August 17, 2008
On Sun, 17 Aug 2008 09:47:46 -0400, Christopher Wright wrote:

> Jesse Phillips wrote:
>> On Sun, 17 Aug 2008 03:59:08 +0300, Yigal Chripun wrote:
>>> There are no inherit rights that allow the author to control distribution. The way it actually works is this: a) you came up with new exciting idea/poem/article/software/etc.. b) either you keep it to yourself or you publish it. c) once it was published it is in the public domain. you cannot tell me: I have an idea such as <some idea> BUT since I just told you my idea it is mine alone and you cannot use it. If you do not want me to use your idea just keep it for yourself and don't tell anyone about it. This is what Coca-Cola does with its secret recipe. (it's secret!)
>> 
>> Yeah, they are natural rights given by nature. A farmer produces corn, and low and behold he has control over distribution of it.
> 
> Unless someone else decides to take away that corn by force. Which is my right, given by nature, if I can pull it off.

Ok, so you claim that stealing is your right if you can get away with it. This indicates we should start there with are argument.

> 
> The notion of property requires some enforcing mechanism, whether it be brute force or legal convention (and the law is backed up by brute force). But physical property doesn't require any great amount of communication; I live in a place, and I actively prevent other people from living there.

Ok, so as long as you have some sort of force to use, you can claim anything to be yours.

> 
> Intellectual property is a much more recent invention. For example, William Shakespeare didn't publish any of his plays. One of the few early English playwrights to publish their own works, Ben Johnson, was ridiculed for having done so -- it was polite and properly modest to allow others to publish your works, with no compensation to you.
> 

Who cares if it is recent or not. The US Constitution is a recent invention, and yet us Americans don't criticize it for that. Actually some may claim it is too old.

> Intellectual property began, I believe, with Renaissance monarchs promoting particular manufacturers by giving them monopolies. If an enterprising entrepreneur created a new product, the rights to manufacture that might be restricted to one individual in the king's favor. This was not any notion of fairness or protection for inventors; it was simply nepotism.

See above.

> 
> In recent times, intellectual property has been extended to cover nearly everything you can think of, and it's transformed into a system intended to protect content creators. This is progress. One can argue that insufficient thought has been given to issues such as remixing copyrighted works, or orphaned copyrights, or patents intended only to generate lawsuits. (I would.)

I'm not trying to defend how the legal system is set up to handle the issue. Many will agree the legal system is crap.

> 
> 
> (Also, it's "lo and behold", not "low and behold".)

Thank you.
August 17, 2008
On Sun, 17 Aug 2008 16:41:06 +0300, Yigal Chripun wrote:

