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Ruining America: Intellectual property abuse (Part I)

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#61 Orpheus


    I'm not the boss of you!

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Posted 19 March 2013 - 03:57 PM

A bit of good news today!

I have earlier noted that publishing/licensing interests have been trying to overturn the right of first sale.

If they had gotten away with limiting those right centuries ago (they tried!) there would be no lending libraries or secondhand book or record stores today. (They've gotten eBay to disallow several classes of secondhand sales -- and it *was founded* to do secondhand sales!

If they had gotten away with it in the 80s, there would've been no video rental stores. Yet they've profited tremendously from the media culture that rentals created, just as publishers profited greatly from the literacy culture created by libraries.

I specifically mentioned an insidious attack on the rights of first sale (what you might call "the rights of physical ownership") by insisting that they didn't apply to anything with "foreign" intellectual property (i.e. any element where foreign laws might be applied -- which would include most consumer products today), and therefore those items couldn't be re-sold or even used without foreign permission!

Fortunately, the Supreme Court shot those arguments down. What you own, you can generally resell, even if a copyright owner would rather sell a new one (vs. used) or a higher priced local version. You don't need a foreign copyright holder's explicit permission to resell in the US.

Supreme Court Rules Against Entertainment Industry in Landmark Copyright Case

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