Slashdot reported (others too, I’m sure) that the Pro-IP act has passed the Judiciary Committee. This is yet another evil copyright expansion that blatantly contradicts the plain English meaning of the 8th clause of Section 8 of the First Article:
“To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries”
This particular bill authorizes seizure of property in copyright cases – a mechanism that has resulted in gross abuse in drug cases and is repugnant to the rule of law.
The /. article linked to William Patry’s blog, who is now one of my heroes. His blog discusses an article by Neil Natenel: “Why Has Copyright Expanded? Analysis and Critique.” It is an excellent discourse on the prevailing contortions exploited to provide legal cover for industry-drafted legislation that has so distorted the concepts of copyright and hobbled the advancement of technology and science.
Natenel’s counterarguments against ideas as property and neoclassical market optimization were convincing but I think missed something, though there is a full-length book on the same subject I have yet to read.
(My thoughts below but they reference the article.)
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