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An IP Environmentalism for Culture and Knowledge? 210

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the made-up-words dept.
An anonymous reader writes "An article by James Boyle in the FT argues that we are (slowly) moving towards a 'cultural environmentalism' that tries to protect the public domain in the way that the environmental movement tries to protect the natural ecology. Apparently there will be a (free) conference at Stanford on the subject soon, organized by Larry Lessig's Center there."
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An IP Environmentalism for Culture and Knowledge?

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  • by Quiberon (633716) on Monday February 20, 2006 @06:31PM (#14763783) Journal
    It opens a can of worms, if you change the laws. It is really unlikely that you will get consensus on what to change them to.

    Besides, for 'software' in these days of public Internet, the real question is 'Can I maintain the software ? Can I resolve defects, or get them resolved, as they are found'. When the answer to that becomes 'no', the software cannot be used; it gets exploited, and you get eaten by worms and viruses.

  • Hugger? (Score:4, Funny)

    by misleb (129952) on Monday February 20, 2006 @06:34PM (#14763800)
    So, what kind of "hugger" does that make me now? An patent-free tree hugger? I just want to know what it is before conservatives start thowing it my way.

    -matthew
    • Re:Hugger? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by CyricZ (887944) on Monday February 20, 2006 @06:41PM (#14763840)
      Please understand that true conservatives are all about protecting the environment. They support short terms on copyrights and patents. Why do they support such things? Because the represent responsibility and liberty, and that's what true conservatism is all about.

      In the US, those who seek to put in place legislation that allows companies to harm the environment, or extend copyright terms, and so forth, are not conservatives, libertarians, nor are they liberals. They are Republicans and Democrats. We may essentially consider the Democrats and Republicans to be one and the same, even if they project the image of being "opponents". They're both financed by the largest corporations and wealthiest few individuals in the US and the world. They have very little incentive to do what's best for the average American.

      So when a self-proclaimed "conservative" rags on you about your support for limiting environmental damage or unnecessarily long copyright terms, just remember that he or she is in no way a conservative. In fact, such an individual stands firmly against conservatism.

      • Language evolves. Or maybe it's Designed Intelligently.

        It changes.
      • Re:Hugger? (Score:3, Insightful)

        by misleb (129952)
        "Conservative" is a relative term, really. It more or less just means "against drastic change" or "maintain tradition." It is relative to what the particular tradition is. For example, if it is the "American Way" to damage the environment in search of profits and jobs (and in many ways it is) then such would be a conservative value. Profit takes priority over the environment. Also, you have to specify the type of conservative we're talking about. Social? Fiscal? Both? Other? A social conservative would be
        • Yeah, you have to keep in mind that "political conservative" is more or less equal to "dictionary liberal". And that neither conservative nor liberal is particularly good in it's entirety for the progress of America or the world. IMO the two-party system is probably the worst idea in the history of the civilized world (or whatever time period you prefer), especially seeing how many people say "I'm a Republican" or "I'm a Democrat" and vote accordingly (or much worse yet, and scarily common, "I think Bush
      • And I suppose no true conservative [wikipedia.org] disagrees with you.
      • Re:Hugger? (Score:3, Funny)

        by jafac (1449)
        Ah, but who are the TRUE conservatives?

        The People's Judean Front?

        Or the Judean People's Front?
    • Re:Hugger? (Score:5, Funny)

      by Snarfangel (203258) on Monday February 20, 2006 @06:48PM (#14763887) Homepage
      Just shorten it to "free-hugger."

      Darned free-hugging IPpies.
      • Good one.

        Do I get credited with an "assist" for that humor touch down?

        -matthew
        • Re:Hugger? (Score:3, Insightful)

          by greyhoundpoe (802148)
          Do I get credited with an "assist" for that humor touch down?

          Whomever explained American football to you needs to try again, slower.

          Remember kids, winners don't do sports metaphors.
      • "Just shorten it to "free-hugger.""

        Yeah, bunch of people who want to get stuff for free.
    • So, what kind of "hugger" does that make me now?

      Perhaps the ideal hugger.

    • Hmm, a binary-tree hugger?
    • Re:Hugger? (Score:4, Funny)

      by slavemowgli (585321) on Monday February 20, 2006 @07:13PM (#14764037) Homepage
      No, no, it's much easier - it just makes you an America-hating pinko liberal terrorist commie. >_>
    • ...I'll snag a copy of this conference and sell it to you for a few bucks so you can find out.

