid and lack depth. oddly enough, thats one of the things leading critics state the harry potter books are filled with, but they rarely say the same about bryantt’s books.

there are so many writers who are so clearly jealous of writers who create phenomenom. it is a achivement to sell 1mil books, but it is a amazing achivement to sell 400mil books in ten years, and that those not happen unless the books are good enough to sell that many.

mr. card has no understanding of the case, and even worse, his attacks on jo contradict the court evidence.

his attacks were almost as bad as antony falzone’s attacks on jo stating she was demanding something of the court that no court has ever given, which is a lie, because mrs. cendelli and her team brought forward like 5+ cases to prove him wrong, cases which set precedence to support author rights, and are legally recored cases.

I respect neil gaiman, he states that he is not a lawyer, and he is commenting on what he feels. he isent pushing it downs readers throats saying he is right and they are wrong if they disagree. I would be curious to know what he says if he read through the lexicon, which is public due to being filed as a attachment to filing 52 on justia.

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His article intrigued me so I just spent a very long time reading the legal transcripts. I’m not a lawyer but I think that JKR and the other plantifs have a case.

At least if logic is used. (I know were are talking about US law here LOL).

I write fan fiction and I have written published orrigional works also. I am very aware of copyright. and I am just a very tiny minnow in a huge Universal sea.

Grandma

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Well to Mr Scott Orson Card (who I have never heard of by the way. He should really learn to sut his mouth. He’s clearly jealous by the sucess of Mrs Rowling and the phenonemon that his Harry Potter. What annoys me the most is that the author of this Lexicon who is clerly a Harry Potter fanatic is trying to beak J.K. Any other fan would clearly step aside and let Ms Rowling publish her own book of termonology and would anticipate its arrival eagerly.

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That’s right, anyone who disagrees with Jo is just jealous! Jo is right! Jo is always right! Praise Jo! Anything Jo wants she should get, because she’s Jo. We should fall down on our knees every night and thank God we have been permitted to read Jo’s works. God should be thanking Jo himself for putting these perfect books on the earth for we low, unworthy people to read. If Jo asked me to shoot myself in the head, I would do it. Because everyone must always do what Jo wants.

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Mr. Card’s statement is simply too harsh. To condemn Rowling for the act of suing ‘RDR Books’ is one thing, but to call her an “evil witch” is an utterly different thing.

Rowling has said she has no problem, whatsoever, with books criticizing and giving commentary on the Harry Potter series. She has a particular problem, however, with this specific book.

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1 The world of Harry Potter it’s her world and she needs to protect it. It really took a whole lot of time and consuming effort to make it.

2 “Jo” had already mentioned some time ago that she would make one herself.

3 She should had been respected in this matter and left to at least do hers first.

She should just go ahead and let everyone know that she is still making hers and the faithfull fans will wait for hers with passion and love of Harry and respect for her.

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I just hate how all of these people don’t know what they’re talking about, at all.

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This is really sad, how much bad press Jo is getting, even from her fellow author’s like Card.

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As i have it drummed into me every day at uni “you MUST CITE your source properly! If this is NOT done it is plagiarism! If this is not done your work will not be counted and you maybe removed from the university altogether.” (various lecturers). Surely this applys here too? A question, for i have missed the answer else where, why if it is all on the web avalible to anyone and everyone, does SVA want to make a hard copy of it to sell? or am i missing what the content of the book is?

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To English Ivy:

Well, dear, no one knows who you are at all, so why is anyone interested in hearing YOUR opinion? It’s called free speech.

And unless your a hypocrite, if you support JKR then you had better avoid ever using Cliff’s Notes.

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“Nothing prevents her from doing exactly that – annotating and explaining her own novels”

The problem is, Mr. Card, is that the HP Lexicon is NOT Harry Potter Annotated, Analyzed, or anything of that variation. Its Harry Potter Rearranged. Why don’t people check the facts before speaking out against Jo? How many of these ani-Jo crusaders have actually seen the Lexicon site???

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Rock Golf—Cliff notes (as well as Spark Notes) have a little section after each summary called “Commentary”. That is the little crucial thing lacking in Steve’s book that makes it illegal..

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I have not read ALL the comments. I don’t think it’s really necessary. Yes, I’m sure that there are “fine points” for ether side…HOWEVER: than you, first of all, to Kristin, for setting the record straight, right off. And for shauna for reiterating the fact that #1, first and formost…there WERE “little or no citations” in SVA’s work…and THAT’S the crux of JKR/WB’s case. Also, I aplaud davidenglish, for pointing out facts concerning other works. I also followed Star Trek…if anyone cares to notice, the Start Trek Concordance was publish BY BiJo Trimble and Coprighted to Paramount. Unlike SVA, they went about it the RIGHT way. No, Nunki. You don’t want to “go to Mr Card’s Blog” and “leave him a nasty comment so I can get banned”. I, myself, would find it a waste of time, energy and effort. Yes. it would be a “high honour to be banned from such a website.” It’s not worth it to give creedance to his saddly uninformed opinions. JMHO, guys. [and girls] nothing more…

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Quote from ‘aloyalsheep’ above,

“God should be thanking Jo himself for putting these perfect books on the earth for we low, unworthy people to read.”

“Low and unworthy” that sums you up perfectly my friend. What’s the point of spilling your vitriol all over a Harry Potter site? Are you hoping that we will suddenly turn against her because of your venomous attack on her? Most of us are not the gullible idiots you take us for. Every one has the right to guard their property, whether it is their house, car or intellect. I happen to think that making money off someone’s hard work is morally wrong. A lot of other posters here also seem to agree – it doesn’t make us Jo’s minions.

I am willing to let the courts decide the legalities of the case. The judge may decide to rule in favour of RDR books but he cannot make people actually buy the book. I, for one, will not be buying it – so, even if they win the case, they have lost it in my case, because I’m not going to be giving them any of my money. I’m sure millions more will be doing the same.

As for this Card fellow, I really don’t know what he thought he would achieve by this personal attack on Ms Rowling. If this isn’t a case of ill-disguised jealousy, I don’t know what it can be. Does it sound like anything else? No, it doesn’t. Jo’s philanthropic works guard her from the ‘greedy witch’ label he tried to vilify her with.

I will wait patiently until the ‘Scottish Book’ is published. In the meantime, there are thousands of good books to read out there, although from now on a certain author (or two) will not be getting any of my money.

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I am not being wise after the event but I said all along that Jo would suffer because of this very ill advised attempt to restrain the publication of tis book. It was using a sledgehammer to crack a nut, and she should have been better advised.

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Editor’s note: Someone asked why we included Mr. Card’s comments in our trial coverage. In the past, he has expressed himself to be an enthusiastic fan of the series, and has written about Harry Potter in his blog on multiple occasions (Google for past Leaky posts). He is an influential, successful writer – his Ender’s Game series won both Hugo and Nebula awards, and are highly regarded by a many readers and critics.

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Guys, Mr. Card is completely braindead about literature if he thinks he created the hero’s quest, fantasy, and the idea of a orphan with a destiny. these themes predate his career as a writer, and his very existance. so pigheaded of him to claim owernship of genre conventions. honestly, the authruian retellings by T.H. White… woah… card should sue his corpse for having a orphaned boy if i remeber correctly who is abused and misused have a destiny to rise up above his upbringing and become someone important. how dare other writers premeptively useing the same genre conventions Mr. card eventually used in his books…. HOW DARE THEY!!!

its easy to make people like they look the fool, they do all the hard work when they go out and attack people by claiming that they are the god of literature and anyone who dose anything similer, even though hundreds of writers that predate them have used similer conventions and themes, is in the wrong.

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I guess I just really am being silly, but does anyone else remember from English and Journalism classes a couple little things called quotation marks? Isn’t “citing your source” what this whole thing is really about—and the fact that the SVA book doesn’t do that properly? And how many times has Jo said that if they would rework that aspect of the publication she would give it her blessing? And I’m getting very, very tired of people standing on their soapboxes screaming about how evil Jo is because she happens to be successful and wealthy. Besides defending her own hard work and that of other authors, she’s defending the charity for whom she intends to send the proceeds from her “Scottish Book.” The charitable aspect of her goals seems to have been lost here. I guess that’s what happens when you spout off without doing your research.

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Oh yeah, I know someone brought this up before, but another thing that is very obnoxious of him is his, “evil witch,” comments, because not only are they the stuff of five year olds, but they are very, very, sexist. He wouldn’t have called Jo an evil witch if she was a guy, and he probably wouldn’t have made a stink about the case at all. The way he puts it, the moment a female author tries to stand up for herself and her work, she’s a nasty evil person. If, hypothetically, a well known guy author did the same thing, he would be protecting his rights. But lets say tomarrow, Mr. Card, that someone takes your Ender books, rearragges some names, publishes it as an encyclopedia, and makes money off of your work, then we will see who’s talking.

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Orson Scott Card is a bitter bitter man. It’s pretty sad but you can see right through his comments and tell he’s extremely jealous of the money Jo’s made. I read Ender’s game and while the story had substance his writing style was so damn dry! When someone copies 91% of your book WORD FOR WORD and publishes it then come talk to us!

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I appreciate that Leaky posted this story as part of their comprehensive coverage of the trial, but why did the editors of the Rhino Times (reallly???) feel Mr Card was a good person to write his article? His opinion doesn’t matter. Let’s hear from the lawyers, judges, etc.

And it is all very well for Mr Card and Mr Gaiman to say “tribute books exist; deal with it”, but as we know the argument here is that Mr Vander Ark DID NOT cite his sources or add new material. This makes me wonder: How would Mr Card and Mr Gaiman react to someone saying: “We are re-printing all of your books under another title, and oh, we’re giving all the money to someone else.”

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Most of these people just sound a teensy-weensy bit bitter about Jo and her success. Just wait till one of their books is embroiled in a case like this,then let’s see what they have to say…

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Orson Scott , You are a moron for supporting that poorly sited book of Lexicon’s. You are ALSO some things I can’t write here!

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Mr. Gaimen and Mr. Card really need to get a better understanding of the case before saying such things. It makes them look stupid and foolish otherwise. I’ve never read Mr. Card’s words, however I am quiet a fan of Mr. Gaimen’s works. I find it amusing and surprising that he is siding with SVA. Then again, he did have issues with WB awhile back. I’m not 100% sure, but I believe he had to sue them for using characters he created without his permission. I haven’t payed much attention to that case in awhile so I could be wrong. However there might be some, bitterness there.

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It does seem like they are slightly jealous of Jo which may be a misinterpretation on my side but calling someone an ’’evil witch’’ seems rather childish.

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What I don’t get is the amount of misinformation that is out there about the trial. It is amazing to me how many people think that Steve is the one on trial, when that isn’t the case. He was a witness. . . This and other facts are skewed and then people like Mr Card take these misinformed facts as truth. Gotta love the mainstream media sometimes.

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How about if he changed the title? Something like “HP Lexicon-My Opinion”?He can even state the old word “UNAUTHORIZED” .Joe is a gazillionare and I am sure she could come to some agreement. I didn’t see her attack all the many web sites( L.C. included) that gave her publicity through the years. I guess when you have tons of $$ you can battle with whomever you want. I find it hard to believe that Steve’s intention from the first words of HP were ” I am going to make a fortune off of this!” Just my two “sickles” worth. I read that in HP….I hope I don’t sued.LOL

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I guess I was also taken in by the media…

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I just wanted to add some praise for all those truly considerate people here who actually took the effort to read the broad coverage, to deal with the details, even read the court documents before offering an opinion. You, folks, are much more responsible writers than several of the self-acclaimed authors who felt they had to stab JKR in the back for trying to protect every (!) individual’s rights to her or his intellectual property.

Personally, I also felt extremely uncomfortable when I came across the sexist insults some of JKR’s fellow writers used to denounce her appeal. After all, even if they feel that they wouldn’t mind when somebody else were scanning their books in order to re-publish their contents to make a quick buck, why not concede her the right not to embrace plagiarism (as they claim they would?)? Wait, this is probably what this is all about: Has somebody ever tried to publish an unofficial “reference book” to Scott’s works, or is he not popular enough?

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I agree. How is all this stuff OK on the web and then it gets in print and JKR has a problem with it? Anyone read the article on msnbc about it? It referred to the websites as being ‘invisible horse thingys’ like in her books. You cant see them til they’re in print? It was pretty funny.

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Wow. And the thing is, I love Ender’s Game, Card’s signature novel.

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You know, I actually faced this kind of situation in real life a couple of years ago. I sat on a board of directors for an organization and according to outside individuals we weren’t doing enough for the organization and it’s direction. Our choices were called into question and were increasingly under the gun by employees. A newcomer to our board on his very first sitting started bashing us all for our inaction etc. Everyone else was shocked at such a diatribe from this person but I wasn’t about to let sleeping dogs lie. I told this man what had really gone on, that the very people who he thought he was defending were actually the root cause of the problem. After some heated argument and some swift explanations, this man quickly saw the error of his ways and became a true supporter of the board. It is the same as these people with their opinions. They have been sold a bill of goods in the media etc., have only a rudimentary understanding of the issues, and are coming out swinging. It is up to us, the fans, who have been sitting in this crap and know every nuance of the case from start to finish to set this people right. I do encourage everyone to hang in there, and know that it will all come out in the wash in the end.

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Sorry, I haven’t read all the comments yet, so I’m sure this has already been brought up.

Mr. Card, why would JKR have to pay Steve’s fees if he isn’t the one being sued? Oh, maybe it’s because Card hasn’t paid any attention whatsoever to the facts of this case, and there doesn’t even know who is on trial here. Whoops!

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NO ONE call’s Jo an evil witch or harry potter a cinderella story

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Wow my respect for Mr. Card just vanished, reading his comments. I bet if anyone cared to republish his work as an “Enderverse Lexicon” and sell it would be in for a fight—good thing for him no one DOES care that much, so he doesn’t have to bother.

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Would seem that Mr. Card is grossly uninformed about this law suit and is perhaps suffering from “writer’s envy”. However, he like a number of uninformed journalists is having his 15 minutes of fame. Too bad that he doesn’t know what he’s writing about.

@Mollywobbles23…...you go girl.

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This Orson whathisname is rather foolish to blog such a childish attack on Jo. If his Ender series is highly recommended, I would like to read them but I feel I wont enjoy them as much knowing in the back of my mind, the author’s lack of eloquence and sensibilities in his everyday speech. As for fans of both Ender and Potter, I feel for their frustration at Orson Whathisname’ unprovoked attack on JO.

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What some of those people said, like Mr.Card or w/e his name is~thats complete crap.

I bet some people are just too jealous that JKR has sold better and higher known books than them!!

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As much as I’m totally annoyed about how unnessisarly harsh some of this was, I loved the line, “Maybe you’re a Gilmore Girls fan who’d love to see an index annotating and explaining the show’s dense web of cultural references” by Ken Jennings, because I’m So one of those fans. Except, he’s kinda wrong, or has just never looked at a Gilmore girls DVD case before, becasue, excempting seasons 6 and7 when the orginal director/the show creater was gone, they all had little “Gilmoreism” booklets explaining all the pop culture references put out by the show creater (Amy Sherman-Palendino) and, well, Warner Brothers.

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I love HP, and I always will, but this is the one thing I do not agree with Jo on.

My father is a librarian, and he has published many times. He knows Orson Scott Card. Both know all about copyright laws. HP-Lexicon did nothing that violated Rowling’s copyright, no more than any other web site or author who wrote a book about Rowling’s work.

Even if it did, this is ridiculous that she’d try to sue the Lexicon for trying to publish an encyclopedia just because she was going to write an encyclopedia. I would think that hers would be far more detailed and far more accurate to the books, because she knows far more about the Harry Potter world than the Lexicon does.

So I see Card’s point of view here. Perhaps he was a little harsh, but he does have a good point about copyright.

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As much as I’m totally annoyed about how unnessisarly harsh some of this was, I loved the line, “Maybe you’re a Gilmore Girls fan who’d love to see an index annotating and explaining the show’s dense web of cultural references” by Ken Jennings, because I’m So one of those fans. Except, he’s kinda wrong, or has just never looked at a Gilmore girls DVD case before, becasue, excempting seasons 6 and7 when the orginal director/the show creater was gone, they all had little “Gilmoreism” booklets explaining all the pop culture references put out by the show creater (Amy Sherman-Palendino) and, well, Warner Brothers.

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I wonder what Stephen King has to say. I respect his thoughts and opinions as very honest and unbiased. He wrote a beautiful tribute to Jo’s Harry Potter series but not without honest criticisms either. For instance he thought Jo’s attempt to stifle story leaks went a bit too far by also suppressing pre-release book reviews. It was a fair comment but overall admires Jo’s work. So I would like to hear his thoughts as opposed to the shallow jealous ridden opinions of Terry Pratchett and Orson Whathisname. i was very very disappointed with Pratchett, as i enjoy his books.

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ginnymalfoy and Rich S, I like your comments very much! That’s why this opinion piece refers to her as a hypocrite and ethically and morally, I can see that point of view.I don’t think he’s jealous of her success, I think he’s genuinely appalled by her behavior. And if he’s a Harry Potter book fan, as Kristin’s post indicates, then I give him credit for being able to separate JKR the person from the wonderful books which he has enjoyed. All the opinions and comments in the world will not determine the outcome of the legal case, the judge will. But as WB and JKR continue to milk this mass marketed “cash cow ” called Harry Potter for all it’s worth with splitting one book into two movies, theme parks and traveling exhibitions…..I feel like the magic of it all is taken away. It’s been a great thing, but it’s ridiculous to me now. Just my opinion.

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It’s nice to see some sense be made about the trial on this website…God knows it isn’t coming from the crazed fanbase.

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Even if the book does eventually get published, who is going to buy it? Not the majority of HP fans who fiercely align themselves with Jo, not people who aren’t HP fans; possibly the newcomers to the fandom who want to know what’s what, but if the book is essentially what’s on the website, I can’t see why they’d bother buying it when they can get it for free online.

It seems to me that, regardless of whether Jo wins the trial, she has already won because this book will, as my book publishing professor says, “die a quiet little death” once it’s released.

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nunki- that OSC article is from a local paper/magazine type thing that he writes a regular column for.

you can comment, but either no one has or the comments are being deleted because the only thing up there now says “ouch!”

classy…

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Does anyone else get the sense that an awful lot of mediocre writers are hitching their cart to this anti-Jo bandwagon. Gee, i wonder if they could be trying to increase the market for their own books… Clearly, they haven’t done even a modicum of research into the case, and yet they are coming out against Jo in the strongest terms possible, as if they really care, as if they have some sort of personal stake in all this. What they care about is cozying up to us, a potentially huge market for them. But they have underestimated the Harry Potter fandom. Most of us support Jo based on the facts at hand—we’re readers, after all, and have acquainted ourselves with the court documents. I get that there is something archetypal about SVA’s “heroic struggle against the evil WB empire,” and as consumers of speculative fiction, this should naturally appeal to us. But most of the fans do not blindly and ignorantly support SVA simply because he is one of us, despite the surfeit of biased media coverage telling us otherwise.

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That’s just rude. Very rude. Jo Rowling might be in tears, and that damn guy doesn’t have a right to call her an evil witch, we all love Jo and no matter who wins the trial, we are still with Jo and we won’t go against her.

I feel that all that Steve Vander Ark is doing is taking her work and creating it into a unneeded encyclopedia, it’s unneeded because Jo Rowling is already making a encyclopedia and also because the book would only be for lazy readers, people who don’t want to read the whole adventure of Harry Potter.

I’d love to protest in front of the trial, because Steve Vander Ark doesn’t even know how fans feel right now, I think we should all form and protest, perhaps we can send in a letter, signed by the fans, that shows how we feel about Steve Vander Ark’s book. Clearly, the fans of Jo Rowling and Harry Potter don’t want this encyclopedia, so why publish it if people can read the damn encyclopedia through online? It doesn’t need to be a book, it’s already online, it’s already easier to find information through the online website, so why the Hell would someone waste their money to flip through the pages for information? The information is online, we don’t need to flip through a unneeded book for information. Also, what is the information for? We readers already know as much information as others.

It’s totally unneeded!

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Funny, I don’t have a sour taste in my mouth regarding Jo, but I now do with OSC. Shame since I love his books.

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Aside from the ‘evil witch’ comment, which is just in poor taste, I do completely agree with these authors and the others. If the only legal problem with the lexicon book is that there isn’t sufficient acknowledgement, then that is a problem easily rectified. The book is not a word-by-word copy of the Potter books because that would simply be…. the Potter books.

I love this series, almost obsessively so. (okay, completely obsessively so), and I’m very thankful to Rowling for creating it, but I have never heard of a popular author who in this day and age, did not have a reference book about their work. It just doesn’t happen. In fact, I’d think that an author would be insulted if people didn’t want a reference book of their works. Kind of like saying, here are the books, read them, but there’s nothing else to look for – they’re not important enough.

These three authors are not the only ones who are siding with the lexicon. I’ve only read one article that was on JK’s side on this – and yes, many of those on the lexicon’s side are fans of hers. It’s possible to be a fan and still disagree with her. It’s possible to disagree with her and not have an ulterior motive – like to make themselves look more important. I love my mom – she’s one of my best friends – doesn’t mean I don’t disagree with her or think she’s flat out wrong about things. To dismiss opposing arguments and opinions with such glib statements are rather childish.

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I think it’s completely unfair for someone like Mr. Card (who obviously doesn’t know very much about Jo Rowling) to make such ridiculous comments. I don’t know Jo Rowling personally, but I’d like to think that, for a fan, I know as much as possible about her and I have never understood her to be someone with a selfish or greedy attitude. Ms. Rowling is a hero of mine and I support her stand in this case completely.

