Copyright scofflaw

Found out today that scanning my father’s decaying high-school and college scrapbooks, containing nearly-70-year-old newspaper clippings of his athletic feats, is a copyright violation. So said the affable dude at FedEx/Kinko’s when I presented the crumbling artifacts for their oversize flatbed scanner.

I suppose a visit from the FBI is next. This is one conversation I wouldn’t mind having.

I would love to be the guy at the Baton Rouge Advocate newspaper who receives Kinko’s ass-covering copyright-permission fax. I can see the headline now: “Preserving Dad’s Memories is a Crime: Local Basketball Hero’s Son Harassed by Feds for Scanning Scrapbooks”. I think Kinko’s Dude is technically right, but…jeez, really?

I signed a waiver, which pretty much inscribed the limits of FedEx/Kinko’s actual caring about copyright law. Kinko’s Dude then took my stack of scrapbook pages and my USB drive, and promised to have the whole bunch scanned and ready by tomorrow afternoon. Formalities thus observed.

With apologies to my attorney friends — the “law” as “made” by “legislators” will be our undoing.

Michael Sebastian @mikeseb