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Links 1 through 10 of 48 by Paul Raven tagged IP

"The notion that lengthening copyright increases creativity is questionable, however. Authors and artists do not generally consult the statute books before deciding whether or not to pick up pen or paintbrush. And overlong copyrights often limit, rather than encourage, a work’s dissemination, impact and influence. It can be difficult to locate copyright holders to obtain the rights to reuse old material. As a result, much content ends up in legal limbo [...] The penalties even for inadvertent infringement are so punishing that creators routinely have to self-censor their work. Nor does the advent of digital technology strengthen the case for extending the period of protection. Copyright protection is needed partly to cover the costs of creating and distributing works in physical form. Digital technology slashes such costs, and thus reduces the argument for protection."

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"It all comes down to concepts of intellectual property, which are frankly a bit abstruse for most people who don’t need to spend their time worrying about such things. Even if you buy a Braun coffee maker, you don’t buy the rights to recreate it in your workshop and sell copies of the coffee maker. Except the process of copying a coffee maker is so tedious, that unless you own a Third World knockoff factory, you’re not going to bother.

Copying or scanning a print book is a possible behavior. Copying an ebook is a trivial behavior, at least technically.

But you, the reader, never take full title to the story underneath. You have taken a license to that story, a contract ultimately between you and the author, embedded in the copyright statement in the front matter of the book. And that license has value, whether it’s delivered on cellulose and ink, or via an organized compilation of electrons." Jay Lake.

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""We are happy that the patent office has reached a final decision in this case but remain concerned that the ex partes patent reexamination procedure meant that these patent claims remained in force for such a long time," said Geoffrey Hawtin, Director General of CIAT, which has been fighting the patent since 2001. "For several years now, farmers in Mexico, the USA and elsewhere have unnecessarily endured legal threats and intimidation for simply planting, selling or exporting a bean that they have been growing for generations."" There'll be more cases like this. Because copyright's an *unconditional good thing*, you see. If *you* invented a bean, you wouldn't want to get shafted by millions of Mexicans, would you?

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"Stronger intellectual property may also be unnecessary in another way. Although they are promoted as a tool for enhancing economic competitiveness, readers of Techdirt will know that their effectiveness is, at most, questionable. In the 1980s, there was a boom in American patenting activity, seemingly corresponding with changes to intellectual property laws that were made in response to worries about diminishing national competitiveness (Dahlman 2001). A measure of useful innovation, Total Factor Productivity, should have increased accordingly with the rise in useful, novel and non-obvious inventions, but this has not been the case (Boldrin 2008), providing compelling evidence that, contrary to common usage, patent activity is not equitable with economic benefits."

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"Every content creator is building on the works of others, and there are plenty of business models that can be put in place easily that don't require "protection" at all. It may be more difficult for someone who makes their living helping enforce those protections to see it, but we're seeing it every day."

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"Even if you own something due to the fact that you created it, once you have given away or sold that product, you no longer have ownership of it -- and claiming you do actually removes property rights from the lawful owner."

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"The return of this "remix" culture could drive extraordinary economic growth, if encouraged, and properly balanced. It could return our culture to a practice that has marked every culture in human history -- save a few in the developed world for much of the 20th century -- where many create as well as consume. And it could inspire a deeper, much more meaningful practice of learning for a generation that has no time to read a book, but spends scores of hours each week listening, or watching or creating, "media.""

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"The Indonesian argument -- now set to be ratified by the Non-Aligned Movement general gathering in November -- is that the information derived from viruses found in a particular country should be the property of that country to control as it sees fit." *facepalm*

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"Of course, in every one of these cases, the copyright lobby's arguments have focused on the threat of "piracy." But when they've won, the practical result has been to give content creators the power to control the evolution of media devices."

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