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Sorry, guys. Fandom is probably going to hate me for this, but I think this guy has a point. Steve is not going to steal any money from Jo or her charity – what sort of fan dedicated enough to buy a fan-made Harry Potter encyclopedia isn’t going to buy Jo’s version, which will go into much more detail and have hundreds of extra facts?

Steve is just trying to help the fandom… sorry, but I think all the abuse he’s getting is totally unwarranted.

M’kay. Feel free to bash me now. =P

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“Does anyone else get the sense that an awful lot of mediocre writers are hitching their cart to this anti-Jo bandwagon.”

Oh yes! EVERY writer who DARES to disagree with JKR is mediocre.Think of Ursula Le Guin – an awful writer, really!

Until they praise her, it’s O.K., but in this case there’s great no, no, no! How could they not see us, so greatly enlightened, our best reasoning!

I hope SVA will win.

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@ daughter of librarians

The lexicon is an infringement of JKR work. Steve hardly puts in any new information. He is merely repeating stuff already written in the HP books, but in a different order and paraphrased. How can it not be an infringement. And that’s the reason why JKR is suing the lexicon. Not because she wants to write her own encyclopaedia (that would indeed be ridiculous since you can’t copyright an idea) but because somebody has the audacity to put his name on JKR work. When you read the lexicon, you will read JKR and not SVA. The difference with other reference guides is, that when you take away all the JKR stuff, they still have some contents left. The lexicon however will be nothing more than some incoherent phrases. How much fun and useful the lexicon is, it does not intend to sell own work, (also different from other guides) it intends to sell Jo’s work. SVA did not came up with Harry potter, sectumsempra, Dexter Fortescue or any of the entries mentioned in the lexicon but JKR did. Yet he’s trying to sell those specific contents of HP. And that’s what Jo, quit understandable, is objecting to. Whether SVA meant to or not, in a way he’s stealing JKR’s work.

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Jo should win. ther is no question. she worked for 17 years on these books and deserves all the credit for them. Steve is way out of line with this and shouldnt get away with it.

And ya, this does seem a little harsh.

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From the way Mr. Card speaks of this issue, he seems to believe that the law is absolute. Ok, as much as 99% of us wishes it will never happen (include me in that 99% too), RDR might be able to wriggle through the loopholes of fair use and publish the encyclopedia _.

BUT!!! The law isn’t absolute-especially with copyright, fair use and so forth! This court case is another reason why there needs to be additional tweaking to the current copyright laws, and there can’t be change without standing up and doing something about it. For doing just that, Mrs. Rowling is a winner no matter what-in my eyes at least.

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The fact that Jo is just now having a problem with the Lexicon now that it will be published and sold for profit is what makes her seem greedy and selfish. Granted it makes Steve seem that way too. But how can Jo praise it on the web and now condemn it? Doesnt make sense to me.

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100% agree with Card.

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OK, Mister Card, “people who hear about this…will have a sour taste in their mouth about you from now on”, because everybody will see what a selfish small person you are, full of prejudice, who completely missing the whole point wants to show himself better and cleverer than another person, stupidly putting his ego above common sense. Good luck.

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“Sorry, guys. Fandom is probably going to hate me for this, but I think this guy has a point. Steve is not going to steal any money from Jo or her charity – what sort of fan dedicated enough to buy a fan-made Harry Potter encyclopedia isn’t going to buy Jo’s version, which will go into much more detail and have hundreds of extra facts?

Steve is just trying to help the fandom… sorry, but I think all the abuse he’s getting is totally unwarranted.

M’kay. Feel free to bash me now. =P”

Posted by CrystalP734 on April 26, 2008 @ 12:22 PM

I’m not going to bash you, but I will disagree and here’s why: Jo has the right to protect her copyright and she feels that the Lexibook is incredibly infringing. When she gave that fansite award to it, it was much different than it is now. But, even the website has essays, where the Lexibook does not. Also, Jo has said, under oath, that she basically gave the fansite award to the Lexicon as an “A for effort.” It was not an invitation or permission to publish it and profit from it.

Also, I don’t think the Lexibook will do much harm NOW, with this whole mess. But, at the time of the lawsuit (which was done to prevent it being published in November before they had a chance to see the manuscript, which they had requested a couple of times and never received). It was a necessary thing to ensure the protection of her copyright. With RDR’s evasive tactics, they became suspicious that maybe it’s really infringing and that’s why they sued. It could have all been handled outside of the courtroom had RDR just cooperated. If it had gone ahead with publishing, they could still stop more printing; it’s beend done before. Anyway, it was about it’s POTENTIAL market harm and it does have that potential.

As for the “abuse” that Steve is getting: I see mostly people showing anger and disappointment in him. We thought he was better than saying Jo was making a “power grab” and claiming he knows what’s the best for the fandom, even though a good majority of the fandom is on Jo’s side in this. Some people have gone overboard. I don’t think SVA acted maliciously, but he does act arrogantly about this whole thing. It’s a mid-life crisis combined with a powertrip.

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Here, here mollywobbles23! I second the motion!

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Okay… If you go get your ‘Harry Potter & The Goblet Of Fire’ copy, And turn to page 360, Then, about have-way down the page, Find where Karkaroff gives harry a four, then find where Ron is yelling at Karkaroff….That’s what I’d say to Mr. Card!

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Oh, and LOL @ the fact that Card’s blog still only has one comment, though I know at least three people from Leaky have commented and one of them (DaisyRenee’s) has no reason not to go through.

Who’s the coward? Not Jo, certainly.

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Whatever people’s opinions of the case, it is very unprofessional and childish to make personal attacks on JK, as Card did. They may disagree with her take on the case, but to think that a legal opinion reflects on her character is ridiculous. She is doing this because she legitimately feels that the book violates fair use, not because she is selfish, wants to make more money or wants to prevent all companion books from being made.

Perhaps some of these commentators should look more closely at the facts of the case before flinging around personal insults.

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Finally, someone comes out with the truth. JK Rowling is nothing more than a greedy, megalomaniac and overly sensitive fop. I used to follow everything about Harry Potter and I used to revel in it. Now, it has been ruined by Ms. Rowling and she will lose her “case”.

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@ crookshanks

“The lexicon is an infringement of JKR work. Steve hardly puts in any new information. He is merely repeating stuff already written in the HP books, but in a different order and paraphrased. How can it not be an infringement. And that’s the reason why JKR is suing the lexicon.”

Dear Crookshanks

The lexicons and encyclopedias are NOT books into you “put any new informations” (created by your own mind, that is). That’s not their nature and sense. They should EXACTLY “paraphrase, ensure different order and repeat stuff, that was already written”. By adding something creative, new into them you’re falsificating and deforming the reality, they’re discrebing (in our case: the world of HP). The Lexicon/encyklopedia should be drily, in matter-of-fact way and ABSOLUTELY FAITHFUL to the primare source.

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What a jerk Jo did an AMAZING job on her books why the hell should some so-called fan be allowed to profit from copying her idea JO YOU DESERVE TO WIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Those articles are completely ignorant. It seemed like the authors had no idea what the case was about- all they saw was “powerhouse” Jo going after a small website. The whole point of this case is that the book IS NOT a commentary or review. It’s ridiculous how they are making Jo seem like a fool and a gold digger to the public.

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Some of the people who are in support of RDR need to please stop whipping out the “you all agree with Jo because you think she’s God” argument. Yeah, some of the people siding with Jo are only doing so because they “worship” her, I won’t disagree with that. But from what I’ve been reading in the comments, a majority of Jo supporters have plenty of valid points to back up their support, just as the other side does as well.

Besides, saying that you hope RDR wins just to stick it to all the Jo worshipers out there? Great way to fight fire with fire. Instead of using that as an excuse to send a little shout-out to RDR/SVA, post valid reasons for your support like many of the other people here are doing.

Anyway, regardless of what side you agree with, Card’s article is incredibly bitter and totally devoid of any class. His childish insults are compeltely uncalled for, and he should be ashamed. Also, there was absolutely no need for him to throw in the bit about homosexuality at the end of the article. The “Dumbledore is gay” controversy (which in my opinion should have never been a controversy in the first place) has been done with for what, half a year now? Get over it, Mr. Card, it’s been beaten to death and doesn’t relate to this court case at all. And using gay characters for the sake of saying that you use them does nothing to cover up your homophobia, anyway. Also, you call Jo a hypocrite, but I find it incredibly hypocritical that you post a mean-spirited article on a famous figure and then keep a filter on all of your comments. Nice.

And Ken Jennings? Yes, everyone has a right to express their opinion, and granted Jennings’s post is more professional than Card, but where does he fit into this at all? At least Card has some kind of connection to Harry Potter through the Great Snape Debate commentary. Please, Mr. Jennings, your fifteen minutes of fame was over a long time ago. Place your hands above your head and step away from the limelight.

His statement that he hasn’t read the book version of the lexicon explains it all—yet another random and misinformed person who feels the need to throw out jabs about overzealous fans and Jo crying on the stand. Yes, we should all be cheering on RDR because the Jeopardy guy saw some comments posted here on Leaky by obsessive fans and read those silly mainstream articles that focused on Jo crying. SIGH. Why does it feel like all these blog opinions are totally missing the point of the case? It has nothing to do with what you think of Jo or Steve as people, how big a fan you are, who cried on the stand, or whatever other stupid little detail the mainstream media can pull out of it.

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Don’t worry about it people. Just more jealous authors who don’t understand Jo or her fandom, or have any idea just how amazingly supportive Jo has been towards the fandom and fanworks in the past. One book takes too much for monetary gain, and suddenly she is painted as an evil witch for trying to stop it.

I’d like to see what Anne Rice thinks of Orson Scott Card’s idea that anyone is free to write about your work. Ms. Rice is vehemently against fanfiction, and she’s far from the only author that has completely (and successfully) disallowed fanfiction. Mr. Card is, forgive me, an idiot.

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You have completely missed the point of this case. Vander Ark’s book is neither a commentary nor a review, but quoting paragraphs and sentences from the books and not labeling them as JK Rowling’s words, and instead as his own brainchild. Your article reeked of ignorance- and perhaps, jealousy of her success- as you quoted her so called “cinderella story” with mockery. Shame on you! Everything in your article- from your mentions of Dumbledore’s homosexuality, Rowling’s wealth, etc.- was poorly thought out and, in my opinion, plain stupid.

‘Once you publish fiction, Ms. Rowling, anybody is free to write about it, to comment on it, and to quote liberally from it, as long as the source is cited.’

The above quote proves my point. The Lexicon encyclopedia DOES NOT cite Jo, and it DOES NOT review or comment on Harry Potter. It has no personal “flavor” to it- when Jo writes her own encyclopedia, it will include new “tibits” of information about the characters, of which we have never read before.

In short, I find you to be an idiot. As you yourself said, a pretentious, puffed up jerk.

^ thats what I wrote to Card. His article was ridiculous- although, I admit, the last sentence of my post was immature, but as ‘i can has sanity?’ said perfectly, every blog and article written seems to be missing the point of this case, and instead manage to make a mockery of Jo.

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Have these people even followed the trial thoroughly? If they did, they would know that the whole point is that RDR/SVA didn’t cite Jo or provide commentary. Don’t make such harsh statements like that unless you have all the facts. These comments seemed unnecessary and down right mean.

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I can’t begin to pretend that by reading a transcript of the trial, and the media articles/opinion pieces/comments about it, I now have the background, expertise and knowledge of copyright law needed to judge the case like many of you seem to have aquired. This guy wrote a great opinion piece, and I , a Harry Potter fan, see a lot of truth in it.

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I am so neutral on this case but Card’s comments were just over the top. It’s his right to express them but he clearly doesn’t know anything about the case because his arguments are what the case is all about lol.

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@ Fatfriar “The lexicons and encyclopedias are NOT books into you “put any new informations” (created by your own mind, that is). That’s not their nature and sense. They should EXACTLY “paraphrase, ensure different order and repeat stuff, that was already written”. By adding something creative, new into them you’re falsificating and deforming the reality, they’re discrebing (in our case: the world of HP). The Lexicon/encyklopedia should be drily, in matter-of-fact way and ABSOLUTELY FAITHFUL to the primare source.”

Whether the lexicon tries to be absolutely faithful to the primary source or not, it won’t conceal the fact that it’s a copyright infringement. If anything I would like to think when one is trying to stay as close to the books as possible, it only indicates you’ll be infringing on JKR copyright more and more.

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“Whether the lexicon tries to be absolutely faithful to the primary source or not, it won’t conceal the fact that it’s a copyright infringement. If anything I would like to think when one is trying to stay as close to the books as possible, it only indicates you’ll be infringing on JKR copyright more and more.”

That will be judged by Mr. Patterson.

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It seems like Neil Gaiman is the only one who has any sort of handle on this.

Yes, everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but, really, that’s only true if they’re properly informed. If you’re going to express opinions as strongly as, for instance, Mr. Card does, you should really make sure that you have all your facts straight first.

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I read the full of Orson Scott Cards article and he says that JK Rowling took ideas from his book just because in his book theres a bit of flying and that theres an old legend who helps ender out (i have read Enders Game) and that he grew up with parents who treated him differently or something like that but you could compare that to other strories like Annie who is an orphan so that must mean that JK Rowling took that idea from annie as well!! UGGG he also goes on in his full article that JK Rowling took names from other people like muggle but she might have read that book along time ago and that word just happened to be in her mind does that mean that shes a fraud because she took some names out of greek mythology!!! NOO!

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people who are dising Jk Rowling on a HArry Potter website that claim to be a Harry Potter fan.. how does that even go together?

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Until a major news organization covers ALL the aspects of this case, people - for whatever reason: fair or foul. informed or uninformed. - will have misconceptions about what this case is all about.

Judge Patterson is right that “with imagination” this case could be settled and should be settled. IMHO, the longer this drags out, the more harm will come to Jo and SVA. (I don’t give a damn about RDR, Stanford or WB)

So many of the arguments that have to be made in a court case sound ridiculous out of context.

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stupid crossout thing.

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Orson Scott Cards seems to think he holds the patent on the Monomyth style, i guess he must be a few thousand years older than he actually looks. Jo took names from many things, adapted many others from Mythology.

I too studied Classics at Exeter (though not French) and often find myself taking names from Greek and Roman mythology (plus plenty of other areas) for my writing. Lets not forget that she also spends many days walking round old graveyards, looking at memorials for different names. Perhaps SVA could actually put some original thought into writing his own book, probably not.

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Is Orson Scott Card a Harmonian? I’ve seen just the same sort of bitter nonsense on Harmony forums – right down to the “she’s a meanie who’s going to alienate all of her fans and no one will buy any more of her books.” I swear, I’ve seen H/Hr shippers say the EXACT same thing. Maybe he’s plagiarizing them?

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finishing my thought -

So many of the arguments that have to be made in a court case sound ridiculous out of context.

Making ready-ammunition for someone who seems to have an agenda, whether it’s: I’m jealous; I didn’t like the ending of the series; I don’t like Jo because she’s successful; I’m not a fan of the books anyway; Etc.

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My favorite post so far in these comments was the one where the poster first criticized others for namecalling (ok, valid criticism), then also goes on to accuse others of being “wannabe lawyers.”

OK, so if I suspend my emotions about the case and refrain from namecalling and try to make an intelligent argument based on the legal facts of the case, I am a “wannabe lawyer”? (hmmm, isn’t that namecalling?mmmm, that’s yummy hypocrisy…)

So, pray tell, is there any comment we CAN make that you wouldn’t find reason to criticize?

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Sorry to be such a comment hog here, but I get so angry thinking of what Jo has gone through through recently. By all rights, this should have been a time for her to enjoy her triumph and decompress and start processing the whole experience.

Although I believe Jo/WB have a stronger case than RDR, I also agree with someone upthread that this never should have gone to trial and that Jo was ill-advised. As difficult as it was/is to deal with an ass like RDR, Jo’s lawyers should have found a way.

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As for OSC’s and Ken Jennings’ arguments on the case, I think TLC does an excellent job of pointing out where their legal arguments have been contested by JKR/WB in court, so I’m not going to bother. I just wish TLC could actually have quoted relevant excerpts from the transcripts instead of linking to the transcripts as a whole.

Maybe I will go through the transcripts and extract relevant quotes myself and post them in the comment to OSC’s opinion piece, although it sounds like the comments are being supressed so perhaps I won’t bother. Anyway, why are the comments being supressed on an article that is arguing in favor of the right to comment? Ironic.

Gaiman seems to have at least a partially open mind about the issues, and after reading OSC and Jennings, I appreciate Gaiman. OSC and Jennings basically re-state the defense’s arguments while omitting JKR/WB’s arguments (then in the case of OSC go on to make prolific personal attacks that are totally unrelated to the legal issues).

It just worries me that the general public is only seeing RDR’s arguments in the press, which of course is going to lead to bias. I mean, I am biased for JKR, but I can at least eloquently state the opposition’s case and do so whenever I make an argument for JKR/WB.

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Is it just me or is every other teen fantasy/ sci-fi writer taking credit for Harry Potter. Maybe Card was being sarcastic when he said Harry Potter mirrored Ender’s Game, but he still said it. I hope he was being sarcastic, because Harry Potter is nothing like Ender’s Game.

I don’t understand why alot of fantasy writers continue to claim that HP is unoriginal. It is a shame that Card feels it is nessecary to compare his compelling Ender’s Game with the equally compelling Harry Potter. His book is fascinating and he needs to be above petty comparisons and accusations. I wonder when we will hear from Jane Yolen. She surely hates HP enough to put out a public opinion. But she might be to busy recycling folk tales to up her book count. I don’t think these authors understand what HP is, or what JKR is going through. She is the first author to reach a billion dollars off of a book. Even Steven King is not on Forbes Richest list.

Card, did make a good point about authors taking things and borrowing from other authors. The fact is there is maybe only 36 storylines when you think about it. If I wrote a book about a young boy who has an elderly guide that gives him advice that influences to adult hood. Card’s Ender’s Game would not be the only story about that. Card even admits taking a word from Ursula K. la Guin. Thats fine for him, it would not be worthwhile for la Guin to pursue that. But in JKR’s case it would be extremly profitable for the authors that claim she borrowed form them to pursue. That is why she is covering all bases. Look at the Nancy Stouffer lawsuit, she could never prove JKR had access to those books and she even fabricated evidence. Also the lawsuit by the Wyrd Sisters an obscure band that borrowed their name from Shakespeare but suddenly has it copyrighted and wants compensation from WB. WB even offered them money to avoid those stupid claims, but they did not take it because a billion dollar industry like HP should offer them more.

I have said since the beginning of this trail, that the threat the lexicon poses is in the future and not now. When the Scottish book comes out RDR would be suing claiming plagarism and copyright infringement. JKR expressed these concerns in the trail and Steve’s continued claims to the Hogwarts timeline makes the threat a reality.

IMHO, this all really boils down to jealosy and regret. Card’s Ender’s Game has had a movie in the works for years, but it has never materialized. Maybe he feels it would be just as succesful as HP but has never got the chance. I am just tired of people bashing HP and claiming all kinds of things about its writer not being original, its cultural snobbery. A cultural snob claims everything popular is trash because it steals this and that, and this book is so much better. But its not, I like Ender’s Game but not enough to read the other books in the saga, because unlike Ender’s Game they suck.

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I have to say that I think the point is being missed. SVA was obviously worried because he had a clause added to his contract stating that the publisher would pay any legal fees. Anyone so worried about things that he needs to add a clause like that to his contract ought to just trust his instincts and NOT write the book.

Even if (heaven forbid) that JKR and WB lose this suit, I would never buy the book after all of this bs that has occurred. I have no more respect for SVA, which is sad since I used to think he was really cool. I won’t even visit the Lexicon website any longer, which is a shame since I did think it was a great website.

JKR has a right to sue for copyright infringement. It is up to the judge to decide the merits of the case, I just hope the judge supports JKR/WB.

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I hope they comment on this on PotterCast.

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lolo wrote: “The fact that Jo is just now having a problem with the Lexicon now that it will be published and sold for profit is what makes her seem greedy and selfish. Granted it makes Steve seem that way too. But how can Jo praise it on the web and now condemn it? Doesnt make sense to me.”

Jo has said that she is trying to protect the interests of other writers, and I can see that. By allowing this book (which is 91% material directly lifted from Jo’s books—not paraphrased or commenting on, but word for word) she is fighting the fight for less wealthy authors who may have the same thing done to their work down the line.

The difference between the website and a printed book is that NO ONE was making money out of the website and the deterrent to wholesale plagiarism is that very few people are obsessed enough of have the time to copy out books they will receive no financial gain for.

By Mr Vander Ark and RDR seeking to re-publish Jo’s books without her permission, they will be setting a precedent that could financially ruin other authors.

Authors make money from their ideas, talent and hard work. To take the product of that hard work and claim it as your own is stealing.

Jo is not greedy to seek to prevent these people from stealing what is rightfully hers. I have seen some comments here that were to the effect that she has enough money, let her share some of it. As far as I know, the US (where this lawsuit is taking place) is NOT a communist state and therefore that kind of argument does not apply.

Jo does give a lot of maoney to charity, which is certainly to her credit, but even if she didn’t, she lives and works in a capitalistic society and she is not obliged to let other people steal her work in order to “share the wealth”.

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‘Card has written that an increase in crime in USA of the 1970s and 1980s “might well have been the result” of what he calls “the New Morality and the Pill” because they may have increased the number of babies born to “the people with poor impulse control” who are “most likely to be irresponsible parents.”’

