Subject: Re: Intellectual Property Reform
From: burton@openprivacy.org (Kevin A. Burton)
Date: 11 Jan 2002 18:37:44 -0800

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"Karsten M. Self" <kmself@ix.netcom.com> writes:

> on Fri, Jan 11, 2002 at 01:44:22AM -0800, Kevin A. Burton (burton@openprivacy.org)
wrote:
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> > 
> > Just some things I have been thinking of.
> > 
> > Ever since the source code for Quake 2 was released
> > 
> > http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=01/12/22/053211&mode=thread
> > 
> > I have been really thinking about this issue.
> > 
> > I think ID software did a GREAT job here.  They made money and at the
> > same time contributed back to the community.
> > 
> > I would have NO problem within having a system of copyright for
> > software that expired after 3-5 years and required that the source
> > code go back to the public.
> 
> For many proprietary software companies, their own old product, even five year
> old product, is a substantial competitor.  It's no small secret that Microsoft
> must cannibalize its own established base to sell new product (they've
> exploited their ability to grow marketshare, and there's little current growth
> in the overall market).  Even sales of MS Windows 3.x remain surprisingly

Microsoft is no longer selling Windows 3.x or 95.  Both of these were taken off
the market a while back IIRC.  I think you might be referring to their market
share.

> high, as does Win95, now a seven year old product.
> 
> This creates a significant incentive to oppose such a revision. Lessig
> proposes shortened copyright term, with extensions available on a fee basis.

Really?  Where would this fee go?  Is this talked about in 'Code and other
laws...'?

> His term suggestion is on the order of 50 years, essentially rolling the clock
> back to the situation in the early 1970s.

50 years is WAY too long for software.  The entire software industry is hardly
older than 30 years.

Kevin

- -- 
Kevin A. Burton ( burton@apache.org, burton@openprivacy.org, burtonator@acm.org )
             Location - San Francisco, CA, Cell - 415.595.9965
        Jabber - burtonator@jabber.org,  Web - http://relativity.yi.org/

Never under estimate the power of a hacker!
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