Saturday May 18, 2013
Today in 1917, the United States Congress ordains the Selective Draft Act, or Selective Service act of 1917 which demands individuals become soldiers to fight World War I.
People of little understanding are most apt to be angry when their sense is called into question. —
NPR.org | Twenty years ago this week, researchers renounced the right to patent the World Wide Web. Officials at CERN, the European research center where the Web was invented, wrote: CERN relinquishes all intellectual property to this code, both source and binary form and permission is granted for anyone to use, duplicate, modify and redistribute it.
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EverythingIsARemix | Remixing is a folk art but the techniques involved — collecting material, combining it, transforming it — are the same ones used at any level of creation. You could even say that everything is a remix.... - [More]Posted: March 1, 2012 in Videos
QuestionCopyright.org | The opposite of “free culture” is “permission culture”, which you probably don’t need to have explained in detail because you’re familiar with it already. In the permission culture, if I write a book and you want to translate it, you have to get my permission first (or, more likely, the permission of my publisher). Similarly, if I wrote a song and you want to use it in your movie, you have to go through a series of steps to get clear permission to do so. Our laws are written such that permission culture is currently the default.... - [More]Posted: November 2, 2011 in Articles
C4SIF.org | In talking about various technopanics over time, there’s always someone who hates some new technology because it somehow “undermines” the good “way things were.” These days, think of the books by the likes of Nick Carr or Andrew Keen, who focus on just how awful new technology is making people, compared to “back in their day…” when things were just lovely. Yet, as we’ve pointed out, these sorts of complaints about new technology happen throughout history, such as the attacks on the telephone (makes men lazy and breaks up your home life) and novels (corrupts the mind). But sometimes it goes back much, much further. In the past, we’ve even joked about those “poor monks” put out of the scribe business by the printing press.... - [More]Posted: July 25, 2011 in Articles
TheFreemanOnline.org | It’s important to understand the origins of these concepts. As law professor Eric E. Johnson notes, “The monopolies now understood as copyrights and patents were originally created by royal decree, bestowed as a form of favoritism and control. As the power of the monarchy dwindled, these chartered monopolies were reformed, and essentially by default, they wound up in the hands of authors and inventors.”... - [More]Posted: May 26, 2011 in Articles
TheMedicalPodcast.com | Why are medical devices protected by patent law while medical procedures are exempt? And what about the government’s use of compulsory licenses to force pharmaceutical companies to produce certain drugs like CIPRO. These are two medical-related examples in a long list of arcane exceptions and arbitrary details written in to intellectual property (IP) law. It is commonly believed that IP rights, such as patents, copyrights, and trademarks are necessary to foster innovation and protect the interests of the people and companies that create new products and ideas. Patent attorney Stephan Kinsella of the Mises Institute, holds an opposite view, and in this podcast with Michael Ostrolenk, discusses the growing movement that views IP law as not only anti-competitive and a barrier to innovation, but also as incompatible with true property rights. Michael and Stephan also talk about the evolution of IP from laws like the 1709 Statute of Queen Ann, an attempt by the monarchy to control the output of book printers, the influence of which carried into the copyright and patent provisions in the U.S. Constitution.... - [More]Posted: March 13, 2011 in Articles, Audio
QuestionCopyright.org | There is one group of people not shocked by the record industry’s policy of suing randomly chosen file sharers: historians of copyright. They already know what everyone else is slowly finding out: that copyright was never primarily about paying artists for their work, and that far from being designed to support creators, copyright was designed by and for distributors — that is, publishers, which today includes record companies. But now that the Internet has given us a world without distribution costs, it no longer makes any sense to restrict sharing in order to pay for centralized distribution. Abandoning copyright is now not only possible, but desirable. Both artists and audiences would benefit, financially and aesthetically. In place of corporate gatekeepers determining what can and can’t be distributed, a much finer-grained filtering process would allow works to spread based on their merit alone. We would see a return to an older and richer cosmology of creativity, one in which copying and borrowing openly from others’ works is simply a normal part of the creative process, a way of acknowledging one’s sources and of improving on what has come before. And the old canard that artists need copyright to earn a living would be revealed as the pretense it has always been. ... - [More]Posted: September 4, 2010 in Articles, Videos
“Sita Sings the Blues” was released in 2008 only after long negotiations with the copyright holders of the 80-year-old songs recorded by Annette Hanshaw. Following the experience of almost having her film blocked from distribution, Nina Paley released it freely under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license, and now devotes a significant portion of her time to free culture activism. She is Artist in Residence at the non-profit QuestionCopyright.org.... - [More]Posted: in Movies
My topic was “Ideas are Free: The Case Against Intellectual Property,” though a better title might be something like “Ideas Are Not Property: The Libertarian IP Mistake and the Structure of Human Action.”... - [More]Posted: June 21, 2010 in Audio, Videos
TechDirt.com | Could you make the argument that by restricting the use of certain resources and restricting freedom of expression, those laws lead to unethical limitations? Put another way, if intellectual property is causing actual harm, then you could make the claim that there is a moral issue in discussing them — in that the laws of intellectual property, by themselves, are immoral. That is, if taking away IP causes no direct harm, then there’s no moral issue to discuss. But, if leaving them in place does cause harm, then that is a moral issue worth considering. ... - [More]Posted: June 13, 2010 in Videos