According to Wikipedia, “A Visit from St. Nicholas”, more commonly known as “The Night Before Christmas” or “T’was the Night Before Christmas”, was first published anonymously in 1823. Today, it is most often attributed to Clement Clarke Moore, though there is at least some debate about that.
Reading this poem is something of an annual tradition for many, myself included. However, this year, I decided to make myself a version that might more accurately describe what my night before Christmas could be like.
So, without further ado, here’s my adaptation of the famous poem, for those seeking copyright sanity this holiday season.
T’was the Night Before Copyright Christmas
T’was the night before Christmas, and all through the house
No legislation was pending, no new laws to espouse
The EFF was all quiet, seeking donations with care
Hoping their 8-bit recap would get many a good stare
The copyright trolls were nestled all snug in their beds
While visions of lawsuits and dollars danced in their heads
My wife on the couch, our dog on her lap
We were preparing our minds to watch movies of crap
When out on the Internet there arose such a clatter
That I sprang to my computer to see what was the matter
Pulling up Windows I opened Chrome and Adobe Flash
I pulled up the Web, only to watch Adobe crash
The monitor on my face casted an eerie glow
As I screamed in frustration at YouTube being so slow
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear
But a Google Alert about copyright and fear
Pundits and rock stars both responded so quick
I knew in a moment it must be some prick
More rapid than memes, the controversy came
As everyone yelled and shouted, joining the flames
Now ACTA! Now COICA! Now ICE Seizures Too
On Jailbreaking! On Costco! On orphan works part two!
To the top of the torrents! We can download them all!
Now hash away! Hash away! Hash away all!
I pinched on my temples and let out a long sigh
“I need a drink,” I said as I started to cry
So into my inbox the emails flew
With mountains of panic and propaganda too
I tried to ignore, to keep myself aloof
As arguments were made by all, without any proof
As I drew in my notebook, I dared not make a sound
Instead I waited for the f bombs to come falling with a bound
Then it began, another copyright war was afoot
And I was wishing that, for once, I could just stay put
Instead of ideas to go forward and back
Every soldier was content to attack attack attack
Their eyes all glistened, so angry it was scary
This holiday season found them all anything but merry
Instead of calling for peace, they drew back their bow
And launched their verbal arrows o’er the new-fallen snow
I took to my keyboard as I clenched my teeth
“Can’t for one night we put our swords in a sheath?
We fight and we argue, about YouTube and the Telly
We argue over musicians, like that guy named Nelly
We fight and we fight, in spite of ourself
Can we not put our differences aside, resting on a shelf?
It’s the holidays after all, the time to break bread
Can we not all shake hands and embrace the season instead?”
For a moment there was not a word, I felt it might work
But then the reply came, “Shut up you fat jerk!”
Said one, “You’re an RIAA shill, your opinion blows!”
Said another, “He’s just another freetard, so I suppose!”
The fighting continued as I made my dismissal
As the obscenities fell like guided missiles
No dignity, no sanity, but I can’t really complain
Because at least the original of this poem is in the public domain.