"[EMAIL PROTECTED]" wrote: > > In a message dated 7/23/00 13:15:58, [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes: > > << IP is indeed property, owned by the creator. I could > > get into it here, but I am afraid we are veering sharply off-topic >> > > I'm listening. :o) So, at your request, I will now dive into a wretched morass of conflicting ethical principles and white-hot rhetoric. Definition of Property (two parts): 1. Something that some sentient entity (individual or collective) has complete rights over (to sell, modify, destroy, throw up in the air or sleep with). 2. Something to which nobody has any rights of action a priori. By right of action, I mean that if photons bounce off the object and enter your eye, you are not acting unethically; however, you cannot in any way manipulate the object by volition, unless its diposition is violating your rights (e.g., a gun at your head). Definition of Intellectual Property: Property that is not concrete, i.e. without tangible form. A CD would be property, the data on the CD would be intellectual property. Ethical Justification of Property: That which itself does not have rights, can be property. At its creation, a piece of something becomes a piece of property. Traditionally, this started with land. Land in theretofore undiscovered territories were claimed by a person or group, often under the aegis of a country. Once claimed, the land and non-sentient objects on it (ore, trees, dumb animals) could be commoditized, and then all valued-added derivatives as well. Most people agree with concrete objects as property. The conflict over IP comes down to ethical principles. Two principles which have the same real-world result for concrete entities are: * Usufruct of Labors -- I bought it, or added value to it, so it's mine. * Sub-ideal Sharing -- If someone else has, I can't have it, so it's mine. There are probably more, but I cannot think of any. Obviously, holders of the latter cannot support IP, since data can be reproduced very well, and discrete (digital) data can be replicated flawlessly. My task is to show that persons subscribing to Principle #1 should support IP: 1. I postulate abstract entities (non-concrete entities), i.e. that they can be well-defined (mathematically, ethically, legally, all that). 2. I assert as an axiom that all sentient, i.e volitional, beings have complete right and responsibility to their own life, and the actions therewith. The "right to life" is complete freedom of action (mental and physical), provided that actions do not interfere with the preemptive actions of others; this restriction constitutes responsibility. 3. IP is abstract, and is indeed created *materially* out of thin air. However, some sentient entity had to generate this object, lest it not be well-defined. In other words, IP is in it's totality value-added. 4. Since a sentient entity created an object, it can claim it as property by right, as the value-added product is a direct result of their own actions, and none others. Hence, IP, like regular ol' property, is a derivative of the fundamental right to life. A preemptive assault on the most common counter-argument: Q: If someone claims IP, is that not infringing on my right to thought? A: Say you hear a (copyrighted) song on the radio -- the tune is now somewhat in your mind. The mp3 for this track was encoded by some guy, and you say you have a write to download it using Napster and store it on your hard disk, because you claim rights to the tune. But, this is just a licensing. A band could release its music with the license that it also claims the tune in your head upon hearing the CD track, and you are not permitted to strum it, hum it, or even think it. I argue that this is their prerogative, because they created the abstract entity, the song, and hence it is theirs; you are free to ignore bands that proffer such ridiculous terms. Howver, most bands and recording companies only restrict redistribution of the data on the CD. The person who encoded the mp3 violated the license, and you would be remiss in downloading something that was created by unethical means, like buying a gun or car you know is stolen. There are other counter-arguments, but all that I've seen are lame and do not withstand a minute's scrutiny. To Mr. Francois-Rene Rideau: I'm sure you will disagree vehemently to my line of reasoning, but I believe I am correct given my fundamental axioms. A critique of my argumentation that accepts my ethical principle is welcome. If you wish to argue about axioms, you may also want to check out a similar dogfight I had previously: http://www.technocrat.net/944262508/944338271/944345191/944358944/944 372178/944374844/index_html Sincerely, Sourav Mandal PS: If this exigesis was waste of your time, please send flames to "[EMAIL PROTECTED]" (I'm sorry sir, I do not know your real name!). -- SKM ------------------------------------------------------------ Sourav K. Mandal Massachusetts Institute of Technology Department of Physics http://web.mit.edu/smandal/www/ "In enforcing a truth we need severity rather than efflorescence of language. We must be simple, precise, terse." -- Edgar Allan Poe, "The Poetic Principle" ------------------------------------------------------------ Sourav K. Mandal Massachusetts Institute of Technology Department of Physics http://web.mit.edu/smandal/www/ "In enforcing a truth we need severity rather than efflorescence of language. We must be simple, precise, terse." -- Edgar Allan Poe, "The Poetic Principle"