According to a leaked report (see here and here; CHT Brandon), the Campaign for Libertys upcoming internet freedom manifesto condemns as an insidious and pernicious form of internet collectivism the view that what is considered to be in the public domain should be greatly expanded. Bizarrely, they toss opposition into IP into a list of proposals for government intervention.
Hey, C4L: refraining from censorship and protectionism is not a form of government intervention. For the libertarian case against IP, check out the Center for the Study of Innovative Freedom and the Molinari Institutes anti-copyright page.
I think they took the “Creative Commies” rhetoric literally. When some people pretend to be socialists, others will believe them.
Yeah, but there are plenty of prominent anti-IP free-marketers who have never “pretended to be socialists” — like virtually everybody at the Mises Institute, for example. And one would expect the C4L to be aware of them. It’s like one Ron Paul cheerleader accusing another Ron Paul cheerleader of being a commie.
“It’s like one Ron Paul cheerleader accusing another Ron Paul cheerleader of being a commie.”
The problem with this analogy is that that’s anything but uncommon.
Only a communist would say such a thing.
How could you have IP without the state? If persons A and B both independently come up with the same idea and A happened to have done it first, why should A be able to use force against B or anyone else to prevent them from putting their ideas to work? The is no contract between A and B that limits B to what he can think on his own, and aren’t his ideas just as much his property and A’s are to him?
I imagine the same way you could have roads, property, marriage, law, taxation, slavery, war, genocide, and all sorts of other things that would supposedly require a state to exist but existed long before states regardless.
I have a friend who is working in her doctoral research in anthropology. Her work is about peasant resistance in Colombia against genetically engineered seeds, specially the royalties peasants have to pay for the use of seeds genetically engineered by companies such as Monsanto (there are laws that prevent even the use of seeds that are genetically “similar” to the ones produced by such companies, as unbelievable that it sounds, with jail for “offenders”). I will like to know if there are some good books written from a libertarian perspective against the idea of intellectual property that you could recommend to her.
For a rights-based argument, Stephan Kinsella’s Against Intellectual Property.
For a consequentialist argument, Michele Boldrin & David K. Levine’s Against Intellectual Monopoly.
For a left-libertarian argument, Kevin Carson’s Intellectual Property: A Libertarian Critique.
All three happily available for free online.