      Also, look for copies of this conference, released on Disney DVD, to hit store shelves in the fall.
  • beautiful analogy... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Daneurysm (732825) on Monday February 20, 2006 @06:35PM (#14763807)
    I've never thought of it in quite that way... It really is a wonderful analogy... the only difference being that the 'IP-ecosystem' was created by us.
     
    ...and indeed both sides of the issue have been polarized in nearly the same ways.... the "whacko environmental extremists" and "evil big business" who will destroy anything in the path towards profit.

    Is this dichotomy a natural progression of such issues or is it truely the way things are.

    I know what I believe...and I've picked my side.
     
    ~Dan
    • by JulesLt (909417) on Monday February 20, 2006 @07:16PM (#14764050)
      Or perhaps the media has chosen to focus on the extremists, while most of us behave in a contradictory way - 'I want artists to get paid, but I like free downloads' and 'I'd like to prevent global warming, so long as it means donating to charity once a year, and not cutting down on my car / air travel'.
      • Collective licensing (Score:4, Interesting)

        by tepples (727027) <tepples@gmaiBLUEl.com minus berry> on Monday February 20, 2006 @07:35PM (#14764149) Homepage Journal

        while most of us behave in a contradictory way - 'I want artists to get paid, but I like free downloads'

        How about "I want artists to be paid, but I don't want to pay inflated marginal costs for works, nor do I want to be shut out of works completely." Thinking like this is what let collective licensing programs such as those offered by BMI and ASCAP take off, and the EFF has expressed interest in extending collective licensing to other media [eff.org].

        • Don't disagree with it - it makes huge sense to see p2p as a form of broadcasting, but it's a step up from free. It requires a social change in most peoples behaviour.

          It has the great advantage that you still have a law and body stopping the commercial usage of music too (ASCAP, BMI, etc, also existing to collect royalties from use of music in adverts, nightclubs, etc) - and also allow artists to decline to have their music used to advertise or promote things they disagree with (I know people who have turne
      • I want artists to get paid, but I like free downloads

        I want artists to get paid, but I like very cheap downloads. I just don't like the RIAA to get in the middle, thank you.
        • Me too, but I merely wanted to outline that most people have a contradictory stance on both issues - they want the positive outcome so long as it doesn't involve them changing their behaviour.
          Nor, seeing as I'm downloading a torrent of a TV show right now, are the RIAA the only organisation impacted.
          Moving to a culture of voluntary payment, for instance, could be a great step forward, but would require a change in behaviour in our society - one that would probably be positive overall.
          Ditto, people taking re
    • It is a beautiful analogy, but there are some pretty deep differences.

      As you said, the "IP ecosystem" is our creation. However, I'd add that the "IP ecosystem" moves and expands at a sustainably exponential rate. Natural ecosystems do not. Which is very important in some "ecosystem management" issues, if we do want to draw the analogy.
    • Typically, the environmental movement takse as a premise of faith that we need very very large levels of government microregulation and manpulation of business, property, and commerce to protect the environment.

      Typically, the annti copyright and patent movement simply wants the government to get out of the way more by not helping to impose restrictions on what people can copy and immitate.

      • Or, there are those that believe that the "natural" economics of the world is incomplete since it does not account for the value (either present or future) of clean air, healthy ecosystems, etc.

        Nice try though.
  • IP environmentalism. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by TripMaster Monkey (862126) * on Monday February 20, 2006 @06:39PM (#14763822)

    Ahh...I can see it now...
    • IP environmentalists chaining themselves to the doors of the Patent Office and singing 'we shall overcome'.
    • IP environmentalists zigzagging down the street in a VW microbus, blocking an IP lawyer from getting to the Patent Office while jamming his cellphone.
    • IP environmentalists hurling red paint at Patent Office employees while chanting 'Patents are Murder! Patents are Murder!'.


    • by CyricZ (887944) on Monday February 20, 2006 @06:47PM (#14763883)
      While we might see things like that, what we will likely see is innovation just end up moving outside of the US. If the patent and copyright laws really begin to take a financial toll on research and implementation, it may become economically beneficial to move such business to foreign nations with more reasonable laws.

      Even though an ever-increasing copyright term benefits Disney, it concurrently causes much harm to many other (potentially far more important) fields. Soon enough companies won't want to develop products in the US due to the cost of ensuring that their products don't violate obscure patent or somebody's copyright (in the case of software). A situation like that might have to happen before truly beneficial changes start to occur in the US

    • * IP environmentalists hurling red paint at Patent Office employees while chanting 'Patents are Murder! Patents are Murder!'.

