European Intellectual Property Scholars: Copyright Extension Harms Innovation

from the good-for-them dept

Following the EU's misguided proposal to extend performance copyrights on songs from 50 years to 95 years, a group of professors from intellectual property, legal and innovation positions, have gotten together to send a highly critical letter, pointing out why such a copyright extension is not necessary and, in fact, will be quite harmful. Here's a snippet of the letter:
Unanimously, the European centres for intellectual property research have opposed the proposal. The empirical evidence has been summarised succinctly in at least three studies: the Cambridge Study for the UK Gowers Review of 2006; a study conducted by the Amsterdam Institute for Information Law for the Commission itself (2006); and the Bournemouth University statement signed by 50 leading academics in June 2008.

The simple truth is that copyright extension benefits most those who already hold rights. It benefits incumbent holders of major back-catalogues, be they record companies, ageing rock stars or, increasingly, artists' estates. It does nothing for innovation and creativity. The proposed Term Extension Directive undermines the credibility of the copyright system. It will further alienate a younger generation that, justifiably, fails to see a principled basis.
Hopefully, European politicians will actually pay attention to this condemnation of the proposed extension.

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  1. identicon
    Pat, 12 Jan 2009 @ 11:26am

    Patent Industry Doomed

    Design innovation is greatly hampered by not having a system constructed to facilitate the industry, and to make it easy for all those who should earn from new ideas to earn from those ideas, and to collaborate in a manner that actually enables patents to be protected, or to prevent offshore knockoffs so that the patent process is frustrated by non-uniform laws.

    For those persons who are already invested heavily in the patent industry, there is more incentive to steal ideas and products than to prevent it, and that is not the "idea" of making a patent or copyright system to begin with.

    Funny how this "problem" gets much discussed, much written about, but never solved - even with incentive in America to do so. Thus, the cart perpetually leads the horse.

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