Likelihood of Success

Ron Coleman’s pretty good blog

Copyright law has been stood on its head and Bill Patry doffs his cap

Posted by Ron Coleman on August 5, 2008

Copyright doyen Bill Patry explains why he shut down his brilliant copyright law blog. Some of it had to do with his inability to prevent people from ascribing his personal views to his employer, Google. Some of it had to do with a sort of spiritual exhaustion (despite being a pretty spiritual guy). But naturally, this is the reason that got my attention:

Copyright law has abandoned its reason for being: to encourage learning and the creation of new works. Instead, its principal functions now are to preserve existing failed business models, to suppress new business models and technologies, and to obtain, if possible, enormous windfall profits from activity that not only causes no harm, but which is beneficial to copyright owners. Like Humpty-Dumpty, the copyright law we used to know can never be put back together again: multilateral and trade agreements have ensured that, and quite deliberately.

It’s depressing, and he’s probably right. Again: He says copyright’s “principal functions now are to preserve existing failed business models, to suppress new business models and technologies, and to obtain, if possible, enormous windfall profits from activity that not only causes no harm, but which is beneficial to copyright owners.”

What ever kind of thing could he be talking about? (Hat tip to Carol Ruth Shepard.)

Cross-posted in slightly expanded form on LIKELIHOOD OF CONFUSION®.

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One Response to “Copyright law has been stood on its head and Bill Patry doffs his cap”

  1. Robin Roberts said

    That really got me down, as I was a huge fan of his blog.

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