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The Opposition
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Intellectual Property and Exclusion: Build Your Own Damn Fence
May 17th, 2018 at 2:39am
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The quote that inspired this topic has been placed at bottom. I know we've been over this before, but not, I think with this exact perspective in mind: The fence.

In context, a wall, or a fence, is something a private property owner must build to exclude non-payers from a product or service they sell. For example, a fence might be a literal wall, around a movie theatre for example, to exclude non-payers from experiencing the movie.

It's perfectly fine to fence up your own property. I posit here that it's not fine to fail to build one and then cry to the government, expecting them to punish your non-payers for you. Here's the post I've been thinking about most on this issue (which wasn't even brought up in the last thread):

Land of Freedom wrote on Jan 25th, 2011 at 3:14pm:
Before recorded records and tapes it was impossible to protect music with a copyright. That being the music itself. There was a copyright on the sheet music and the writer could only make money selling the sheet music. Before the printing press sheet music wasn't in existence and couldn't be protected.

Long ago music was passed around and played by many people. The songs were likely changed over time with different sounds from the many types of instruments used. The words in songs probably changed.

So it's only due to technology that it's possible to protect music with a copyright.

If new technology makes it less likely to protect music copyright or impossible is that really a problem or should it be? It would be the nature of the market or technology that result in changes.


So by all means, build up your DRM so I can't crack it. You are entitled to build a fence. You are entitled to make me sign a contract when I download that MP3 that I won't share it.

And you know what you actually ought to do? You ought to have a computer programme generate a tiny iota of useless (but unique) data and add it to the MP3 you just gave me. So you know who actually broke your damn contract and burst through your fence and aggressed against you when you find your MP3 floating around on limewire.

If I can come up with this idea, the industry should be able to come up with an even better one. If I can explain to you how technology makes it easy to build your fence higher, wider, tougher, and deeper, it's not my fault when you don't do it.

Keep up, build a better fence, or STFU. If you don't fence in your movie theatre, don't whine to the government that people watching it for free are "stealing" it.

Jeff wrote on May 16th, 2018 at 8:07am:
The philosophy can be very clear cut. "Stealing is wrong" is clear cut. It becomes murky in some instances where it's not completely clear that the action is really theft.

That's where the common law comes into play. A general law prohibiting theft gives rise to a disagreement and the disagreement is taken before a jury and judge who will examine the particulars of the case and look at precedents from the past that might help make the case more clear.

Imagine you wrote a really good poem and hoped to profit from selling it (You even copyright it!). You post it on a website you started so that people can read a bit of it, and then, if they pay you $5.00, can download the entire poem.

I download it (after paying you $5.00) and then post it on my website Free Modern Poetry.org and allow anyone to download it for free (as long as they become a member of my site first, which only cost's $1.00).

People stop buying your poem.

Do you have a complaint or not? I bought a copy of your poem, that makes that copy mine and I can give it away if I want to, right?
  

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Not taking Jeff seriously until he admits this is animal abuse (which he says should be illegal): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WE-IT7_CaE4
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Jeff
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Re: Intellectual Property and Exclusion: Build Your Own Damn Fence
Reply #1 - May 17th, 2018 at 9:01am
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The Opposition wrote on May 17th, 2018 at 2:39am:
The quote that inspired this topic has been placed at bottom. I know we've been over this before, but not, I think with this exact perspective in mind: The fence.

In context, a wall, or a fence, is something a private property owner must build to exclude non-payers from a product or service they sell. For example, a fence might be a literal wall, around a movie theatre for example, to exclude non-payers from experiencing the movie.

It's perfectly fine to fence up your own property. I posit here that it's not fine to fail to build one and then cry to the government, expecting them to punish your non-payers for you. Here's the post I've been thinking about most on this issue (which wasn't even brought up in the last thread):


So by all means, build up your DRM so I can't crack it. You are entitled to build a fence. You are entitled to make me sign a contract when I download that MP3 that I won't share it.

And you know what you actually ought to do? You ought to have a computer programme generate a tiny iota of useless (but unique) data and add it to the MP3 you just gave me. So you know who actually broke your damn contract and burst through your fence and aggressed against you when you find your MP3 floating around on limewire.

If I can come up with this idea, the industry should be able to come up with an even better one. If I can explain to you how technology makes it easy to build your fence higher, wider, tougher, and deeper, it's not my fault when you don't do it.

Keep up, build a better fence, or STFU. If you don't fence in your movie theatre, don't whine to the government that people watching it for free are "stealing" it.

