Author Topic: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?  (Read 20042 times)

Requia ☣

  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 53479
  • Delicate and pretty shark of impending doom.
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2009, 10:33:14 pm »
The point is that its *not* property.  Its a contract wherein the government grants you special rights in exchange for you creating more of something (new inventions, new books, whatever).  The result of copyright being treated as property is that 99% of the works of the 20th century are completely inaccessible to anyone without academic credentials (or a great deal of money).  Only the original copies exist because the profit motive is gone, (its a fading tail, usually you make the most money right after release, and revenue drops as time goes on).

It used to be copyright was short, 14 years, and another 14 if you wanted it.  This is enough for most people because most works aren't worth anything 28 years later, (back when it was still 28+28, 86% of registered works were not considered valuable enough to pay a 25 dollar renewal fee after 28 years) but a corporation has a *lot* of works, and some small number are worth big money forever.  So corporations introduced  the idea of copyright and patents as property, damaging the entire system for the sake of the 1% thats still profitable to print.
Inflatable dolls are not recognized flotation devices.

Cain

  • Alea iacta est
  • Chekha
  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 105788
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2009, 10:37:58 pm »
The early disco and hip-hop scenes were almost built entirely on ignoring IP legislation and extensive use of sampling and remixes.  Depending on your opinions of those two genres, I realise that may not be exactly an argument in favour of if it.

Outside of the arts, I think there is more solid ground though.  Pharmaceuticals in particular.  I know that isn't what you were asking about, but copyright laws there mean you have third world nations paying through the nose for, say, AIDS treatments, despite the fact they can make their own generics for a fraction of the cost.  Doctors have broken the law in the past in order to get past these restrictions, but it would be a lot more humane if GlaxoSmithKline and the rest were done for profiteering off human misery, and the laws in those areas repealed.

The Good Reverend Roger

  • Horrible Bastard
  • One-Armed Jizz Moppers
  • Deserved It
  • **
  • Posts: 36736
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2009, 10:44:55 pm »
The early disco and hip-hop scenes were almost built entirely on ignoring IP legislation and extensive use of sampling and remixes.  Depending on your opinions of those two genres, I realise that may not be exactly an argument in favour of if it.

Outside of the arts, I think there is more solid ground though.  Pharmaceuticals in particular.  I know that isn't what you were asking about, but copyright laws there mean you have third world nations paying through the nose for, say, AIDS treatments, despite the fact they can make their own generics for a fraction of the cost.  Doctors have broken the law in the past in order to get past these restrictions, but it would be a lot more humane if GlaxoSmithKline and the rest were done for profiteering off human misery, and the laws in those areas repealed.

Interesting.  Would you then support the notion of the government taking someone's house, if that house could benefit other people more?
" It's just that Depeche Mode were a bunch of optimistic loveburgers."
- TGRR, shaming himself forever, 7/8/2017

 "Billy, when I say that ethics is our number one priority and safety is also our number one priority, you should take that to mean exactly what I said. Also quality. That's our number one priority as well. Don't look at me that way, you're in the corporate world now and this is how it works."
- TGRR, raising the bar at work.

Cain

  • Alea iacta est
  • Chekha
  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 105788
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2009, 10:55:09 pm »
Leading question.  Sorry, not willing to play a rigged game.

The Good Reverend Roger

  • Horrible Bastard
  • One-Armed Jizz Moppers
  • Deserved It
  • **
  • Posts: 36736
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2009, 10:57:21 pm »
Leading question.  Sorry, not willing to play a rigged game.

It wasn't intended that way.  To me, property is a matter of principle.  If I develop something using company resources, on the clock, my invention belongs to the company, as that is what I am paid to do.