Taken from a CITED reference on Orson Scott Card’s Wikipedia page… anybody who justifies these kind of opinions, doesn’t amount to much in my book

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Ouch, I have to admit that Mr. Card sounds really nasty in what was posted here in leaky, but have you guys read the entire comment? so yeah he’s kinda harsh there too, but he does have a point, don’t get me wrong, I LOVE JK, and Harry Potter, but Mr. Card has a very balid point, and JK is being really harsh with lexicon, the book was probably goin to go on sell, and do good, not great but good, and when JK published her own book, it would be a bestseller, and now it’s going to be very different, you’ll see. Now don’t hate me, I’m just saying what’s on my mind

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Have any of these detractors ever spawned a franchise? Hmmm… I don’t think any “unofficial” lexicon will ever come close to one written by JKR herself. I was patient enough to wait for all seven books in the series – I can wait for whatever JKR writes next. Writing – and I mean real writing and not just the “cut and paste” method – takes time. Any real writer knows that.

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Bleh. :-(

I don’t like all this conflict and negativity. What can I say, I’m a wuss.

Do you suppose Warner Brothers are waiting for the suit to be settled before they give us Half-Blood Prince info?

::longs for pictures and trailer news::

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Boy am I glad that Scott Card’s screed went up around the same time mine did! I’ve gotten off comparatively lightly here as a result.

Since the only substantive comments here about my piece have been along the lines of “That Jeopardy! guy? Uh, who cares what he thinks?”, I’ll take a shot at answering that.

I’ve been interested in the RDR case from the beginning—as a big HP fan (and occasional leaky-cauldron reader, by the way) but also since I’ve long been interested in transformative copyright and related issues. One of the first posts on my blog in 2004 was a (WAY too long!) analysis of Castle Rock v. Carol, which precedent will likely figure into the judge’s RDR decision.

I’m also a (best-selling, he said modestly) writer now, and felt informed enough about the RDR case that I thought it was worth a quick blog post. I mean, all of you saw fit to publish your opinions on the Internet, right? You’re all intellectual-property lawyers, then? When I do the same, I’d expect arguments a little more substantive than “Who asked you, game show boy?”

By the way, I’ve read the entire transcripts and I’m still strongly inclined to go with RDR here. That has nothing to do with whether Vander Ark or Rowling are better writers (no contest there), nicer people to puppies (who cares?), etc. It’s strictly a copyright issue. The Lexicon seems like a textbook example of a kind of book that’s been common and accepted for decades, especially in academia, and I’d like legal precedent not to keep chipping away at it.

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Just posting here on Leaky what I just submitted to be posted to Mr. Card’s comment section. Considering that, despite numerous posters here saying they have sent in comments as well, the only comment currently showing merely says “ouch”, I’m guessing that my own post won’t make the cut, either. I just had to say something, though, I was too incensed. Just so that it wasn’t an entire waste of energy, though, I’d like to post it on a site that isn’t afraid of letting viewers express their opinions:

“It is my opinion that you are being rather hypocritical about Ms. Rowling being a coward, when you and your staff don’t post responses that refute what you’ve posted here. It is also my opinion that you come across as either uninformed or misinformed in regards to this case. I’ve been following this case rather closely (my husband says obsessively), and, while I am very much a fan of Ms. Rowling, I think that I have maintained an open mind to both sides so that I could form an unbiased view. After reading the transcripts of the trial, reviewing the manuscript of the Lexicon book, and reading every other document I have come across in regards to the case, it is my opinion that JKR and WB are in the right here. It would take far too long to refute what you say point-by-point, as I disagree with pretty much everything, so I will instead focus on one part that particularly rankled. You called JKR greedy in your article, but I fail to see how you come to that conclusion, unless it is your opinion that all supremely wealthy individuals are greedy? For she has repeatedly stated during this trial that she is not suing RDR for monetary gain, as she’s well aware that she has plenty of money- in fact the only monetary damage she is concerned about is that if this Lexicon book is published, it will give consumers virtually no reason to purchase her own companion books (Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them & Quidditch Through the Ages), whose proceeds are given to the Comic Relief charity. Likewise, she has expressed concern that this Lexicon would cause consumers to not purchase her own encyclopedia, when she intends to again donate all royal ties to a charity. She has also stated that, should she and WB win this lawsuit, she will donate all financial damages paid by RDR to charity. While I agree that she has no legal legs to stand on in regards to the possible-future-encyclopedia bit, I certainly think it is admirable that she intends to spend the time and energy writing such an exhaustive book in order to raise money for charity. So, forgive me, I fail to see how anything related to this case makes her greedy. Also, as a side, you erroneously state that Mr. Vander Ark has made no money from working on the Lexicon website. He in fact told the court that he has made some profits from advertisers, particularly Google. While it may not be a substantial amount, I believe it was said to be about $7,000. I’m just pointing this example out, as you make quite a few mistatements in this article that caused me to file it as “uninformed or misinformed”. I hope you make a visit to the Great and Powerful Oz yourself, for the courage to not censor disagreeing viewpoints on your personal webpage.”

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@Ken Jennings

Mr. Jennings with all due respect this site also includes all the court documents and a good amount of the proposed Lexicon. Yes, there are a lot of “we love Jo” comments however, for the most part a great many of the comments made here have been intelligent and well researched, far more informed that what has appeared in the media.

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Orson Scott Card is just jelous. He is jelous of the fact that J.K. Rowling writes one series and it becomes the most famous of all time. After such unjust and harsh comments I will have a very hard time reading Orson Scott Card’s books with out distain. I do agree with Mr. Jennings when he states that there were hundreds of companion books to series like The Lord of the Ring and Star Trek, but if you look at those books they do not usually use the exact language exactly. Using A Tolkien’s Beasary for an example, one can find no lenghty exact quotes to describe something. Instead it is all a compendium of facts (usually dates and habits of the thing in question) taken from the book but not copied. I also think that these should be seperated because there is no encyclopedia by the author in either Star Trek, Star Wars, or The Lord of the Rings, that fact that J.K. Rowling is planning to write an enclycopiedia herself should be reason enough to side with her. LONG LIVE JO

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@Ken Jennings

I do agree with you that this is “strictly a copyright issue.” I don’t mind the idea that SVA is publishing a Lexicon book. The problem is that he uses JKR’s exact words throughout nearly the entire book and hardly adds anything original. He doesn’t just mention something and then explain it. He takes it straight from JKR’s books. Everything in his book can be found in the Harry Potter books. Even worse, he doesn’t properly cite when he does directly quote JKR’s work. You would think that a librarian would know better. Apparently he did, because in his contract with RDR there was a stipulation about how he wouldn’t be involved in any lawsuits. He suspected this would happen even he knew that what he was doing was wrong. JKR has allowed many other Harry Potter reference books to be published. The difference is that those books actually added some original commentary to her work.

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“The Lexicon seems like a textbook example of a kind of book that’s been common and accepted for decades, especially in academia, and I’d like legal precedent not to keep chipping away at it.”

Posted by Ken Jennings on April 26, 2008 @ 04:10 PM

I appreciate that you have read the transcripts, but part of the transcripts that stood out the most to me was that the defense could not produce a single example of a book that took as much as or more than the Lexicon, so in my opinion the trial showed that the Lexicon is not a textbook example.

As such, I believe that this case doesn’t chip away at accepted fair use precedent, it chips away at accepted copyright protections.

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A reason why the lexicon does NOT violate JKR’s copyright on her encyclopedia:

If Rowling had written, published, and released her encyclopedia, then the lexicon would infringe her rights, and she would have every right and reason to file a law suit.

But no such encyclopedia is in print yet. All the lexicon did was write a book documenting J.K. Rowling’s books, which is perfectly legal, and which many other people have done. Did she sue them as well? No.

The issue isn’t the HP series. The issue is Rowling’s encyclopedia. That is where the copyright comes into question, but since Rowling’s encyclopedia isn’t even finished, has not been edited, certainly hasn’t been published and surely tells us a lot more about the HP world than Vander Ark’s encyclopedia will, then there has been no violation.

Think about this before you take sides, people.

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This is a good one.

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“I appreciate that you have read the transcripts, but part of the transcripts that stood out the most to me was that the defense could not produce a single example of a book that took as much as or more than the Lexicon, so in my opinion the trial showed that the Lexicon is not a textbook example.”

Then the defense is an ass. :) I haven’t owned a copy in decades but I believe Robert Foster’s Complete Guide to Middle Earth takes a comparable amount. I believe Bjo Trimble’s Star Trek Concordance does as well.

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Mr. Scott Card does make some valid points, although I think his personal attacks on Jo’s character are totally out of line. Its a shame that everyone seems to “pick a side” in this case, and therefore lose respect toward the other party. I see it on both sides. Lexicon supporters bash Jo, while JKR supporter bash Steve Vander Ark. Its so sad to see this happening to such a wonderful fandom!

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I have to agree with Athena….I would buy JKR’s book way before anyone elses.Afterall she can create any sub-story (plot-twist) she wants now. I hope she comes up with some good ones.

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@ Athena

I think directly copying from, not adding anything original to, and then failing to properly cite from JKR’s books makes it an issue about the Harry Potter books. All of the other books that she previously allowed actually added some original commentary.

Also, if this is only about the encyclopedia, then what will happen if RDR/SVA win? Does that mean that they will be able to sue JKR when she writes her own encyclopedia for infringing on their rights?

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By the way, comments here about the overwhelming amount of Rowling verbiage in the Lexicon don’t strike me as plausible-or backed up by the transcripts. The “91%” number in one WB exhibit refers to any information derived from Rowling’s books, no matter how distantly-not just verbatim cut-and-paste.

I’m guessing that the amount of Rowling text in the published lexicon is roughly equivalent to the Web one—that is, vastly outnumbered by legitimately summarized and paraphrased copy. On the stand, Rowling seems just as exercised about the latter as the former, which doesn’t inspire confidence.

Didn’t mean to get sucked into this, so I think I’ll leave it at that. It cracks me up that the comment above about how “a great many of the comments made here have been intelligent and well researched” is followed immediately by one that starts “Orson Scott Card is just jelous” and ends “LONG LIVE JO!” I know, you guys are trying.

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“Didn’t mean to get sucked into this, so I think I’ll leave it at that. It cracks me up that the comment above about how “a great many of the comments made here have been intelligent and well researched” is followed immediately by one that starts “Orson Scott Card is just jelous” and ends “LONG LIVE JO!” I know, you guys are trying.”—Posted by Ken Jennings on April 26, 2008 @ 05:06 PM

I’m sure we all appreciate your condescension, Mr. Jennings.

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Athena: If you had read the transcript of the case, you’d see that they went through several of those previously published books and explained WHY Ms. Rowling did not find them to be infringing. Jo went as far as to say that she really liked one of them. They added substantial commentary or background alongside the information taken from the books. The Lexicon adds next to nothing. What this case is about, as Jo has said a few times now, is that the Lexicon takes too much and adds too little. That is the reason why she never tried to block publication of those other books. She has been talking about doing an encyclopedia for the last five years or so.

Interesting that there is only one comment below Mr. Card’s rant. None of us are stupid enough to think he would not have recieved a load of comments by now. Censorship anyone? Yeah, makes you look really good, Mr. Card.

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“By the way, comments here about the overwhelming amount of Rowling verbiage in the Lexicon don’t strike me as plausible-or backed up by the transcripts.”

Posted by Ken Jennings on April 26, 2008 @ 05:06 PM

That’s the thing. In the transcripts, the defense never rebuts the line-by-line analysis provided by the plaintiffs from which the 91% figure was derived. So maybe we will just have to go on your conjecture that the defense is an ass.

“I haven’t owned a copy in decades but I believe Robert Foster’s Complete Guide to Middle Earth takes a comparable amount. I believe Bjo Trimble’s Star Trek Concordance does as well.”

Posted by Ken Jennings on April 26, 2008 @ 04:58 PM

Again, maybe the defense is an ass, but everything they produced could either be shown to have been produced with permission or after the copyright had expired. Were the two books you mentioned produced without permission and before copyright expired?

Anyway, I’m not bringing these points up just to be argumentative, these are points that actually inform my opinion on the case. If they were shown to be inaccurate (in spite of the defense’s inability to do so), I might change my opinion.

And finally, all hail LEAKY! Where else could I debate with a guy who could kick my butt at Jeopardy!?

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@Tyler

Excellent last line…..and please remember all answers must be in the form of a question.

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Okay, wasn’t going to post again, but this looks like a legitimate chance to maybe change some hearts and minds. So, one last post:

1. Yes, Star Trek and Lord of the Rings were (and still are) under copyright when those books were fan-press-published, with no license. I’m sure there are other, analogous examples from the (still copyrighted) works of Faulkner, Pynchon, etc.

2. Everyone here should be more credulous about the ridiculous 91% number. As we’ve been discussing over on the message boards at my site, the 91% number identifies 164,461 words of the Lexicon. That’s a book roughly the size of Deathly Hallows. Do you really think it’s possible that all that text could be quoted verbatim? Plaintiff’s exhibit very cagily refers to this number as “Rowling material,” hoping that people will misinterpret that to mean “verbatim text” when all it probably means is “material based in any way on facts from her books.”

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Usually, when I come on here I defend Jo or copyright law or whatev. But with all that this case has brought out in us (and its not pretty) I’ve got to defend the other “Rowling-o-philes”.

Choosing to support JK Rowling in this case does not, in any case, make you a fanatic, a freak, a lemming, a sheep or any of the other ideas being thrown around. It means you believe in her SIDE.

I’ve read the court transcripts. They are hell to get through but worth it in the end. JKR sat at her kitchen table (Or perhaps it was dining room, I don’t remember exactly) with her young daughter and made charts of the several different areas where her work was stripped verbatim. There are extremely specific guidelines when it comes to referencing a work. If you are going to strip a sentence or paraphrase an idea, you still have to cite it. If you strip the whole sentence, there better be quotation marks. And in both cases, you need to have page numbers as well as chapter numbers.

In SVA’s testimony he talked about not using the page numbers due to the amount of different versions out there. That’s what a bibliography is for. SVA also spoke about his knowledge of the copyright laws and the fact that, as a teacher, he taught children how to cite.

So…why exactly didn’t you practice what you teach?

I don’t respect individuals like Orson Scott Card who feel the need to vilify another individual simply because they are taking a stand against an injustice against them. Individuals like JKR stand up for what they believe in. If she didn’t she would be vilified for letting RDR and the Harry Potter Lexicon walk all over her.

JKR is a wealthy woman. And therefore she’s facing a double edged sword. If she fights, she’s an “evil witch”, if she doesn’t, she has no spine.

I respect her for the hard choice she made to stand up for herself and fight for something she believed strongly in. I respect her for the fact that she had to face a man she knew idolized her and is probably troubling to her that she has to be attacking his work. And I respect her for not backing down, not letting the negativity of people like Orson Scott Card make her want to throw in the towel.

I love HP. But I love literature in general as well. And for the sake of literature, to protect all writers, creators and copyrighted material, I’m on the side of JKR.

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@Athena: That may be a convincing argument, but the defense have not taken that stance. They admit it’s infringing. The question is as to whether it’s fair use.

@Ken Jennings: I addressed you directly in an earlier comment and it had nothing to do with you being a game show contestant. I’ll copy and paste it here for ease:

Ken Jennings says: “crummy $10,000 advance” and crosses it out. Um, what? That’s really, really good for an unknown with a manuscript that has a very small market (HP is huge, but companion books are not). Wasn’t Jo’s advance from Bloomsbury 3,000 pounds? That’s about $6,000 today. She had worked on it for seven years. SVA had worked on the manuscript for two weeks. I don’t include work on the website in this as even Steve says that the book is of lesser quality.

I think I may have to blog about this whole mess. My poor f-list who hasn’t been following this case at all or not as much as me…. If I do, I’ll link it here and refer people to the forums here and the documents and Leaky’s archive of articles on it.

I am getting so fed up with people constantly pointing out Jo crying, but not saying a word about SVA doing so. So, her crying is just an act and his is heartfelt? What? I thinnk they were both sincere. I’d cry too. I’m a crier anyway (I cry at Hallmark commercials for goodness’s sakes).

I need blood pressure medication just to read Jenning’s blahg (intentional).

As for us here at Leaky being angry at SVA, apparently he hasn’t read that deeply or he’d have realized how much we feel betrayed by him as well and how much he has lied. There’s not a comment place either. Maybe he’ll read this since his name is in the article:

Mr. Jennings,

For me, and I’m sure for others here, the reason we are so angry with Steve goes far beyond him trying to publish this book. He lied to us and talked about the fandom as if he knew what was best for us. We feel just as betrayed by him as Jo does. Most of us here who are on Jo’s side have read about all the events that lead up to the lawsuit and how RDR evaded. Why? Because he knew what he was doing was wrong and illegal, probably. He got lucky that the people at Stanford with the Fair Use Project stepped in to further their own agenda. We have read court documents. Some of us have already read the manuscript as well. We’ve read or are reading the court transcripts. We had three people present at the trial for all three days, while most media outlets got out of there as soon as Jo had finished her testimony.

I agree that people should be able to talk about art. SVA doesn’t talk about Harry Potter. He restates it. That’s all. There’s little to no commentary and no anaylsis. The citation system is very poor and confusing. In short, it’s not fair use.

Sincerely, Katie

Tyler, I also find it incredibly amusing that I’m debating with someone who could kick my butt at Jeopardy. Only on Leaky. It’s also the only place where a fan who meets Jo would play with her bracelet and ask if she would bail him out of jail if he ran through the courtroom yelling “Troll in the Dungeon!” Oh, John. You amuse me. :-)

Oh, one more thing Jennings, I don’t know if you’ve visited it, but here in the forums we’re on our eleventh thread discussing the case. It can be found here: http://www.leakylounge.com/WB-JKR-vs-RDR-SVA-Part-X-t61366.html&st=150&gopid=1595412#entry1595412

The arguments given there are more thoughtful than some of the ones here (for either side). We even have a few on RDR’s side and some lawyers and librarians giving their views.

I’m going to pimp my video one more time because it’s amusing and relevant: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pq0bZ7cAHlg

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@ Ken Jennings -

JKR isn’t even claiming that the entire 91% is verbatim. What she is claiming is that its either verbatim or paraphrase. And the majority of that 91% isn’t properly cited.

That would be the basis of her argument. If in that 91% it was cited properly, and more commentary from the writers of the HPL had added to each entry – then we would have nothing to debate upon. JKR would just consider it another companion book that she was fine with. Like the several she spoke about on the witness stand.

Again…these are facts of the case. That I got from reading the actual text of the case. I know I’m not the only one begging you and everyone else to do this. Read the facts before you attack the individuals involved.

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Re: Star Trek Concordance

Mine is over in the states in my office, however I’m an very sure that it is copyright Paramount, so that would have been produced with their permission i believe.

Correct me if i am wrong

I have never owned the other so can not comment. Plus there is a lot of difference between Concordance and the Lexicon Book

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skimming through the comments, I see nothing but negative (and often unfair) comments towards those who disagree with Jo. Remember that this trial is really a matter of perspective. If anything, these quotes have made me think more closely about the situation. Is Jo really right to do this? Possibly your (and my) admiration for Jo is blinding you from the right thing. It’s good to have an open mind. It seems to me Leaky is being pretty biased in this issue, which is kind of surprising. This isn’t to say I want Van der Ark to win, I’m just not sure anymore. I suppose I’m neautral.

One mans terroist is another mans freedom fighter.

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If you read Card’s whole article, it is so obvious he has been waiting to criticize JKR.

Quoting Card’s Article:

“Rowling “feels like her words were stolen,” said lawyer Dan Shallman.

Well, heck, I feel like the plot of my novel Ender’s Game was stolen by J.K. Rowling.”

Sounds like sour grapes to me.

If this stupid Lexicon book is ever published I will NEVER buy a copy. (But I cant wait for the “evil witch” to write her book and will be there the first day it comes out). I am getting so tired of people bad-mouthing JKR when it is so apparent that they have NO clue what they are talking about.

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“As we’ve been discussing over on the message boards at my site, the 91% number identifies 164,461 words of the Lexicon.”

Posted by Ken Jennings on April 26, 2008 @ 05:32 PM

Oh, so THAT’s where I could debate with someone who could kick my butt at Jeopardy!. Oh well, but given the rest of the content on the two respective sites, Leaky still wins.

Ken Jennings provides some of the better arguments I have seen for SVA’s case, in that he sticks with the issues, comes up with better examples than the defense themselves did in the transcripts, and refrains from personal attacks (the fact that he rightly identifies OSC’s piece as “screed” is another point in the favor of his objectivity).

I still am on the fence as PJB just came up with possible proof and arguments to the contrary of KJ’s claims regarding comparable reference books, but I can at least identify KJ as someone who can objectively discuss these issues from the other side.

“skimming through the comments, I see nothing but negative (and often unfair) comments towards those who disagree with Jo.”

Posted by noodles on April 26, 2008 @ 05:56 PM

Hey, there are lots of us who aren’t being negative, unless you consider reasoned arguments to be inherently negative. Again, you say Leaky is being biased, but all they do is provide access to contrary opinions for every argument, which is the opposite of bias. I have seen equal negativity on both sides (OSC’s article being a prime example of the pro-RDR negativity). We could just as logically argue that pro-RDR people’s inherent dislike for JKR or rich people is blinding them from the right thing.

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@noodles : Compared to most mainstream media outlets, Leaky is Switzerland. Do not confuse the comments with the reporting, which has been incredibly neutral.

@Jennings : For the Lexicon book to be considered a true concordance (the way I understand it), it would have to give a Book and page number for every time one of the creatures or characters or places appears in the series.

It does not even come close to doing that. I think it was Mr. “Hammah” (giggle) who had no idea what (HBP10) meant as a citation. Maybe the defense is just an ass. But, I doubt it. Many of the lawyers are associated with Stanford and its Fair Use Project. Not too shabby. I think they know a lot more than us, yet they still have yet to present a previous case that reflects the Lexicon case. They all give off an air of a used car salesman, though. Maybe that’s just RDR rubbing off on them. I imagine him to have really greasy, petroleum-jellied hair.

