Copyright Industries Massive Success Shows That They're Dying And Need More Draconian Copyright Laws?
from the say-what-now? dept
Unfortunately, this myth persists that if you add up all of the broadly defined "content industries," it somehow shows why you need stricter copyright. But that makes no sense. If they actually showed a direct causal relationship -- or even any evidence that copyright policy directly drives aggregate revenue, they might have some argument. But they don't go near such things. But it doesn't stop grandstanding around the issue. With the latest release, Senators Sheldon Whitehouse and Orrin Hatch, along with Reps. Bob Goodlatte and Adam Schiff, welcomed the various lobbyists who produced this report (i.e., the heads of the ESA, NMPA, RIAA and MPAA) to cheer on the report and use it to falsely pretend this is proof that more draconian copyright laws are important.
This makes no sense and, frankly, it insults the intelligence of just about everyone, to pretend that total revenue within an industry is the automatic indicator of how policy should be determined for that industry. You determine policies based on deltas, not absolutes.
It gets even worse, when you look at the actual report, which shows the industries in question are doing tremendously well. In fact, as many are noting, the report actually appears to undermine the industry's entire argument that "piracy" is somehow decimating their businesses. Instead -- even through a recession, these companies are making a ton of money, and there's no evidence of significant job losses.
It's a pretty weak move when our Congressional leaders to then take those points, that simply do not support the need for more copyright law in any way... and then use it to support such policies. Each year, of course, CCIA puts out a report that shows that if that's how you're going to calculate "the copyright industries," it's only fair to use the same methodology to calculate the industries that are built from "exceptions to copyright law," which turns out to be significantly larger than "the copyright industries." So if any of the elected officials praising this latest report are intellectually honest, they should actually be advocating for weaker copyright laws. After all, the same methodology shows that exceptions to copyright law contribute much more to the economy than copyright law itself.