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In Our World

A Sense of Entitlement

Earlier today, I read a disturbing post at Mezzoblue. For those who don't know, Dave Shea is the creator and caretaker of the CSS Zen Garden. If you haven't visited the garden to see the designs that people come up with using pure CSS (no mucking about with…

Earlier today, I read a disturbing post at Mezzoblue.

For those who don’t know, Dave Shea is the creator and caretaker of the CSS Zen Garden. If you haven’t visited the garden to see the designs that people come up with using pure CSS (no mucking about with the page itself), you owe yourself a trip. This is some cool stuff.

But I digress. It seems that Dave’s had some problems with people making use of the CSS made available by the garden and using it as their own. The issue here isn’t one of legality, though that’s how some have portrayed it. The licensing terms used by Dave in the creation of the garden were apparently too lenient, as some goofball can just come along, take everything, and pass it off as his own, and that’s a shame.

It’s not a crime, but it is abhorrent that someone would do this. While apparently legal if you follow the letter of the law (or the license), it’s just not in the spirit of things. Since when did our society become a place where you took what you could – and didn’t leave well enough alone when you should? To be presented with your own work, and be told that it’s going to be used and you’ll like it? That’s just wrong.

Many people would love to say “oh, it’s an Internet thing”. And while that phrase means less today than it did even five years ago, it’s a really pathetic reflection on our society.

On the way home today, the person in front of me flat-out ran a stop sign. Didn’t pause, brake, or even appear to look at the cross street. I was so busy wondering about this person, that I nearly ran into someone else at the next stop sign. I realize that doesn’t make me any better – and that’s exactly the point. This isn’t about finger-pointing. It’s about recognition of a disease.

There was an article in the paper the other day about the next disease that will come along, and if it will result in catastrophe. I submit that the next disease is here. The pandemic is among us. It’s a disease of carelessness, a disease of selfishness. Somewhere along the way, we decided that the person next to us didn’t matter nearly as much as we did, simply because they weren’t us, and that’s not right.