      Well, million die every day because of pharmaceutical patents, so they wouldn't be far off the mark there.
  • So is this a good thing or bad thing for the Slashdot community?
    • So is this a good thing or bad thing for the Slashdot community?

      I'd argue that it is neither. It's merely pointing out an analagous concept.

      However, giving a name--and better yet, one identified as 'all serving'...I'd argue moreso with information than the physical environment... not to mention the association with the altruism of the physical environmentalism--is something that is sure to 'play well in the stix'...and beyond...perhaps we can get high calibre Celebrities on our side, donating time,
      • "I'm sure they will come up with them, but I fail to see any valid arguments against IP-enviromentalism that Joe Blow could be convinced of, just the same there are no arguments of that ilk for the opposition of the physical environmentalists either."

        Right, because people will still make films like the LOTR series for a hundred million or so even when there's no copyright law to protect their investment.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Finally, the US Register of Copyrights released a report on Orphan Works - copyrighted material whose owners cannot be identified or found and which is thus extremely hard to use legally.

    Publish them and see who sues. Then figure out if they really own the copyright.

    ---Please, help support your local Bar Association. They're starving on $200K+ a year

    • In many cases, works from the 20's, 30's, and 40's are in the public domain because the copyright holders didn't renew their copyrights after 28 years. You can check the records for books here [upenn.edu]. One of the most obvious, simple, and effective things we could do to reform copyright law would be to go back to requiring renewals.
  • by P0ldy (848358) on Monday February 20, 2006 @06:58PM (#14763950)
    A more elaborate explanation of this idea is in his essay "A Politics of Intellectual Property: Environmentalism For the Net? [duke.edu]" from 1997.

    See section V.

  • The public commons for ideas and artistic works is better off the more populated with diversity it is. This connects closely with the idea of Memes (related to the idea of the selfish gene by Richard Dawkins). For my own part, I do copyright some things, but I am starting to use Creative Commons licenses for more and more of my writing and music (not that I make a big contribution, but hey... every little bit helps :-).
  • by G4from128k (686170) on Monday February 20, 2006 @07:05PM (#14763993)
    I'm sure they tried very very hard to create a feel-good phrase but "cultural environmentalism" doesn't work. Ecological environmentalism seeks to prevent any human-made effects in ecological systems -- preventing any human-made changes to pristine ecologies and removing the effects of humans from sullied ecologies. The true parallel that could be considered "cultural environmentalism" might include splitting or censoring the internet to prevent the flow of "deleterious" culture from one country to another (just like the USDA tries to regulate the import for foriegn plants and animals). Some of the issues raised by Islamic fundamentalism might be true examples of cultural environmentalism in that they seek to avoid pollution from western cultures. The point is that China and Bin Laden are doing more for true "cultural environmentalism" than are Lessig and crew.

    This version of "cultural environmentalism" is less about prevention of change or pollution of cultures by "bad" cultural influences and more of an economic fight about who pays and who does for so-called "cultural" properties. Lessig et al have only made use of a positive buzzword.

    Its just another example of co-opting a word for its connotations, not its true meaning (like calling every act of violence or non-patriotic idea a "terrorist" threat).
    • Ecological environmentalism seeks to prevent any human-made effects in ecological systems -- preventing any human-made changes to pristine ecologies and removing the effects of humans from sullied ecologies.

      Yours is a very simplistic - ideal definition. I have seen, met, read about every type of ecological environmentalist possible. Many of them may want to prevent human-made changes and remove the effects of humans, but many others support things like putting out forest fires or stopping erosion. Som
    • Ecological environmentalism seeks to prevent any human-made effects in ecological systems -- preventing any human-made changes to pristine ecologies and removing the effects of humans from sullied ecologies.

      That sounds like the definition used by radical authoritarians (i.e. the people currently in power in the USA, who love pollution because it creates scarcity).

