Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Intellectual Infringement

I just found out that two cards were removed from my shop because the attorney for Dr. Seuss Enterprises objected to my use of a quote from Dr. Seuss. I had given credit for the quote, not claiming it to be my own. I'm more than a little annoyed by this. It's a quote I had heard before and found online on various quote compilation sites. Seriously, do you not have anything better to do with your time than hunt down things like this and complain? If I had not given credit to the author of the quote, I would understand. I guess I'm just frustrated by the idea that you can lay claim to everything someone said.

I was told by etsy that "The letter stated that these listing(s) incorporate designs or symbols or language or images or photographs that infringe upon the concerned party's copyright or other intellectual property right." So I can't use language that infringes upon another person's intellectual property. Well, as all my cards feature quotes by other people, I might as well just take the whole thing down! Heaven forbid I'm moved and inspired by something someone else said and want to incorporate it into what I do!

Being raised by a children's librarian, I had a great respect for Dr. Seuss and still do. However, I feel that his current representatives might not being operating in the spirit he seemed to embody. They let that horrendous Mike Myers movie mutilate The Cat in the Hat, but I can't put a quote on a $3 card? Are there any of us who didn't grow up with Dr. Seuss books? His work is so much a part of our culture that you see little things everywhere. The banter of Green Eggs and Ham has spawned more parodies than I can think of.

My rant is running out of steam because I'm just flabergasted and annoyed by this so much that I can't think straight. I'm not denying that there are copyrights and patents that are important, I just think this is an overreaction on the part of people with more money and power than I could ever dream of having.