Re: When is an MP3 file like a lighthouse.

From: Peter C. McCluskey (
Date: Tue Oct 30 2001 - 10:15:27 MST ( writes:
>Lee Crocker writes:
>> So how do you propose to measure the immense loss of valuable goods
>> from those people who would have made use of a larger public domain
>> of art and ideas to create, but who were priced out?
>They wouldn't be "priced out" if the goods they could have created were
>really of such immense value. The funds they would receive from selling
>their valuable goods would allow them to purchase the information they
>needed for production.

 This would make sense if the transaction costs associated with selling
information and associated with negotiating the rights to the IP were
zero. I deny that this is an good approximation to the truth.
 Anyone familiar with open source software can see that there is a large
class of derivative works for which nonmonetary rewards are enough
incentive to motivate the creation of works, but the transaction costs
associated with charging money for those works probably exceed the benefits.
 A comparison of the fraction of derivative works in the open source world
to the fraction in the world of proprietary IP probably demonstrates that
the costs of negotiating the right to create derivative works affect
the availability of derivative works. A $10000 legal fee might be trivial
for a cancer cure, but it is hardly trivial for a piece of software that
would provide the author with $100 worth of improved reputation.

Peter McCluskey          | Free Dmitry Sklyarov! | 

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