As for those who are saying that if the Lexicon would give commentary and such outside of what is said in the books, it wouldn’t be a lexicon anymore, I disagree. I have a Buffy companion book called The Monster Book. Not only does it list every monster ever in the series (as current as it could be as the series was still going on), it says which episodes they appeared in, even multiple ones. It also gave quite an extensive history of monsters in cultural history, particarly film and tv history. It still functions as a lexicon and gives original commentary.

I don’t see why the HP-Lexicon couldn’t do the same. Other than laziness.

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@ noodles

I do agree with you that sometimes we do get carried with our “Pro Jo” sentiments. I stand by my other comment that a great many here have done a lot of reading and research regarding this issue. I am certainly not any kind of legal or copyright expert but I personally find this fascinating from both points of view and have learned a lot. I am mostly interested in how this will eventually impact publishing rights and internet fandom, I am sure there will be fall out of some kind regardless of the outcome.

@ Ken Jennings

Answer: A heated, passionate discussion about all things “Harry Potter”.

Question: What is The Leaky Cauldron? (and welcome)

We may not agree but the conversation is exciting, educating, infuriating and sometimes hilarious.

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There’s still only the “Ouch” comment over on Card’s blog.

At least Ken Jennings was brave enough to enter the lion’s den.

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Orson Scott Card should do what Orson Wells did and eat himself to death and rid us of his idiocy.

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This is an issue about compassion for another person, a thing that seems to be horrible lacking in the world today. RDR Books have no compassion for J.K.’s work and seek only to capitalize on the series that she has brought to life. Any work of this magnitude in the Harry Potter line not bearing J.K. Rowling’s name on the front is a travesty.

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I am very saddened by the way I feel things are going on Leaky and I think that I like Cam will get my HP fix elsewhere until this case is resolved. I used to love coming to this site and feeling a connection with other people who liked HP as much as I did. I still have not made a conclusion about who I think is right in this case, but I am sad that a compromise could not be made. I am tired of the negativity and I am sick of coming to the site and hearing nothing but bickering and frankly it is depressing. This article and the responses to it were pretty much the last straw. TTFN Leaky… I will miss the way you used to be.

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You know, people keep saying they’re leaving Leaky temporarily because of negative comments (which are really few and far between). None of us are any more or less passionate about this case than we were about whether Snape was good or evil and other theories. In fact, comapered to the shipping wars, this whole thing is a lovefest.

Also, if you don’t like the comments, don’t read them. It’s that simple. Leaky hasn’t changed a bit, it’s just that we’re debating something real this time. That’s the only thing that has changed.

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Ugh, compared* not “comapered.” Stupid typos.

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For Kevin’s and other’s information – Mr. Card wrote the Ender series (Ender’s Game, Ender’s Shadow, Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide).

I’m a huge fan of Card’s work, and I respect him a great deal. He’s an avid Potter fan himself, so I think everyone should think twice before we start bashing him here. He’s uniformed about the case, and shouldn’t be making staements like this because of that, but we need to be a little more civil. Its not like there aren’t quite a few people who are less informed than Card on these boards. And, you guys take it too far when you insinuate that Card is prejudiced against Jo because he is homophobic (which i doubt is true).

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Ali-son, I am not making it up when I accuse Card of being a homophobe. Read his Wikipedia page. You’ll find cited there an article of his in which he declares that homosexuality should be punishable by law. I have no doubt that he was angry when he found out that Dumbledore is gay. JKR’s revelation came as an unexpected blow to him; there he had been praising Harry Potter, and lo and behold, one of the noblest characters is revealed to be the sort of person whom he obsessively disapproves of. (As an interesting, slightly relevant aside, I own a copy of his book “Characters and Viewpoint.” In this book, he offhandedly references homosexuality no less than three separate, completely unrelated times. The book isn’t even two hundred pages long. That is what I’m talking about when I say that he has a suspicious obsession with homosexuality.)

In regard to the court case, I have no idea which side is in the legal right; I don’t know the first thing about the finer points of our legal system. What I do know is that, as a creator myself, I strongly believe that creative works should be protected from the kind of lazy parasitism that Vander Ark is subjecting Harry Potter to. I don’t believe that someone should be able to divert thousands of dollars into his pocket simply by rehashing someone else’s blood, sweat, and tears. Even less do I believe in the kind of blatant disrespect Vander Ark has shown someone without whom he couldn’t claim as much as a penny.

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@Ali-son,

Nunki has covered the homophobic bit, as for the responses to Card’s blog, I think most of them are justified. It’s not just that he’s uninformed, but he’s also unneccessarily cruel and childish. It makes his credibility sink even lower.

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The problem is that the general media reporting on the trial make it look like this is the first “companion book” written about Harry Potter; and that somehow JKR jumped on the possibility to challenge RDR and Steve in court now because she hates fans and their work. People outside the fandom don’t know that this couldn’t be further from the truth, let themselves be provoked to some irrational reactions.

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I find it interesting and rather amusing that Jennings would come here to post, not once, not twice, how many times now? If you don’t want to post, don’t post. If you don’t want to read the comments of JKRowling fans, don’t come to a site that is designed specifically for that purpose. Your posts won’t be missed, I assure you.

I, for one, could care less what some has been game show participant has to say regarding this case. I’d much rather read the very insightful and thoughtful posts of those people who have actually followed the case, read the proposed Lexicon and are completely cognizant of the facts of the case. If you find it in you to reach that point, Jennings, come back; I might care about what you have to say. “Might” being the operative word in that last sentence.

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Yeah, Melissa always tells us that if we namecall in the comments, it makes our side look worse. Well the same thing is true for Card; ultimately, he is not doing any favors for RDR and SVA (or himself for that matter).

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Ali-son, nice reply. But I respectfully disagree with your last line. :) I have no doubt in my own mind that Card experienced a ‘wtf how dare she’ moment when Rowling outed Dumbledore. Enough regular joes went bugsh!t over it and came to terms with their own even mild homophobia. Card, whose views on the homosexuality have had forty more years of life and religion behind them than many of the online posters in an uproar, must have ‘freaked’ considerably. Again, I could be wrong, but my experiences in life tell me this was the case. :)

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I will never understand those damned strike outs. I guess they ALSO happen between parentheses. Sigh.

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King Arthur raised lowly, “discovers the truth” and is guided by an old “all knowing” man to his destiny of protecting his people and creating a better world

Prydain Chronicles by Lloyd Alexander (wonderful books if people haven’t read them, based on the welsh mythology including Arthur) Taran (bumbling and always in trouble) is an orphan, is raised by an “all knowing” man who guides him in his destiny to fight off evil and creating a better world

The list goes one and on, StarWars even, you have Luke, who thinks he knows who he is, then discovers he is somebody else, is guided by an old man who again knows a whole @#* of a lot and goes on to lead his friends in saving the galaxy.

Its not a unique concept…neither are English boarding school stories, and the reason I got into Harry Potter in the first place was the Worst Witch, that is the only reason I even gave Harry Potter a chance, it is a fantasy boarding school series. I believe Harry Potter to be the superior series, and yes I can’t help comparing Miss Hardbroom to Snape, but you don’t have to think about your character and question its loyalties if its named “Hardbroom” you know up front that she is a hard @* JKR is a little more imaginative and mature with her word choices, though I do think there is a little nod to the Worst Witch with Ron’s “spell” that is supposed to turn Scabbers yellow, the language that is used seems like something that would have been in the Worst Witch, its a little more juvenile.

Everyone is entitled to their own opinions yes, but lets try to be respectful here, that includes Mr. Card.  I am rather disappointed in his views, he can disagree, but he didn't have to be hateful, but he is allowed to be.
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“Um, Ken Jennings? Why exactly is anyone interested in hearing the opinion of an old Jeopardy contestant from like, what, 3 or 4 years ago? Is Mr. Jennings a lawyer as well? I’m not being sarcastic, I’m actually asking.”

Mr. Jennings is not a lawyer, but he is a published author and has two books to his name already. In case you couldn’t tell from his being on Jeopardy, he is also highly intelligent. He has a very faithful following on his blog, which is frequented by about 4,000 people, believe it or not. He writes for the people that want to hear his opinions, nothing more. It’s not his fault that Leaky put a link to his page on here.

These comments make me very sad because they have no substance. Clearly this issue is very gray or else this lawsuit wouldn’t be going on. The arguments going on at Mr. Jennings’ message boards are much more thought-provoking and informative, as well as representing a lot of non-biased people.

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You know, I don’t necessarily equate memorization of trivia intelligence. His two “books” were one to chronicle his experiences on a game show; the second was a compilation of trivia questions. Hardly “books” in my opinion.

I’m thrilled for him that he has a fan base who reads his blog. Having such, he should hardly be surprised to find criticism from the fan base of a real author.

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my comment broke leaky! Why does it do that?

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I’ve never equated trivia knowledge with intelligence either. It’s one thing to know who created a scientific theory and when they did it, and a whole other thing to actually understand it and apply it.

I know quite a bit about the music periods throughout history and I’m rubbish at composing, but I can play. I don’t know where that lands me on the music intelligence continuum, but it’s above trivial knowledge. Then, there are other things I don’t know a darn thing about, but that doesn’t make me un-intelligent. I’m perfectly capable of learning about them in the future. Why can’t I write an amazing essay and win a million dollars on some game show? Lol.

I think I drifted. Whoops.

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Someone’s got a bad case of book envy.

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mollywobbles23, thank you for going off topic, because that helps me to get back on it.

The point I was trying to make and likely failed in achieving was that while I have no doubt Jennings has a good mind and can remember trivia, that doesn’t necessarily equate to intelligence. I can’t remember what I had for lunch yesterday, so who am I to talk.

However, “writing” a book that chronicles your experiences on a game show is hardly “writing” a book, it’s more like writing a diary. Similarly, compiling a list of trivia questions and calling it a “book” is just like SVA compiling the work of JKR; it’s hardly being an author.

Perhaps the similarities of what Jennings has done, and what SVA is trying to do, hits a bit too close to home?

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Here’s the thing – regardless of the fact in the case, JKR takes a very big risk pursuing this from a PR standpoint. To the general public, i.e. those who are not Rowling zealots, it looks like someone rolling in a disgusting amount of money is picking on the little guy. I’m not saying that’s actually what’s happening, but that’s how the wider public may very well view it and this Card fella may just be giving some good advice.

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Woah, guys, I think you’re being too harsh on Orson Scott Card. His books are truly wonderful, and he definitely has moral values (read Speaker for the Dead).

I’ve left a polite comment explaining the details of the case on the article he wrote. It still needs to be approved or something so it’s not on there yet.

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I can understand Mr Ken Jennings’ concern with the copyright issues surrounding regurgitation of trivia as that is Mr Jennings’ peculiar talent in life. His Turing Machine brain certainly gives a good imitation of intelligent life. However, I think he needs to realise that the Lexicon falls short of a scholarly reference. It quotes, it plagiarizes, it paraphrases. It does not instruct, comment or analysize. I can take any entry of the Lexicon and show that less than 10% is original or new. And, yes, my copy of The Star Trek Concordance is copyrighted by Paramount Pictures and Bjo Trimble. I know it may be trivial, but most comprehensive guides do seek permission before they publish. I suggest that Anthony Falzone’s terms “reorganize, synthesize and distill” can easily be translated into the derivative terms arrangement, abridgement and condensation. The Lexicon could be published, but only with permission or license. It is NOT fair use.

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I’ve never liked OSC, and his opinion doesn’t surprise me in the least. And what’s up with the game show contestant? It’s like a side-show now.

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I was just rereading OSC’s (hugely complimentary, btw) review of the Deathly Hallows from back in July…and I came across these couple of sentences:

“Will There Be Another Harry Potter Book?

Rowling has already said she’ll probably do a book of side stories and will donate the royalties to charity. “

So he KNEW that the encyclopedia’s royalties will go to charity. He’s always known that. How can he possibly call her greedy? I suppose it’s because she’s not being “generous” enough to let SVA profit off her work too?

It’s getting late and I can’t think properly anymore, so I’ll just say that it seems to me that this is something he conveniently forgot in order to better portray JKR as the evil villain of the piece. Grr…

Here’s the link to the review, by the way: http://www.hatrack.com/osc/reviews/everything/2007-07-29-extra.shtml

And now I’m going to stop rambling about barely on-topic things :)

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Wow, I just went to Ken Jenning’s site, and in one of his posts he really goes off on the Leaky commenters, basically tearing us a new one.

I’ve read his arguments, and he is in total denial about how much the Lexicon takes as compared to other reference books. Expert witnesses and a team of attornies were not able to rebut the line-by-line analysis or find other companion books that took as much as the Lexicon, but Jennings very vaguely pushes past these details on the basis that he has seen lots of companion books in his life and the 91% number doesn’t seem plausible to him (he says he quickly “debunked” that number). Basically, he bases his conclusions on assumptions that run contrary to what was proven in court. Apparently his general impressions and gut instincts are above such trivialities.

Why wasn’t he a witness for the defense? Oh yeah, because he is long on generalities and short on specifics. Oh and also because he would have had no credibility once the plaintiffs identified that his sole qualification is that he won a game show, something that several Leaky posters have aptly pointed out here. Mr. Jennings didn’t like that, he complained that the comments on Leaky questioned his game-show background. He would probably think badly of attornies who would make the point.

Basically, he makes it sound really good, but he has no more specifics than the defense did to show why the Lexicon is comparable to other reference books. He just expects people to take his impressions and instincts as ironclad fact.

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I detect a great deal of the mean spiritedness & hypocrisy in Mr. Card’s words—they are bitter and spiteful. However, as they say, everyone has an opinion …

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@Kumar,

Good luck with getting your comment posted. Lots of us have left comments, and none of them have been posted.

@Tyler,

You’ve peaked my curiosity and my inability to not read things that will probably aggravate me. I take back what I said about Jennings being brave enough to enter the lion’s den, as he’s obviously run off to lick his wounds and tell fish tales.

Also, just generally, I think we should leave SVA’s personal life out of this. It has nothing to do with the case and can quickly turn into a bashing.

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Bnickel – Too true. “Big guy tries to crack down on the little guy” is the easiest way to tell the story. It’s the easiest way to get the biggest reaction. “Big guy is actually in the right” or “Both sides have some valid points, but it’s a murky legal area” doesn’t foment the same kind of interest. People would rather say “Gasp! That rich bitch! How dare she!” and then go about their day.

The thing is, though, how can anyone think that Jo rushed into this lawsuit without pursuing other means first? I mean, even if you know nothing about her, do you really think she was looking forward to the inevitable “Huge Author Sues Biggest Fan” headlines that would inevitably result?

(By the way, I hope that your comment wasn’t meant to imply that she should have not pursued legal action because it might make her unpopular.)

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I just popped over to the Jennings’ forums and yeah, sure enough, he’s bashing us. How ironic.

“Speaking of Leaky, those commenters over there are even worse than you’d think! They make the pro-Rowling arguments over here look coherent by comparison! Luckily, Scott Card tossed off some blustery anti-Rowling screed around the same time I posted my entry, so he takes most of the nerd heat. (Including some tearful laments that the author of their beloved Ender’s Game could have proved so disloyal to their Other Favorite Author!) Really, the only comments on my entry are along the lines of “The Jeopardy guy? Uh, why would anyone care what he thinks?” Well, I got news for you, I_Believe_In_Thestrals or whatever your screen name is: you’re posting your opinions on the same trial, and you’re apparently a 14-year old with a shaky grasp on punctuation, not to mention copyright law. If you’ve got an opinion worth publishing online, I’m pretty sure I might as well.

The official “Leaky” rebuttal to my post is limited to: but he DID steal too much stuff verbatim! The transcripts, to my mind, don’t seem to back that up very well. Their smoking guns seem limited to “But look how similar this entry here is! Look how you didn’t add anything but paraphrase facts from the book.” Uh, yes. It’s a reference work. That’s what it’s supposed to do. You can certainly imagine a book that introduced new facts (like the other A-Z guides that Rowling cites in the court transcript) but it wouldn’t be the same kind of book at all.” -Ken Jennings, his forums

He obviously didn’t read my comment. He must suffer from selective reading. I refuse to join there just to post it there. That would be the lowest of lows. He also obviously hasn’t seen the highly intelligent arguments in the forums as well as those here. I wouldn’t worry about him folks. He’s just a guy who’s trying to recapture his fifteen minutes of fame in a rather pathetic attempt to sound intelligent. It’s all well and good that he read the transcripts and saw them differently. He’s a trivia guy, not a comprehension guy. Whoops, I slipped in some ad hominem. Someone should put up a caution sign.

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LOL! I was just re-reading it; I had merely quickly skimmed it before. He calls us nerds. Is that supposed to be an insult, Mr. Trivia? I wear my nerd badge proudly. It means I’m SMART.

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mollywobbles23: I am not Steve-bashing, I am stating facts that can be checked. His personal actions speak for his motivation in getting this book published. Everyone should know this, lest anyone try to paint Steve as an innocent, saintly fan being persecuted by the greedy millionaire.

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I am a bit confused. I will admit that I have not fully investigated the trial; however, that is not what I am confused on. I am trying to figure out why so many people, who do not approve of what Card said, is calling him a homophobe. And more importantly why they seem to think that, THAT point is so important that they need to say it repeatedly!!! I loved coming here and getting news about HP. I even enjoyed reading others comments about the articles. However lately I find no pleasure in it all and that saddens me. =( Please don’t get me wrong and start calling ME names because you don’t agree with something I have said, because I am truly asking in earnest.

Having said all of that, I do think that Card, could of said his opinion a bit nicer. However I think pretty much everyone makes that same mistake often in thier lives. I know I do…..

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mollywobbles23 -

I’ve loved everything you’ve written here. Just, y’know, sayin’.

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@harrypottergeek: I didn’t say you were bashing, just that line of discussion will definitely lead to it. It’s been discussed before and it got really ugly.

@Nareese : Card brought up (for no reason) in his blog, Jo’s outing of DD last fall. Tyler found something cited on Card’s Wiki page in which he says homophobic things. It is their opinion that he is angry at Jo for making DD gay, among other things. It’s not really calling names, but more of an acute observation.

And yeah, I’m sure we’ve all gotten out of control when we felt passionately about something. But, Card is a professional writer whose words are going to be paid more attention to than yours or mine. He’s also a grown man who should know when it’s proper to say things like that and when it’s not. As a writer, he should be able to find the words to express his opinion without resorting to ad hominem. It’s like he wrote it at 2AM after reading the MSNBC article and channeled Popkin. He probably wrote in the morning while drinking his Earl Grey, though.

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Thanks, Jupeand everyone else who has been complimentary about my posts. You’ll make my head big.

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@mollywobbles: OK…I’ve never seen it discussed anywhere…thought it wasn’t common knowledge.

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mollywobbles23:

Thanks for printing Ken Jenning’s screed. I changed my mind about him too when I read that. I try to be polite and engage him in informed debate, and he runs back to his site and starts talking smack. Oh well, says a lot.

Basically, he thinks he knows better than what was proven in court. He rejects Johnson’s line-by-line analysis as implausible, when in the transcript she testifies that she was actually CONSERVATIVE in her estimate as she did not classify as infringing any copied phrases that were proceeded by an attributive clause (i.e., “Dumbledore said”), the attributive clause being a questionable qualifier added by the defense to downplay the amount of taking. Further, he misunderstands the line-by-line analysis in that he argues that the 91% figure would mean that SVA copied “1,000,000” consecutive words (or some insane figure), when in fact the 91% figure refers to the percentage of lines that contain JKR’s unique language (and these are short lines, as we’ve seen from the Lexicon exhibit), which is illustrative of the amount and substantiality taken. He argues that other companion books take a lot too, but is silent on the point that the Lexicon’s taking consists so wholly of JKR’s unique language. To him, the qualification for paraphrasing is really low.

Oh yeah, and p.s. Mollywobbles, I’m not the one who sourced Card’s quote on homosexuality, I’ve been pretty much ignoring his piece as I think it actually does his cause more harm than good and doesn’t even need to be bothered with. But thanks again for printing the Jenning’s stuff, that was highly relevant.

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harrypottergeek: Someone on one of the articles commented, claiming to be Steve’s wife. I don’t know if they actually were, but it brought it up again. And before that someone else mentioned it on another article. I can’t for the life of me remember which articles, though.

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@Tyler: Oops. See, that’s why I’ll never win at Jeopardy. I have a horrible memory with names. Your post must’ve been above or below that one, then. Maybe it was PB&J Rules?

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I used to think that I was one of JK Rowling’s biggest fans. She is a wonderful writer and her characters seem like good friends. I hope that brighter days will soon be in her future.

However, I have come to the conclusion that there are many more fans who love her and her work even more than I do. I bow to your loyalty, but I can tell that I do not belong here. I thank you for sharing your ideas and excellent website. It is time for me to move on, at least for a while.

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Stop the gossiping about SVA’s private life. This case really does bring out the worst in people.

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Of course it’s possible to be a fan and disagree with Rowling and of course it’s possible for ‘celebrities’ or whatever to disagree not simply because of jealousy. But it’s seems clear that JK’s wealth and success is playing a role in this because the media and jealous people (there obviously will be some) can’t wait to tear down people like her. Every article has referred to her fortune.

I personally don’t understand how people like Mr Card, etc, can say the book cites properly and is a good reference book when they haven’t seen it. Have they seen it? Is there some kind of copy available to inform these articles?

Then again, on that point, one can argue that WB haven’t seen it either, but I would hope they are more informed than these folks.

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mollywobbles23, to what quote are your referring? I’m a tad confused.

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@PB&J RulesSomeone (not sure who) said they saw something cited on Card’s Wiki page that indicated he’s homophobic. It’s really not important.

