Tuesday, June 19, 2007

As I've hinted before, the lack of intellectual property protections will drive things underground.* Companies will stop patenting things, and start treating them as trade secrets. The result will be essentially the same as if there were adequate IP protections--companies and invidividuals would be required to come up with truly innovate works, not just derivatives--but the timeframe would be extended beyond the patent's inherently limited scope.

Note that this applies to patents. Copyrights, on the other hand, remain a mess. Perhaps someone will come up with unbreakable encryption that can be applied to copyrighted material, including software, that will render digital copyright infringement almost impossible. That'll do away with physical distribution in a heartbeat, of course, leaving only the computer-equipped able to enjoy music, video and other, non-physical art.

And those who oppose intellectual property rights will only have themselves to blame.

*Note: I'm not sure if this is exactly what the linked story is saying. It's my take on the issue, however.


NeoAuteur said...

You are absolutely correct. Sadly, most people are pragmatic and not foresighted.

Mark said...

I couldn't agree more. And I fear that things will get worse before they get any better.