New Book about TOS: These Are The Voyages

Discussion in 'Star Trek - Original Series' started by neoworx, Jul 13, 2013.

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  1. HaplessCrewman

    HaplessCrewman Commander Red Shirt

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    Ha ha. Yeah, it's whatever one can live with.

    As Landis was the director and therefore responsible for everything that happened on set, I would blame him for Vic Morrrow's death as well. And, of course I applaud Neal Adams' efforts in the 70's to help the Superman creators.

    I don't want to derail this thread - so back on topic. I've just come to the part in the book where Trek premieres. It's amazing that the episode air-dates were based almost entirely on what episode was finished - the ones needing extensive SFX being pushed back in the schedule. Even more reason to favor production order over air-date order for viewing.

    Also, Shatner sounds incredibly professional and sincere in the early press interviews he gave while promoting the premiere in 1966. A far cry from his late glib attitude toward the show.
     
  2. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    Shatner had a piece of the show, besides his salary. Its success meant his success.
     
  3. HaplessCrewman

    HaplessCrewman Commander Red Shirt

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    Very true.

    According to the book, it was a coup that Trek got Shatner as he was an up and coming star at the time.

    As much as I like Jeffrey Hunter, Trek would probably not have been a success with him. No one can deny Shatner's charisma and passion. I've never seen him not give his all to a role - no matter how ridiculous a part it was.
     
  4. trevanian

    trevanian Rear Admiral

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    It's alchemy. Nimoy and Hunter ... two recessives. But Nimoy and Shatner ... very complementary. Add Kelley and the writing of Coon and two-thirds of the way through season 1 you have magic that goes beyond just another SF story.

    In the old SHATNER WHERE NO MAN book, Nimoy says as much, noting that it would have been much harder to work out his own portrayal against Hunter's, whereas Shatner carved out a huge block of the scene and Nimoy knew to operate in what was left in a kind of counterpunching low-key way.
     
  5. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    For the record, I explained to the lawyer exactly where the images came from (film trims, etc,), what was done to them (extensive photo restoration), and how they were used in a commercial work without clearance by either the original copyright owner or the people who did the restoration.

    All I'm going to say about this entertainment lawyer is that he has worked with film and media since the 80s and cleared properties for use in major motion pictures, including one that last year made over 160 million dollars domestic box office, so you'll pardon me if I take his opinion about a thousand times more over those posted here. :D
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2013
  6. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    Shatner had just had his own show, For the People, which apparently was some sort of mid-season replacement. It ran for 13 episodes between January and May 1965. That left him free to do the second pilot. I don't remember For the People, I was probably watching another network.
     
  7. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    This reminds me of a situation among my friends many years ago. One was dating a girl of about 20 (we were in our mid-30s), and one night at a party, they had a legal question for another friend who was a practicing lawyer. He gave his opinion based on his years of schooling and experience. Only the 20 year old girlfriend didn't like the answer. After our lawyer friend left, the girlfriend started ranting about how he obviously didn't know what he was talking about, and how they could probably do this and that without getting in legal trouble... :vulcan:
     
  8. stcanada29

    stcanada29 Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Thanks for weighing in, dude! If you didn't mention the film trims were created in the '60s; before all the copyright laws changed in the mid-70's - that might have a bearing on things. I would suspect; even though he's been practicing since the 80s he would be familiar with the history of copyright legislation. No one here needs to be a lawyer to confirm that the copyrights laws underwent a major overhaul in the mid-70s. Just saying - perhaps he thought your question pertained to stuff created in the modern era. It would seem to make the publisher and the opinions of their legal team look very foolish (assuming they consulted with lawyers of their own) if they went ahead and filled their book with images that were still owned by CBS. Maybe they are as stupid as you suggest, then.

    Also, if you suggested that there was "an original copyright owner" that may be misleading, since I think the publisher is claiming the pics were never originally copyrighted since the studio didn't bother to individually register them as they claim was required at the time. So the studio forfeited any property rights. But hey, I'm absolutely NOT a lawyer, dude. I bow to your superior knowledge!
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2013
  9. HaplessCrewman

    HaplessCrewman Commander Red Shirt

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    Maurice,

    I think you would be much more credible if you used the word 'dude' more often. :rolleyes:
     
  10. stcanada29

    stcanada29 Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Or "dudette", which is just as happening, gangstas.
     
