Saturday, August 02, 2008

A Copyright Giant Gives Up in Disgust

I regret to report the end of William F. Patry's Copyright Blog. Patry, author of a superb multi-volume treatise on copyright law and Google's Senior Copyright Counsel, not only offered a feast of news and commentary for copyright geeks; he offered it up in style. Consider this, among the many sound reasons he cites for ending his blog:
Copyright law has abandoned its reason for being: to encourage learning and the creation of new works. Instead, its principal functions now are to preserve existing failed business models, to suppress new business models and technologies, and to obtain, if possible, enormous windfall profits from activity that not only causes no harm, but which is beneficial to copyright owners. Like Humpty-Dumpty, the copyright law we used to know can never be put back together again: multilateral and trade agreements have ensured that, and quite deliberately.

In short, Patry found blogging about copyright simply too depressing to keep up. I certainly understand that feeling, though I find righteous indignation a fair remedy for weary sadness. At any rate, I thank Patry for his long and selfless blogging, wish him happier diversions, and look forward to the day when we can discuss copyright's reformation with smiling pride.

[Crossposted at Agoraphilia and Technology Liberation Front.]

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