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http://www.jpost.com

This article asks the over-simplified question, "Are property rights in ideas unethical?" The article is flawed, but worth reading. The author concludes that the IP system should change somewhat (how he doesn't specify) to accommodate free content. However, he also holds that free content is inherently dependent on proprietary content. I pointed out that free content existed before proprietary content (think of cave art or ballads, just a quick example), that proprietary content often uses free content itself, and that much free content is now actually built without proprietary dependencies.

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mattflaschen's picture
Created by mattflaschen 14 years 27 weeks ago – Made popular 14 years 27 weeks ago
Category: Philosophy   Tags:
kiba's picture

kiba

14 years 27 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago

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Of course it is unethical. It alway

Of course it is unethical. It alway been so.

Intellectual property(Let call it Intellectual Monopoly) rights are nothing like physical property right. It allow the owners to extend controls over others' ability to redistribute and modify the contents. Copy of ideas should be treated as private properties of the individual, not the originators of the ideas, artworks, etc. The amount of control by owners over the people is absurd! It mean that I might have to pay the owners a royalty fee making the cost of business higher. Also it discourage the spread of ideas by giving owners control over the distribution. If owners choose to, they can even restrict the modification of works. It have a chilling effect on freedom.

Unfortunately, Free softwares use the same copyright law to promote freedom, the same law used to control people's ability to modify and redistribute version of a work.

Perhaps the question we really should be asking is the amount of freedom for the individuals.

In this view, I believe that programs without source code is insufficient for the individuals because it does not allowed them to modify the work easily where just the book's contents is sufficient for modifications. Programs that cannot be modified easily are of less utility to users and programmers alike.

Or maybe just reframe the moral questions as an economic one We will just forget the morality baggages until economic studies and debates choose the best theoretical policy. So instead, we will just conform our morality to economics one.

(My default view is that I support Free softwares)

dave's picture

dave

14 years 27 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago

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Thanks for finding this one Matt.

Thanks for finding this one Matt. We need more philosophy articles. They seem to be a bit rare at the moment.

mattflaschen's picture

mattflaschen

14 years 27 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago

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"Unfortunately, Free softwares

"Unfortunately, Free softwares use the same copyright law to promote freedom, the same law used to control people's ability to modify and redistribute version of a work."

Thus, how can you say all copyright is immoral? Copyright is essential to enforce copyleft, which guarantees free software stays free.

kiba's picture

kiba

14 years 27 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago

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However, it is unfortunate that

However, it is unfortunate that most people use copyright law to discourage freedom instead of the other way around.

What I meant is that the same law are often used to restrict people from modifying and redistributing a work.

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