  11. GSchnitzer

    GSchnitzer Co-Executive Producer Moderator

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    stcanada29:

    Well, as I read the rules, it looks like there are a number of categories:

    Works Before 1923
    Works 1923-1963
    Works 1964 to 1977
    Works 1978 to 1989
    Works 1989 to 2002
    Works After 2002
    Works Never Published, and Never Registered

    I think these images weren’t actually copyrighted by the team that produced them. (I think everyone agrees with you on that point.)

    It looks like the particular "flavor" of these "unpublished works" is the "anonymous, pseudonymous, or 'works made for hire' (corporate authorship) category." That is, a corporation and not an individual was responsible for creating these images.)

    If I read this correctly (and assuming Cornell University Law knows what the hell they are talking about), the Copyright term for an unpublished corporate work is actually 120 years from the date of creation. As I read this, these images are not, in fact, in the Public Doman, and folks are not entitled to earn any money off of these unpublished corporate images without corporate permission until about 2085. But someone more knowledgeable than me would need to confirm if Cornell University Law is accurate.

    More information is here:

    http://copyright.cornell.edu/resources/publicdomain.cfm

    In the end, it looks like Maurice's contact probably knows what he is talking about. But you might have a different citation you can offer us. (So far, you've made assertions but you've been a litle short in the citation/justification department.)
     
  12. stcanada29

    stcanada29 Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    I think it might be Maurice's contention (or his lawyer friend) that these works are copyrighted (and still owned by CBS) - though I could be wrong.

    Again, just quickly referring to an online source, not as prestigious as talking to a lawyer, but I read the explanation at: http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/publication
    as suggesting the legal definition of a published work was satisfied for these film clips when they were sold to the public by Lincoln Enterprises.:

    Publication:

    Making something known to the community at large, exhibiting, displaying, disclosing, or revealing.
    Publication is the act of offering something for the general public to inspect or scrutinize. It means to convey knowledge or give notice.
    In Copyright law, publication is making a book or other written material available to anyone interested by distributing or offering it for sale.

    I just find it hard to believe the publisher of "These Are The Voyages" would be so reckless as to create an unauthorized book on TOS and fill it with a lot of images that are still owned / copyrighted by CBS; thus opening themselves up to a slam dunk lawsuit which they would have no chance of winning.

    When I visited the Cornell University webpage that you just referenced, I believe I saw the category "1923 through 1977" and "Published without a copyright notice" and the explanation they provided of the Copyright term is:

    None. In the public domain due to failure to comply with required formalities

    So that is my, again, "uneducated" opinion of where the publisher at least might think these items can be categorized.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2013
  13. GSchnitzer

    GSchnitzer Co-Executive Producer Moderator

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    [LEFT]I think what we're after is, instead of a definition of publication from The Free Dictionary, we probably want the definition of publication as defined in the actual 1976 Copyright Act. The 1976 Copyright Act defines publication as follows:

    "'Publication' is the distribution of copies or phonorecords of a work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending. The offering to distribute copies or phonorecords to a group of persons for purposes of further distribution, public performance, or public display constitutes publication. A public performance or display of a work does not of itself constitute publication."

    I think these images were not, in fact published. In the case of the filmclips, the actual frames were distributed--the actual original filmstock itself. Copies of the work weren't distributed. If copies had been made of the clips and if the copies had been distributed, they would have been published according to the 1976 Copyright Act definition. But making an original filmclip frame available instead of distributing copies of the frame doesn't seem to qualify.

    [/LEFT]
     
  14. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I am not going to drill into the details and vagueries of how intellectual property copyrights are assigned and renewed (hello Mickey Mouse, whose films Copyright get extended ad nauseam), because to do so is diverting us from the real topic, which remains the ethics of the author and publisher in this matter.
     
