90-year-old fills in $90,000 crossword art, now claims copyright

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/08/03/90-year-old-fills-in-90000-c.html

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Splendid. We haven’t had a good ‘What is Art?’ debate in ages. I’m just going to rustle up a quick bowl of pasta for dinner, BRB. Have at it!

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The Monkey Jesus defense, eh?

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They say there’s no defense like a good offense.

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Okay, I can see how someone might be confused and think that “Insert Words” was a serious invitation to fill in the crossword.

But claiming the copyright on the “collaborative artwork” takes this lady from “clueless” up to “reprehensible.”

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Art is just the last three letters of fart.” --Gibby Haynes

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He says that far from harming the work in question, his client has increased its value by bringing the relatively-unknown Köpcke to the attention of a wider public.

I am still desperately trying to understand how/why publicity of anything supposedly increases “value”. Isn’t that like claiming that people with megaphones are more important, so you should listen to them? It sounds like a fantasy of broadcast media.

her “invigorating re-working” of the exhibit

Is that what the 90-year-old kids are calling it these days?

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In this case, it seems the unstoppable force of imbeciles in public has met the immovable object that is pretentious concept art.

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A 90 year old wrecking your art then claiming copyright = “troll” personified.

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Police rushed to the scene and questioned the senior citizen, whose name has been released as Hannelore K.

Hmmm… what’s a 9 letter word for “both greedy and senile”? Starts with “H”…

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https://youtu.be/zSQUPINrgYg?t=54s

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Wait, does copyright even work like that? Nobody’s trying to copy her work, display it (quite the opposite) distribute or perform it, or create a derivative work.

Even if we grant that she had a copyright claim, I don’t see how that protects the work from erasure. As far as I know, that’s just not a thing.

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Yet another reason why we can’t have nice things. :rage:

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step back, germany – this is the US’s kind of batshit opportunism. it’s our turf!

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Don’t forget that the famous urinal was signed “R Mutt”.

I’m still surprised the urinal manufacturer didn’t sue Duchamp for using his intellectual property without attribution.

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Now, in the States, she’d have a claim in the basis of hostile occupancy. Not sure what German law has to say about it. But even so, she’d have had to maintain her “collaborative addition” for 7 years before having a valid claim.

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From a brief google of the artist in question, it strikes me that he may very well have found this absolutely hilarious.

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the lawyer argued her copyright* was violated as the museum removed her additions

* but I’m quite sure the few letters she inserted are below the threshold of originality (or however one would translate the German legal term “Schöpfungshöhe”) so she did not create a copyrightable work (“Werk”)

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Oh, great. Now urinals will come with shrink wrap licenses requiring attribution.

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I think we have a new definition of Chutzpah here.

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