If, however, I create something using my resources, on my own time, then that belongs to ME.  It matters not if that is a house, an invention, or a piece of writing.  The form of the property is irrelevant.
" It's just that Depeche Mode were a bunch of optimistic loveburgers."
- TGRR, shaming himself forever, 7/8/2017

 "Billy, when I say that ethics is our number one priority and safety is also our number one priority, you should take that to mean exactly what I said. Also quality. That's our number one priority as well. Don't look at me that way, you're in the corporate world now and this is how it works."
- TGRR, raising the bar at work.

Cain

  • Alea iacta est
  • Chekha
  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 105788
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #20 on: September 11, 2009, 11:03:14 pm »
And how is that any different from libertarianism?  Property is not an absolute.  Patents create monopolies which distort markets.  If that monopoly is abused, then the government has the right to step in and rectify that.  People dying because of monopoly pricing on drugs that can be produced more cheaply, and where there is a real need, is an abuse, in my book.

The Good Reverend Roger

  • Horrible Bastard
  • One-Armed Jizz Moppers
  • Deserved It
  • **
  • Posts: 36736
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #21 on: September 11, 2009, 11:09:33 pm »
And how is that any different from libertarianism?  Property is not an absolute.  Patents create monopolies which distort markets.  If that monopoly is abused, then the government has the right to step in and rectify that.  People dying because of monopoly pricing on drugs that can be produced more cheaply, and where there is a real need, is an abuse, in my book.

Yeah, I realize this kinda sounds like the LP tards, but consider:  If there is no profit motive in research of drugs, if another source is permitted to then manufacture that drug without the capital investment of the research.  Given that, why engage in new research?

I am not fundamentally opposed to reform of patent laws...for example, drugs should go generic in X years, where X is a function of the cost of research as described on the companies quarterly profit and loss statements (the only way they can game that is by undervaluing their stock, which gets the CEO and board fired).  Exactly what that function is, is up for debate.

However, simply stating that intellectual property is automatically up for grabs is both morally and fiscally unsound (Bulgaria comes to mind). 
" It's just that Depeche Mode were a bunch of optimistic loveburgers."
- TGRR, shaming himself forever, 7/8/2017

 "Billy, when I say that ethics is our number one priority and safety is also our number one priority, you should take that to mean exactly what I said. Also quality. That's our number one priority as well. Don't look at me that way, you're in the corporate world now and this is how it works."
- TGRR, raising the bar at work.

Cain

  • Alea iacta est
  • Chekha
  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 105788
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #22 on: September 11, 2009, 11:20:26 pm »
Yes, I can see that.  I don't think it should be a free for all.  There have been arguments for restructuring the relationship between the companies, patenting offices and distributors where there will still be a net benefit to those companies...but maybe not quite as much.  I'd need my notes to check the exact nature of those proposals, but they are plausible, and do away with the problems of generics while ensuring incentives and funds for further research.  Equally, there have been moves, through the UN and WTO, for countries to be exempted from patents for certain drugs, for certain diseases, where they are a pandemic...but the costs in proving this and being processed are so prohibitively high, and so easily failed on technicalities, that few countries ever get accepted for them.

I think the patent regime should be weakened and adjusted, not done away with.  Exemptions and loopholes should be put in place for circumstances such as this.  If we accept that healthcare, is basically, not a market good, then it makes little sense to subject it to the visscitudes of the market at its most manipulative and brutal.  I don't want a free for all, but I do want something that is essentially fair, in that the outcomes are not thousands of dead Indians and Africans, because they couldn't stump up enough cash to make Roche's shares go up an extra 0.1%.

Most serious intellectual property activists tend to agree with this view, in whatever respective field interests them most (music, drugs, software etc).  Only a very vocal, idiotic minority want the entire thing done away with, and to create a free for all.  Unfortunately, because they are a vocal minority, with a simple message, they get much more exposure than, say, Lawrence Lessig or Matt Mason, who get positively wonkish and legalistic in their more moderate approach.