> Mike Parker wrote:
>>> no one disputes that the artist/software developer should be able to earn a living.
>> 
>> But you want to take the choice of how they do so out of their hands.
> 
> Again, I do not take that choice. You claim that a software developer
> has the right to decide to treat his software as a product and sell
> "units" of it. I claim that such an option does not exist in the first
> place. software is information, either you share it or you keep it to
> yourself. beyond that there are copy-right laws that _give_ the author a
> limited time-span of exclusivity. the software developer doesn't have a
> right to exclusivity, he receives it from society for a limited time.
> that time span should represent a balance between the fact the published
>  work is public domain and the need to make it worthwhile for an
> individual to publish his work. current us law is 70 years after the
> death of that individual is out of balance entirely. a more reasonable
> amount (for software) should be 10-15 years at most. maybe even less.
>>> what I'm trying to say here is that allowing free distribution of
>>> music online makes it easier for a young new artist (or software
>>> developer) to
>>>  achieve his goals (becoming a known artist). I claim that we'll find
>>> our selves in a world where the independent creators, the garage bands
>>> and bedroom software developers, have _NOT_ gone the way of the dodo
>>> but rather flourish.
>> 
>> I don't dispute any of that (well, except the last bit about the future of indies). The opportunities opened up by the internet are tremendous, and I've taken advantage of them myself to some extent. But you've missed the point entirely. I'm not saying we should disallow free distribution. That's rather silly. My argument is that *it's the creator's choice to sell his product or distribute it freely.*
> 
> Again, this choice never existed but rather manufactured artificially by a few groups of interest.
> 
> 
>> Just because you like free stuff doesn't mean I have to give my stuff away for free. Conversely, just because I like to sell my stuff doesn't mean you have to buy it. If we leave things at that, we're all happy campers. I'll sell my stuff to people who want to buy it and you can get your stuff from people who want to give it away for free. But when you start taking my stuff without paying for it, knowing that I'm selling it and don't want it given away freely, now you're stepping on my toes and infringing my rights.
> 
> You do not have to publish your work. you can keep it for yourself. either you give to society or you don't. that's your choice.
>> 
>> I can see you are passionate about this, but it reminds me very much of the debate over the GPL. This isn't a direct analogy, but the circumstances are similar. GPL supporters love to go on about how software should be free (as in 'libre'). Ultimately, they wind up reducing freedom by dictating that the source of any derived work be released under the same terms. True freedom would give developers more choice, like the BSD or MIT licenses do. In your arguments, you keep going on about how grand it would be for us to have free (as in 'gratis', which is a different beast than 'libre' for sure) access to all of this stuff, but you would implicitly restrict the freedom (as in 'libre') of the people who produce it by dictating how they should distribute it.
> 
> I do not object to OSS that is sold for money (again with the Red hat
> example). there is no conflict here with this at all. another way to
> look at it is this:
> an MP3 file is just information and should be available online, at the
> same time there is nothing that prevents the musician to charge money
> for his performance. a singer "produces" music by singing (for example).
> he does not "produce" MP3 files.
> Why don't you pay for each song you here on the radio for example? when
> you go to a restaurant do you pay for the taste, the smell or the food
> itself?
> 
> 
>> Speaking of the GPL, how do you feel about taking GPLed code and using it in closed-source, proprietary software that is then distributed to your customers freely or commercially (that is, ignoring the terms of the GPL altogether)? Is that just as acceptable to you as pirating the end product?
> 
> I feel that the GPL is a necessary evil. It's a hack on top of a broken
> system. Ideally, there should be no need for it at all. Currently the
> GPL is the exception to the rule. the default is Closed-source. I'd want
> it to be the default while closed source would be the exception.
> to answer your question: yes it's wrong to subvert the GPL. The parallel
> you're trying to draw here however is not acceptable to me. these are
> two separate issues.

At this point I merely wish for you to define what information is to you. Information can refer to a number of things, but only one of them will you get me close to agreeing should be free of charge once released to the public and that is, "Knowledge about a topic." and any combination of bits does not fall into this.

August 17, 2008
"Yigal Chripun" <yigal100@gmail.com> wrote in message news:g88lc3$hgc$1@digitalmars.com...
> Mike Parker wrote:
>>
>> No, I'm not. My assertion is that the creator of a thing has a right to determine if and how that thing will be distributed to others. The rest of the world doesn't suddenly get to decide that they can distribute the thing freely just because they can. If I create a PC game, I dictate if it's freeware or commercial -- not the users.
>
> your train of thought here is going backwards. No one "suddenly" decided
> to take away the right to control distribution from the creator.
> That right never existed in the first place.

No rights exist a priori, and it adds nothing to this discusion to point that out.

We can only talk about rights in the context of what society decides we have, or what we think those rights should be.

So if society decided we have the right to control distribution of our work, then we do have those rights.


>> At the end of the day, everyone has to make a living. Contrary to some assertions, I don't see that as an emotional argument. There's nothing illogical about the need to put food on the table. No one disputes the right of a carpenter to be paid for his work, nor for a doctor to be paid for his (though some would dispute the amount). Why, then, is it so difficult to accept that a software developer should be compensated for his work as well? Or a musician?
>
> no one disputes that the artist/software developer should be able to earn a living.

