"Killer punch"? - no, gasoline for self-immolation by copyright 'rentiers'
The hegemony of 'intellectual property' (IP) rentier economics is coming to a close more rapidly than I anticipated.
The Internet Archive has lost in a case brought before a US Federal judge. More likely than not, the judge interpreted the law diligently. Judiciary in higher courts may or may not agree with him. No matter, law, as in statute, is being superseded by law in other guises: take your pick from 'moral', 'realist', 'pragmatic', and 'jungle'.
Law lacking power to enforce is nothing more than recommendation. Just possibly, the Archive shall be obliged to close down. Yet, that would be a terrible outcome for the rentiers. Widely, they would be perceived as having destroyed a noble effort to share knowledge/culture fairly. The Archive is not some tacky outfit trying to gull people into divulging credit card details. It is not the somewhat nobler type of site, offering bounty free of charge whilst regaling visitors with pictures of prostitutes available in their area (old-fashioned telephone booth advertising). The Archive comes across as a genuine 'not for profit' (aka charitable) rather than so many of its ilk which operate under that banner.
Across the globe, exciting things are happening. Russian response to the USA sanctions diplomacy has placed Western IP in the crosshairs.
The first link refers to former President Dmitry Medvedev's suggestion to allow Russians to download western entertainment content for free. Medvedev is the deputy chairman of the Russian Security Council, and thus continues to carry weight within the Russian Federation.
The second link is confirmation by a Kremlin spokesman that Medvedev's proposal is backed.
What better than to offer the Archive protection within Russia? Further, to legitimise Sci-Hub, Z-library, and so forth?
I am seeking to persuade the Kremlin of the advantages to the economies of Russia, China, and the 'Global South' from eschewing the concept of IP as applied to copyright and patents. Gains will figure in monetary terms, despite short term disadvantage to the nations' current IP supposed 'owners'; more importantly, it will break the dam holding back knowledge (and its application) and culture (and derivation from it) from distribution to all. The knock-on will be beneficial in monetary terms (for those whose minds are affixed to that metric), but importantly it will kick-start another intellectual renaissance: perhaps we can conquer malaria and get to the stars sooner than we thought?
The transition from rentier (monopoly) economics to a proper market-driven set of business models truly compatible with market-capitalism, I have sketched elsewhere.
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