Reader Comments on Aardvark Daily 10 July 2001
Note: the comments below are the unabridged
submissions of readers and do
not necessarily reflect the opinions of the publisher.
From: Brian Harmer For : The Editor (for publication) Subj: Intellectual oxymoron Hamish McEwan's position on intellectual property is astonishing. Given that people who write code (or books) have to get paid for their labours, where does he suggest that money should come from if not from the very real rights to benefit from their own work? But then later on he produces his carefully selected analogy with ditch digging. How about a different analogy: with a car, for example. Does a rental car company lose the right to earn money from the car once it hass been rented once? Or even once the car's cost has been met? The ditch digger has usually entered into a different kind of transaction. He or she has agreed to provide a quantum of labour for an agreed price. It is a simple sale. The new owner has the ditch and can thereafter continue to benefit from it. If the ditch digger digs a ditch on his or her own behalf however, they too can benefit in perpetuity from the ditch. The book author could likewise do as the ditch digger does, and sell the rights to his or her labour as a one off transaction and then Steven Speeilberg or whoever can make a movoe from it and profit evermore. The book is no less the tangible product of someone's labour than the ditch. The ditch digger is a straw man. From: Nigel McNaughton For : The Editor (for publication) Subj: Bad Analogy "The elitist snobbery that suggests a "creator" of mind products deserves payment for ever, where a ditchdigger is paid once for his time and not for each use of the ditch, nor is allowed to control what may flow through the ditch, is a repugnant discrimination that should be eliminated, not extended." I hire someone to dig a ditch on my property a job which I pay him for. Why should he then get to say what may flow through the ditch? I design a better shovel on my time with my resources then shouldn't I be granted some chance to make some money off that?Now Have Your Say
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