Saturday, February 07, 2004

In 'Who Owns New Knowledge?' Robert Reich highlights the digital conumdrum: "This problem didn't exist in the old economy. Most of the cost of any given product was in the making of it. But in the knowledge-based, digitized economy almost anyone can pirate almost anything, almost right away. In other words, the old rules about private property no longer work."

This, again, leads me to the question I keep asking: Why don't we forget the old copy rules and try a new system of collective property where communities of consumers share the product with the author? There are already examples of this principle at work such as Magnatune's open music experiment where they have found that consumers will pay more than the minimum asking price for the freedom to own and use the music with very few restrictions. Magnatune issues their music under the Creative Commons licence but, as I said before, if the CC principles were extended and took advantage of a true P2P environment imagine what other benefits might arise.

No comments: