Give A Man A Fish... And Make It Illegal To Teach Fishing
from the welcome-to-the-world-today dept
We've talked in the past about how intellectual property rules seem to directly conflict with the purpose of educational institutions -- and yet, many of those institutions are now starting to try to enforce those rules. Taking that a step further, in response to Bono's recent confusion over ISP filtering, Russell McOrmond makes a great point in updating the old parable of "Give a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach him to fish and he eats for a lifetime," to the more modern version of: Give a man a fish, make it illegal to teach fishing. (found via Michael Scott):
There are those who think that making knowledge scarce, including criminalising private citizens owning and controlling their own communications technology, is the only way to make it possible to pay authors/inventors for their important contributions to society. This ignores all the experience and research to the contrary. Whether you believe this or not, you must admit that deliberately making knowledge scarce and thus more expensive greatly harms the interests of the worlds poor.Indeed. It's a scary world when people think that locking up naturally abundant information and knowledge somehow makes sense. All it does is lock away a natural resource that can be used at no cost to make the world a better place.
The repercussions of deliberately making knowledge scarce will be an underlying issue that will show up in many global conflicts in the next decade, whether talking about poverty, western economic recovery or global climate change.