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 Language Learning Forum : Language Programs, Books & Tapes Post Reply
171 messages over 22 pages: << Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... 16 ... 21 22 Next >>
Senior Member
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Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Polish, Slovak, Uzbek, Turkish, Korean, Finnish

 Message 121 of 171
18 August 2010 at 6:36am | IP Logged 
jaylr wrote:
The reason for copyright is the time and money it took to convert the audio and textbooks. NTIS charges money for these courses. They don't offer all course material on CD or MP3. You can look up copyright law and see that if work went in to creating a product, and it was not underwritten, paid for, or done by a government employee, it can be copyrighted. This is not to say you can't obtain the course material on cassette from the government and then digitize it yourself, but the FSI material you mention can and is copyrighted. Regarding taking the course because your tax dollars paid for it is false. These courses are sold by the government. They cost money. It's amazing how people think everything should be free. I've read people talk about getting one course from a certain library, because they have it listed, but it costs $100 to become a member of the library. Another example of "not for free."

Regarding high prices, the prices are lower than what the government sells the same courses for, as well as offering the courses on CD and MP3 which the government sells mostly on cassette.

So, the government still charges money for these courses. Fact. The price being sold at is still lower than what the government charges. Fact.
Money and time therefore labor and capital went into digitally remastering the courses. Fact. People complain about not getting something for nothing. Fact.

There's actually little argument on this point. However it's talking about something different.

Incidentally this method is how companies such as Multilingual Books,, and Barron's (see the "Mastering" Series) make money on reselling FSI courses in addition to Plurality Language Inc., Langocity et al. Because products of the US federal government are almost always in the public-domain in the USA (there are exceptions depending on when or how that material was created), there's nothing illegal about an American taking what's in the public-domain and then redistributing it for free or for a fee in the USA. Moreover a good being in the public-domain may lead to a situation where any user can take that good, alter it trivially or non-trivially, and then impose a copyright on the altered good.

However it's up to the user to determine whether it's worth paying a few hundred dollars for a reprint and tapes converted to CD, or not. Strictly speaking, anyone who gets the FSI course bought from a private reseller and redistributes (with or without payment) could justifiably face legal problems from the reseller if it has imposed a copyright after having done some alteration, however minor or superficial it is.

At the same time, a reseller would have a tough time intimidating someone else legally and effectively if that second person were giving away copies of FSI courses which had been bought directly from the federal government in the form of NTIS, rather than buying from any privately-run reseller. From the reseller's point of view, it looks like undercutting when someone gives away a FSI course (however if that FSI course in question came straight from NTIS, the reseller can rant and rave all he or she wants, but the fact remains that the reseller's "merchandise" is not involved). It has nothing to do with stealing (as a reseller may see it) or getting your taxpayers' dollars worth (as how a non-reselling American taxpayer may see it).

The more important and overarching fact is that something that's public-domain in the USA allows it to be used in ways that copyrighted material cannot be in the USA. The other facts about resellers charging less than NTIS, or that taxpayers have effectively paid for the creation of federal government products, or that people prefer to get something for nothing are beside the point. In fact it is because there is useful material in public-domain that actually give a chance to resellers to even dream of making a quick buck using such old material as the core inventory. Basically stocking up the inventory with something that's in the public domain helps keep costs down for the reseller. Otherwise the reseller has to actually think harder and come up with something from scratch to offer for sale.
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Andy E
Senior Member
United Kingdom
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Speaks: English*, Spanish, French

 Message 123 of 171
18 August 2010 at 11:22am | IP Logged 
jaylr wrote:
This conversation is stupid.

I'm not quite sure what point you're making here... if it's free, it's free and if it ain't it has to be paid for?

This is a commercial site, they make money off of Google ads and donations.

I don't think Fran├žois' going to be moving to the Bahamas on the back of this. The ads and donations help fund the hosting costs - nothing more.

1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
United States
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Speaks: English*, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Galician
Studies: Hungarian, Vietnamese, Modern Hebrew, Norwegian, Persian, Arabic (Written)

 Message 125 of 171
18 August 2010 at 1:27pm | IP Logged 
Chung wrote:

There's actually little argument on this point.


Please let's try to keep this thread related to download links for the DLI courses.

We can debate the legitimacy of public domain on a separate thread if you wish.

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Joined 5390 days ago

98 posts - 114 votes 
Speaks: Tagalog, English*
Studies: German

 Message 126 of 171
18 August 2010 at 2:25pm | IP Logged 
jaylr wrote:
...And for anyone that just wants to argue...

Do yourself a favour and look in a mirror.

jaylr wrote:
...your an idiot for arguing.

What did you see in the mirror? An idiot!

"your" is a possessive pronoun. I'm pretty sure you mean "you're". (more proof that
you're an idiot)

You sound like you've got lots of time in your hands to argue, are you jobless or

This forum is for people who like (or love) learning languages, and this thread is
there to help them obtain these language-learning materials. There's no need to act
like a complete retard. If you want to, start a new thread, and name it "Come on
jobless retards, let's argue!". I'm pretty sure you'll be the only poster on that
1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
United States
Joined 5453 days ago

1014 posts - 1533 votes 
Speaks: English*, Spanish
Studies: German, Russian, Dutch, French

 Message 127 of 171
18 August 2010 at 3:02pm | IP Logged 
If your post is offensive, or provokes fighting, I suggest you delete it now before a moderator does. Let's stay on topic people!

Anyways. Can anyone kindly link me to the DLI Russian course? I've had absolutely NO LUCK trying to find it :(
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 Message 128 of 171
18 August 2010 at 3:53pm | IP Logged 

You obviously have some axe to grind, but this isn't the place to do it, especially considering the tone of your posts.

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