Rococo Modem Basilisk

  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 36937
  • Now 30% more declassified!
    • View Profile
    • ALL HAIL LORD ENKI
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #23 on: September 11, 2009, 11:21:32 pm »
The early disco and hip-hop scenes were almost built entirely on ignoring IP legislation and extensive use of sampling and remixes.  Depending on your opinions of those two genres, I realise that may not be exactly an argument in favour of if it.

Outside of the arts, I think there is more solid ground though.  Pharmaceuticals in particular.  I know that isn't what you were asking about, but copyright laws there mean you have third world nations paying through the nose for, say, AIDS treatments, despite the fact they can make their own generics for a fraction of the cost.  Doctors have broken the law in the past in order to get past these restrictions, but it would be a lot more humane if GlaxoSmithKline and the rest were done for profiteering off human misery, and the laws in those areas repealed.

Interesting.  Would you then support the notion of the government taking someone's house, if that house could benefit other people more?

By quoting TGRR and Cain, I have broken the law. This is the problem with treating intellectual property as property.

However, like most other things, if it isn't enforced it doesn't matter. You are probably not going to sue me for quoting you. The courts would probably throw it out if you tried. You, likewise, probably wouldn't sue a friend if they showed up at your doorstep unannounced and asked if they could crash at your place for a few nights. The distinction becomes more clear, however, when you compare somebody photocopying a passage from a book with somebody showing up and living in your house while you are on vacation.

And this is where some spag will mention fair use. But, fair use is like having the case thrown out of court for suing the friend who wants to crash at your place for a few nights. It factors out the most frivilous of suits AS LONG AS THE LAWERS AREN"T GOOD. Also, as long as there aren't bribes being thrown around.

It makes the most sense (to me) to view IP in most forms as a license to sue. Take whatever the inverse is of the terms of the license (and in the case of something without a license, such as something that is patented or something without a license agreement attached -- this includes a lot of books and a lot of music -- this can be whatever the hell you feel like saying it is, within reason) and if the people using it do that, you get to sue them and (unless the terms are COMPLETELY ass-tarded) win.


I am not “full of hate” as if I were some passive container. I am a generator of hate, and my rage is a renewable resource, like sunshine.

The Good Reverend Roger

  • Horrible Bastard
  • One-Armed Jizz Moppers
  • Deserved It
  • **
  • Posts: 36736
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #24 on: September 11, 2009, 11:23:46 pm »
Yes, I can see that.  I don't think it should be a free for all.  There have been arguments for restructuring the relationship between the companies, patenting offices and distributors where there will still be a net benefit to those companies...but maybe not quite as much.  I'd need my notes to check the exact nature of those proposals, but they are plausible, and do away with the problems of generics while ensuring incentives and funds for further research.  Equally, there have been moves, through the UN and WTO, for countries to be exempted from patents for certain drugs, for certain diseases, where they are a pandemic...but the costs in proving this and being processed are so prohibitively high, and so easily failed on technicalities, that few countries ever get accepted for them.

I think the patent regime should be weakened and adjusted, not done away with.  Exemptions and loopholes should be put in place for circumstances such as this.  If we accept that healthcare, is basically, not a market good, then it makes little sense to subject it to the visscitudes of the market at its most manipulative and brutal.  I don't want a free for all, but I do want something that is essentially fair, in that the outcomes are not thousands of dead Indians and Africans, because they couldn't stump up enough cash to make Roche's shares go up an extra 0.1%.

Most serious intellectual property activists tend to agree with this view, in whatever respective field interests them most (music, drugs, software etc).  Only a very vocal, idiotic minority want the entire thing done away with, and to create a free for all.  Unfortunately, because they are a vocal minority, with a simple message, they get much more exposure than, say, Lawrence Lessig or Matt Mason, who get positively wonkish and legalistic in their more moderate approach.

One exception for me is copyright.  If you make your living writing or publishing, for example, there is no "greater good" argument that applies, and thus property should be invoilate, for as long as you renew the copyright.
" It's just that Depeche Mode were a bunch of optimistic loveburgers."
- TGRR, shaming himself forever, 7/8/2017

 "Billy, when I say that ethics is our number one priority and safety is also our number one priority, you should take that to mean exactly what I said. Also quality. That's our number one priority as well. Don't look at me that way, you're in the corporate world now and this is how it works."
- TGRR, raising the bar at work.

