Re: Excerpts from "Software, Property & Human Civilization"

From: Mike Lorrey (
Date: Sat Dec 22 2001 - 08:52:26 MST

"J. R. Molloy" wrote:
> It seems to me that what we're seeing in the software area, and this is the
> scary part for human society, is the beginning of a kind of dispossession.
> People are talking about this as dispossession that only comes from piracy,
> like Napster and Gnutella where the rights of artists are being violated by
> people sharing their work. But there's another kind of dispossession, which is
> the inability to actually buy a product. The idea is here: you couldn't buy
> this piece of software, you could only licence it on a day by day, month by
> month, year by year basis; As this idea spreads from software to music, films,
> books, human civilization based on property fundamentally changes.

One more looter disinfo-grenade. What he is talking about is a
subscription model for software licensing. First off, little to no
software out there is sold outright to its users. Almost ALL software is
licensed, which means they do not own the rights to reproduce it any
more than that copy of TIME magazine on the coffee table which they

The only difference between the single fee license and the
time-delimited license is the difference between a year's subscription
and a lifetime subscription fee. With the lifetime subscription fee, the
IP owner agrees to supply all fixes and provide support for the product
indefinitely. With the subscription, the support period is fixed, along
with the usage period. Up to now, all major software producers have been
drifting to the limited period subscription model by limiting the period
of free support for the product, as well as not offering free upgrades.
Now the limited period picture is complete.
> ---------------
> What I'm trying to do is separate academe from industry by giving academics
> back all their intellectual properties, and accept a tithe, like 9 percent of
> the value of all IP created on campus, including books and software and
> options in companies. I call it the "commonwealth of intellectual property,"
> and through it a community of diverse scholars can share in some way in the
> success, drive, and luck of themselves and their colleagues. Most people are
> afraid of this, but I am certain it would lead to greater wealth and academic
> freedom for smaller universities like my own.

Much like tip sharing pools among restaurant employees, these concepts
are regressive toward innovation and personal initiative, and act as a
shelter for the unproductive, uncreative, unimaginative types who
believe ferverently in looter-type socialist mentalities.

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