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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: August ::
Re: Contentville
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1576  Thursday, 24 August 2000.

[1]     From:   William Proctor Williams <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Aug 2000 15:11:15 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1572 Re: Contentville

[2]     From:   Jack Heller <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Aug 2000 14:45:44 GMT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1572 Re: Contentville

[3]     From:   Mike Jensen <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Aug 2000 08:55:39 -0700
        Subj:   SHK 11.1572 Re: Contentville

[4]     From:   I. Asher <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Aug 2000 19:29:32 -0400
        Subj:   SHK 11.1572 Contentville


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           William Proctor Williams <
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Date:           Wednesday, 23 Aug 2000 15:11:15 +0100
Subject: 11.1572 Re: Contentville
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1572 Re: Contentville

Although I am dubious about the Contentville project, at least my
doctoral dissertation was listed and perhaps this will prompt someone to
buy a copy.  No one has so far in over 30 years.  Indeed, I am tempted
to buy a copy for myself since I no longer own one.  What is really a
corruption is the deal UMI does with graduate schools to force students'
participation in their system as a requirement for obtaining a Ph.D.  If
someone wants to litigate about something that would be a much more
worthy target.

William Proctor Williams

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jack Heller <
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Date:           Wednesday, 23 Aug 2000 14:45:44 GMT
Subject: 11.1572 Re: Contentville
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1572 Re: Contentville

> If you want royalties from your
> Dis. publish it as a book (but don't expect much $$ for your efforts).

I haven't yet looked into what Contentville or UMI is doing with my
dissertation. However, since it has recently been published in revised
form as a book, I think I and my publishers would have a vested interest
in having some control over the distribution of my dissertation. I don't
expect riches from my work, but I'm all in favor of curtailing those who
would bypass my and my publishers' interests.

Best wishes,
Jack Heller

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mike Jensen <
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Date:           Wednesday, 23 Aug 2000 08:55:39 -0700
Subject: Re: Contentville
Comment:        SHK 11.1572 Re: Contentville

Here we go.

As someone whose income is supplemented by the sales of my book and
other writing - I love my new car -  I am stunned by John V. Robinson
basically telling everyone to shut up and let Contentville rip them off.

As far as I know they don't have anything of mine - I can't figure out
how to search authors alphabetically, if such a feature exists - but
there is a principle involved if they are profiting from my work and I
don't share in that profit.

I'll put it another way.  I'm selling Mr. Robinson's message for $10,
but not cutting him in.  1000 people have bought copies.  Is that fair?
It is fairer is only one sold?

Sheesh!
Mike Jensen

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           I. Asher <
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Date:           Wednesday, 23 Aug 2000 19:29:32 -0400
Subject: Contentville
Comment:        SHK 11.1572 Contentville

This is my first post, and I loathe the fact that this is a subject that
draws me out, having missed the opportunity of commenting on many other,
less base and more noble, topics.

First, let me point out the pure and unreasoned BIAS in the implied
logical portion of Mr. Robinson's response. He apparently doesn't
realize that times, both in and out of the Academy, have changed. As a
struggling adjunct faculty member, I would LOVE to get by on accolades
and reputation from published articles, monographs, theses, etcetera.
However, in corporate America those days are long gone. Mr. Robinson
seems to miss the principle behind the original post: Ownership of
information and control over its dissemination.

In a digital world, information is the new commodity. Are we learned men
and women now supposed to allow third party organizations to form around
our writings, like vultures waiting atop a wastebasket? When I was in
the doctoral program there was quite a controversy (the school will
remain nameless to protect the individuals involved) over the Graduate
Program's "requirement" that graduates not only list their
dissertations, but have them 'published' with a company that then
automatically retained the rights to those works for a specific time.
One graduate balked, fought, and the "requirement" was changed. He later
published the mss. himself, inserted the line on his CV, and amassed
what few royalties were his due.

Mr. Robinson may feel as appalled as he likes. The system by which the
Academy replenishes its ranks is dying (if it isn't indeed dead
already), and along with it the means of remaining unmoved amidst
economic changes outside its walls. The original post wasn't about
income/royalties as Mr.  Robinson seems to think (at times; it's clearly
a hastily written diatribe and thus vacillates severely from logic to
emotion), until those currently in the Academy realize the dire straits
of those of us who are now entering the walls, there will be a lot more
drastic changes than simply the publication/ownership of dissertations.

To relate this to the topic of this list, something both posters may
want to move toward in any subsequent postings, I can only say that I
doubt whether Shakespeare would have written *anything* for the
reputation it afforded, rather than the recompense.

Finally, I also want to go on the record as saying that the baseness of
Robinson's closing remarks certainly point out the . . . lack of
introspection, that went into the response. One wonders just how much
stock he owns in the aforementioned and poorly defended company. I was
disgusted; not by the vulgarity itself, but by its unnecessary inclusion
in this group and in relation to such an innocuous subject. Robinson
obviously has issues with the judiciary that it seems should best be
addressed in another forum.  Not to mention that as a Southerner myself,
the "bubba" moniker in his email address would seem to be even more of a
reason to hold one's self above the common perception of such title
holders, should one choose to use it.

While I'm on the boards, I would like to thank the majority of all of
you for such rich, thoughtful postings. This has been the most splendid
list I have ever been privileged to belong to, and I hope to respond to
other, less vulgar posts in the future.

--I. Asher
 

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