I just got an automated email from iCopyright, the flunkies who handle the AP’s insane blog licenses. It turns out that my “license” to quote Thomas Jefferson has just been “revoked” and my money refunded. When I saw that word, all I could think of was Danny Glover’s response to the bad guy’s claim of diplomatic immunity Lethal Weapon 2: a bullet and the quip, “Just been revoked.”
Oh, noes! Does this mean I need to take the Jefferson line down? Will they sue me for infringement and cattle rustling if I don’t? Whatever will I do now that the all-knowing AP won’t permit me to use twenty-six words by a man who’s been dead for a hundred and eighty-three years?
I love it. The AP realizes it’s made a mistake trying to assert copyright over words it didn’t write and doesn’t own, but it can’t even bring itself to admit it. No, they’re saying they’ve “revoked” the license, as though it were their choice whether to allow me to quote Jefferson in the first place. How about this, AP? Why don’t you buy a “license” from me that allows you not to be such dunderheads when it comes to copyright? I’m willing to give it to you for free if you’re interested—but somehow I don’t think you are.