But you do seem to want to dictate how they do so. And you seem to want to dictate that they make their living in a way that best benefits you.


> what I'm trying to say here is that allowing free distribution of music online makes it easier for a young new artist (or software developer) to achieve his goals (becoming a known artist). I claim that we'll find our selves in a world where the independent creators, the garage bands and bedroom software developers, have _NOT_ gone the way of the dodo but rather flourish.

You obviously dont know many people who do this or else you'd know that the vast majority of bands / artist online, still SELL their music. They dont give it away for free, yes sometimes they give some tracks for free, or have listen online thingmebobs, for promotional reasons, but they dont give all their music away for free.

And in fact the real benefit of the internet for these people is free and cheap access to distribution / the public, not distribution of their work for free.

Small software developers in the pro audio industry have flourished because of easy entry to the market. They havn't flourished by giving their software away for free and hoping somone will drop a few pennies in the honesty box.


> Another example - current state of the legal system makes it harder for
> two teams of OSS to work together since they are afraid of legal
> consequences. (phobos and tango)
> in a more free legal system we wouldn't find ourselves waiting for more
> than a year since one author is afraid of taint and possibly getting
> sued in the future duo to it. the absurd is that both projects provide
> freely redistributable code and yet there are still fears of taint.

In a more free legal system there might never have been a phobos, or a digital mars. If Walter and the company he worked for couldnt have protected their investment its likely none of us would be here chatting now.

Capitalism, and property rights, are what has made western societys so prosperous, they encourage investment and enterprise.

Just because such laws / rights sometimes have negative effects doesnt mean they are all bad, and should be scrapped.


> If you ever watched "sliders" than you'd probably seen the episode where they slid to a world with 85% of the population having law degrees. in that world you had to provide a full health record and a signed and legally approved note that you wouldn't sue just to buy a hamburger.

Have you heard of the USSR? Of China? Of North Korea?

There's some real world examples, not sci fi jibberish, of why having weak property rights is bad for enterprise and economy. Just look at how China has flourished since it embraced capatalism.





August 17, 2008
"Adam D. Ruppe" <destructionator@gmail.com> wrote in message news:mailman.7.1218945114.19733.digitalmars-d@puremagic.com...
> On Sun, Aug 17, 2008 at 04:12:37AM +0100, Jb wrote:
>> No-one is trying
>> to erase certain ideas / artistic works from history. We are in fact
>> trying
>> to do the exact oposite. We are trying to create an enviroment where
>> ideas
>> and artist works flourish.
>
> Then why is this debate about rights? Rights are irrelevant - what matters is the results.

Because rights are what lead us to those results. Human rights are what make society more fair, compasionate, and inclusive. For example.


> If your goal is to create an environment where ideas and art flourish, great. That's a good goal, and that is where your defence should be focused.

That's pretty much where my defense has been focused.


> Forget all this repetitive talk about rights, and talk about how the law helps or doesn't help achieve this goal (or whatever other goal you want to set).

It is the law that decides what rights we have. You cannot talk about this without talking about rights.


> Copyright law might be a valid way to achieve this goal. It might not be. There might be completely better ways (something I'm convinced of).

I think the mistake you and Yigal are making is assuming that it should all be done in the same way. Red Hat does this or that why cant everyone else? Well the system should allow people as much freedom as possible to work on whichever business model best suits their enterprise.

Which is pretty much what we have today. By allowing authors to control distribution they can control the business model. They can give it away if they like. They can go for a service model, and honesty box model, or a product model.

But if you take away that right the range of options open to them is far smaller.

And you would see far less enterprise because of it.



