Even though my ‘ldb’ is still included the poster on this site gave credit to another artist, mistakenly. It happens when someone is a little careless, or not careful enough. From there it moves on in time and the original artist is unclear and very likely it will end up posted by ‘anonymous’ artist because that’s easier than trying to find the original artist. It must happen this way for all kinds of art. In time it is impossible to know who created anything. The individual is lost but, it is nice, that their creations remain.
I’ve been interested in keeping old content and what happens to content once the source is gone, for a long time. In particular, web content, since the days I was an editor with the Open Directory Project. I liked finding sites which disappeared. Often I could find them again, on their own domain or from their own domain to a free service like Blogger. I liked tracking them down. It was an adventure and something I could feel pleased about. Not every site could be found again. Often, they were abandoned too. Content still there but no one maintaining it.
There are so many other issues when it comes to preserving online/ web content. Consider the web host the site is on. When payments to the host stop it isn’t long before the domain expires and the site will go missing. What happens to your own sites, social media and whatever else you’ve got, if you die? I think about that too. Mine would all just be gone and not all that missed. But, I’ve written it mostly for myself and my own satisfaction, something new to learn.
I’ve got archives of ASCII art. Loads of it but all a mess, not organized. I try to sort it but soon decide my methods are not working well and no one will actually find anything. Plus, there is the problem of how to display it. ASCII art works in plain text files but does not show up on an HTML site (very well or easily) that way. I’ve had people bitch, complaining that it isn’t really ASCII art if it’s shown in an image file versus plain text. Well, whine on, but you don’t have the headache of trying to make it work.
Anyway, so much for keeping on point…
I’d like to know more about how web content is being archived and what people are doing with the content they save. How is it being stored? Is it viewable by anyone? What about copyrights? So many questions…
I noticed my ASCII art train posted to this site while I was looking to see if anyone else has posted ASCII art for the New Year, 2015. I sent a note to the site owner because the train is posted without a link back to my site or even the site where the image was found and is still linked to for downloading. Not good to steal bandwidth. Also, the source site is a friend of mine. I wrote a post for her and added my ASCII as images for illustration with the post. I did not give them away for anyone to upload and offer them as free. I think people still don’t really understand copyrights online.
I don’t mind the ASCII art being displayed on another site. Not so keen on having it offered for distribution as freeware. It isn’t freeware, it isn’t free really, other than free to look at. I think it is fair to expect a linkback along with the ASCII art image. I don’t think that is asking or expecting too much. Of course, I feel especially strong about this depending on how the site uses the ASCII art. If a commercial/ business site uses ASCII art they should track down the artist and offer to pay for the art. I have more leeway with personal sites.
Anyway, will see what happens in this case. I sent a note, tried to write with all the details. If you look at the site the information about copyrights and asking for your art to be removed makes it seem they are holding the art hostage and expect the artist to do everything they ask (as they ask) just to hear back from them. I don’t know if they meant it to sound that way, but that was how I felt as I read it. (See below).
Copyrights have never been a simple thing online. I see the issues as both a web publisher and someone who creates original content which gets stolen, borrowed and so on. Kind of a good thing to have more than one point of view about it all in one head.
Nitpicky? Maybe. But, other than my initials, no one will know I made that ASCII art. It does link back to the site I had it posted on, but not a link anyone will likely click and follow to find me. I wouldn’t care so much, but this is a commercial site, not personal.
Most ASCII artists will tag their ASCII creation with their initials. This is not just about signing your art, it shows who created the art – the original artist. If someone else colours the art, or modifies it in any other way, the artist initials need to be kept with it. Anyone modifying art can add their initials and a note about what they had done to the original art. Include a link to where you found the art, if not a link to the original artist themselves.
This is what the Respect ASCII Artist’s Campaign is about. The ASCII art is available to be enjoyed, used and shared. But, give respect to the original artist and leave their initials on the work.