Almost the entirety of the effectivity of laws against theft come from people respecting those laws. It generally starts with young children being told "No, that's not yours".

If you teach a morality that says private property doesn't really exist, and that keeping your things for yourself is "stealing them from others", you can expect to have to keep everything you own under lock and key with armed guards standing by.

I lived in a small town in Maine in the early '70s where the only locks on houses were in the new development (where people didn't lock them even though they had locks), and everybody left their keys in their car, but theft was very rare.

People grasped the concept of "yours" and almost always left other people's stuff alone. They thought it was the right thing to do.
  
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SnarkySack
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Re: Intellectual Property and Exclusion: Build Your Own Damn Fence
Reply #2 - May 17th, 2018 at 9:22am
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Amazingly, I find myself in complete agreement with Opposition and Billie at the same time.

Yes, owners of intellectual property are morally entitled to every penny that people are willing to spend for it and are entitled to not give it away free for people who are not willing to pay their asking price.

But we have to look at the practicality of spending billions of tax dollars to protect a pop singer's ninety-nine cent download fees.  More importantly, we have to apply Snarky's razor and see clearly that the path of least government is for intellectual property owners to use that intellect to figure out how to protect it.

  

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Jeff
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Re: Intellectual Property and Exclusion: Build Your Own Damn Fence
Reply #3 - May 17th, 2018 at 10:30am
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SnarkySack wrote on May 17th, 2018 at 9:22am:
Amazingly, I find myself in complete agreement with Opposition and Billie at the same time.

Yes, owners of intellectual property are morally entitled to every penny that people are willing to spend for it and are entitled to not give it away free for people who are not willing to pay their asking price.

But we have to look at the practicality of spending billions of tax dollars to protect a pop singer's ninety-nine cent download fees.  More importantly, we have to apply Snarky's razor and see clearly that the path of least government is for intellectual property owners to use that intellect to figure out how to protect it.

Laws to protect copyrighted material aren't going to go away, but if the laws are largely ineffectual or can't be enforced, people will indeed be working to figure out ways to protect their property, and if enough money is at stake, a way will be found to protect it. Probably. Sometime.
  
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Re: Intellectual Property and Exclusion: Build Your Own Damn Fence
Reply #4 - May 17th, 2018 at 10:51pm
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Burnsy, I knew that Snarky's Razor would force you to agree with me, though this wasn't the sort of agreement I wanted.

SnarkySack wrote on May 17th, 2018 at 9:22am:
Yes, owners of intellectual property are morally entitled to every penny that people are willing to spend for it and are entitled to not give it away free for people who are not willing to pay their asking price.


What I believe is that IP owners are entitled to the same as what everyone else is entitled to: Not to be aggressed against.

A movie theatre owner might be upset that his movie (let's say for the purposes of simplicity that he produced and owns the film itself) is being stolen by the people whose houses have a view of that movie, but I am positing something unique.

Even though these people are stealing by watching that movie they didn't pay for, if the theatre owner doesn't want them to watch it, the thieves are not aggressing.

The burden is NEVER on the supposed aggressor to do a positive thing or else aggress, like get out of the way of light rays or plus their ears.

Intellectual property creates this same unique situation. By illegally downloading an MP3, it is possible to come into possession of someone else's property without having aggressed. There is no force involved, so we can't consider it aggression. Your computer simply sees what someone else has and takes an image.

Let's say I took a photo of you. Your image is your property, and I have stolen that photo. With my remarkable intellect and memory, I've stolen your image if I so much as look at you.

None of this is aggression, though, because it's not force. Lifting a watch off you (even if you don't notice) is force. I applied force to the watch. Hitting you is force; I applied force to your face.

You applied no such force to anyone or their property when you simply copied it. It might be theft, but it's not force, so it can't be aggression.
  

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Not taking Jeff seriously until he admits this is animal abuse (which he says should be illegal): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WE-IT7_CaE4
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Re: Intellectual Property and Exclusion: Build Your Own Damn Fence
Reply #5 - May 18th, 2018 at 6:19am
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The Opposition wrote on May 17th, 2018 at 10:51pm:
Burnsy, I knew that Snarky's Razor would force you to agree with me, though this wasn't the sort of agreement I wanted.


What I believe is that IP owners are entitled to the same as what everyone else is entitled to: Not to be aggressed against.

A movie theatre owner might be upset that his movie (let's say for the purposes of simplicity that he produced and owns the film itself) is being stolen by the people whose houses have a view of that movie, but I am positing something unique.

