Free Information vs Information Protectionism

Francois-Rene Rideau Francois-Rene Rideau <>
Sat, 26 May 2001 11:28:00 +0200

On Sat, May 26, 2001 at 02:40:30PM +1200, Paul Foley wrote:
>>> I claim you owe me because you
>>> agreed to owe me when we made our mutually-agreeable exchange.
>> Except that copyrights are not based on such mutual agreement,
>> but on preventing third parties from copying.
> Property rights are not based on such mutual agreement in general; I
> don't have to make separate agreements with every person on Earth in
> order to own..oh, say, my shoes, do I?
I'm thus happy to see you drop your previous argument above.

> Assuming that I can own things, the question is: what things can I own?

> Do I own the result of my own labours?
Depending on what you call "the result", yes or no.
You certainly do not own all the consequences of your labours.
If you build a knife, that is latter used by someone else to
win a cooking competition, or to kill his wife, you don't own this result.
If your neighbour is enlightened by the way you work, and starts behaving
like a saint, or shoots passers-by in a frenzy, you don't own this result.

> Any code I might write is surely that;
Depending on what you call "result", it is or it isn't.
In any case, I dispute it is something you can legitimately claim
to own in an exclusive way.

Note that if you root copyrights in natural property, then you shouldn't
be claiming a lapse of 70 or 90 years after the death of the author or
anything. You should be claiming eternal copyrights, just like Gustave
de Molinari or Ayn Rand claimed them.

[ François-René ÐVB Rideau | Reflection&Cybernethics | ]
[  TUNES project for a Free Reflective Computing System  |  ]
The people cannot delegate to government the power to do
anything which would be unlawful for them to do themselves.
	-- John Locke, "A Treatise Concerning Civil Government"