The Good Reverend Roger

  • Horrible Bastard
  • One-Armed Jizz Moppers
  • Deserved It
  • **
  • Posts: 36736
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #25 on: September 11, 2009, 11:25:52 pm »
By quoting TGRR and Cain, I have broken the law. This is the problem with treating intellectual property as property.

No, you haven't.  You have not caused measurable loss, nor profited from, the quotation, and a debate is not copyrighted.  Now, if you were to take Cain's rants and publish them without his permission, you would be in violation of copyright.

ETA:  Scratch that.  The act of responding to you has constipated me.  You will hear from my lawyers.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2009, 11:33:23 pm by The Good Reverend Roger »
" It's just that Depeche Mode were a bunch of optimistic loveburgers."
- TGRR, shaming himself forever, 7/8/2017

 "Billy, when I say that ethics is our number one priority and safety is also our number one priority, you should take that to mean exactly what I said. Also quality. That's our number one priority as well. Don't look at me that way, you're in the corporate world now and this is how it works."
- TGRR, raising the bar at work.

Cain

  • Alea iacta est
  • Chekha
  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 105788
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #26 on: September 12, 2009, 12:17:52 am »
One exception for me is copyright.  If you make your living writing or publishing, for example, there is no "greater good" argument that applies, and thus property should be invoilate, for as long as you renew the copyright.

I'm a lot less worried about artistic copyright than I am about pharmaceuticals.  While I think there are some dodgy things going on in the music industry (namely conflating artistic copyright with attempts to control distribution methods) and some of the punishments dealed out are punitive, they quite frankly pale into comparison with the sort of patents I am worried about. 

Fortunately, I think the internet is dealing with a lot of the problems in the music and publishing industry, too.  Whereas before, if you wanted to retain exclusive rights to your work, your options were highly limited (vanity presses, home recording of your music etc) now there are effectively free distribution models in the internet, which can be used for artists to make a living if they choose to do so.  As a musician, I could see the value in uploading my album for free on the Pirate Bay, pimping the hell out of it, and getting the money in through merchandise and gigs.  Equally, more than a few writers have gotten paid gigs through putting out free work online, be it for books or punditry.  So I think there are alternatives there which are helping mitigate the problems that do exist.

Requia ☣

  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 53479
  • Delicate and pretty shark of impending doom.
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #27 on: September 12, 2009, 12:30:09 am »
You don't actually *need* to cause a loss, at least if the work is registered (any infringement of a registered work is 750 dollars, minimum, under federal statute, even if you gave the 'victim' a profit in the process).  An implementation problem with the current law (which was written back when 'piracy' meant selling bootleg movies at half price).

I'd actually be willing to support an indefinite copyright with renewal as a compromise reform (outside of constitutional issues), since that still lets almost all works that are no longer profitable fall into the public domain.
Inflatable dolls are not recognized flotation devices.

Requia ☣

  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 53479
  • Delicate and pretty shark of impending doom.
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #28 on: September 12, 2009, 12:50:56 am »
As for the idea that pharma needs profit to encourage R&D, the federal government spent 27 billion in 2003 on biomed research.  In 2005 pharma spent 18 billion on R&D.  So the research is hardly all profit motive.  (though we wouldn't have viagra with just public research  :fap:)
Inflatable dolls are not recognized flotation devices.

Requia ☣

  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 53479
  • Delicate and pretty shark of impending doom.
    • View Profile
Re: IP Freely? There's a call for I.P. Freely?
« Reply #29 on: September 12, 2009, 01:31:05 am »
Apparently I have a really American centric view of copyright, the Berne model (copyright as property) is from 19th century France.
Inflatable dolls are not recognized flotation devices.