Thursday, September 13, 2007

We Can Make It - You Get Me?

OK guys, it's time to stop harshing on the estate. Let's take a minute and use our empathy. While posting the newsletters online would be a great resource for the fans (and it's something I will continue to pursue), it's important to remember that copyright law is complicated and dangerous if you've got money. See I don't have any. I don't make anything on this blog. If the lawyers came after me I'd have nothing for them. However, the PKD Trust is in another position. They have assets that a lawyer could go after. While I think keeping tight control over the newsletters is somewhat antithetical to the spirit in which the newsletters were created, the letter of the law is clear and the estate might be liable if a contributor were to feel slighted.

Look at it this way: which would you rather the estate spend its time on, putting together good movie adaptations (remember how much the estate did to ensure the quality and faithfulness of A Scanner Darkly?), or spending long days talking to lawyers because some blogger and a bunch of fans are stirring up trouble?

Let's keep in mind all the estate is doing right: PKD's novels are in print (even the mainstream stuff that was impossible to find for so long like Voices From the Street), a truly great PKD adaptation (A Scanner Darkly) managed to retain its independent spirit in a Hollywood which would have loved to get Travolta to play Arctor, the recent LoA release has elevated Dick's literary status to a whole new level, and most importantly, the estate seems to be surrounding itself with quality Dick-heads who are devoted to the work and vision of PKD (I'm speaking here primarily of Jonathan Lethem and Scanner producer Tommy Pallotta.

Sure we'd do things differently but let's not play armchair literary executors. There are so many forces in the current market that could really damage Dick's reputation and from where I sit the estate has managed to navigate a lot of these, so let's cut 'em some slack. I'm trying to determine if Paul Williams is still selling the newsletters, and if he is, we should get our copies from him. I'm sure he'd appreciate the support.


Clark Nova said...

When I purchased the newsletters a couple of years ago, I used this link (had to "wayback" it)- called the phone number at the bottom of the page and ordered them directly from Paul:

Don't know if the number or email are still valid, but it's worth a try - a true treasure trove! Now if they'd only publish the entire Exegesis.

Clark Nova said...

Cal Godot said...

Excellent. Indeed: the estate is to be praised for the great work they do on the behalf of Philip K. Dick. Every author should have such a dedicated team working on behalf of their works.

Anonymous said...

I guess it takes all kinds to make a community, including aholes. Most of the people here, indeed, most of the Dickheads I've met or communicated with personally are stellar. Personally, i'm happy the estate is taking an interest in planning for the long term. There was a time, not all that long ago, that finding non- collectable PKD's sf books, much less the mainstream novels were hard to find. Now, they're ubik-quitous. Publishing the Newsletters online would be great, but if they are available for purchase, so be it; spend the money and support the cause. I've probably spent more on PKD than most of my other books combined. Maybe addiction to PKD is sort of like the Hotel California- you can enter but you just can't leave.

Anonymous said...

This has a description of the newsletters.

The link from there to order isn't current though. Well, worth clicking on anyway since it takes you to an online version of Crawdaddy!