August 17, 2008
"Yigal Chripun" <yigal100@gmail.com> wrote in message news:g899ph$1gks$1@digitalmars.com...
> Mike Parker wrote:
>>> no one disputes that the artist/software developer should be able to earn a living.
>>
>> But you want to take the choice of how they do so out of their hands.
>
> Again, I do not take that choice. You claim that a software developer
> has the right to decide to treat his software as a product and sell
> "units" of it. I claim that such an option does not exist in the first
> place. software is information, either you share it or you keep it to
> yourself. beyond that there are copy-right laws that _give_ the author a
> limited time-span of exclusivity. the software developer doesn't have a
> right to exclusivity, he receives it from society for a limited time.
> that time span should represent a balance between the fact the published
> work is public domain and the need to make it worthwhile for an
> individual to publish his work. current us law is 70 years after the
> death of that individual is out of balance entirely.
> a more reasonable amount (for software) should be 10-15 years at most.
> maybe even less.

Again you are making an utterly pointless distinction. When we talk about what rights the author has of course we are talking about what rights our societys have decided they have. We are not saying the rights are bestowed on us by god.

Although FWIW i agree the length of copyright is far too long.

I think perhaps 20 years would be long enough.


>> I don't dispute any of that (well, except the last bit about the future of indies). The opportunities opened up by the internet are tremendous, and I've taken advantage of them myself to some extent. But you've missed the point entirely. I'm not saying we should disallow free distribution. That's rather silly. My argument is that *it's the creator's choice to sell his product or distribute it freely.*
>
> Again, this choice never existed but rather manufactured artificially by a few groups of interest.

Again an utterly pointless thing to say.

You may as well say that a few hundred years ago we didnt have the right to a fair trials so we should not have them now.

It's utterly irelevant, we have that right today, so lets stick to talking about that.

(at least we do in civilized countries).


> Why don't you pay for each song you here on the radio for example? when you go to a restaurant do you pay for the taste, the smell or the food itself?

We do pay for songs that are played on the radio. In America there's ASCAP, and likewise in other countries there are organizations that are licenced by the government / rights owners, to collect royalties from the radio stations.

The radio stations typicaly pay these royalties by runing adverts.



>> Speaking of the GPL, how do you feel about taking GPLed code and using it in closed-source, proprietary software that is then distributed to your customers freely or commercially (that is, ignoring the terms of the GPL altogether)? Is that just as acceptable to you as pirating the end product?
>
> I feel that the GPL is a necessary evil. It's a hack on top of a broken
> system. Ideally, there should be no need for it at all.
> Currently the GPL is the exception to the rule. the default is
> Closed-source. I'd want it to be the default while closed source would
> be the exception.
> to answer your question: yes it's wrong to subvert the GPL. The parallel
> you're trying to draw here however is not acceptable to me. these are
> two separate issues.

So GPL coders have the right to control what is done with their work but book authors / musicians dont?



August 17, 2008
Jesse Phillips wrote:
> On Sun, 17 Aug 2008 09:47:46 -0400, Christopher Wright wrote:
> 
>> Jesse Phillips wrote:
>>> On Sun, 17 Aug 2008 03:59:08 +0300, Yigal Chripun wrote:
>>>> There are no inherit rights that allow the author to control
>>>> distribution. The way it actually works is this: a) you came up with
>>>> new exciting idea/poem/article/software/etc.. b) either you keep it to
>>>> yourself or you publish it. c) once it was published it is in the
>>>> public domain. you cannot tell me: I have an idea such as <some idea>
>>>> BUT since I just told you my idea it is mine alone and you cannot use
>>>> it. If you do not want me to use your idea just keep it for yourself
>>>> and don't tell anyone about it. This is what Coca-Cola does with its
>>>> secret recipe. (it's secret!)
>>> Yeah, they are natural rights given by nature. A farmer produces corn,
>>> and low and behold he has control over distribution of it.
>> Unless someone else decides to take away that corn by force. Which is my
>> right, given by nature, if I can pull it off.
> 
> Ok, so you claim that stealing is your right if you can get away with it. This indicates we should start there with are argument.

That is my natural right, since it is my ability. I do not claim that it is right or good or just; society defines those, and society is not the source of natural rights.

But it's pointless to talk about natural rights. You can talk about societal rights or, if you're so inclined, God-given rights.

