Many people have been hoodwinked into believing this is "laissez faire" or naturalistic, and that it does not involve or require a lot of government supervision. But in fact, as this discussion has touched upon (perhaps deeply), the truth is that it requires a very complex system of laws and enforcement to make it possible. Without these laws, even the suckers would consider themselves lucky to hang on to just one car (as opposed to stock piling them).
Dude. You totally missed what I was saying. I don't care what the hell other people download. I believe that people should have the ability to be paid for their efforts. Currently, this is accomplished through some bizarre system of intellectual "property" hinging on an artificially enforced idea that ideas can be owned by people.Quote:
What makes it possible for you to make a living writing software is a PRIVATE agreement (or two) with someone else. I do not see how it follows that you and these other parties have the right to make up rules for everyone else. The vast majority of music "consumers" regularly copy CD's, etc, and this has been totally normal since the cassette, but it is still "illegal". I bet, however, that none of them feel particular guilt about it, and why should they? IN REALITY, 90% of music fans have far less income than 90% of (major label) recording artists. I don't care how great your art is. If I am concerned about ethics, I would much, much rather give $10 to some homeless guy they say to myself (like a complete fool) "Gee, I have to buy the million+nth copy of that album instead, because I don't want to break the law and rip a copy from somewhere." Nuts.
That's obviously garbage, but it's not exactly easy to make money writing software any other way. People love to talk about "Software as a Service" or advertising revenues or other nonsense. But that makes it impossible for the guy in his garage to ever succeed. You can't have "Software as a Service" without an army of support personnel.
Then there's the argument that we can make money from documentation. But that's just the same problem all over again. The reason you can sell documentation is because it's... INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY. It's copyrighted. Not just anybody can distribute it legally.
But we're trying to get AWAY from that, remember?
So here's what it comes down to for me. I want to be paid to be a software engineer. The economic scaffolding that presently allows me to enjoy that, is based on some really kooky ideas about intellectual "property." I don't bite the hand that feeds me -- that's all it comes down to.
Give me a better system, and I'll be the first to immerse myself in it. 'Til then, I refuse to be a hypocrite.
That would be the patent system, but in this case it is copyright that is relevant.Quote:
Originally Posted by brewbuck
One more interesting thing is that everyone has the right to reverse engineer a legal copy of software when it is necessary to ensure compatibility with another program.
Yes, but I have also heard it argued that collectively treating these (including trademarks, etc) under a single heading of "intellectual property" may not be a good thing since the precise rationale and mechanics of regulation and enforcement differ between them.Quote:
Originally Posted by brewbuck