      All the environmentalists I know simply want to live within the constraints of an ecology capable of reliably supporting human life. They fear

  • This analogy is certainly compelling and has some truth to it. In biology/ecology, there have been differing levels of competition throughout time. At first it was RNA vs. DNA in the competition for genetic storage. DNA won, with RNA relegated to second place (DNA was like a RAID 1 of RNA). Then it was single cellular organisms against multicellular organisms. Even though cells in a multicellular organism lost their direct ability to pass on their genes (the endgame in evolution), the made the rest of
  • by kadathseeker (937789) on Monday February 20, 2006 @07:09PM (#14764018) Homepage
    Tree-hugging wacko is a term used to often and inappropriatly. I'm green, but there are some real nutjobs. There's an interesting book called Green Death by an author who's name escapes me right now. It explores the damage that fanatical environmentalism is doing to developing nations. There's even a quote by the co-founder of Greenpeace saying that the environmentalist movement has really gotten out of hand. All sides have nuts, know yours.
  • by ursabear (818651) on Monday February 20, 2006 @07:18PM (#14764062) Homepage Journal
    Ladies, germs, and other types of keyboard users...

    I appreciate folks that are willing and able to take the time to work towards reasonable means of managing Intellectual Property (we weren't talking about Internet Protocol, were we?). Without hard-working folks where the rubber meets the road, awareness would be low and reason might actually be lacking.

    Do I think we should have folks chaining themselves to filing cabinets, patent office doors, and the like? Well, I don't know... If a fundamental and important issue is getting slammed by a troll or by someone who's only interested in the money - then, maybe it is important to be an activist. OTOH, if one believes that militant behavior is the only way to handle all Intellectual Property issues, then I think over-the-top behavior is not appropriate.

    I don't think that burning Hummers is quite the right approach - I think being an active participant in the process to lend intelligence and reason is probably the right approach.
  • It is good (Score:3, Interesting)

    by roman_mir (125474) on Monday February 20, 2006 @07:56PM (#14764285) Homepage Journal
    that there are these discussions about freedom and so forth. We are now at the point when DRM is coming towards a definite reality and we need these discussions to make sure that the DRM technologies do not in themselves violate the law.

    I am pro-DRM in principle, it is obviously not a popular point of view here but this is a public forum and we can be civilized about it (hopefully.) I am pro-DRM in the following sense: I want an ability to create a document (text/music/video/CAD drawing/object code/etc.) that I could trust to be moved around in the world as a limited resource. I could send this document to anyone I wanted (whether money is involved or not is actually irrelevant,) and they couldn't make copies of it, or could make the preset number of copies. I would like the ability to have the document lock itself after certain amount of time has passed or after certain number of viewing/usages whatever. This also could be used for legal documents, and other sensitive data. Basically this would make the document into almost a real thing.

    Now, I am still in favour of the discussions on these issues from point of view of public domain rights etc. People are not willing to accept the fact that some producers want their data to be really their data forever. Well, we could implement a standard, that would unlock the DRMed document, that is meant to go to public domain after the copyright period expires.

    Say you are buying a CD (for example,) on this CD you have your DRMed files that can be plaid by your CD player. It is possible that the outcome of these discussions would be a standard, which would allow the original buyer to copy this music file a specific number of times onto his/her other CD players/computer/backup/whatever. Maybe there would be a way to make a backup copy, and then make say 2 or 3 copies that could be moved around from your portable MP3 player to your computer HD. When I say 'moved around' I literally mean moved, not just copied. Thus we could satisfy the laws regarding fair-use. On the other hand this file that you have in your possession must become public domain at some point, so the DRM must probably take care of that by unlocking the restriction part of the DRM after the copyright expires.

    I think DRM can be actually an incredible tool for real file sharing, not the what they call file 'sharing' today. You could actually share a file but in a sense, in which you could share your CD or your watch. DRM can also be used for protection of sensitive data. But we need discussions about the rights of the public to the public domain, and so DRM could also be the tool that guaranteed the public domain safety by implementing time unlocking mechanisms.

    Just a thought.

    • I think you've got the germ of truth here, and yet I can't help think that while producers should have every right to DRM their files, I don't see why it's the FBI's job to make sure people don't crack it. The trouble with the scheme is that it effectively extends copyrights forever.

      You say:

      "People are not willing to accept the fact that some producers want their data to be really their data forever. "

      But that's backwards. I'd say some people are not willing to accept that fact that they have no legal rig
      • I can't answer your FBI question. If you ever watch movies, you know that in the beginning of the legally acquired movies there is always an FBI warning. Personally I also do not know how this concerns the FBI.

        About holding to data forever: just don't release it at all and you can hold on to it forever, I do that all the time, I don't most release stuff that I create, just some of it. The corporations of-course want to release the data and then have the perpetual copyrights, well that is why I think the
        • On DRM. (Score:4, Insightful)

          by David Rolfe (38) on Tuesday February 21, 2006 @03:49AM (#14766009) Homepage Journal
          > The corporations of-course want to release the data and then have the perpetual copyrights, well that is why I think the DRM schemas must have the time copyright time limiters built into them.

