And What Market Failure Required The DMCA?
from the pray-tell dept
Furthermore, the author of the piece gives the DMCA credit for the "flourishing digital content market," ignoring of course that the industry has consistently used the DMCA to slow down or wreck attempts to move that market forward, and the flourishing (if you can call it that) has only occurred with them kicking and screaming in protest. There are also some wild claims about "tremendous competition in price, services and features." That just doesn't seem true. For example, in digital music, Apple owns the market with a dominant share. Price is $1 or nothing (if you use file sharing). It's not clear where the "competition" is (well, in truth, the competition is with file sharing, but that's clearly not what the author here is talking about).
The author also falls back on the old (and totally false) line that if producers were forced to sell goods at marginal cost, it would stunt the growth of the market -- showing a total misunderstanding of the free market economics he claims to espouse. Price equaling marginal cost is what a competitive free market will push for, but what the free market allows is for you to be creative and innovative in your business models to differentiate yourself, attach your product to other products and to continue to produce profit above and beyond marginal cost -- without the help of government regulations protecting an old business model. By the logic of the op-ed, any regulation that sets up any market (free or not) is somehow good. Air is abundantly available, but if the government only put in place an Air Protection Act and allowed the Air Industry to sell off pieces, we'd have a much more effective market, wouldn't we? After all, those who really wanted to breathe would be able to do so much more with the air. Why, it would be positively flourishing...