@Secretive: The manuscript is available at justia.com. I doubt Card has read it as he doesn’t even know who the real defendant is.

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@mollywobbles23: I can’t find it on justia.com. Do you have the actual url?

@tasha: Read the rest of the posts and you’ll see why his private life seems important. Apparently it’s already been discussed, but I haven’t seen that thread.

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I cannot say anything about the lexicon. I haven´t read it. But why are all those creative authors so eager to have their say in this trial? I mean they may of course. But what is forcing them to shout their opinion out publicly. I know we do that here, too, but we are not regared as authorities of any kind. They are misusing their social status in a way. As to sexism in this case: I read parts of the trial script. Yeah, I got the impression that the judge is biased. he is more sympathetic with Steve. But then I haven´t read too much of the script. Was it this judge (i have a lousy memory for names) that called Jo´s work “gibberish”?

Why has an engineer more rights about his invention than an author? They are drawing circuitries and get them protected by the Patent Office. None of a modern engineer has discovered electricity and all the rest they modell their inventions out of. Sorry for my bad English

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@harrypottergeek: Here’s a link to Attachment 2 to SVA’s declaration: http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/new-york/nysdce/1:2007cv09667/315790/52/2.html

I think through Attachment 14 makes up the manuscript. I could be wrong, that might not be all of it. If someone knows otherwise, please jump in.

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@harrypottergeek: The topic to which you are referring has been discussed briefly in one of the threads during the trial. SVA’s wife appeared and posted. Melissa verified that it was she. I agree that his actions seem to inform his choices about publishing, and are thus important. I also think that if SVA had been concerned about his personal privacy, he would not have been photographed walking to the courthouse holding hands with an unnamed woman. I don’t believe it’s bashing to state these facts. If it LEADS to bashing, I agree that the bashers should be reprimanded or have their posts deleted.

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Orson Scott Card is a real jerk. “Her greedy evil-witch behavior now disgusts us. And her next book will be perceived as the work of that evil witch.” Does protecting her rights as an author make her a ‘greedy evil witch’? She wasn’t suing him because he violated her rights, mainly, but for the sake of other authors. If RDR books win the suit, then imagine what other not as well known authors are going to have to go through, worrying every second about their security.

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Does JK Rowling have an American publicist? I know that she’s hired a public relations firm, but it’s based in the UK, I think. Someone correct me if I’m wrong. It just really seems like with all the negative spin in the American media, she needs a team of media specialists in there defending her interests. With the internet, especially, anyone can say anything they want about her, and they have. This case is being tried in the media, and she needs a better public relations defense.

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Her PR people can do the same job from the UK that they could do in the U.S. It’s all emails and statements anyway. Really, it’s better for her to ignore the comments, rather than give statements or attempt to defend. It would just give the media more material for the tearing.

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I see whats going on in the world today. And I see how so many people are getting rich at the expense of others and it saddens me. I think Rowling is the only person who deserves what she got and to be honest, she deserves a whole lot more. Millions of people around the world waiting for hours for a book to buy. In a world with hundreds of tv channels, video games, and tons of other crap that rots and corrupts kids minds that is nothing short of a miracle.

What really pisses me off is these ignorant people who are bashing her. Rowling has never objected to these kinds of books being released. All she wanted was a few changes to let the buyer know that this book wasnt an official encyclopedia. Rowling and her publishers gave RDR every chance to fix the problem but it became quite obvious RDR was stalling so they can release the book no matter what. Imagine using a death in the family to get more time from Rowling only to use that time to sign more deals with other publishers. Ultimately, of course, this is a win win for RDR. Even if the Judge rules in favor of Rowling all this free publicity will increase sales of the lexicon when it does come out.

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Jupe – I actually AM suggesting that perhaps JKR should not have pursued this case. If it was more clear cut in her favor, I might view it as a noble cause, but with all the fuzzy grey areas, I think a better choice may have been to just let it go. We all get screwed at some point in our lives and sometimes its better to just eat it and move on to higher pursuits. I don’t say this simply because JKR risks looking like the bad guy, but because I can’t imagine the toll that this enormous distraction must be taking on her personal life.

She just may win but at what cost? The saddest comment I’ve heard was a quote from JKR saying that this case is detracting her focus from her work on a new novel—so the way I see it, we all lose.

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I actually think this guy wrote a great opinion piece and frankly, that’s what it is….his opinion and he’s entitled to it. And unless all of you are lawyers with expertise and experience in copyright law, I don’t see what makes this such a clear cut case to you ,when actual lawyers that have written about it agree that it isn’t. It’s generating lots of good discussion, but please, having a different opinion does not mean a person is jealous, uninformed or less credible than you…..or less of a fan than you, for that matter.

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i wish people who haven’t taken the time to actually listen to the details of the case would speaking as though they have informed opinions. It just undermines journalism.

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@marie: Which guy are you talking about? If it’s Mr. Card, he was nothing but cruel and his blog had little substance.

They’re not lawyers either. We can give our opinion as well.

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Seems Mr. Card and his staff have finally allowed some of the real responses (aside from the “ouch” one) to be posted on his blog. Just thought I’d point this out in case not everyone has noticed and would maybe like to take a look.

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Thanks, goldfish!

Unsuprisingly, mine didn’t make the cut. Unless, they’re not done.

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@ mollwobbles23, thanks you for writing that! so well-said. i hope your comments remain on mr. card’s blog.

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Huh? My comment didn’t make it on there. Not yet, anyway. I signed it “Katie W. (aka mollywobbles).”

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I submitted another comment:

...

How in the world is a tree planted to shield the secret entrance to the Shrieking Shack so Lupin could transform there every month, the same as trees that throw apples?

Also, I wasn’t aware the word “diagonally” was copyrighted by a city. And that it has a bank run by goblins in it and has a secret entrance behind a pub.

Is that all you got?

The Lexicon book fails to cite Jo’s work thoroughly, as it is mostly direct quotation and paraphrase, with little to no commentary. Also, it takes a couple hundred terms and entries from Fantastic Beasts and Quidditch Through the Ages (both charity books) with very little original commentary. As they are in an A-Z format, this takes away even the tiny amount of transformative quality that the other entries may have.

Mr. Card, I suggest the next time you blow hot air about such a public situation, that you do your research first. Or at least lay off the ad hominem. You weren’t hating on Jo when you wrote “Who is Snape?” for the companion book, The Great Snape Debate. She didn’t object to that. She could very well have attempted to cease publishing on it if she wanted to. She would have failed, since it actually falls under fair use. I don’t think that applies here as RDR actively evaded WB and the Christopher Little Agency. This would naturally make them suspicious to think that the work was infringing, so they filed suit to prevent it from being published and so they could finally see it. And not just “press print” on the website like RDR told them to…even though he was sending electronic copies to publishers around the world.

The fact is that Jo has allowed or not objected to many companion books. This is because they actually bring something new to the table, rather than just restate her work and add nothing original. Alphabetizing and random (uncited) etymologies are not sufficient enough to make something transformative.

“But maybe she wouldn’t be very welcome in Oz. The trees of the forest might remember she stole them to create the Whomping Willow. She might also pay a visit to Barcelona but maybe the city would ask for copyright rights on the theft of the name Diagonal Avenue, an avenue that runs DIAGONALLY through the city. Rings a bell? I couldn’t agree more with Orson Scott Card. Ingratitude is the right word. And that poor resource of selling to the most desperate and brainless fans what she wasn’t able or willing to put in the novels…well, it goes without saying.

Rita Sousa”

Maybe it will make it to the page as I don’t call him an a**.

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Whoa, I have no idea how that happened. Sorry.

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[This is my eight comment. My seventh comment was on April 26th 1:01 a.m. My sixth comment was on April 25th 5:49 p.m. to the article: “JKR/WB vs. RDR Books Trial: U.K. Publisher Not Counting on Scheduled April Release of Lexicon Book.” My fifth comment was posted on April 20th 11:35 p.m. to the article: “JKR/WB vs. RDR Books Trial: The “Blurry Line” of Copyright Law.” My fourth and third comments were on April 18th 2:21 p.m and April 17th 11:51 p.m. respectively to the article “JKR/WB vs RDR Books Trial: Summary Reports.” My first two were posted pm April 17th 3:26 a.m. and 3:57 p.m. respectively to the following article: “JKR/WB vs RDR Books Trial: A partial settlement reached; WSJ summarizes day three of testimony.”]

Re: “Due care has been taken to rephrase them away from Rowling’s language.”

Above quote attributed to: Mr. Ken Jennings, “Harry Potter and the Glossary of Doom,” http://ken-jennings.com/blog/?p=812.

[QUALITY ASSURANCE VS. SUCK THE LIFE OUT OF IT COPYRIGHT VAMPIRES]

Those quoted words typify the attitude of many of those that seem to be turning their back on Harry Potter and his story, as the story was written under the J. K. Rowling penname. I can understand that there are those who are interested in how the U. S. Law would be applied to such a situation as this present case, and about how one’s interest in Copyright/ Intellectual Property/ Fair Use Law could be enhanced through their interaction with such a case as this; it will turn itself into a political Land Run for the pieces of gray area that exist in the Copyright Law itself; gray areas intentionally created by Congress for a more thorough protection of all people alike; gray areas that have yet to be determined or developed fully by the Court. However, it is worth noting that the Copyright Law, as it stands, protects both plaintiff and defendant, WB/J.K. Rowling and RDR/SVA, Harry Potter and Lexicon. When one says that a certain portion of the Law benefits one side, there is the other side that may be benefiting by the portion that is left. Yet, no one was pestering J. K. Rowling about copyright infringement while she was writing her story, and it seems that the extent of her attention to Copyright Law, however big or small that may have been, lay in the amount of time it took her to enact a copy right into the U. S. Patent office. It is very unlikely that she put another thought into Copyright Law as Harry, Ron, and Hermione merriled along their way towards death. The defendants on the other hand, and now those who have an interest in “Fair Use,” are very much concerned about the Harry Potter story; so much so, that it seeks to protrude the colorful fictional material into a bland, sterile environment of Federal Law, because of some broad-reaching “Fair Use” agenda. Harry Potter is not one of the things in life that you can squeeze through animal intestine and form into alphabetical sausage.

The Law protects more than just the author, but does it protect whether or not there is a single “qualitative” element, or the quality of the material? Could the Court, with all due respect, “please stand up”, “please stand up”, and protect diminishing property value? The “sterile protrusion of Harry Potter” side might say that through the sterile fiction-less realm of the stock market, or economics, “quality” will be weeded out through supply and demand; that is, those that want to buy shoddy material will buy shoddy material, and those that want to buy quality substantive material will buy quality substantive material, and then there are those that don’t. Who is to prevent one from “Fair Using” shoddy work out of something that was evidently quiet important to millions, where at least one of those migh have been a Grandfather reading, and yet another might have been his four-year old Granddaughter listening? Maybe there is an argument in there for certain shoddy magazines, and celebrity wrecks, and then again, maybe the result of this case will work out for certain shoddy magazines and celebrity wrecks. To be fair to those interested in developing the Law, as a Harry Potter fan, I hope, and as J. K. Rowling’s Mr. Weasley might say, the “Law will out.” Please Lord let the “Law will out.” To be fair to those interested in Economics, if colorful Harry Potter fiction fans have to rely on the sterile market to sort things out, may there be glistening shelves to hold a good book, and may shoddy material remain behind stranded beads. Then, still, one of the questions might remain relating to Mr. Jennings comment, as cited above: Is the Federal Court interested in damage control and the diluting of someone’s “original authored work,” be it shoddy or not, or is it interested in furthering creativity, or the best interest of society? Because, in the end, I would hate to enjoy all of the freedoms that the United States has to offer, only to find that MY name has been “rephrased” in the “Book of Life.”

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For once, I don’t think Jo is in the right, here.

Why does she have to worry about SALES? She already has enough money to live off of for the rest of her life. Considering that I own many HP-related guides, an encyclopedia does not seem any different.

And, with OSC, this doesn’t make me look at JKR admirably. 17 years is a lot, but… so what? If she writes an encyclopedia, people will STILL buy it.

It seems silly.

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@Anne: If one only thinks of how it will affect Jo, one may find the money aspect to be silly. But, considering cases set precedent that will determine how future cases will be decided, a win for Jo will help those authors who can not and will never be able to afford this kind of litigation to protect their copyright. The issues at hand have more to do than with money and marketplace. It all really boils down to what is fair use, of which affect on marketplace is only one-fourth of the factors to consider.

As for your statement about OSC, I’m not sure what you’re trying to say. What he said doesn’t make you look admirably at JKR? Of course it doesn’t…if you believe it. OSC didn’t even know who the actual defendent is in the case and his rant sprung from that, apparently, and quickly drowned in ad hominem and pompous declarations that have no more substance than hand-blown sugar. That is to say, they’re full of hot air and fall apart at the slightest change of the environment, or in this case: the facts.

Sorry for the pastry reference; I just watched Surprise Engagement Cakes on The Food Network. lol

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mollywobbles23, please stop fanning the flames. What is it about the internet that brings out the worst in people, this matter is a legal one that will be resolved in the courts. Take some time out and get lives people.

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@mollywobbles23

Do not listen to harry fan. I and others enjoy your posts.

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@copperhead – That was one amazing post. It’s posters like you and mollywobbles23 that keep me coming back to Leaky. Its the arguments that are based in fact, law and aren’t all “But I looooooove Jo. So I pick Jo.”

Don’t get me wrong. I loooooove Jo. And I’m on her side. But it’s due to the law behind it that I chose her side. I would have picked her side if she was just some random author fighting for her right to keep her hard earned living in tact.

I think that’s what a lot of people forget. Yes, JKR has a lot of money. Big deal. Harry Potter is still how she makes her living, at least for now. JKR at the moment does not have any other novels out about any other characters. Harry Potter is her life’s work as far as being an author. And someone is trying to take that from her. I would never want that to happen to me or anyone.

Success is earned not given. To take that away from someone is cruel and unrealistic.

To the rest of my fellow posters who are awesome and know how to argue a good point – Thanks for the distraction from some homework today.

I tried posting on OSC’s blog but alas, I made a good point so that isn’t going to show up.

Here’s hoping the judgement/settlement comes sooner rather than later. I’d love for a happy Harry Potter world again.

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@harry fan: I don’t know what flames I’m supposedly fanning. I’m just stating my opinion. Maybe if folks like Card would stop putting their foot in their mouths and censoring comments, I wouldn’t feel compelled to.

If you want to disagree with me, back it up with something more than telling me to stop stating my opinion. I’ve censored myself quite a bit. Believe me. You haven’t seen flame fanning until you see the thoughts in my head regarding the vacuum of snarky, bandwagon-hopping blogs and articles, that don’t make it into the comment box. In short, I’ve been kind.

@William and beckett: Thanks for the votes of confidence. I tend not to shutup until I feel I’ve said my piece. You either love me or hate me, it seems.

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I’ll gladly back it up. You are fanning the flames by running back and forth between this comment section and the one attached to Card’s post. If you have an opinion, great, post it ONCE, and then move on. Days after the event, you are still going on – you said it yourself, “I tend not to shutup until I feel I’ve said my piece.” Are you the same mollywobbles that did this on the Lexicon site recently? Running back and forth between the LL forum and the comments section on the “What’s New” section?

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Lets just end this squabbling here. Melissa has said it before, it’s things like this that made the HP fandom look bad and especially reflects bad on Leaky.

Ken Jennings is already spouting enough hatred towards us for having opinions and posting them here. Let’s not give him or anyone else ammunition.

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harry fan: mollywobbles23 isn’t going to just post once and leave. As each new poster arrives and refutes the initial points she made, she is going to post again to strengthen her arguments and cover any bases she missed in her previous argument, and so on and so on. She’s not fanning the flames of anything, she’s just making counterarguments. Flaming is being rude, trollish or making personal attacks; mollywobbles23 has not (to the best of my knowledge) done any of these things. All she is doing is debating, fiercely perhaps, but she’s being civil enough about it.

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beckett: Are you serious? Are you telling me that we should stop having opinions because somebody doesn’t like the fact that we have opinions?

I say again, this isn’t squabbling, it’s debating, and I think for the most part people have avoided any real flaming and remained civil enough, at least no more vicious than Orson Scott Card, anyway.

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I agree that mollywobbles23 and the rest of us should not feel compelled to over-censure ourselves out of our logical points. This is a discussion, and thesis + antithesis = synthesis. Sorry to all those who find it a little too rough; but we have rights to a civil disagreement. Respectfully, if you’d rather not take part it’s probably better not to read comments on the trial and the feedback to it. You’ll just raise your blood pressure and increase your stress levels.

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I can understand that people want to express their opinions, but is it really necessary for some of you to be so rude?. I have read most of the comments made, not only to this news item, but also to the previous news items about the trial and most of the comments aren’t even about the copyright issue ! To me , there is a great difference between JK Rowling , the author of the HP books, and JK Rowling , the person. I like JK Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter books, but that does not implies I have to love JK Rowling as a person, I do not know her, I never spoke to her. And I must admit , I do not understand fully what is going on. If Mrs Rowling really wants to keep Harry Potter under her wings, if money is not involved, if she is so concerned about the copyright issues , then why did she agree to the big business HP commercialization : cards, games, puppets, all kind of (stupid) gadgets and so on? Why was it necessary for Mrs Rowling to say that in case RDR would win the trial, It would become impossible for her to write the “Scottisch” book?

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I wonder if this guy’s editor realizes that he has just committed libel in respect of his comments about the Stouffer case?

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Good points, HPfanBelgium, and beckett. Mollywobbles, yes, I was talking about Mr. Card, a respected and award winning author, and I don’t agree that his article lacked substance. I know full well he’s not a lawyer and that’s my point. He’s writing an opinion and like it or not, it’s every bit as valuable and worthy as yours and mine, or any other ones posted. His piece generated discussion and thats what good journalists/writers do, after all. Isn’t one of the themes in JKR’s books “tolerance”?I think it would raise the level of intelligent discussion here if that were taken to heart.

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@ Marie

Laws against homosexual behavior should remain on the books, not to be indiscriminately enforced against anyone who happens to be caught violating them, but to be used when necessary to send a clear message that those who flagrantly violate society’s regulation of sexual behavior cannot be permitted to remain as acceptable, equal citizens within that society. The goal of the polity is not to put homosexuals in jail. The goal is to discourage people from engaging in homosexual practices in the first place, and, when they nevertheless proceed in their homosexual behavior, to encourage them to do so discreetly, so as not to shake the confidence of the community in the polity’s ability to provide rules for safe, stable, dependable marriage and family relationships

Perhaps Mr Card should learn Tolerance

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The lawyer on Neil Gaiman’s site says that copyright shouldn’t be so powerful as to supress new ideas. He should know that it isn’t and never has been. It’s specifically stated in copyright law that it DOES NOT protect ideas in any way. It protects words and images, not the ideas behind them. It DOES protect derivative works, however.

Now, before anyone says that JKR derived her work from others, let it be noted that 1) most of what she derived work from was in public domain and so she was free to do so, and 2) that she derived ideas and concepts from other work (which aren’‘t protected by copyright anyway) to create a NEW work.

SVA’s work is entirely derived from JKR’s, it does not create a new work out of it, it does not use ideas and concepts from the series to make something original.

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Very harsh, Jo is protecting her work and SVA is simply ripping her off and trying to pass off what she has written as his own. I believe he was led into this by RDR who promised loads of money. He was tempted by greed and is now reaping the backlash, in some ways I feel sorry for him cos I don’t believe he knew what he was getting himself into, but really he’s a big boy and should have done his legal research into it first (considering how much time and effort he put into the website and collecting the information I’m surprised he didn’t do the same with covering his own back with the publication of the book!). I don’t think JK is coming across as greedy in regards to the case, I don’t think people will think of her as a money hungry ‘greedy evil-witch’ either. She has donated so much to charities (including most importantly her time) and wants to do the same with her ‘Scottish book’, how anyone can think of that as ‘greedy’ obviously misses the point. This clearly isn’t a ‘york notes’ type of exercise but a money spinner for SVA and RDR and as such it’s unworthy of earning them moeny as the work was done by JK and they don’t own the rights to rip her off.

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Well, I do have mixed feelings about all of this. I love OSC’s books. Love them. He’s a great writer. However, I don’t particularly like HIM. His political opinions are definitely neo-conservative, and heavily influenced by his own narrow religious views (I do NOT mean to say all religion is narrow, or even the religion to which he belongs is narrow, just that HIS version of it is narrow). So his calling her a witch (which I suspect is just because of her subject matter) is something I just discount because he can be mean and reactionary. It’s a shame he’s not as good a person as Ender.

However, I am leaning against JKR in all of this. Her HP books are some of my favorite EVER. I love her charitable work. I like most of the public stands she makes. But, in this…It really does seem … I don’t know, misguided, perhaps? However, I’m withholding any strong opinion, because I don’t know all of the details of the case, and without seeing the book version of the lexicon (I’m a huge fan of his online version), neither does anyone else. We don’t know if it’s a complete rip-off of her work, and the lawsuit is warranted. We also don’t know if a great work, and violates no laws, and she’s just wrong. So, I guess we’ll see.

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I think everyone should remember that this is an opinion. You don’t have to agree with it, but they should be able to post said opinion without people trolling and calling them names. I honestly believe that taking the high ground and not, say going to is blog and calling him a bitter old man. Make your case without name calling or insinuating that he was obviously reading biased court reports and is wrong, because I don’t think that, in this case anyway, an opinion can be wrong. Further, I doubt that there is an unbiased report of the proceedings, unless you go straight to the transcripts. Everyone has a bias, and it’s going to show if you see the transcripts. Because what they emphasize and what they omit becomes evident, and so does the unconscious/conscious bias they have.

