Tag Archives: intellectual property

Copyright law versus Internet culture

Source: Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Kit Walsh

“Fair use, unfortunately, places the burden of justifying speech on the speaker, rather than presuming speech to be permissible unless proven otherwise by the would-be censor. This is one of many reasons that copyright is an aberration in the realm of speech regulation. Copyright is also unusual in that a rightsholder can sue for extraordinary damages even if they have not suffered any actual harm from your activities. When the law assigns some people the power to control what stories others tell, it distorts culture.” (02/24/17)


What do you own

Source: A Geek With Guns
by Christopher Burg

“I’ve annoyed many electrons criticizing the concept of intellectual property. The idea that somebody has a government granted monopoly on something simply because they were the first to receive a patent is absurd in my opinion. But we live with much more absurd ideas today. Due to the way software copyright and patent laws work, if a company loads software onto a device they can effectively prevent anybody from owning it. At most a buyer can acquire a limited use license for those devices. Combining software copyright and patent laws with the Internet of Things (IoT) just amplifies this. Now there are a bunch of devices on the market that rely on continuous Internet access to the manufacturers’ servers. If the manufacture decides to drop support for the product it stops working. This wouldn’t be as big of an issue if laws such as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) didn’t make it illegal for you to hack the device and load your own software onto it that allowed it to continue working.” (02/22/17)


Thumbs up to DRM: The free market IP solution

Source: The Anarchist Shemale
by Aria DiMezzo

“[I]n this World Without IP, DRM still wouldn’t be enough, because the pirates would be more active than ever. Not only would they finally be allowed to work publicly and openly without fear of being kidnapped by armed thugs, but they could actually make money doing it. … Since DRM wouldn’t be enough, the onus would again fall to the creators to provide incentives for people to purchase their games, rather than just throwing a bit of small change at piracy groups and playing the games at substantially reduced costs.” (02/22/17)


New Zealand: High Court rules for rendition of Dotcom and co-defendants to US

Source: New Zealand Herald [New Zealand]

“Kim Dotcom and his three co-accused are eligible for extradition to the US, the High Court has ruled in a decision just released. The US Government has been seeking to extradite Dotcom, Mathias Ortmann, Bram van der Kolk and Finn Batato to face trial on 13 counts, including allegations of conspiracy to commit racketeering; copyright infringement; money laundering and wire fraud since 2012. In the High Court finding released today, Justice Murray Gilbert upheld a decision by the District Court that there were grounds for the quartet to be extradited. But the judge has also supported an argument made by Dotcom’s legal team that he and his former Megaupload colleagues cannot be extradited on copyright infringement grounds.” (02/20/17)


A follow-up about intellectual property

Source: The Anarchist She-Male
by Aria DiMezzo

“By the arguments of Intellectual Property, I have just as much right to dictate how EA uses that $60 I paid them for Dragon Age: Inquisition as they have to dictate how I use my copy of Dragon Age: Inquisition. Why not? I worked for that money just as hard as they worked for that one copy of DAI. In fact, I probably worked harder, when it’s all said and done. But we reject that out of hand, without even taking the time to process the argument. ‘Of course you can’t tell EA how to spend the money you paid them for that game! You gave them that money! It’s theirs now!’ I mean, that’s it. That’s exactly the point. So of course EA can’t dictate how I use the game, because they gave me that game. It’s mine now.” (02/20/17)


How intellectual property poisons video games

Source: The Anarchist Shemale
by Aria DiMezzo

“[N]o one is entitled to being paid twice for something that they’ve sold. If, for example, I sell you a vehicle for $3,000, and you go on to sell that vehicle to someone else for $4,000, absolutely no one in their right mind would contend that I was due any additional money from you, or from the person who bought the car from you. … Intellectual Property, as a duplicitous way of allowing people who have created a thing to maintain ownership after the point of selling it, would dictate that, if I had been the one who invented this car — thereby making it my intellectual property — then I would, in fact, be due compensation. It is every bit as asinine as thinking that, if I sold my Chevrolet Impala to you for $3,000, then I needed to give a cut of that to Chevrolet.” (02/17/17)


Tax-funded Harvard/MIT outfit wins versus tax-funded Berkeley outfit in CRISPR fake property rights case

Source: Nature

“The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has upheld a series of patents granted for the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology to the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. The hotly anticipated decision could conclude a contentious battle between the Broad Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and the University of California over intellectual-property rights to the potentially lucrative technology. Although the Broad was awarded its patents first, the University of California was the first of the two to apply for a patent on the technology. The California contingent also argues that its team in Berkeley invented the technique before investigators at the Broad.” [editor’s note: Even if “intellectual property” was actual property, the Broad Institute gets more than half its funding from the federal government, and the University of California is government funded as well — which makes any patents rightfully “public property” – TLK] (02/15/17)


Another way to explain the problem with IP: Resources v. knowledge; ownership v. possession

Source: Center for the Study of Innovative Freedom
by Stephan Kinsella

“I’ve observed before that information is a guide to action, not a means of action. Means of action are scarce and ownable so as to prevent conflict over the use of those means. The same is not true of knowledge or information, which merely guides action. Another way to see this is to understand that ownership may be viewed as the right to possess or control something, and is distinct from possession or control.” (02/06/17)


Leaked TISA safe harbor proposal: The right idea in the wrong place

Source: Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Jeremy Malcolm

“A new leak of the Electronic Commerce chapter of the Trade in Services Agreement from the November 2016 negotiating round has exposed a brand new U.S. government proposal on Internet intermediary safe harbors. The proposal, which the European Union is shown as opposing, is a rough analog to 47 U.S.C.§ 230, enacted as part of the Communications Decency Act (known simply as ‘Section 230,’ or sometimes as CDA 230). Section 230 is one of the most important provisions of U.S. law for online platforms that host users’ speech. It provides a shield protecting online intermediaries against a range of laws that would otherwise that would otherwise hold them responsible for what their users say or do online.” (01/31/17)


US regime, “intellectual property” monopolists, shut down automated threat system

Source: ZDNet

“The Center for Copyright Information (CCI) has announced that the United States Copyright Alert System (CAS), designed to combat online piracy, has been abandoned by its members after a four-year run. The CAS was run by the CCI and involved voluntary participation by five ISPs — AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Cablevision — which all agreed to send users a warning notice when requested by copyright owners represented by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) or the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).” (01/30/17)