>> The notion of property requires some enforcing mechanism, whether it be
>> brute force or legal convention (and the law is backed up by brute
>> force). But physical property doesn't require any great amount of
>> communication; I live in a place, and I actively prevent other people
>> from living there.
> 
> Ok, so as long as you have some sort of force to use, you can claim anything to be yours.

Well, yes. If fifty armed men showed up at your door and said that all your pillow cases were now theirs, you wouldn't be inclined to argue.

>> Intellectual property is a much more recent invention. For example,
>> William Shakespeare didn't publish any of his plays. One of the few
>> early English playwrights to publish their own works, Ben Johnson, was
>> ridiculed for having done so -- it was polite and properly modest to
>> allow others to publish your works, with no compensation to you.
>>
> 
> Who cares if it is recent or not. The US Constitution is a recent invention, and yet us Americans don't criticize it for that. Actually some may claim it is too old.

Being a recent invention, intellectual property protection is clearly not a basic right of humans. Not all societies will require it.

> I'm not trying to defend how the legal system is set up to handle the issue. Many will agree the legal system is crap.

Because intellectual property is a recent invention, its implementations may not be optimal. Unfortunately, a well-defined legal system predates intellectual property, so it's harder to try out different mechanisms for IP protection.
August 17, 2008
On Sun, Aug 17, 2008 at 06:58:13PM +0100, Jb wrote:
> I think the mistake you and Yigal are making is assuming that it should all be done in the same way.

My own position is may be a little weird. As far as rights to information goes, there are a two:

1) You cannot force someone to divulge anything.

Thus, he is free to charge someone for a piece of information if he wants.

2) You cannot force someone /not/ to divulge something.

Thus, once you tell someone something, he is free to resell it if he wants.

In short, I'm saying a person can choose to tell or not tell whatever he wants.


We are definitely in agreement on point #1. Copyright directly restricts point #2 - it forces people to not divulge something they know, lest they face undesirable consequences.

Use of force to modify people's behaviour needs to be justified. This
is where the disagreement really lies, and as you read on, you'll see that
you and I don't really disagree as much here as it might look at first glance :)


> Well the system should allow people as much freedom as possible to work on whichever business model best suits their enterprise.

If my business model was to murder all my competitors, you surely wouldn't allow that.

Clearly, people aren't free to pick which ever business model best suits them - there are restrictions on what they can do, especially when it comes to using force on other people.

As I said above, copyright law is using force on other people to modify their behaviour. It seems like it, by default, shouldn't be permitted.

Unlike most human rights which prevent you from using force on people except in extreme circumstances (people have a right to life, thus murder is wrong, etc.), copyright permits you to use force on people. This is backward. The burden of proof is on the pro-copyright side.

> But if you take away that right the range of options open to them is far smaller.
> 
> And you would see far less enterprise because of it.

They don't have the option to send armed thugs to their competitor's office to prevent him from manufacturing other objects, and that doesn't hurt business - quite the opposite, it helps business.

Copyright might not be sending armed thugs, but it is the same idea: you are forcing someone else out in favor of yourself.

I would argue that in an ideal world, there would be no copyright, and this is something that would allow art to flourish.


Consider a world without copyright for a moment. Say you find a software library on the Internet that is perfect for your needs and would shave weeks off your development time.

With copyright, you have to adhere to its license, which wastes your time. Without copyright, you just take it and use it.

Your project is now completed weeks ahead of schedule and is of higher quality than if you had to reimplement that library yourself.

This lets you move on to another project more quickly. The world gets more and better creations since you weren't restricted in what you could do in creating it.

Later on, someone could do the same to your project, using it or pieces of it to shave time off his own project, adding more and more quantity and quality of creations to the world.

This would be ideal. Art would flourish.


But the real world isn't ideal as it is right now. This is where you might
be able to justify a copyright law. In the real world, if you devote
several months to creating something, you have bills that need to be
paid during those months.

You have two options:
1) Work another job to pay the bills. This eats into the time you would
otherwise spend on the creation of your project, meaning you can't create
as much nor as high quality as you could by devoting more time to it.