Even though these people are stealing by watching that movie they didn't pay for, if the theatre owner doesn't want them to watch it, the thieves are not aggressing.

The burden is NEVER on the supposed aggressor to do a positive thing or else aggress, like get out of the way of light rays or plus their ears.

Intellectual property creates this same unique situation. By illegally downloading an MP3, it is possible to come into possession of someone else's property without having aggressed. There is no force involved, so we can't consider it aggression. Your computer simply sees what someone else has and takes an image.

Let's say I took a photo of you. Your image is your property, and I have stolen that photo. With my remarkable intellect and memory, I've stolen your image if I so much as look at you.

None of this is aggression, though, because it's not force. Lifting a watch off you (even if you don't notice) is force. I applied force to the watch. Hitting you is force; I applied force to your face.

You applied no such force to anyone or their property when you simply copied it. It might be theft, but it's not force, so it can't be aggression.
You applied force to the MP3 to get it to illegally move onto your computer. Basically you kidnapped someone else's music and forced it to come home with you against it's will. Shocked

People's music doesn't want to be stolen any more than people's watches (What's a watch anyway?) want to be stolen.
  
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SnarkySack
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Re: Intellectual Property and Exclusion: Build Your Own Damn Fence
Reply #6 - May 18th, 2018 at 9:29am
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The Opposition wrote on May 17th, 2018 at 10:51pm:
Burnsy, I knew that Snarky's Razor would force you to agree with me, though this wasn't the sort of agreement I wanted.


What I believe is that IP owners are entitled to the same as what everyone else is entitled to: Not to be aggressed against.

A movie theatre owner might be upset that his movie (let's say for the purposes of simplicity that he produced and owns the film itself) is being stolen by the people whose houses have a view of that movie, but I am positing something unique.

Even though these people are stealing by watching that movie they didn't pay for, if the theatre owner doesn't want them to watch it, the thieves are not aggressing.

The burden is NEVER on the supposed aggressor to do a positive thing or else aggress, like get out of the way of light rays or plus their ears.

Intellectual property creates this same unique situation. By illegally downloading an MP3, it is possible to come into possession of someone else's property without having aggressed. There is no force involved, so we can't consider it aggression. Your computer simply sees what someone else has and takes an image.

Let's say I took a photo of you. Your image is your property, and I have stolen that photo. With my remarkable intellect and memory, I've stolen your image if I so much as look at you.

None of this is aggression, though, because it's not force. Lifting a watch off you (even if you don't notice) is force. I applied force to the watch. Hitting you is force; I applied force to your face.

You applied no such force to anyone or their property when you simply copied it. It might be theft, but it's not force, so it can't be aggression.


Hm . . . food for thought there.

If I go into a store and walk out with a candy bar, is that aggression?  The owner's intention in displaying the candy was for people to be motivated to want to walk out with it, so the act of walking out with it cannot constitute force.    So would the additional fact that I did not pay for the candy bar as the owner also intended render a non-aggressive act aggressive?   I would have to say that under the concept I bolded above, the answer would be no, that was not aggression. 

Yet, it seems aggressive to me.  Am I missing something?


« Last Edit: May 18th, 2018 at 11:07am by SnarkySack »  

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The Opposition
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Re: Intellectual Property and Exclusion: Build Your Own Damn Fence
Reply #7 - May 19th, 2018 at 12:57am
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SnarkySack wrote on May 18th, 2018 at 9:29am:
Hm . . . food for thought there.

If I go into a store and walk out with a candy bar, is that aggression?  The owner's intention in displaying the candy was for people to be motivated to want to walk out with it, so the act of walking out with it cannot constitute force.    So would the additional fact that I did not pay for the candy bar as the owner also intended render a non-aggressive act aggressive?   I would have to say that under the concept I bolded above, the answer would be no, that was not aggression. 

Yet, it seems aggressive to me.  Am I missing something?




Maybe I misphrased this. I meant that if someone is going to call you an aggressor because you failed to do something, they're wrong. They can only call you an aggressor because you committed some positive action.

The guy watching a movie for free, that he can see, because his yard has a view of the theatre, and the theatre owner didn't build walls... he is not aggressing.

In every other case, it is on the property owner to exclude non-payers with a proper fence. It would be ludicrous if the theatre owner didn't build walls, then cried to the government that free riders were "stealing" his movie.
  

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Not taking Jeff seriously until he admits this is animal abuse (which he says should be illegal): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WE-IT7_CaE4
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