          How do you time limit data? How does data know its expiration date? How does it know whether its author is alive or dead? How does it know whether 95 years have passed since death?

          You may go around in circles trying to describe a mechanism, but the fact is that it cannot.

          The only reasonable mechanism would be this: If I attempt to copy a piece of data, the system would ask me "is this file copyrighted or does its license permit this operation, yes or no?" I would answer the question honestly to the best of my knowledge. The process would continue or not. This is the only system that respects the sovereignty of individual freedom.

          DRM (in essentially any form) violates the basic contract the constitution describes for copyright in the first place: In exchange for growing the public domain we the people grant artists and inventors time-limited monopolies. We the people agree to honor these monopolies, just like we agree to honor every other law. If we don't, we face the music, as we do whenever we commit a crime.

          I don't see how anyone can expect software to enforce the law. Or at least, not until software systems can be fair and just and personally responsible. This seems like a huge distance into the future.
          • Big error in this boolean: ""is this file copyrighted or does its license permit this operation, yes or no?""

            This should have read "is the file copyrighted or does its license forbid this operation, yes or no?"

            Hehe, otherwise the operation would always be forbidden. :-D
          • How do you time limit data? How does data know its expiration date? How does it know whether its author is alive or dead? How does it know whether 95 years have passed since death? - obviously this is a technological problem. The standard for DRM must include encryption of the actual useful data and the envelope that is more like a program itself that is capable of holding state, securily connect to servers for status updates and such.

            The only reasonable mechanism would be this: If I attempt to copy a piec
            • >> You may go around in circles trying to describe a mechanism, but the fact is that it cannot.

              > The standard for DRM must include encryption of the actual useful data and the envelope that is more like a program itself that is capable of holding state, securily connect to servers for status updates and such.

              This is why I said that you would go round and round describing a mechanism... but you and I both know that that a piece of data in an envelope that must contact a third-party for proof that co
              • Again, these are technical questions that can be solved. After all, this is not a flight to the Moon. We can have a library of all materials that are DRMed with the time-lock, that works on the library's hardware only.
    • so the DRM must probably take care of that by unlocking the restriction part of the DRM after the copyright expires.

      So in other words, my computer system clock just needs to be set 45 years into the future to unlock all drm files? Brilliant! seriously though how does the DRMed file know it's been 32 years or whatever arbitrary date the disney collective has manipulated congress into setting this week? okay it's some server on the internet, now all i need to do is run a packet sniffer load some drmed files
      • The DRM is within the OS, but it is not the OS that can decide how old the file is, it has to be the file itself, because it is, after all, what I described as an ITEM not just a collection of bits. So the file cannot rely on your computer's clock, but time to time the file has to communicate over a secure channel, after all browsers do it with SSL, I am sure the details can be worked out.
    • > am pro-DRM in the following sense: I want an ability to create a document (text/music/video/CAD drawing/object code/etc.) that I could trust to be moved around in the world as a limited resource.

      We already have a mechanism for this form of trust. It is called a contract. When the recipient agrees to your contract to treat said document as a limited resource then they are obligated to do so under the law. Anything else would be coercion. Coercion is contrary to our inalienable freedom.

      The only argument
      • We already have a mechanism for this form of trust. It is called a contract. When the recipient agrees to your contract to treat said document as a limited resource then they are obligated to do so under the law. Anything else would be coercion. Coercion is contrary to our inalienable freedom. - how about stealing? How about copyright infringement? Is there a contract between say me and 1000,000,000 people on the internet not to copy a document that I provided for one specific person or a specific group o
    • Re:It is good (Score:4, Interesting)

      by plasmacutter (901737) on Tuesday February 21, 2006 @05:33AM (#14766256)
      As an economist I have to say what you are proposing is scary, not just scary scary but truly chilling.

      You want to take the most efficient information distribution mechanism ever seen, practically an economist's wet dream, and do everything possible to hinder or destroy the features which make it great.

      Face it, copyright was designed in an age when corporate muscle and physical copies were REQUIRED in order to distribute information. Now distribution on the same or even greater scale can be achieved on a $50 a month boradband line with bit torrent.

      I understand about legal documents and keeping them private, but that's not about DRM, that's about using point to point encryption and only passing it to people you trust. It's not as if you pass your social security documents to random people over the internet, youre sending it to a specific person. Well encryption of emails is NOT drm, it is encryption.