Or 2) Make some money off that project in some way. This lets you devote all your time to the creation of the art while still paying the bills.


There are a few ways to accomplish that. One is to sell originals of the work to people later. Musicians can do this by selling tickets to live performances. Painters can do this by selling their painting.

Software developers can't do this directly. The best hope they have is selling support, which IMO isn't a very attractive option...

Another is to work on commission. You create a custom work for someone
who pays you ahead of time to create something just for him. This
is actually how I make money off my software right now in the real world;
I write extremely boring, but highly specialized applications to specific
customers. They pay me for a custom fitted program, which I cannot control
at all when it is done (the copyright is assigned to the customer.)

That is how artists worked through most of history. It's a fairly good model for various kinds of artists, including software developers. Even without copyright, people will probably still want custom-tailored solutions to their own problems and will be willing to pay for it.


Another way to pay the bills while being an artist is to be sponsored by someone. This is comparatively rare, so it isn't something on which to bet the farm.


Finally, you have the copyright option: using force to shape the market
in such a way where it is profitable to you. If none of the above options
are workable, this lets the artist still pay the bills while working on
his art full-time. Thus, most everyone is happy: the art is created, letting
people have it and the artist doesn't have to starve to death.



That result is the only thing that justifies copyright. It isn't about
the rights of the creator - he doesn't have the right to use force on people
under normal circumstances, so that argument is right out. It is about
the end result.

In an ideal world, copyright would be an evil. It would do only harm and
no good. (As you can probably tell, the definition of the ideal world
I'm using here is simply one where bills /don't/ have to be paid. Other
than that difference, all things are equal with the real world. I strongly
believe that the real world could be adjusted to fit this definition in the
near future, if only we had the political will to make some changes.)

In the ideal world, the only restriction I'd place on 'intellectual property' is basically what several of the phobos source licenses say: you may not misrepresent the source of the work. Otherwise, do whatever you want with it.


In the real world, it serves a useful purpose - letting artists work full time without selling originals or working on commission, permitting things to be created that otherwise would be neglected in favor of the artist paying his bills. Thus it is allowed to exist.


That's it.

-- 
Adam D. Ruppe
http://arsdnet.net
August 17, 2008
On Sun, 17 Aug 2008 15:44:57 -0400, Christopher Wright wrote:

> Jesse Phillips wrote:
>> On Sun, 17 Aug 2008 09:47:46 -0400, Christopher Wright wrote:
>> 
>>> Jesse Phillips wrote:
>>>> On Sun, 17 Aug 2008 03:59:08 +0300, Yigal Chripun wrote:
>>>>> There are no inherit rights that allow the author to control distribution. The way it actually works is this: a) you came up with new exciting idea/poem/article/software/etc.. b) either you keep it to yourself or you publish it. c) once it was published it is in the public domain. you cannot tell me: I have an idea such as <some idea> BUT since I just told you my idea it is mine alone and you cannot use it. If you do not want me to use your idea just keep it for yourself and don't tell anyone about it. This is what Coca-Cola does with its secret recipe. (it's secret!)
>>>> Yeah, they are natural rights given by nature. A farmer produces corn, and low and behold he has control over distribution of it.
>>> Unless someone else decides to take away that corn by force. Which is my right, given by nature, if I can pull it off.
>> 
>> Ok, so you claim that stealing is your right if you can get away with it. This indicates we should start there with are argument.
> 
> That is my natural right, since it is my ability. I do not claim that it is right or good or just; society defines those, and society is not the source of natural rights.
> 
> But it's pointless to talk about natural rights. You can talk about societal rights or, if you're so inclined, God-given rights.
> 
>>> The notion of property requires some enforcing mechanism, whether it be brute force or legal convention (and the law is backed up by brute force). But physical property doesn't require any great amount of communication; I live in a place, and I actively prevent other people from living there.
>> 
>> Ok, so as long as you have some sort of force to use, you can claim anything to be yours.
> 
> Well, yes. If fifty armed men showed up at your door and said that all your pillow cases were now theirs, you wouldn't be inclined to argue.
> 
>>> Intellectual property is a much more recent invention. For example, William Shakespeare didn't publish any of his plays. One of the few early English playwrights to publish their own works, Ben Johnson, was ridiculed for having done so -- it was polite and properly modest to allow others to publish your works, with no compensation to you.
>>>
>>>
>> Who cares if it is recent or not. The US Constitution is a recent invention, and yet us Americans don't criticize it for that. Actually some may claim it is too old.
> 
> Being a recent invention, intellectual property protection is clearly not a basic right of humans. Not all societies will require it.
> 
>> I'm not trying to defend how the legal system is set up to handle the issue. Many will agree the legal system is crap.
> 
> Because intellectual property is a recent invention, its implementations may not be optimal. Unfortunately, a well-defined legal system predates intellectual property, so it's harder to try out different mechanisms for IP protection.

