Linked by David Adams on Sun 11th Jul 2010 18:54 UTC
Internet & Networking There's an article today at that looks at recent trends around net-based pay-for services and the smattering of paywalls from News Corp to the NYT that are up or threatening to be put up, and speculating that this could be the beginning of a trend. Of course, a YouTube video rental site and a few large publishers putting up paywalls will make zero difference to the "free internet" on their own. But if they're successful, it could spark emulation. But could this be a trend that could snowball enough to change the nature of the net?
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wannabe geek
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The real struggle is not about whether news corporations offer little value for money or whether users are willing to pay for the internet (they already do, to the ISP). The problem is that technology is making ever more clear how the concept of "intellectual property" cannot be enforced without draconian legislation that puts an end to any trace of privacy and speech freedom. One of the two has to go.

For instance, many news corporations realize that copyright is not enough for news, because a blogger can tell the same news in his own words, and it's essentially just as good, so they are lobbying for legislation that makes them own the news themselves. Can you imagine a world where you can't legally speak with your friends about what you've just read in the newspaper? It's not as far as it seems.

There's only one kind of property. Either your computer, your pen and paper, your mouth and your brain are yours to use as you see fit, or they are not. So-called "intellectual property" is just a particular kind of first-come first-served legal monopoly, so "intellectual monopoly" is a better name for it.

Get rid of all IP legislation and let the market decide how demand and supply will meet for the service of intellectual production, including news and commentary.

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