If you need to respond, respond with facts that were presented in the proceedings – which means that the 91% figure and pie chart are out IIRC. There was no methodology given on what constitutes the entries that were ‘copied’. In academia, that would never be published because methodology needs to be given.

I waffle back and forth on what I think is a fair outcome in this because I think that both sides have decent cases, based on what they presented based on the law and am hoping for a settlement. I do think that Cendali was hamstringed a little with one expert being torn apart by Hammer and the Judge indicating that he could not adopt the testimony of the other because she did not provide specifics. That being said, I’m still on the fence on the legality of the Lexicon, just due to my own experiences in research, and what I see in bookstores. However I find it somewhat amusing that people cite “I like the books so I think she should win” in the response – does that mean that if it were an author you don’t like you wouldn’t care. If we take the author used in this post – if a fan of OSC put together an encyclopaedia of his work, and he went to court over it, would you care? Would you be this strident in your opposition?

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just dont buy it. it’s crap. wait for the encyclopedia that jkr will publish. the one who actually created the story and characters.

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thank you leaky for quoting and linking. gaiman and jennings get to the point of the copyright issue in question, though many here do not like the results.

esp. gaiman’s quoted materials made me understand better why transformativity is a ‘murky area’ of copyright law.

orson scott card had to say very important things about writing and publishing. i don’t know what he said about criminalizing homosexuals. but there are other ways of being homophobe than open law-and-order-approaches. literary imagination of homosexuals as ageing manipulating teachers (without erotic desires besides that for lollipops) or as raving pedophile werewolves will further the gay community neither. mvho.

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I appreciate that Jennings (perhaps alone among the non-fandom types opining on the case) has actually read the court filings and transcripts. That he reached a different conclusion than I did matters less than that he considered the whole thing on its merits without resorting to ad hominem attacks on Jo. And IMO, he is not just some savant regurgitating trivia; he’s a bright and well-read guy. I can see where he’s coming from. I just don’t agree. (Tyler, mollywobbles and beckett, I’ve really enjoyed what you’ve written as well.)

Card, on the other hand, is impossible to take seriously on this.

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I have been following this case and looking into the exhibits for some time now. I agree that there is legal merit for both sides in this case. I don’t think that a lexicon in and of itself is necessisarily infringing, but I think that the Lexicon in it’s current format does infringe. I think that a compromise is the best solution. The compromise would need to be based on a rewrite of the existing manuscript with the following changes:

1. Remove all references to material from Rowling’s companion pieces, Fantastic Beasts & Quiddich. These books were summarily plundered and incorporated into the Lexicon. There is no excuse for this material to be included as the author of the material has already provided it in the form of reference books.

2. Properly cite all quotations. I’m not sure how they would address all the paraphrasing that occurs where word order is transposed, but the same language and meaning as the original canon remains. Perhaps the only way to do this is to revert to the original phrasing and properly cite it.

3. Clearly label the book as unauthorized and remove all references to JKR’s endorsements of the website from the advertising material.

4. Clearly state that all etymologies are guesses on the part of the author.

5. Obtain releases from all contributors to the book who thought they were were contributing to a free fan website, only to have their work published by the webmaster without attribution.

These are the things that I see as a bre minimum would need to change for the work to be non-infringing.

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@harry fan:

As others have said, if people address me or say something I agree or disagree with, I can respond.

I’ve left two comments on Card’s article and one was not posted and I don’t know about the other one. I post them here for posterity’s sake.

Yes, I did comment over at the What’s New section. I remember having a civil exchange with Steve and I ended up having a disagreement with someone there. I haven’t commented there in weeks. I said my piece there.

I’ve avoided flaming as much as possible. I even suggested we leave Steve’s personal life out of it. I think that’s uneccessary and really does turn into a flame fest. I’d much prefer to stick to my interpretation of the facts and of other’s opinions. As far as I know, Leaky encourages such discourse.

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Interesting quips in passing, as I enjoy both Card and Gaiman, and aspire to be the next Ken Jennings! But most of them have missed the pertinant points. But then, I don’t expect them to have the facts straight. But they have the emotional/public impact straight.

1) I’m sure they’re not here reading the transcripts or using/avoiding the Lexicon like we are. How could they—they’re busy writing! Technically, both writers have produced more books than our own Jo and a few movies, so jealousy is hardly an issue. As a trained academic scholar, I see the flaws in the Lexicon, and agree that whether JKR does her own encyclopedia or not is irrelevant to the legal arguments.

2) However, I’ve already hear from my not-die-hard fans, as Card correct identified: there is a growing anti-JKR/WB backlash. I think it’s more about the issue of “big money attacking the little guy.” It’s an easy story for the media to get their teeth into, regardless of the facts. But the backlash is not a Harry Potter one. Harry’s safe (well, now that Voldy’s gone now!). ;-)

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People, people, that link isn’t pointing to Orson Scott Card’s blog. That’s his local newspaper at Greensboro, which he writes a weekly column for. His personal site is somewhere else (http://www.hatrack.com).

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[This comment is in support of “Mollywobbles23,” and in response to “potterdad_sb,” who commented on April 28th, 2008 @ 1:40 p.m, both of whom seem to be working towards a resolution.]

[BOOKS OF THOUGHT WITHIN THE “JKR/WB VS. RDR BOOKS TRIALARTICLES]

A.) THE BOOK ON BECOMING A TIGER: STRIVE TO CREATE A SUPERIOR PRODUCT, INSTEAD OF RE-ENGINEERING THE RUBIKS CUBE®

Re: material posted by “Emily Erland” on April 27th, 2008 @ 11:54 p.m. to the article: “JKR/WB vs. RDR Books Trial: Complete Transcripts.”

The following quote is attributed to “Emily Erland”:

“Emily Erland” wrote: “I’m all for the book form of the HP Lexicon [IF] it undergoes an extensive re-write to clean up quotations lifted directly from JKR’s text and to rewrite descriptions of the HP world using phrases and vocabulary that sufficiently distances itself from Jo’s phrasing (and maybe even incorporate some additional etymologies, comparisons to “real world” figures or mythologies, etc.). I honestly think JKR would have [approved] a book exactly like that, had they (RDR) worked with her and her agents to look over SVA’s initial manuscript. None of these things happened, however, as far as I am able to discern from looking through the posted court documents (the intended HP Lexicon manuscript), following reports since last October on RDR’s and WB/JKR’s interaction, and now skimming through the trial transcripts. As the HP Lexicon book currently stands, though, I’d have to agree with Jo – with no offense meant to the HP Lexicon webstaff (I hope they get their cut) – at best, this looks like a “rough draft” of an A to Z reference, still requiring clear citations and clean up of phrasing and summarization into “original” descriptions.”

B.) THE BOOK OF QUESTIONS THAT, IF PROPERLY REBUTTED, MIGHT STRENGTHEN THE DEFENDANT’S POSITION

Re: material posted by “rotfang07” on April 18th, 2008 @ 9:44 a.m. to the article: “JKR/WB vs. RDR Books Trial: Summary Reports.”

The following material is attributed to “rotfang07”:

“Rotfang07” wrote: “The fans are emotional because some basic MORAL issues have arisen that have not been satisfactorily addressed:”

Rotfang07 continued with the following questions:

1. “If SVA says he is a fan why did he not stop the book when asked to by the author he himself says he admires and he calls a “genius”?”

2. “Why did SVA say in writing that it was illegal (May 2005) to make an encyclopaedia/lexicon and then proceed to do just that?”

3. “Why did he blame RDR for the court case when he could have pulled the book at any time?”

4. “Why did he tell TLC that he would have no problem dumping RDR if it came to a copyright infringement case and then argue in an interview that Rowling was making a “power grab” and that she was threatening fansites, wizard rock, and fanfiction?”

5. “Why did he indemnify himself at all against copyright infringement?”

6. “Why did he not admit that he has possibly taken copyright off all the fans that had contributed to the Lexicon and whose work he now hoped to profit from?”

7. “Why were none of the other authors of the Lexicon mentioned in the book version? Why were they not included in the contract to be remunerated?”

8. “Why was no effort made to contact the fans who had contributed to the Lexicon and whose work was then used in the book in order to acknowledge or compensate them?”

9. “Why did he chase after people who had reprinted passages from the Lexicon website threatening legal action against them for copyright theft?”

Rotfang07 concluded:

“And, irony of ironies, as a result, he is almost certainly in breach of his contract with RDR as well.”

Avatar Image says:

What is the tenative date for the verdict to be released on this trial?

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I just can’t understand that there are people so evil in this world. JK worked hard and really long on HP serias and now this idiot just use her work to get some money and Jo has the whole right to search her rights. HP is hers and noone else has the right to use it like his own and JOOOO pls WINNNNNNNNNN!!!!!!!!!

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Hey, over on the comments to the OSC article, they have just posted the link to another anti-JKR article.

http://www.film.com/movies/story/jk-rowling-next-george-lucas/11597472/20444241

This one is not nearly as bad as most of the others I have read, because it does at least contain a paragraph that goes over JKR’s side of it. But it’s basically a re-hash of the “David vs. Goliath” theme. And it’s basically arguing that since she has money, she is bad for protecting her rights. Same old arguments, yet again.

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@harry fan: I meant the squabble that was going on where you felt the need to attack another member of this site. Not the debate of the topic.

@Copperhead – thanks for that! I have to agree with almost everything said there. I think this whole case is so hard because so many of us have a fond affection towards JKR but I know many also used the Lexicon site (I’ve never been personally…)

I can’t agree more with what Emily Erland said. The biggest problem is the way the book was written, not that it was written. I also find it a bit shady that RDR books refused so many times to allow JKR and WB to see a copy of the manuscript when he was sending it to several other people electronically. It is actions like that that make you think he knew that they were infringing, but was trying to get away with it anyways by just not showing it to WB.

Hopefully the ruling of this case comes out fair for all. I know that SVA has been vilified by many in this case, but I honestly think he was just caught in a bad situation. Yes he should have known better, and probably does, but at the same time, its hard when you’ve signed a contract.

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Melissa,

I posted elsewhere on these fora that I was not going to be back until this trial was over and decided upon. Some people asked that I don’t just lurk, but continue to comment. I feel the need to comment here, both obliquely by what I want to say to you, and directly.

First, thank you for allowing the fans and not-such-fans alike the space to make their opinions heard.It is not often that such a site exists where the only restriction, really, is that people should be polite, and even then, there is much leeway and warning. I just wish people would generally pay as much attention to your exhortations (and others’ as well) about civility and politeness as they do to the issues and comments on this complex case.

It is precisely because I grew weary of the invective, and grew even wearier of trying to set an example, if I could, of a civil demeanour when it didn’t seem to help. I thought,maybe if I came out and said that I was tired of it all there would be at least a “stopping and thinking” period, where, in fact, it was clear that one could discuss the issues, provide an opinion, disagree with others, without resorting to personal attack in EITHER direction).

I stopped posting because it became obvious that this was not happening. I know how hard it is when emotions are engaged. I know how closely many peolple here (myself included) feel aligned to JKR, and I know that such connection cannot fail but to have at least a little influence oo the tone of response. I guess it is even more difficult than I think, so I’ll probably stay silent again until a new issue that needs thinking about arises, where I might be able to contribute to the logical and polite exchange of opinions and discussion. But I will certainly “lurk”. I will not abandon the site, nor the words that I find here. I just don’t want to get into repeating some of the same things ad nauseum, and to, seemingly, no avail. So thank you Melissa, for keeping this place going, and for all your efforts to keep it civil.

Now, please people, it is always irksome, even to me, to read things stated by individuals, that quote wrong references or make statements that clearly are not supported by any evidence, or may, indeed, be contrary to evidentiary findings and statements. I may even believe that such statements are designed to inflame as opposed to inform. However, these are, as has been clearly stated by many of you, OPINIONS, to which every individual is entitled. Personally (and I can only speak for myself, obviously), I try and be careful not to denigrate a person simply because I do not agree with their opinions, or because their opinions, in MY opinion, are unsupported or may even be opposed by the apparent facts. If I want THEM to intellectually accept MY opinions without rancor, I must demonstrate that selfsame tolerance I expect from others. If a can’t, then I have no reason to expect it at all.

By the same token, I have tried to be very careful, regardles as to whether I agree with the opinion or the concept, or not, NOT to make statements that could be interpreted as being intolerant. But, like Mollywobbles and others have done, I will defend my opinion as often as necessary, I will make as many statements in as many locations as I believe necesasary, to correct either misinterpretations of my positions or the spirit in which I have stated my positions.

I always… ALWAYS … make every effort to give everybody equal and due respect, becaue I expect that in return. When it becomes patently and painfully obvious that this is not going to be the case, I have three choices…

1. I can lash out in frustration and impatience, thus prolonging the problem by inviting response in kind to my response (and thereby not advancing the knowledge and information aspect one whit);

2. I can respond patiently and repetitively, forever, or until the system itself breaks down; or

3. I can withdraw and observe, and eventually, withdraw completely and not concern myself.

I am not so self-important as to believe that my comings and goings make any difference, but from my perspective looking out, my missing the wonderful things all of YOU have to say WOULD be a shame for me.

SO there is no need for me to point out that many of you are right about the facts not really being the issue, but rather it is the perception, nor that the perception may not be fair, but then neither is life.. I’ll simply say that I hope I can continue to benefit from your collective wisdom and experience But it gets harder every day.

At least in my opinion.

M.

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@Morton

How wonderful to see your words posted here again…we have missed you. I very much appreciate your comment which has been presented, as always, with much consideration. You sir, are a gentleman. (And a pretty smart fellow as well – but don’t let that go to your head ok :) )

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Thank you, Morton Kaiserman. Good to hear from you again though I do understand about getting tired. Politeness, arguments and reason tend to have a difficult stand against ignorance and self-righteousness.

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How long is this trial supposed to go on? It seems it’s turning into an Author Survey and Snit Fit Fest; everyone getting in their two bits in the press, without actually adding anything new to the discussion, quite like SVA with his Lexi-GONE.

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The only comment I want to make is my observation that the fans on this site have developed a reputation of stalking any other site that says anything critical of JKR. Any time mutiple post in support of JKR start being posted on a critical blog it becomes apparent that the “Leaky Fans” have started their stalking. If people wanted to read your “JKR is wonderful, great, and always right” post they could come here and read to their hearts content. My suggestion is that you let these people state their opinion and quit stalking them. It is really kind of childish.

Paintball

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The judge in this case, Judge Patterson, urged the parties to settle more than once during the course of the trial. I think that is because he saw merits to both sides of the case and because he saw an ending where no one wins. A compromise may be the best solution for all parties concerned, keeping RDR out of bankruptcy, preventing the sullying of Jo’s reputation by an ignorant and uninformed media, and giving the fans a non-infringing and appropriate reference work. In my opinion this would involve an extensive re-write of the existing manuscript.

I am not an attorney, so I am not an expert (and I would appreciate it if anyone with more knowledge than I will correct my statements here) but my understanding of the law is that once the case comes to trial the judge cannot act as an arbitrator and broker a compromise solution. He must rule on the facts of the case and find for either the plaintiff or the defendent. this is a much riskier course for both parties. As Iundestand the law, the parties can settle anytime up until the ruling is announced.

If were the judge, based on the evidence I’ve seen so far, I would have to rule in JKR’s favor. This doesn’t mean that I wouldn’t prefer a compromise, but if it’s a decision that is necessary, I would rule for JKR.

My comments above are based on my understanding of what is legal, not what is right. This is what a judge has to do. In terms of ethics and justice, I am totally against RDR. I see SVA and RDR as opportunists who are willing to exploit others in order to make an easy buck. These are the types of people that i would shun in both my personal and my business life.

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“Any time mutiple post in support of JKR start being posted on a critical blog it becomes apparent that the “Leaky Fans” have started their stalking. “

Posted by paintball on April 28, 2008 @ 05:13 PM

Really? Any time pro-JKR posts are made you assume it’s Leaky fans? Do these people state they are from the Leaky or are you oh I don’t know, maybe assuming? That’s kind of paranoid behavior.

“My suggestion is that you let these people state their opinion and quit stalking them. It is really kind of childish.”

Posted by paintball on April 28, 2008 @ 05:13 PM

So as long as there are no pro-JKR opinions on any comment board, you’ll be happy (and less paranoid). Yeah, okay I’ll get right on that. Any time an anti-JKR opinion piece is posted, I’ll be the first one to comment and my comment will be: “Hey!!! There will be no comments allowed that disagree with this article, as Paintball thinks it childish and it means he is being stalked!”

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I should add that a settlement is also the best course of action because there is no appeals process. Once the settlement is reached (in confidence) both parties can put the matter behind them and go on with their lives. If a verdict is rendered by the judge an appeals process will likely ensue. Why on earth would Jo want to subject herself to that nonsense for the next several years.

Perhaps Jo is taking a page out of Dumbledoor’s book and making a choice between what is easy and what is right. I believe that she was right to file the suit because of RDR/SVA’s behavior. They really left her no choice, but that does not preclude a settlement that is in her best interest and preserves her (and other authors) rights under the copyright laws.

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@ Helyx Helyx: If you go to the transcripts of the trial, 3rd day, pages 662/663, you will find that both parties and the Judge agreed about may 9th being the deadline for putting forward final ‘finding of facts and conclusions of law’ in writing. You will also find that Judge Patterson announced he would not want to delay his decision too long (now, there are participants here in the forum who are familiar with proceedings before US courts and might be prepared to translate that into concrete terms).

The Judge will only decide in case there will be no settlement.

But there is another, more general time factor. You might want you recall the beginning of the trial when Judge P. urged the parties to settle instead of moving into years of proceeding and appealing; he seemed to remind both sides of markets moving on.

@ Paintball: That is the reason I’ll refrain from posting a link to a recent text I found which goes beyond a criticism in form of an opinion piece. JKR suing has become the object of satire at last.

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Oy vey. This place has been saturated with people (or maybe it’s just the same person over and over) who seem to think that just because we support JKR, that we have no basis for our opinions other than she’s Jo. Therefore, we must keep our mouths shut and never express our opinions because we disagree with other people who have a right to their opinion. You can’t have it both ways, folks. Either we all are free to express our opinions, or no one is. By posting my opinion publicly, I open the door to be disagreed with. The same can be said about those who do it in an editorial, article, blog, or anything else that is public.

So, paintball, please don’t say we’re “stalking.” The comments you’re seeing very well aren’t all from Leaky people. Even if they were, so what? Post there and disagree with us. Don’t come here and tell us what we can and cannot do just because you say so and you don’t like it. That is what is childish.

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Mr. Card can’t be serious if he thinks any REAL HP fans have lost or will lose respect for Jo because of this case. His comments indicate to me that he is more than just a bit jealous of Jo’s success. He should quit what he’s doing and go write for a tabloid.

Mr. Jennings writes about “companion” books. I have read the “Lost” book and I own copies of the books for “The West Wing” and also “Northern Exposure”. In my opinion, neither of these constitues a violation of copyright laws nor do they come close to what I’m assuming Mr. Vander Ark has done. A companion book is meant to enhance a fan’s appreciation of a series of books, or in my case, a television series. It is not supposed to be a word-for-word ripoff of someone else’s work. As the webmaster of an HP fansite, Steve Vander Ark knew full well that Jo was planning an encyclopedia. He chose to try to beat her to the punch and get his work published before hers came out. How he can do that and still call himself a fan is beyond my comprehension. I think I will go ahead and do a little “predicting” of my own. If Vander Ark wins this case and his book comes out, he won’t sell many copies because true HP fans will not be interested in it. Here’s one HP fan who will definitely NOT be spending her money on a copy!

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I think Paintball was being polite when he wrote about a reputation for ‘stalking’. Actually I saw a comment using the word ‘trolling’.

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Isn’t that the truth, p.f. What I see here is some extremely childish behaviour, it’s like kids running around in a playground, saying a mean thing to one kid and then running back laughing to their friends and saying “look what I just said.”

Pathetic.

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@p.f.

I saw that comment about trolling too. And I have to admit, when I see an argument in favor of JKR that has no substance and was obviously written by a very angry person, I cringe because it sure doesn’t persuade anyone of JKR’s side of things.

However, I have also noticed that “trolling” is a pejorative term generally used to smear someone with whom you disagree, regardless of how troll-like their behavior actually is.

For example, in the message board where the “troll” comment was made, there were some pretty trollish pro-JKR remarks, but there were also some pretty thoughtful ones. However, the person who made the comment implied that anyone pro-JKR was by definition a troll, which wasn’t true. I’ve seen it done on this site as well, except usually anyone anti-JKR is the troll.

I mean, let’s be honest, even though he put his name on it, OSC’s whole opinion piece was pretty trollish, so I’m not surprised it generated some trollish replies.

Like I said, when I see pro-JKR comments that are trollish, I cringe because I know how bad it makes our side look, but all I can do is try to use calm, reasoned arguments. If someone calls me a troll for doing that, well it says more to me that they can’t refute the argument, so they are playing the troll card.

You honestly can’t paint everyone bad because of the behavior of some people. There has been plenty of trollish behavior on the pro-RDR side too, but I just ignore it and focus on the people who are making reasoned arguments. I don’t go calling the whole lot of them a bunch of trolls.

Actually as we are seeing here right now, accusing people of being trolls can actually be done in a pretty trollish way in and of itself.

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mollywobbles23, I’m not saying you don’t have a right to your opinions and your post. I was just pointing out that this site is getting a reputation because of the fans’ desires to “defend JKR” everywhere she is critized. When a regular Leaky fan like you uses the same name on other site, it becomes rather obvious that the Leaky fans have decided to attack in mass. Like p.f. said, I was actually trying to be polite.

I’ll just go away now. Have a good day.

Paintball

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I use the same name everywhere because I’m not afraid of what I say. If I used a different name everywhere, I’d be the same person, but a coward.

