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   Author  Topic: Property principles and Intellectual property  (Read 1225 times)
Peiwen Chen
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Property principles and Intellectual property
« on: May 1st, 2007, 9:44pm »
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I am writing an intellectual property essay and I have come across this comment:
 
Intellectual property - like copyrights, patents, and trade marks - are being treated more and more like property. This is bad for all of us, because unlike land or personal property, these types of assets are not rivalrous and must be capable of use by everyone in order for culture and expression to occur.  
 
I believe that IP is indistinguishable from property principles. Does anyone disagree or have any opposing views for me to consider?  
 
thanx
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Isaac
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Re: Property principles and Intellectual property
« Reply #1 on: May 2nd, 2007, 9:30am »
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on May 1st, 2007, 9:44pm, Peiwen Chen wrote:
I believe that IP is indistinguishable from property principles. Does anyone disagree or have any opposing views for me to consider?

 
I think it important to distinguish between whether you are advocating changes in the law or discussing how the law actually is.  
 
There are some important legal distinctions between the laws gpverning intellectual property and those applicable to real or personal property.   For example copyright law is chock full of statutory exceptions to the copyright holders rights that have no analogue in the law governming real property.   Patents expire in a relatively short time, are limited to covering novel/non obvious creations and there are limits on the right to exclude others that don't mirror similar provisions in the law surrounding real or personal property.
 
As a more general matter, I find that analysis that lumps intellectual property together into one amorphous mass to be too cursory to be informative.   Maybe you can reach some general conclusions after discussing the particular forms of intellectual property such as copyrights, trademarks, patents, and trade secrets.  
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Isaac
peiwen chen
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Re: Property principles and Intellectual property
« Reply #2 on: May 2nd, 2007, 6:27pm »
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Thanx.
 
But, i have another question. this may seem like a very stupid an naive question...But, would it then be a very theoretical question to ask 'whether and how' intellectual property can be classified as 'property'? For property principles, there are many theories discussing why there is the need for property principles to govern the way we live, such as economic theory. So to ask the question of whether and how can intellectual property be classified as property, must one apply these property principles to intellectual property?  
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peiwen chen
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Re: Property principles and Intellectual property
« Reply #3 on: May 2nd, 2007, 6:39pm »
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thanx.
 
but I have another question, probably a very naive and uneducated one...
to question whether and how intellectual property can be properly classified as 'property', must one apply theoretical explanations of property to compare and contrast? such as economic theories? or a utility argument? is it ultimately a theoretical debate?
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