I will move this to the "does IP exist" thread.
August 17, 2008
"Adam D. Ruppe" <destructionator@gmail.com> wrote in message news:mailman.8.1219006500.19733.digitalmars-d@puremagic.com...

> In the real world, it serves a useful purpose - letting artists work full
> time without selling originals or working on commission, permitting things
> to be created that otherwise would be neglected in favor of the artist
> paying
> his bills. Thus it is allowed to exist.

I wish you'd put that paragraph first and then I wouldnt have spent 30 minutes responding to all your utopian copyright free wet dreams.

;-)

I do think you overstate what copyright actualy does. It doesnt prevent sharing of ideas and information. It just prevent copying of (usualy) artistic works.

You can read a book and tell people about what is in the book. Explain the ideas. Or tell them about your experiences of a film you saw.

You can even buy it on DVD and have them round your house to watch it.

All it actualy does is stop you making a copy and giving it to them.



>Consider a world without copyright for a moment. Say you find a software library on the Internet that is perfect for your needs and would shave weeks off your development time.
>
>With copyright, you have to adhere to its license, which wastes your time. Without copyright, you just take it and use it.

Actualy without copyright the chances of finding that library would be greatly diminished. For a start if people want to they can already create software and release with no restrictions. This option already exists.

All that would happen if you killed copyright is the people who write and release software in order to make a living would likely go out of business and end up doing somthing else.

For a start nobody would be obliged to pay for their work. Second anyone could copy it and put it up on their website, and sell it as if it were there own.

You end up in a situation where those people with the most ruthless business practices are the ones who will do most well.

So the idea that art / software production would flourish without copyright is plain false, it's so false it's almost absurd.




August 18, 2008
Adam D. Ruppe wrote:
> On Sun, Aug 17, 2008 at 06:58:13PM +0100, Jb wrote:
>> I think the mistake you and Yigal are making is assuming that it should all be done in the same way.
> 
> My own position is may be a little weird. As far as rights to information
> goes, there are a two:
> 
> 1) You cannot force someone to divulge anything.
> 
> Thus, he is free to charge someone for a piece of information if he wants.
> 
> 2) You cannot force someone /not/ to divulge something.
> 
> Thus, once you tell someone something, he is free to resell it if he wants.
> 
> In short, I'm saying a person can choose to tell or not tell whatever he
> wants.
> 
> 
> We are definitely in agreement on point #1. Copyright directly restricts
> point #2 - it forces people to not divulge something they know, lest they
> face undesirable consequences.

Copyright has no relevance to the spread of information. That's what NDAs and opaque governments are for. You are absolutely free to divulge anything and everything you know about copyrighted material. You just can't copy if for distribution. Go ahead, write an essay describing the inner workings of the copyrighted software you've reverse engineered so that others can recreate it. You'll violate no copyright by doing so (and no need to mention the DMCA -- that's nothing to do with copyright and everything to do with corporate bottom lines). That's information and you are at total liberty to spread it as you see fit. The software itself is *not* information.
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