The Fountainhead 's influence.

Posted by  $  Dobrien 7 months, 2 weeks ago to Books
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I saw that Roark Capital was in the news bidding for Buffalo Wild Wings my curiosity led me to this,

The Meaning of Roark

Roark Capital Group was named after Howard Roark, the protagonist in Ayn Rand's classic The Fountainhead.

We are a firm of diverse viewpoints. Our name does not connote any particular political philosophy. Rather, our name signifies our admiration for the qualities embodied by The Fountainhead's central figure. For much of the book, Roark's unwavering commitment to his style of architecture put him at odds with the people in power and thus the people who influenced public opinion. While many of his peers altered their architectural designs to gain public approval and fame, Roark was always true to himself and his work, refusing to succumb to conventional wisdom. By the end of the book, the former architectural elite are exposed as frauds, and Howard Roark is revealed as a true visionary.

Integrity, as demonstrated by Roark, is commitment to one's own thinking and one's own mind. If a man sincerely believes a claim to be true, then he must hold to this belief even though society opposes him. He must think independently and form values that he never sacrifices. Howard Roark's life exemplified the true nature of this independence and integrity.

Roark Capital Group's investment style and business philosophy is meant to emulate these principles. We hope to invest in outstanding companies in partnership with exceptional operating executives, regardless of conventional wisdom or the latest trend. Further, Roark Capital Group will support its portfolio companies and its management partners, in good times and bad, as long as the fundamental long-term opportunity remains intact. In the end, we seek to generate superior risk adjusted investment returns for our investors

This is not a recommendation for this co.


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  • Posted by ewv 7 months, 2 weeks ago
    It is interesting that they lead their promotion with such idealistic principles, but I don't see anything demonstrating a superior competence in the business, just lots of sales slogans and bromides showing they know the lingo. They have been in business since 2005, so it isn't new.

    If they succeed and gain a superior reputation, partially because of Ayn Rand's influence, that is good, but if they don't it gives Howard Roark a bad reputation tying Ayn Rand to it. Either way it is an enterprise she had no connection with and could not have possibly endorsed. She did not approve of businesses or other organizations using her name or the names of her characters to promote themselves. She did want those who agreed with her ideas first learn enough about them and then to apply them and become the best they could in their professions -- in their own names. This organization claims -- and emphasizes -- that it generally favor independence, integrity and honesty, but vaguely says it is "a firm of diverse viewpoints", whatever that means in practice.
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    • Posted by  $  7 months, 2 weeks ago
      Thanks for the reply. I wonder how much protection a writer has from someone adopting a characters name and using it for their business.
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      • Posted by  $  Snezzy 7 months, 2 weeks ago
        In Rand's own words, that I heard her speak to someone who told her of his pride in a project that infringed on her copyright: "I'LL SUE YOU!"

        I cannot imagine that LP is unaware of that group.
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        • Posted by  $  Snezzy 7 months, 2 weeks ago
          He was certainly infringing. The project was to attempt making a film version of Anthem.

          He had not had any discussions with Rand prior to telling her what he was already doing. He had not asked for permission, just blithely assumed that what he was doing was right.
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        • Posted by IndianaGary 7 months, 2 weeks ago
          I can't see how basing one's business principles on a fictional character's philosophical approach could infringe on anything. Using that character's name as the name of your company obviously could do so.
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          • Posted by ewv 7 months, 2 weeks ago
            A philosophical approach cannot be copyrighted at all. They are using the name of the character not only in the name of the company but also in promotional materials, tying it to the novel. If a coincidental use of a name not too unusual had no connection at all with the novel then it would be a different matter.
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      • Posted by ewv 7 months, 2 weeks ago
        Ayn Rand protected her copyrights and seemed to have had at least some success in protecting characters from the novels. I don't know if it had to be litigated or how far Leonard Peikoff has pursued copyright protection after he inherited them.
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        • Posted by  $  7 months, 2 weeks ago
          All works published in the United States before 1923 are in the public domain. Works published after 1922, but before 1978 are protected for 95 years from the date of publication. If the work was created, but not published, before 1978, the copyright lasts for the authors life plus 70 years.
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          • Posted by ewv 7 months, 2 weeks ago
            But this is a problem of what is protected, such as using names of characters, which isn't the same as copying long passages out of a book. I don't remember what became of the character name issue.
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            • Posted by  $  7 months, 2 weeks ago
              In short, the copyright protection available to fictional characters is a complex issue with a good deal of money at stake. Courts will often weigh the fair use considerations against the rights of copyright owners to control derivative works.
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              • Posted by ewv 7 months, 2 weeks ago
                The fictional characters are not derivative works, they are part of the original. "Fair use" is a consideration in any copyright dispute over partial use of the text. Ayn Rand sought to protect her character names but I don't know if she had to go to court to do it or if so what the outcome was, in contrast to threatening to sue.
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                • Posted by  $  7 months, 2 weeks ago
                  I believe the derivative works that the copyright owners control would be someone else's use of a
                  Character. Such as a satire or sequel.
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                  • Posted by ewv 7 months, 2 weeks ago
                    If the copyright were enforced, derivative works expropriating the original characters wouldn't be under the control of the original copyright owner; they would be banned from using the characters.

                    An author might be agreeable to allowing specific uses of a character as long as he was compensated, or he might want it stopped entirely.

                    Maybe a law suit following the expropriation would result in the copyright on the derivative works being turned over to the original author, or an injunction against further distribution with a monetary award for the theft, or maybe some other arrangement in a settlement of a particular case?

                    I can't imagine Ayn Rand being willing to share the integrity of her characters just for money, or be willing to argue with someone else over editing! She learned her lesson in the production of The Fountainhead movie where she had all kinds of problems controlling what went into the script.
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  • Posted by tj2117 7 months, 2 weeks ago
    So Howard Roark appears in both Atlas Shrugged AND The Fountainhead? Just asking, 'cause I never did get around to reading the latter.
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    • Posted by ewv 7 months, 2 weeks ago
      Did you read Atlas Shrugged? Howard Roark was not in that, he was the main character of The Fountainhead. The heroes of Atlas Shrugged shared Roark's psychological and intellectual independence, which is why the descriptions sound familiar, but Atlas Shrugged developed the philosophy more completely. The earlier The Fountainhead remains a great novel showing Ayn Rand's philosophy in action and you should read it.
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  • Posted by preimert1 7 months, 2 weeks ago
    I must confess that I voted for Bernie Sanders in the Dem's primary because irrespective of his political position, he has the most integrity. (I couldn't vote in the Rep primary because as a "decline to state" with Libertarian leaning, the Reps wouldn't let me. I refused to vote for "the Evil Hag" in the actual election, however.) Unfortunately I do not see Donald Trump as a man of integrity, but one with situational ethics.
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    • Posted by IndianaGary 7 months, 2 weeks ago
      Another example of the "best available" as opposed to "the perfect". Perfection is rare to nonexistent. One often must choose the best available when the stakes are sufficiently high, but had there been any real deal-breakers for me with Trump, I would have sat the election out. I'm afraid I had to vote to do my bit to keep Hitlery out of office.
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