Linked by umad on Thu 25th Aug 2011 22:51 UTC
Apple I thought OSNews would be a good forum to talk about a matter that has been weighing on my mind lately primarily because the site has been so focused on Apple's patents and litigation as of late. The news that HP, the largest PC manufacturer in the world is spinning off or getting out of this business is what really prompted me to write this article.
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RE: you can't 'steal' an idea
by flypig on Sat 27th Aug 2011 10:44 UTC in reply to "you can't 'steal' an idea"
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Robin hood stole something tangible. Software and ideas are intangible. They are non-scarce resources and should be treated as such by free people. Intellectual property laws ignore this fact, that is why Apple or anyone else who sues for IP infringement is wrong, and why your whole article misses the point. It was an interesting read anyway.

Unfortunately the truth is a little more complex. Money is really just an intangible resource too, made scarce by legal rules rather than physics. Intellectual property is no different. The finite tangible resources that money represents are the goods you buy with it. For IP it's the effort that went into generating the ideas.

Intellectual property laws don't ignore the fact ideas are non-scarce, they create a world in which they are. Just as counterfeiting laws do for money.

Certainly theft, copyright infringement and patent infringement are all very different things and shouldn't be confused, but perhaps saying that suing for IP infringement is wrong is a bit strong?

Concerning the article it's a little moot anyway, since as many others have pointed out, Apple wasn't responsible for generating the crucial ideas behind the desktop, nor were Microsoft or Windows solely responsible for making the PC dominant.

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