  15. stcanada29

    stcanada29 Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    OK, though I think the previous discussion cast some doubt on your earlier assertion that a sweeping statement like "CBS owns all the rights" is correct. And the distribution of the "copy" versus "original" film clip to define if publication occurred seems kind of dubious to me - like grasping at straws. Actually, the original film that ran through Desilu's cameras was developed as a master negative, and these clips are 2nd or 3rd generation copies of that - there were black and white dailies, interpositives, editors copies, etc. So the film clips sold by Lincoln technically are copies of the original film shot in the motion picture cameras - and the original "master negative" reels were never sold to the public but safely preserved.

    Anyway, no one has yet shown that even one of the Black and White images contained in the book has irrefutable ties to a startrekhistory.com image ... with identical jpeg artifacts or however you wish to term the unique startrekhistory.com "fingerprint". Could someone please do that? It's the images in the book that are the ones technically for sale. To repeat what I've mentioned earlier, and those here with publishing experience should agree, a low res image taken from the web would be unusable if someone tried to use it in a book publishing project -- a high res version would have to be located at 600 dpi to 1200 dpi to make it appear crisp and well defined on a printed page.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2013
  16. M

    M Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well, maybe I can help. I'm working in the graphic design business for a few years now, preparing images for high quality offset print every day. And I can assure you, images certainly don't have to be at such a high resolution to be printable. Most images which are only internet resolution (72 dpi) can be blown up to 300 dpi in Photoshop. Sure, many times they won't hold up when you print them very large in four colours. But if it's only black and white print and you only print them rather small, I don't see the problem. Believe me, from a technical point of view, it would be no problem whatsoever to take the images from startrekhistory.com, erase the watermark and scale them up to print size.
     
  17. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Isn't the website listed in the acknowledgements in the back of the book? Why would they be listed there if they hadn't contributed in some fashion (knowingly or not)?
     
  18. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    I love it when somebody from Marketing asks for an image for a trade show poster. "We need a nice shot of an F-16, and the agency says to make sure it's 300 dpi, whatever that means." :vulcan:

    Go to stock photos, get a 72 dpi image that's about 3,000 pixels wide or so, resample it to 300 dpi to shut them up, send it along...
     
  19. plynch

    plynch Commodore Commodore

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    I believe the Mouse is the reason copyright laws changed, isn't it? Disney creations were going to go PD?

    EMI got the 50-years in Europe on recordings changed because a certain group of Liverpudlians was about to go PD. Can't have that, Luv. They threw up some smoke screen about little guys like Cliff Richards needing extended periods of royalties.
     
  20. GSchnitzer

    GSchnitzer Co-Executive Producer Moderator

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    I’m surprised anyone at Paramount was remotely concerned that all these film trims had disappeared if Paramount, in addition to saving all these trims, had also been saving all the negatives to them as well. Did they really do that double archiving? Why would they?

    I think the original verses copies distinction isn’t all that dubious. It doesn't seem like "grasping at straws" to me.

    Abraham Zapruder took some film footage in Dallas, Texas on November 22, 1963. Kodak was hired to do the work of developing the film. Three copies of this film stock were made: one went to the FBI, one was sold to Life Magazine, and one was retained in Zapruder’s possession.

    Life Magazine printed black and white images of thirty-one frames in the November 29, 1963 issue. They also printed nine of the frames in color two weeks later.

    In all these years, I’ve never heard that Abraham Zapruder himself published the images by virtue of selling the footage/frames to Life Magazine. This may be some strange point of Copyright Law that I don’t understand, but I think the general consensus is that Life Magazine published the images. I don’t think that the footage changing hands over to Life Magazine constituted “publishing.” I think that Life Magazine having distributed copies of the footage/frames to the public in the pages of the magazine constituted “publishing.”

    I don't think that cutting up the film stock and selling it through Lincoln Enterprises constitutes "publishing." The important element of distributing copies of the same images in a, well, publication, seems to be missing. (I do concede that some of these clips might actually have been published somewhere before 1977 in some books, magazines, or fanzines after the clips fell into people's hands. But "published" simply by virtue of the clips having been sold? I don't think so.)

     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2013
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