I don’t like the posts that just name call Card (or other critics) or just exclaim that Jo is the best and that’s that. But, that’s not what makes up most of those responses, and mine are certainly not like that.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go watch Top Gear. I am now addicted.

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Matthew Belloni: Even a wizard can’t predict outcome of ‘Potter’ case (April 25, 2008)

http://login.vnuemedia.com/hr/content_display/features/columns/apple_corps/e3i0f3a7216274d5d82847fba505204b2ed

balanced and focused on the copyright issues.


Maja Petersen: ‘Harry’ situation for fan / Rowling wrong in squashing ‘Potter’ book (April 28, 2008)

http://media.www.spectatornews.com/media/storage/paper218/news/2008/04/28/Editorialopinion/harry.Situation.For.Fan-3352182.shtml

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Well, Maja Petersen’s article calls fans “fanatics” and says it may be infringement, but to actually sue is so rude. LOL. Yeah, that really is defending RDR/SVA.

Matthew Belloni’s piece is pretty much the carnival barker’s cry “Anything can happen. Step right up and see the show.” But he gets it right when he says “The battle centers on what additional material Van der Ark has added and how much is required to squirt past fair use scrutiny.”

Of course, most of the pro-RDR/SVA opinions come from people who have not read the book manuscript. Those who have generally come away somewhat subdued, their enthusiasm curbed. That’s because SVA has clearly added so little.

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I don’t care who’s legally or politically correct in this case… that Card guy can get stuffed nobody should talk about Jo that way.

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I liked to be called pro-intellectual property or anti-copyright infringement. As for a compromise between a reference guide which intentions are not to include any outside information and the authors intellectual property who has the (moral) right to call her work her own and stop others from taking her work, I already thought there was one. A reference guide with own content, where as a result the author of this guide is able to say this work is mine. Why change the status quo, when this regulation benefits both author and reference guide author. The lexicon in his current form however, only benefits the copycat. Seeing whose work the lexicon in reality is, I do not consider it to be fair. A copycat prevailing over the working author I do not understand.

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This is difficult for me to keeping reading up on, so I shudder to think what this must be doing to JKR and family.

Why don’t we just give our support and ignore the nay-sayers. If for some reason RDR/SVA wins we collectively join together to ban the books or petition against them sold where ever we may be. We are strong united. Support and love to JKR.

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If this thief of words is a JKR fan how and why would he want to do this? He has got to be one of the most hated men in the world right now. And OSC you are just jealous that your series is not as popular and kinda fizzled out after the first three books.

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Jo should win. Its her world, her words and her imagination. If she finds errors, and facts that can certinaly mislead the readership of her novels, then I think that it is her right (and very kind of her) to make sure that we the readers only get the best. I feel awful that Jo has found out the hard way that no good deed goes unpunished, I just hope that Jo can see that the vast majority of her fans respect her and delight in her world. And that her delight, and encouragement of the imaginations of HER fans will not be seen as her being too trusting or stupid. But welcome, as that what people have needed, she is the modern day Dickens!

What Mr. Van DerArk has to realise that Harry Potter fans are as loyal as Huffelpuffs and that in causing Jo uncomfert and hurt we will never ever forgive him. Meaning that his Lexicon will just gather dust, on book shop shelves.

So, fingers crossed that Jo wins, or we might see that a lot of authors will go to extreems to protect their work. Extreems which will see fan sites cease to be.

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Before I read the bitter cranky vitriol of OSC, I was neutral about this whole thing. But now, after reading that, I’m more on JKR’s side then ever. If this lexicon instead of being an original reference book is instead copy pasting JKR’s work without siting the source then she has the right to sue. Besides, I’d really rather have JKR’s encyclopedia anyway. She’s the one who knows the books up and down, backwards and forwards.

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This comment from Card’s prediction list “Her greedy evil-witch behavior now disgusts us.” is a very nasty comment. Excuse me but his comments are disgusting, without J.K. Rowling there is no Harry Potter. She is the creator of that wonderful imaginary world that we love so much and thank God for such a gifted author. Therefore, she has every right to suit and she should win. I really want her to win from the bottom of my heart.

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“If this lexicon instead of being an original reference book is instead copy pasting JKR’s work without siting the source then she has the right to sue.”

That’s right. If… But JKR didn’t show any evidence that it is really a copy and paste thing.

@I am Minerva I used to be a JKR’s fan. I even used Jo’s fan through and thorugh as a signature in a forum. I ceased to be a HP fan with the crappy book seven and ceased to be a JKR’s fan when she decided to sue Steve. So you are wrong when you say no fan would do that. Actually Maja Petersen is another example and I know some others in real life. Most of the hard Lexicon users know how the Lexicon is transformative and it is not because it use imaginative words, but because it gives us something JKR’s books don’t – a ready reference. The Lexicon don’t and won’t compete with any JKR’s book. It is not for entertainment. It just helps us to find quickly some information, without having to spend a lot of time.

All of the fans who would buy Steve’s encyclopedia would buy hers too. They certainly will be two completely different books if both get to be published. Steve’s is a ready reference. Hers is less comprehensive, but probably more entertaining and with lots of new information about her characters and creation.

What I find strange is that all the defenders of Steve say about what the Lexicon really is, but all the defenders of Jo simply ignore the point and argue about things that have nothing to do with the purpose of the Lexicon (for instance that it doesn’t have useful analysis). Fans here are criticizing Jennings and Card for not having read the trial, but it seems to me that these fans are the ones that didn’t read it carefully. Or didn’t grasp it. They have read only Jo’s side, which is clearly trying to mislead and bring irrelevant arguments to the forefront.

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“all the defenders of Jo simply ignore the point and argue about things that have nothing to do with the purpose of the Lexicon (for instance that it doesn’t have useful analysis).”

Posted by lilyp on April 29, 2008 @ 01:29 PM

I haven’t ignored the point at all. Pro-RDR argues that the “purpose” criteria of fair use law outweighs” the “amount taken” criteria (and all the other criteria for that matter), while pro-JKR argues that the “amount taken” is so great as to make the Lexicon out-of-bounds from any previously recognized definition of the defense’s stated “purpose”.

RDR argued that the “purpose” should outweigh the “amount taken,” and then disingenuously implied that their “purpose” was to copy, so the fact that they MEANT to copy should outweigh legal protection against copying. Ms. Cendali called this a “circular argument” in her closing remarks.

So as you see, I have not only read Jo’s side, I’m stating both sides and giving my reason for my opinion. This post is basically a copy of one I’ve made before, so to say that all defenders of Jo ignore the stated purpose of the Lexicon is inaccurate.

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@lilyp

I feel compeled to point out that providing a ready reference so that one can look up an item without having to find the item by searching longer and through numerous pages is, perhaps, a worthy purpose (although, as I’m sure you will admit, there are other sources of a similar nature for this very same information), that does not necessarily make the lexicon part of the website transformative. It depends (and this is both true in every such case, as well as an indication of the complexity of the circumstances surrounding copyright law and infringement) on a number of factors, the predisposition, if any, of the judge in the case, and other things. So it is an open question as to whether the lexibook will be viewed as transformative. There is ample evidence to refute the claim, but there is also ample precedent in favour, depending on how the legal beagles interpret what is, in any case INTENDED to be an interpretable doctrine.

As an aside, I must also echo Tyler’s sentiments. I and Tyler and MANY others, have presented the INFORMATION, in as clear a way as we can, and tried to be sure that where it exists, both sides of the case are examined. So it is unfair to make the generalization you did. Further, the same can be said of BOTH sides of the issue. Just as there are pro-WB/JKR positions that are absolutely fair in their presentation of the facts as they are available on either side of the situation, there are pro-RDR positions that do that too.

Where I would agree whole-heartedly with you is if you had pointed out that there are many more supporters on both sides who let their emotional involvement (or, I am sure, other motivations) get the better of them and they forget that we are all human beings, and all, therefore, worth treating with respect. I might say too that it is even more important to respond to diatribe, invective and in some cases childish and utter nonsense (none of which, by the way, do I think describes your posting)with even more politeness and tolerance, for what I hope are obvious reasons. And then there are those that simply do not merit any comment whatsoever (again, I do not count your posting amongst that category, obviously).

We are all subject to the same pressures that our emotions and personal involvement exert upon us. We cannot all handle them the same way, and we must make at least some allowances. But that doesn’t excuse the fact that these things happen. It only helps understand that it could be any one of us doing the same things and acting the same way, but for our stronger constitutions, our ability to ignore the irrelevant and focus on the important, our ability to simply walk way.. whatever it is that some people have.

At least in my opinion.

M.

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“I ceased to be a HP fan with the crappy book seven and ceased to be a JKR’s fan when she decided to sue Steve.

-lilyp”

She didn’t sue Steve. She sued RDR. Steve is not a defendent, but a witness.

And the court will decide if it’s transformative enough. I think it is not.

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[A is for Abbott]

As written by Mr. Vander Ark:

Citation: “Abbott” entry, as written by Steven Jan Vander Ark in his unpublished compilation called “The Harry Potter Lexicon,” http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/new-york/nysdce/1:2007cv09667/315790/52/14.html, last viewed on April 29, 2008.

“Abbott – Family name on a headstone in the graveyard in Godric’s Hollow, probably ancestors of Hannah, since wizarding families tended to live close together in certain villages after the Statute of Secrecy went into effect in 1692. (DH 16).” (Vander Ark, under the letter “A”) [Actual entry contains no quotation marks]

That which was written by J. K. Rowling:

Bibliographical Citation: Rowling, J. K., Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Arthur A. Levine Books, New York, First Edition, July 2007.

“Behind the church, row upon row of snowy tombstones protruded from a blanket of pale blue that was flecked with dazzling red, gold, and green wherever the reflections from the stained glass hit the snow. Keeping his hand closed tightly on the wand in his jacket pocket, Harry moved toward the nearest grave.

Look at this, it’s an Abbott, could be some long-lost relation of Hannah’s!” (Rowling, DH, p. 324 -325)

“There’s a bit about the village in A History of Magic, wait …”

“She opened the beaded bag and rummaged for a while, finally extracting her copy of their old school textbook, A History of Magic by Bathilda Bagshot, which she thumbed through until finding the page she wanted.”

“‘Upon the signature of the International Statute of Secrecy in 1689, wizards went into hiding for good. It was natural, perhaps, that they formed their own small communities within a community. Many small villages and hamlets attracted several magical families, who banded together for mutual support and protection…’” (Rowling, DH, p. 318)

[Scrivener’s Note: In my opinion, Mr. Vander Ark’s “Abbott” entry would make at least some sense, if “Hannah Abbott” was from Godric’s Hollow, near where J. K. Rowling had the character “Harry” indicate the “Abbott” tombstone was protruding. On the contrary, there is no mention of where “Hannah Abbott” lives in Mr. Vander Ark’s “Hannah Abbott” entry. For instance, if she lived in Godric’s Hollow, that might have been something “informational” to indicate, as a “possible” place “Hannah Abbott” might go when “Hannah’s mother was killed by Death Eaters (HBP 11) during her sixth year at Hogwarts and Hannah left school…,” before “she returned in May of 1998 to fight in the Battle of Hogwarts.” (Vander Ark, under the letter “A”)]

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JKR needs to grow up…used to like her, thought she was a person of integrity. Unfortunately I’ve seen just the opposite and not only in this pointless case.

I still like the HP stories/movies but I will not buy any more of her books, though I doubt she’ll be able to create anything new that is worthwhile.

There are far better books available…go to a library or a book store and you’ll be amazed at the amount of great literature out there. Support those authors who actually appreciate their fans and stick to their values.

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@BOB:

May I ask how much you know about the case? I’m curious. I hope you’re not getting your information from the mainstream media as they can’t even get who’s being sued (RDR not Steve) right.

Jo still allows loads of fan stuff online and countless companion books.

RDR should have not evaded them so actively. The lawsuit was a last resort after attempting to communicate only led them to believe that RDR did in fact have something to hide (as they wouldn’t send them a simple manuscript and told them to hit “print” on the website).

meesha1971 over on the lounge has posted quite an interesting post that includes a checklist for fair use: http://www.leakylounge.com/WB-JKR-vs-RDR-SVA-Part-X-t61366.html&st=280#entry1598319

It really sinks RDR’s case for fair use.

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“I ceased to be a HP fan with the crappy book seven and ceased to be a JKR’s fan when she decided to sue Steve.

-lilyp”

She didn’t sue Steve. She sued RDR. Steve is not a defendent, but a witness.

And the court will decide if it’s transformative enough. I think it is not. Posted by mollywobbles23 on April 29, 2008 @ 03:16 PM

No, she didn’t sue Steve, she just slaughtered him on the witness stand. Not classy, not cool, – just nasty.

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SVA most likely did not like what Jo had to say about his book. But, she did not personally attack him. The truth hurts.

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It’s nasty to give her honest opinion of the Lexicon when she’s under oath? To give her honest opinion of a book that may very well be sold in book stores?

The truth is, the Lexicon isn’t completely thorough, nor is it very accurate in a lot of places. Don’t get me wrong, it’s more than adequate as a free website run by people who do it as a hobby in their spare time. But if those people want me to shell out $24.95 for it, then I better damn well get something more professional and accurate than what’s currently there.

Some may think she was “nasty” about it, but I can’t fault Jo for telling the truth about where and why she feels the Lexicon falls short. SVA has felt free to be critical of Jo’s work (he’s criticized parts of the books on Pottercast, and once referred to the epilogue as the “crapilogue”), but she’s not allowed to be critical of his? Especially when she’s on the witness stand, under oath?

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Who cares if there are errors in his timeline. Haven’t we all caught errors in even Jo’s books? You have to wonder why his Lexicon won awards when it was free, but heaven forbid he make a dime on his hard work of following they story line. Shouldn’t she have decided years ago then to sue him then? Everyone is intitled to making a buck. Where the story and her telling it is unique, we have all read how her books followed one classic novel or another. Everyone borrows ideas from one source or another. There just is no original story out there that is solely belonging to someone. She should be proud that her novels are talked about and reviewed and critiqued. Really is his book going to interfear with her own idea later down the line? Would any of you not read hers if you read his?

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@Gwynne:

It won one award from her, the fansite award, and she gave it as an “A for effort.” She was trying to be nice to a fan. She did not say “and this now gives you the right to publish this in book form without changing much because it’s such great quality.” Even Steve understood that…for awhile. He changed his tune once he had an offer and money within reach.

Everyone is entitled to make a buck. But, they can’t make a buck off of someone else’s work and creativity without giving some of their own.

Yes, she borrowed ideas like all authors do. But she did something DIFFERENT and ORIGINAL with them. I don’t call arranging something in alphabetical order to be different or original.

She does encourage her novels to be “talked about and reviewed and critiqued.” See thousands of fanforums and other companion books (about 100 of them) and podcasts for proof. The Lexicon book does none of that. It restates her novels; it does not discuss them.

RDR admits that the book is infringing. They claim it falls under fair use, though. See messha1971’s post that I linked above for the reasons why that’s not true.

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I still hold fast to my opinion that it is not going to make one difference to her version, especially seeing how she thinks it is that bad! Also it is not like he is writing a sequel to her novel for peets sake. I think it is petty. And if it is the publisher pushing her to pursue this lawsuit then how petty of them when they had made millions off her work! I have read Lexicon while I was reading all the novels and it was great. If she clearly wanted to do a time line on her own she could have done one long ago when there was years in between novels. I think all great novels have timelines like this done. You can even buy stuff like this for college for required reading to shorten the process. How do they get away with it and not have lawsuits? Just more drama to drive up the price on her time line is all this is.

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@Mollywobbles23

Someone posted the link to these comments in the comments for OSC’s opinion piece along with some inflammatory rhetoric. So be warned, the forecast may call for heavy trolling. I’m only saying this because I don’t want to see you get overrun. Pace yourself. (Now that I’ve said this, it will probably stop. However, I was going to post this warning further up the page but thought it would probably stop as soon as I said something. As I can see it is continuing, I am just throwing that out there for your consideration).

I would be helping you, but I am just too lazy. This whole case has come down to like 10 different arguments to which I could cut and paste responses at this point, but none of this latest barrage has really touched on anything relevant enough to stir me. However, I appreciate you putting up responses that stick to the issues, that’s what I would be doing if I wasn’t so lazy. Hopefully representing Leaky well. However, remember that JKR’s exceptional character will bring her out on top no matter what the outcome of this case is or how many inflammatory posts are made. So don’t burn yourself out too much.

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First of all, people need to RELAX, and STOP bashing Mr.Card. He’s a very good writer, and wrote amazing stuff. Same with Mr.Gaiman. I’m 50/50 on this case. Because first of all, there’s so many more other encyclopedias and all, so why should Jo alll of sudden stop the publication of THIS one? But then I thought,, MAYBE, she found something that she didn’t like in there. OR, this is the most reasonalbe one to me actually, WB manipulated her. Simple as that. I think she’s just be played around by the stupid effed up Warner Brothers, who ruined the movies and are just here for the money. That is all.

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Thanks, Tyler. I figured as much. Honestly, this doesn’t phase me in the least. It gets a little monotoneous at times and my tongue is sore from biting it, though. I’m doing something creative at the same time, so I’m totally calm. I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if it’s all just one or two people using different names.

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Oh, another reason it doesn’t phase me: I remember the shipping wars. This is nothing.

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What I’m chortling about is the assertion that it was a “brilliant twist” for OSC to call JKR an “evil witch” because she wrote books about witches and wizards. Oh, yes, that was a very creative insult!.... except, my 7-year-old nephew, after I read part of OotP out loud to him, said, “That Umbridge is such… she’s such… an EVIL WITCH!! Haha!” He thought he was being really clever, too. Snort. And he was being clever… for a 7-year-old.

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I agree with OSC entirely. It’s a shame for her legacy that JKR has sold out entirely.

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[D is for Doxicide]

As written by Mr. Vander Ark:

Citation: “Doxicide” entry, as written by Steven Jan Vander Ark in his unpublished compilation called “The Harry Potter Lexicon,” http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/new-york/nysdce/1:2007cv09667/315790/52/14.html, last viewed on April 29, 2008.

“Doxycide – Black liquid, usually delivered by spray bottle, used to knock out Doxies so that they can be safely disposed of. The effects last quite a long time. Molly Weasley provided each of the children a spray bottle of Doxycide with which to help clear the infestation of Doxies from the draperies of the drawing room in the number twelve, Grimmauld Place (OP6).” (Vander Ark, under the letter “D”.)

As Written by J. K. Rowling:

Bibliographical Citation: Rowling, J. K., Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Scholastic, New York, First Scholastic trade paperback printing, September 2004.

Note: Text copyright © 2003 by J. K. Rowling; HARRY POTTER, characters, names, and related indicia are trademarks of and © Warner Bros. Harry Potter Publishing Rights © J. K. Rowling.

“Half an hour later, Harry and Ron, who had dressed and breakfasted quickly, entered the drawing room, a long, high-ceilinged room…covered in dirty tapestries… It was around these that…” (Rowling, OP, p. 101)

“Each of them was also holding a large bottle of black liquid with a nozzle at the end.”

“’Cover your faces and take a spray,’” Mrs. Weasley said to Harry and Ron the moment she saw them, pointing to two more bottles of black liquid standing on a spindle-legged table.” “’It’s Doxycide. I’ve never seen an infestation this bad – what that house elf’s been doing for the last then years…’” (Rowling, OP, p. 102)

“Mrs. Weasley was bending over to check the page on doxies in Gilderoy Lockhart’s Guide to Household Pests, which was lying open on the sofa.”

“When I say the word, start spraying immediately,” she said. “They’ll come flying out at us, I expect, but it says on the sprays one good squirt will paralyze them. When they’re immobilized, just throw them in this bucket.” (Rowling, OP, p. 103)

[Scrivener’s note/ revision: According to her book, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, J. K. Rowling wrote about “Doxicide,” which was listed in Gilderoy Lockhart’s Guide to Household Pests (see separate references about J. K. Rowling’ s Gilderoy Lockhart, and Gilderoy Lockhart’s Guide to Household Pests). According to the Harry Potter story, “Mrs. Weasley (see separate reference about J. K. Rowling’s Mrs. Weasley) was bending over to check the page on doxies in Gilderoy Lockhart’s Guide to Household Pests.” (Rowling, OP, p. 103) Mrs. Weasley warned everyone to “cover your faces, and take a spray,” as each of them were “holding a large bottle of black liquid with a nozzle on the end.” (Rowling, OP, p. 102) As Mrs. Weasley colorfully described the usefulness of “Doxicide,” “it says on the sprays, one good squirt will paralyze them.” Then, “just throw them in a bucket.” (Rowling, OP, p. 103) End Note. That is one way of paraphrasing a piece of fiction. But, I’ll have to admit, that it felt a bit odd, because I couldn’t purport that any of what J. K. Rowling was writing, or anything that the character Mrs. Weasley was says as scientific fact or “real.” When I tried to paraphrase it, what I really wanted to do was say: “Mrs. Rowling, if I had to do this proper paraphrasing of your work all day long, rather than feel like I’ve been “Umbridged,” couldn’t we just copy all of the books to Disk, make the Disk uneditable, yet searchable, sell them for charity, then let everyone scan for the word “Doxicide” themselves.?]

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This is not an unexpected comment considering the source and who his crones are. It really sounds to me like Orson Scott Card is a little bitter about J K Rowling’s success and he uses this opportunity as a venue to speak on it. Honestly, I am so tired of hearing jealous authors snipe about Rowling’s writing and her ability to generate an enormous fan base.

Hey Orson, perhaps it is your massive superego that is the problem here, so here’s what you do, leave J K Rowling alone and go see a therapist to work out those unresolved anger management issues.

In addition, I have to correct his statement , because now I am of the opinion that Orson will lose a lot of fans after showing his fangs like that.

