Take my site… please!

I call your attention to the red, black, and green logo at the top right-hand corner of my blog,¬ labeled “KOPIMI.COM“.¬ Give it a click.¬ Go on, I’ll wait.


The KOPIMI logo was created by the fine folks at The Pirate Bay (this link my expire without notice) and is displayed prominently on all the sites they operate.

What does the KOPIMI logo tell your users?¬ Read the name out loud to find out.

Displaying this logo is to absolve any connections to copyright, conditions to reuse or remix or republish, or otherwise create derivative works from the content I’ve created.

Why do this?¬ Well, why not?¬ I write this blog to inform and entertain.¬ I neither expect nor desire¬ compensation for my efforts.¬ I work hard on the content I produce but it really makes no difference to me how my work is consumed or repurposed.¬ I publish relatively anonymously anyway, so I’d be relinquishing that anonymity

Copyrights come in many flavours, from restrictive to permissive, but even the most generous copyrights somehow rub me the wrong way.¬ For example, there’s the ever-popular Creative Commons (CC) licenses which can limit one’s intellectual properties from being modified and/or being used for derivative commercial purposes while still claiming ownership of those assets in case of dispute.¬ Whether this would stand up in a court of law, I’m sceptical, but it’s a pretend line in the imaginary sand nonetheless.

I’ve learned just now that CC has introduced a seemingly wide-open alternative license called Public Domain which appears to relinquish all rights of ownership for any conceivable purpose.¬ Now we’re talking!¬ I’m all for it.¬ Maybe I’ll consider adding this license to my blog some time soon, but I somehow prefer washing my hands entirely of any ties to CC.¬ The Pirate Bay seems so unequivocally in favour of the notion of bits without borders.

Subscribers to my RSS feed know that I’ve leveraged Joost de Valk‘s RSS Footer plugin for WordPress to add a few words stating that I wrote the accompanying article, with a link to the original source on my blog.¬ I draw the line at optional (aka suggested) attribution.¬ I’ve found my content duplicated and hosted verbatim on fully automated “scraper” sites whose sole purpose is to attract web users to show them ads.¬ Myeh.¬ I can’t stop it and I don’t exactly suffer because of it so no use sweating over it.

So plunder away, Internet.¬ My blog will remain regardless of wherever it might be duplicated, in whole or in part.¬ That’s what the internet is for; creating a facsimile does not tarnish the fidelity of the source.

P.s., observant readers may recognize my favicon (the image next to my URL in the address bar at the top of¬ your browser) as a modification of BoingBoing‘s.¬ This falls within their CC license for non-commercial re-use with attribution.¬ Well, it does now anyway.¬ Sorry it took me 2 years for that attribution, BB, though I did leave a comment in one of your stories admitting to this last year.

Lactivist cries over spilt milk

A short while ago Cinira Longuinho, breastfeeding her child on the steps of a swimming pool, was asked to do so elsewhere by the owner.  Longuinho is now declaring that her human rights have been violated.  Here’s the Toronto Star’s report on this story.

My wife and I just had a rather in-depth discussion about this matter, and there are many reader comments arguing both sides of the story.

Do women have the right to breastfeed in public?  In my opinion, absolutely!  On one hand it’s legal for women to do so in Ontario (perhaps not in other provinces) and that’s where this altercation took place.  On the other hand, I have no moral objection to this action because that’s what human bodies are built to do.

As it happens, Longuinho was not ejected from the property but was asked to breastfeed in another room, away from the pool area, for public health concerns (the property owner mentions the possibility of breast milk entering the pool, and the likelihood that a fed infant is liable to urinate, defecate, or vomit).  As such, it seems to me that the pool owner has no problem whatsoever with breastfeeding, but was trying to accommodate the majority of her guests at the expense of inconveniencing one (or two, as my wife points out to me as she reads over my shoulder).

The key concept here is public.  Here’s the third paragraph from The Star’s story:

But the owner of the private pool said her priority is keeping the pool clean for everyone.

Here’s as far as I needed to read before formulating my opinion:

But the owner of the private pool

Done.  The breastfeeding woman has equal rights as other patrons inside this private property – pretty much none.  The owner of the property, as long as she breaks no laws in doing so, is free to impose whatever rules she wishes and is free to eject whomever she chooses regardless of whether she has any reason.  ROAR – Right Of Admission Refusal.

Or so I believe.  I might be mistaken.

Longuinho makes mention of a case in 1999 where a woman from Caledon, Ontario, was proclaimed the winner where she was ejected from a public pool for breastfeeding on the premises.  As this was a public space the breastfeeding woman was partial owner of that facility and thus was beholden to the law and no further restrictions.

I’d have thought this would be the most important distinction if not for this proclamation by Longuinho regarding the resolution of that case:

They said it was a human rights issue, that I have a right to breastfeed anywhere anytime, in a public space or private space, and so mediated in my favour

This statement troubles me.  I like to think that if I own property I should have absolute control over whom is permitted on my property, and should be permitted to eject anyone with or without justification.  If I’ve invited someone into my house and they refuse to leave, I should hope that the police would assist me in shooing that person onto public property.

I really don’t feel that there’s any more to this discussion, and I share Longuinho’s desire if not her means:

I’m doing all this because I really think it’s important for women to go in public and breastfeed without being scared.

I couldn’t agree more with this.  As Canadian taxpayers we are co-owners of publicly funded spaces.  I simply believe that the human right to regulate our own property is greater than that of women to breastfeed wherever they wish.  This isn’t a breastfeeding issue in any way.

It is a Canadian woman’s right to breastfeed in public, but it is her privilege to be a guest on private property.

Thanks to my wife for provoking this conversation and for supplying the title to this post.


A heil and hearty hello

This was the subject of the email I just sent to the Miss Toronto Tourism Pageant, hosted by Toronto Tourism (an independent organization, not to be confused with the official Tourism Toronto). Check the URL in the email, below, to see what I’m so upset about. Feel free to express your concern in your own words to

Hi there,

I just read a story about Miss Canada Plus 2007, Stephanie Conover, on The Torontoist blog ( and the way she was treated at the hands of the Miss Toronto Tourism pageant. As a Torontonian and a traveller myself I’m rather appalled that Toronto’s esteemed guests should be welcomed by an organization that allows a religious bigot to misrepresent one of the world’s most multicultural cities. May I recommend that, instead of going through all the trouble of hosting a pageant, you simply display a disclaimer on your website, perhaps in a flashing and flaming typeface, stating that only travellers who worship the Christian god are welcome in Toronto? Seems to me that would achieve your goal a little more efficiently than meticulously writing letters replete with Christian bible verses on a person-by-person basis.

Thank you, and I wish you a happy and prosperous 1939.