1. Content
  2. Index
  3. Search
  4. RSS/Subscribe

The Right to File-Share · Friday November 07, 2008 by Crosbie Fitch

I thought this fairly straightforward exchange on Techdirt put things fairly succinctly:

Anon:

Why should consumers have rights regarding unauthorized file sharing?

CF:

Ahem, people already have the right to liberty (freedom of speech, etc.).

In 1710 (UK) and 1790 (US) the privilege of copyright was created to partially suspend this liberty, specifically the right for members of the public to make copies or derivatives of books that they had purchased. This ‘right to copy’ was then granted to publishers – hence the name ‘copyright’.

So, file-sharers are actually enjoying their natural rights.

Ideally those rights are no longer suspended for the benefit of publishers, but are fully restored to the public, by abolishing copyright.

Anon:

Copyright isn’t bad, in and of itself. The horrible way its been twisted and extended since its initial implementation.. is whats bad. Lets not throw the baby out with the bathwater here. I’m all for people being paid for work, I’m not for the idea of lifetime residuals on a piece of work and complete show stopping powers for derivative work. If people want to sign their rights away and open it up to the public without personal gain, well… thats what CC, GNU, and BSD licenses are for.

CF:

People aren’t signing their rights away, they’re restoring the public’s rights back to them (by neutralising their privilege of copyright to published works and derivatives).

It is actually impossible to sign one’s rights away – this is what is meant by inalienable.

It takes the power of a government to grant privileges that supersede individual rights.

I too am all for people being paid for their work. What I’m not at all for is the people’s liberty being suspended for publishers’ commercial exploitation.



 

About

Contact

Recent Articles

Recent Comments

Topics

Rights

Natural Right

Legal Rights

Life

Equality

Fraternity

Violence

Privacy

Being Privy

Confidentiality

Personal Data

Publication

Truth

Attribution

Authenticity

Moral Rights

Plagiarism

Representation

Veracity

Liberty

Censorship

Disclosure

Freedom of Speech

Freedom vs Liberty

Official Secrets Act

Piracy

Property

Apprehensibility

Facility

Identifiability

Copyright

Copyfarleft

Ineffectiveness

Modulation

Neutralisation

Patent

Software

US Constitution

'exclusive right'

Sanction

Contract

Inalienability

Licensing

NDA

Abolition

GPL

Business

Models

Incorporation

Immortality

No Rights

Regulation

Culture

Miscellany

Links

Principles

Amnesty International

Copyleft (Wikipedia)

Electronic Frontier

Free Culture F'n

Free Culture UK

Free S/w Foundation

Pontification

Against Monopoly

One Small Voice

Open...

P2Pnet

Question Copyright

Paragons

GratisVibes

Jamendo

SourceForge

Wikipedia

Protagonists

Downhill Battle

Publishers vs Public

Proof

Rethinking Copyright

Papers

Against Monopoly

Ecstasy of Influence

Libertarian Case

Post-Copyright

Practitioners

Janet Hawtin

Nina Paley

Rob Myers

Scott Carpenter