      DRM stands for the corporate spun term "digital rights management" which involves some external party controlling the products you bought. It's not document protection like is achieved with pgp encryption.

      the whole point of DRM is to exploit the lack of technical knowledge of both consumers and lawmakers to rob them of their god given right to personal property, and to undermine the advancement of the internet and its tremendous promise of greater efficiency just to line your own pockets on an outdated model.

      no, It is Not good.
      • As an economist I have to say what you are proposing is scary, not just scary scary but truly chilling. - as a content creator, I can tell you that what I am proposing is first of all useful to me.

        You want to take the most efficient information distribution mechanism ever seen, practically an economist's wet dream, and do everything possible to hinder or destroy the features which make it great. - this is an emotional response, now think about it. I am not proposing that all materials should have DRM built
        • exactly how is it an "emotional" response to detest something which stands in the way of the advancement of society, and mark my words the internet and the efficiency it brings is and advancement, much like the vehicle was over the horse and buggy, but you dont see us imposing "VRM" vehicle rights management in order to keep cars to the same speed as a cart horse do we?

          >>but from point of view of authors, this is the age when their work becomes worthless in a matter of minutes, once one copy of their
          • but you dont see us imposing "VRM" vehicle rights management in order to keep cars to the same speed as a cart horse do we? - of-course you do. It is called a speed governor. Next step, that is taken in the UK - total control over the speed governing by using GPS and maps with speed limits on them, a car that follows the speed limit regardless of the wishes of the user. You should realize (if you are an economist,) that the demographic changes dictate societal changes. What is acceptable today will be u
            • >>Next step, that is taken in the UK - total control over the speed governing by using GPS and maps with speed limits on them, a car that follows the speed limit regardless of the wishes of the user.

              I get the feeling this will be thoroughly shot out of the saddle. I can think of everyday and completely politically neutral examples for why that would never come to be in the way you describe.
              example 1: your wife is in labor/kid has a fractured femur/gash on the side of his head and you have to rush to
              • In any case our minds are pretty much made, so we just have to see what happens next. I am in a pro-DRM camp, you are in an anti-DRM camp. This is a political issue more than anything, and as usually in politics, those with more cash win.
  • Excellent! (Score:2, Funny)

    by DigitAl56K (805623)
    'cultural environmentalism' that tries to protect the public domain in the way that the environmental movement tries to protect the natural ecology

    I'm sure it will be just as succesful. And now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going outside to enjoy the unnaturally hot weather we're having this year...
  • Niche culture (Score:2, Insightful)

    by DigitAl56K (805623)
    Is this culture limited to a niche audience? E.g. the Slashdot crowd? Taking a look at the real world for a moment we have millions of people embracing DRM because it comes in a nice shiny iPod package, the MPAA telling us that unless you have end-to-end HDCP you won't be watching the HD content you just bought in HD, TPM for the next generation of operating systems, the RIAA telling us that ripping a CD we bought to a PMP is not fair use while suing people who can't afford to defend themselves left, right
  • This comparison, while apt, is a teriffic way to pigeonhole the movement. Now all people opposed to the patent and copyright laws as they stand are just more commie wacko enviro-nazis that everyone already hates. Me being one of them, unfortunately.

    And all I do is recycle, drive a Prius, and post my music and stuff to the creative commons. What a scourge my type is. Someone has been running a pretty effective smear campaign.

    Cheers.
  • Its not an "ism" (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 3seas (184403) on Monday February 20, 2006 @11:11PM (#14765070) Journal
    its a human characteristic that separates us from other creatures.

    The ability to advance and create upon what other humans before us have done.

    Intellectual property rights (the ability to say no, you cannot use) had its purpose. But today its really losing ground on the reasons it was created it the first place.

    Thats what you are seeing in the efforts to extend them further. Copyright has become a joke in that its limited length terms has in all practicality become a deception of continually extending them into infinity.

    When in reality, with todays technology it is easier to create and market/distribute works within the shorter time length of the original copyright length terms. Yet the length terms are getting longer.

    Where did all this IP build up come from?

    A: by those who want to constrain us more and more for their benefit, and its not so often the actual creators doing it.. what some call capital-ISM...

  • Some environmental groups use donations to actually buy land they want preserved. If it's so important to have copyrighted works in the public domain, use donations to buy the works and release them to the public domain yourself.

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