Friday, February 4, 2011
Mises points out that copyright gives one a monopoly on one's creation, creating an opportunity for monopoly prices. But what does that mean in artistic production? Other than allowing for legal recourse against those who print and sell your works without your permission, it has little real effect on artistic production. But could it? The Mises Institute's position is against protecting intellectual property on the argument that ideas are not scarce. Ayn Rand's argument, to take up the complete opposite view, is that one should have intellectual property rights protection precisely because ideas are scarce. They are likely talking past each other a bit, since Rand is interested in the production of ideas, while MvI's position is that ideas, once produced, aren't scarce. They are also afraid that people will use IP to prevent people from being influenced. Are there any real examples of that? What are the arguments for and against?