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@everybody, both sides….

I thought perhaps I could come back and try one more time. Which I did. To no avail. Not surprisingly. The people involved simply insist on dealing NOT with the issues, the intellectual discussion, or anything else, in any rational way. It has come down to personality bashing, childish (as I said earlier) insults and retorts. I’ve had it. I’m going.

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I think one problem with “Jo’s Army” is that, as a generalization, the JKR supporters have unintentionally formed “talking points,” some of which are somewhat uninformed (or, more likely, are informed solely by the WB attorneys, while you toss the Stanford attorneys aside as if they’re crackpots, blind zealots, or ignorant of the law. It’s a fair, but reckless, opinion to take.)

Look: the simple question of the case is whether or not a “ready reference” (as SVA termed his lexicon in his testimony) is a transformative use of copyrighted work. Many people very well-versed in copyright law would say it is, ESPECIALLY since this is a ready reference to a children’s book. Children’s companion books are going to, by necessity, be simplistic, not chock full of “scholarly analysis.”

And if this book is truly a “ready reference,” you would expect it to contain entries very similar to Rowling’s words, since it is based on a reality that is only defined by Rowling’s words. All this talk about adding material, interpretation, analysis, essays or whatever is beside the point; none of that is appropriate in a ready reference, so of course it’s not included in the book form of the Lexicon.

I’d also add that this “fair use checklist” that’s been referenced here and in the Lounge is a red herring; it’s been taken totally out of context (the list in question was created to help students while creating scholarly work to begin with, so it aims its checkpoints to that purpose) and it’s designed to PREVENT copyright infringement, so therefore is developed with a “play it safe” basis. The truth is that there is no such thing as a “fair use checklist;” there are only four basic theories of fair use (with a wild variety of case law that swings from conservative to very liberal) that the judge has to weigh back and forth, any one of which could well overpower the other three should the judge see fit. In this case, the obvious factor being weighed is the transformative nature of a lexicon, and whether its value to the reader is “worth” the material it borrowed to exist.

Like it or not, Jo’s financial success with Harry Potter DOES come into play as well, since part of the fair use situation may come down to whether the Lexicon can hurt the potential profit of Jo’s future efforts. Given her massive worldwide success, it’s unlikely, and the court will take that into consideration. So yes, the huge corporation/rich author vs. “little publisher” aspect of this case DOES merit consideration, if you are intent on making an informed inquiry into the case, rather than parroting the WB legal filings.

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@Melanie: Orson Scott Card is an outspoken person who speaks his mind openly without worry about who he offends, so he therefore offends many, But, he doesn’t care. When a special “Children’s Best Seller’s List” was created just to remove the 3 HP books off the best sellers list to make room for other books, Mr Card was one of the first to express his displeasure and unfairness of this treatrment of JKR’s books. When JKR is treated unfairly he speaks out for her. When she is wrong he speaks out against her. To accuse him of a jealous motive shows clearly that you know nothing of this man. To believe his fans will abandon him shows that you know nothing of his fans.

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O.S. Card comes across as obnoxious and jealous and not worth acknowledging.

As for the other assessments, they can spout all the legalities and theories they like. It still does not justify the bad manners of piggybacking on someone else’s hard earned success, esp. while the work is still in creative process. The films are not yet done and Jo still has her own HP reference manual to complete.

Five years, ten years, from now when the dust of the creative process has finally settled and there is no chance of fans confusing the authentic from the opportunistic, then perhaps a proper, well-constructed enthusiast’s guide would not be a terrible thing. Doing it now, though, is just greedy and invasive, and a pitiful attempt at stealing thunder.

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@ Morton – I too shall be departing this comment section of the board for a more civil environment (back to the forums). Thank you for your attempts to keep the discussion under control, but I feel at this point that the battlements have been breached. It is difficult to reason the finer points of law in the middle of a hand grenade lobbing contest. Hope to see you again on a more sane thread.

To those remaining, I reccomend that you try to stick to the issues and the law. Spouting talking points that are not backed up by the facts of the case just fans the flames and invites another incomming hand grenade. Spend a few hours reading the full exhibits associated with the case and look at the unbiased legal opinions before forming your conclusions. After that post something meaningful that adds to the discussion. Later folks.

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First, let me say, I appreciate ALL the work that Steve has done on the Lexicon. I have enjoyed it for the past few years. I do not, however, plan to purchase his book, as it is not canon. I also don’t like the fact that his book repeats Jo’s work to the tune of 91% (according to reports). That really bothers me. It bothers me MORE than he does not cite her work/ideas, as reported. I plan to purchase Jo’s book when and if she releases it. Like I said, I really appreciate Steve’s work on the Lexicon. It has served as a true fan’s offer to enhance my enjoyment of Jo’s books. Thanks for the chance to share my views.

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Having read thousands of comments on this case on many different sites, I am at the point now where everything I read is a repeat of an argument I have seen before, so everything is starting to sound like “talking points” (except for the numerous personal attacks that pop up, that is sadly the only place where new material and creativity can be shown, but it is too bad such energy is being wasted on meaningless endeavors).

I wish this lawsuit had never happened. It is easy to say WB should have never brought the suit because they have all the money (and unfortunately I have come to the realization that most people are probably not on their side for this reason), but when you consider how badly RDR dealt with any inquiries regarding the Lexicon, it is not surprising legal action was taken. Again, not taking sides here, just saying I wish this suit had never happened but I can see why it did given the circumstances.

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Mr. Card’s prediction is coming true. Quite a few people who were once charmed by Rowling and felt sympathy for her early (though relatively brief) struggles to become a published author have been surprised by the lawsuit and disgusted by the huge PR campaign against Mr. Vander Ark. It’s sad to see Rowling attack a fan who made his own inestimable contribution to her success. When a writer who makes a billion dollars is still this uptight about sharing the wealth, it’s disheartening. She could easily have co-produced that lexicon and made Vander Ark some money while exercising what now appears to be an insatiable need for control. She is blocking publication of his lexicon, to protect the value of a lexicon she hasn’t even begun to write yet! Does she imagine that Potter will still be this popular when she finally completes her book (or more likely Warner pays someone to complete it for her) in several years? In any case, I won’t buy any more of her products—because I now realize that they ARE products, not works of art. Rowling has reduced them to products with a specific monetary value.

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Based on the vociferous responses on this site, I truly believe there is no position JK Rowling can espouse that would not be defended to the death on these boards. In the case of Rush Limbaugh listeners, their unqualified support has earned them the moniker of “ditto heads”. Obviously this nickname would be very aptly used here.

On the question of Fair Use rights and the specifics of this case, I believe the facts have been well presented by both Card and Jennings. JKR ditto heads may choose to ignore the facts in favor of their imagined reality but I doubt the judge in this case will do the same.

And to Cheryl, I believe you, your bosses, WB and JKR will find the delivery technology will have little impact on the law in this case. And your comment continues to force me to greatly question the quality of advise being presented to JKR. And she strikes me as someone who REALLY needs good advise and a strong PR management team about now.

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COMMENTERS NOTE: with regard to leaky’s rebuttals of every single criticism this trial faces, it is quite possible that these famous authors and entertainment magazines like newsweek may not be wrong.

You’re doing a massive job of killing the littlest of naysayers, so keep up with it. You’re being paid in blinged out unsellable rare books so it’s worth the trouble.

It’s obvious Leaky’s encouraging people like Nunki who want to flame and hang those that disagree with the trial. It’s all over the internet the loyal fans who act more like Death Eaters on Voldemort’s orders barging down the doors of blogs and using spiteful personal attacks on anyone and everyone despite their respectability in the real world.

This toxic fandom is the home for vicious armchair critics who twists the arms of anyone who disagrees with the scarfaced juggernaut. If she wins the trial, it will be on its legal merit only, and not because of the fanassasins who spent all their waking hours defending this trial in every corner of the web.

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I was pretty neutral on the case for a while…until I read the facts. Now, if one reads the facts and comes to the decision that RDR should win, that’s fine. They obviously see it differently than I do. But, I have no patience for people who come on here and attack us for defending our opinions when it seems the only opinion they have is based on the spin the media has given the case. To me, that makes those people the “ditto heads” and not those of us who have read the facts and come to our own conclusions. We have every right to do express our opinions, just like you have every right to comment here. Look, you’re not even put through a filter first (though if you curse heavily or say something lude it will be deleted because children come here). If you disagree with us, then that’s fine. But don’t insult all of us, just because some of us went overboard with our comments. It makes you look bad and certainly doesn’t give you the upper hand. In other words: don’t sink to the level of which you complain.

I’m done with this comment box. Hopefully things will go back to the way they were (actual civilised discussion) when the next bit of news about the trial is reported. Until then, see you on the forum, folks.

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In response to those who are saying that Orson S. Card is “bitter” or “jealous” of Rowling, I’d like to disclose that Mr. Card was previously an energetic fan of Rowling’s. He’s been on Snapecast promoting his “fanboy” love of the Potter serious. He even wrote an essay on the “goodness” of Snape before DH hit the shelves. I believe he’s just stating his honest opinion on the issue (and I happen to agree with him. I mean, I love Jo and all but jeez, it can’t be this serious). And anyway, it’s true that Rowling is incredibly successful and all, but it’s not like Card’s some unknown author. He’s been writing for decades, won countless awards and published dozens of books. He’s a legendary author. Do show him some respect.

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@mollywobbles23:

I know I know. Up until now, the arguments have been more or less about the case, although with varying degrees of relevance to the actual issues. But this latest wave of postings is concentrated solely on attacking people for… I’m not sure what, for expressing their opinion?

So someone posts an opinion piece and then some people disagree with it… the NERVE of those people to disagree. I have seen some pretty immature attacks coming from the pro-JKR side, but I have yet to see one that attacks the other side just for expressing an opinion in the first place.

But I do agree with AP’s post above that we should show people some respect. Just because OSC posted a disrespectful smear piece does not mean that we should sink to his level.

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Um. To all those folks who claimed that they’re going to chat in a more “civilized” forum…where? I’ve checked around the Forum and I don’t see the thread. Anyone care to disclose?

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@AP

The one that I know of in the Leaky Lounge is at:

http://www.leakylounge.com/WB-JKR-vs-RDR-SVA-Part-X-t61366.html&st=320&start=320

It does look pretty civilized. I think you have to sign up and get a username to post.

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This all just goes to show how very brutal a courtcase is.

By brutal, I mean the arguments used - based as they are on legal points that have to be covered and defended - often sound ridiculous in the real world outside of the courtroom. Witnesses and lawyers are working in a defined space.

Jo/WB has to argue that the Lexicon will hurt her encyclopedia sales. That’s one of the arguments for copyright protection versus Fair Use. On a theoretical level it’s very possible her sales will be hurt, but outside of a legal argument it seems absurd. She’s not being greedy, but it sure sounds like it.

Jo/WB is not being a meanie or ungrateful to the Lexicon website when she argues that the Lexicon Book is sloppy. One available Fair Use defense argument is that the proposed work is scholarly so Jo/WB have to show it’s not.

Etc. Etc

I’d use some RDR examples, but can’t think of any right now.

Most arguments seem absurd when taken from court out to the street.

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Stupid ferschugener strikout thingie.

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desertwind

I totally agree. I think the biggest example I can think of is the one that JKR shouldn’t be suing because she is rich. I tried imagine that argument from the point of view of someone who doesn’t know anything about the legal issues involved. And it is a pretty daming argument. If you believe she shouldn’t be suing because she is rich, you don’t even WANT to hear about the legal issues because they are the product of a lawsuit you believe shouldn’t exist.

I think to balance that argument out (that she shouldn’t be suing because she is rich), it is very important to know how RDR really gave her the finger for months. Once you see what they did, you can at least understand why some legal activity may have been in the offing.

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First I want to thank Copperhead for the brilliant quotations (too long to paste here, refer back to April 29th) because they show VERY clearly how Steve’s work IS transformative.Taking the relevant information from the passage, he wrote a straight and clear entry with the essentials, as it is proper in an encyclopedia. Second I think that “crapilogue” (which I hadn’t heard about) is an accurate description of Rowling’s epilogue. The same goes for the various information she decided to sell fans bit by bit about things she wasn’t able to include in the books. Third, as someone said above, “she should be proud that her novels are talked about and reviewed and critiqued”. She doesn’t have to “allow” anything. Freedom of expression is still on. Fourth, I couldn’t agree more with Gwynne and Kizzie

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Am I seeing a trend?

People who don’t like the last book (and epilogue) or are unhappy with comments she’s made (Dumbledore, etc) are so angry with Jo that they want her to lose?

Is that their argument in RDR’s favor?

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It is rather difficult to discern whether the intentions of some of the contributors to this discussion are truly sincere or merely attempting to be malignant. I mean, this is a site for fans of the HP books, which are the creation of one J. K. Rowling, to point out the obvious. One shouldn’t be surprised to encounter fierce loyalty to the author here.

Don’t get me wrong. I think it’s great to have a difference of opinion. It’s what keeps the world balanced and diverse.

One thing that does seem certain, however, is that O.S. Card, with his list of “predictions”, did clearly set out to incite. Mission clearly accomplished. (No doubt he has been having a good chuckle over the chaos he has created.)

I would say to everyone who has become emotionally invested in these proceedings to just breathe deep and let go. Whatever happens happens. The final decision, whatever it may be, will hopefully be fair and not create a precedent that will threaten the creative freedoms or livelihoods of future authors and likewise, not restrict anyone’s freedom of speech.

The Harry Potter books are already well proven to be literary classics that will endure the test of time. The trial and its controversies, however distressing at the moment, will fade and become mere anecdotes, little tidbits of interest for future historians to happily consume.

In the end, the truly important thing to remember here is that –

Voldemort is dead and Harry is not a Horcrux.  (Is that a spoiler?)
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Mr Card said, “Once you publish fiction, Ms. Rowling, anybody is free to write about it, to comment on it, and to quote liberally from it, as long as the source is cited,” which, I admit, mirrors my own instinctive reaction when I first heard wind of this case. As a decade-long fan of Harry Potter, hearing my beloved JKR go on record putting down another long-time fan of hers and calling SVA’s book “inferior” left me feeling very disillusioned. Of course, I’ll grant that the media played rather a lot into my interpretation, and I’ve still not read all the “facts” of the case, but the acknowledgement of all that does not change the uneasy though nebulous (and logically ill-founded) feeling that JKR’s turned on her fans. Though Mr Card is unnecessarily harsh with his words, I can understand his stance.

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[Editorial Correction]

Re: comment posted on April 27, 2008 @ 7:22 p.m. to this article.

This is a self-correction. After reviewing a comment I posted, please note that the term “celebrity wreck” should be interpreted as being synonymous with “tabloid,” and not about a particular person, or living thing.

My apologies to anyone that this may have offended.

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@Jill

I totally agree with everything you said. I just want to make one tiny comment, which hopefully I can make without sounding like a TOTAL twit (oops, too late). I know you were probably using the term out of convenience, but the term “freedom of speech” refers to a basic human right that countless people have suffered and died to protect. It’s taken for granted, but it is a serious freedom that people in many countries would die to secure.

This basic human right has nothing to do with an argument over how much of another’s words someone is allowed to sell or whether a work is transformative. I know you didn’t mean it like that, but somebody above you DID use that term in all seriousness ( they said “freedom of expression,” but same difference) and it surprised me that anyone would actually confuse freedom of speech with the fair use of copyrighted material.

I’m sure RDR would LOVE to have this case tried on constitutional grounds, but the last time I checked there weren’t any fair use clauses in the U.S. Constitution. Anyway, I’m really not trying to attack you, I’m just sayin’.

@Dasani

It’s kind of an unspoken truth that a bestselling author is going to be a better writer than most of her fans, but JKR was put in the position where she actually had to elaborate about it in public. I wish she didn’t have to do that. I’m sure she didn’t enjoy it, if that’s any consolation.

All that having been said, just seeing in Copperhead’s quotes how much text is used in the Scrivner’s notes makes me think that the Lexicon isn’t taking much more than anything else, it just isn’t quoting it as accurately (and not adding as much new). So I guess my opinion is that with better citation and some analytical essays, the Lexicon wouldn’t be out of line. I still would not be thrilled that SVA went against JKR’s wishes like he did while portraying himself as the ultimate fan.

The best news that we could get would be that a settlement has been reached and the Lexicon will be published with some changes. Then there are no winners and losers (except for maybe SVA’s reputation with the fans).

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I have a question : If WB should win this trial, could WB order people to give their registrated domeinnames to WB, if it contains a name from the books, for example “the Leaky Cauldron” or “Godric’s Hollow” ? They tried it once before !! I remember a lot of fans were very angry at that time, but I cannot remember any reaction of Mrs Rowling. What would happen if WB tries it again after winning the trial?

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@ Uric the Oddball

You are right and, indeed, it needed to be said. Thank you for doing it so nicely.

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Some people remind us that “this is a site for fans of the HP books”. I don’t know if I am fan. For the first time, I read HP books in 2003, then re-read them, spending many an hour on the lexicon-site and on JKR’s site as well.

When DH was published I read the whole series over and over again, and I posted for the first time a small remark about the word ‘hallows’ to the Lexicon. I re-read for the overall feeling; then, more technically, for the timing, for the narrative, for motivation, for dialogue, for details and clichés: starlight in dobby’s eyes, moonlight falling through the window; plants; people choking on different liquids and spilling them over their clothes. My parents died in 2004 and 2005; my soul-mate died in 2005; close friends went in 2003, 2004, 2005. So there was real death and mourning for me. I could mirror my feelings in a strong narrative current underlying the HP books; the books were a means to feel safe from reality too, of course. By the way, Book VII did not work for me any more. I was so disappointed by the horcrux-mechanics and the cup-and-saucer-metaphysics, that ruined the rest vor me. And the epilogue with the “little family”-kitsch, gaah.

Some of my friends do not understand at all why I read HP. And in a way I’d say I am not a HP-Fan – I am not ready to worship. The only reason for stepping in here was the trial and some of the ‘Pro-Jo’-comments which are to be read as ‘Pro-WB’-comments as well. I think no one – no one – has the right to burn a book, it is unforgivable. Some one here did venture the idea, others thankfully stepped in. So did I with p.f., h.m. & ‘et altera pars’. As far as possible I’d step in again when I see people prepared to burn books.

Time to get back to life and to move on. In about a week’s time we shall know whether Judge P. will have to write a judgement or not.

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They should have just asked JK Rowling for permission at the beginning to publish the book.

I think that the book should be allowed to be published if it clearly states that it is unofficial and credits her.

However being an artrist i can kind of understand where she’s coming from, that it’s not about money but protecting her life’s masterpiece, and that her world should be just the way that she want’s it to be

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i am gonna show this to my friend, brother

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I agree that it’s true that Orson Scott Card didn’t have his facts right, but that doesn’t mean that everyone has to gang up on him and say that he’s an awful person. He was just expressing his feelings and exaggerating because he was so angry about this case. I believe that we should have sympathy Vander Ark and for Orson Scott Card. The character without sympathy in the Harry Potter series is voldemort, and no one wants to be like him. That series has a heart, and I don’t think that its fans should be any different. What I’m trying to say is, cut him some slack!

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What I said earlier was mostly responding to earlier posts.

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Help Me With My Bra Girl asks people to help her with her bra. A cool hidden camera, enjoy!

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hello , ban me please , im a weird boy, i like to write strange things , thank you and sorry

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I still don’t really understand why people can apply what is really a double standard to the issue of publishing a book which is sold as compared to creating a website which is free to view. Morally, the two cases are identical. Websites are growing in popularity and book sales are falling. If you can run a website paid for by adverts which is free to viewers, you are profiting from someone elses work just as much as if you were selling them copies. If you think the book is morally wrong, then so is website lexicon, and so is this website. It happens I don’t think that, and I don’t think there is any double standard in Vander Ark publishing a book about HP which is very similar in content to others already published about this series and about other series.

This case is about legal niceties, and the fact that the copyright owners (not necessarily JKR, though she is obliged to be the figurehead) think they can win a case about print which they could not win about a website. Either way it is sheerest hypocrisy, because I firmly believe the websites and companion books have all boosted sales of the books themselves, and the profits achieved by the copyright holders already.

On the whole I think that when someone writes a book and sends it out into the world, they have both a moral and legal right to be acknowledged as author and paid for their work. But I am not convinced they have a right of veto about others discussing their works. I don’t know exactly what is in the SVA book, but in general it must follow character/plot descriptions and explanations as presented on lexicon, or other websites such as this one. It aims to explain the stories, even if it only does this by cataloging and unravelling the sometimes convoluted plot. A book which examines and collects the information to make the facts easy to find and to explain things clearly is completely different to the original. Rowling could have written such a book herself, but she has chosen not to.

I do not believe such an explanation of her books reduces her ability to profit from them. No one is likely to be interested in a comprehensive explanation of the story unless they have already got into it.. For an author to claim the exclusive right to explain her own books is just the same as one author writing a biography of george bush to call foul that another author publishes one ten years before hers is finished. Books like this are not hijacking her ability to create the characters and stories, but are explaining them to others. This is something which obviously she deliberately avoided doing as she wrote the story. I do not think it is in either the public interest, or even in the authors interest that others be forbidden from explaining what someone has written.

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I fully agree with Card. I don’t know what the hell Rowling is thinking, hasn’t she already made enough money? There’s no way in hell she’s going to win, she has absolutly NO case against them. Anyone who doesn’t think so obviously doesn’t know anything about the law. I would suggest to all the 13 year olds replying to this post flaming Mr Card that they actually look up THEIR damned facts before spreading BS everywhere.

Avatar Image says: Monique, a Leaf fan, set up this plumb earnestly to believe. Now, let me regarding out that this was in no way an undertake to official one together is raise than the other. It was upright a core to official two things.

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