TPP and copyright

December 8th, 2012 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

A good article by Geoff Cumming at the NZ Herald:

If you think opponents of the Trans Pacific Partnership are typically anti-free trade/anti-globalisation conspiracy theorists, consider these unlikely bedfellows: librarians, software exporters, researchers, book lovers, fans of DVDs, media creatives and people who download music. The negotiations for a trade deal covering 11 Pacific nations have managed to unite these apparently unconnected sectors in alarm.

I wouldn’t say they are opponents. Some people are opposed to the no matter what its form is. They often oppose all trade deals.

Other groups and individuals have concerns over potential provisions – especially those in the US written draft intellectual property chapter. To date the NZ Govt and other countries have not agreed to these, and have proposed alternative wording which would mean no change in current NZ law.

Parallel importing is in the firing line, according to the leaked draft of the US position. This could affect not just knock-off copies but our freedom to source licensed brands without the premium charged by licensees.

Trade deals are meant to liberalise trade. Restricting parallel imports is actually going in the other direction.

Apart from the damage to our Christmas shopping budgets, the Libraries Association says a ban on parallel imports would slow down access to new-release books in libraries. A longer length would restrict what libraries are able to digitise. They could be prevented from overriding technological protection measures such as zone restrictions on DVDs. Users of iPhones and iPads may risk fines for “jailbreaking” devices to add non-licensed functions. Longer periods would narrow the options for musicians and media creatives.

The longer copyright term proposed is especially worrying. We already have life plus 50 years. I actually think that is too long. Life + 20 years is more than adequate when you consider the purpose of copyright is to reward and incentivise creators.

Internet and copyright law specialist Rick Shera is concerned about proposals to increase powers to prosecute and hike penalties – up to US$150,000 ($180,000) per infringement.

“There have been cases in the US where housewives have been sued over [downloading] five to 10 songs,” says Shera. “You could end up with an iPod with $4 million of infringements on it, as rights holders are able to seek a multiple of the damages suffered.”

And we have seen here that the music rights body will try and claim 90 times the value of a song based on hypothetical situations.

The film and music industries, which are driving the US goals on IP, want internet service providers (ISPs) to monitor internet activity for copyright breaches at their own expense and to pass on alleged abusers’ names to rights holders, says Shera.

Telecommunications Users Association chief executive Paul Brislen says the huge monitoring costs would be passed to consumers.

“If ISPs are required to filter stuff or block websites, it’s the consumer who pays at the end of the day. It will lead to things like deep pocket inspections [filtering] of everybody’s content which will slow down the internet and raises privacy issues. ISPs risk being sued for the behaviour of their customers – it becomes quite laughable. You get lawyers claiming to represent rights holders and demanding take-downs for content they don’t have any rights to or clients they don’t represent. It’s the kind of nonsense that only the American legal system engages in.”

I think our current law is a pretty good balance. ISPs do have to respond to requests to pass on notices to customers whom allegedly infringe. But they get their costs (in the main) reimbursed.

The devil is in the detail – and it quickly descends into terminology that only trade treaty specialists and techno geeks can decipher. Susan Chalmers is policy lead for internet NZ and spokeswoman for Fair Deal, a coalition of the interest groups. She believes that the draft US position threatens the very workings of the internet, for instance by challenging the right to store copied material, known as caching. “The internet works by making temporary copies, or ‘transient reproductions’, of data in order to transmit it from point A to point B,” says Chalmers. “The US proposals threaten the exception [in copyright law] that ensures that copyright owners don’t abuse their power by suing anyone who intentionally or unintentionally makes a temporary copy.

Basically the US draft says any copying is infringement, but then says we’ll give you an exception for caching and the like. We actually need copyright laws that focus on use of material, not the fact it may be copied. The Internet is the world’s largest copying machine.

A summary:

Contentious wish list

Interest groups’ key concerns over leaked draft of US IP chapter.

• Extension of copyright terms, eg, from 50 to 70 years for books after author’s death.

• Clampdown on exceptions to copyright rules, e.g, “fair use” provisions.

• Patents on software (New Zealand has already reversed its plan to exclude software in review of patent law).

• Parallel imports subject to veto.

• Internet service providers responsible for monitoring and policing.

• Rights holders can insist on removal of material.

• Offence to circumvent technological protection measures (e.g, region codes on DVDs, technology locks on iPhones).

I’m actually up in Auckland for a couple of TPP events today. My hope is that the NZ Government will continue to maintain its position that the TPP IP chapter should be consistent with current NZ intellectual property laws.

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47 Responses to “TPP and copyright”

  1. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    Coopyright is an outdated concept that today infringes on too many personal and individual liberties for it to be effectively enforced.

    Mick Jagger and Madonna and the like just have to get up to speed, and wisen up to the fact that times have changed and there is no longer any rational market driven reason why they should be making millions by producing music.

    If they want to keep making millions, they just have to shift to another industry.

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  2. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    A predictably marxist response that denies recognition of private property rights.

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  3. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    Garbage.

    Intellectual property rights are not property rights at all but rather a made up concept that is really just a feeble attempt to enforce unenforceable laws and deliver money through regulation to government cronyists.

    If I choose to share my property with my friends or anyone, that is my fucking business.

    That is property rights.

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  4. tristanb (1,127 comments) says:

    Surely a trade partnership should just be things like “we won’t charge tariffs on your xyz if you don’t charge tariffs on our abc.”

    Why the hell should a trade agreement be able to write the laws of our land? John Key should just say “Keep the hell away from our laws – we’ll keep away from your laws – now let’s talk trade.”

    It looks as if this agreement just isn’t going to work. Fuck the US, if they want free trade they can have free trade – but they can stay out of the business of private citizens.

    It’s disappointing that many people here believe the left-wing dogma that “the government should decide what you can do with information”.

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  5. hmmokrightitis (1,590 comments) says:

    LOL red you really cant see it can you? No, goodness me no, no private property for anyone. Bloody Marxists, all of them!

    Oh, hang on…

    None so blind as those who will etc etc. Or those so blinded by their own terminal stupidity.

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  6. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    Intellectual property rights are not property rights at all but rather a made up concept that is really just a feeble attempt to enforce unenforceable laws and deliver money through regulation to government cronyists.

    Remarkable.

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  7. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    What would be remarkable is you making a comment that isn’t a manifestation of your sick, creepy and unbalanced obsession with Redbaiter.

    (cue pissant clichéd “third party” snickering)

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  8. Nigel Kearney (1,012 comments) says:

    There will be people on street corners all over Asia selling pirated copies of the Hobbit. If we could reach a trade deal where those countries would agree to put a stop to this, wouldn’t we do that? Would we feel a moral obligation to keep the hell away from their laws? I certainly wouldn’t.

    Music is a poor example as musicians can make high quality music on a low budget and earn money from giving live performances. But for movies, TV shows, books and computer games, unrestricted copying and sharing can easily make it uneconomic to produce those things at all. This has already started to happen, and we will never know what we lost because it simply wasn’t created in the first place.

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  9. wat dabney (3,756 comments) says:

    If I choose to share my property with my friends or anyone, that is my fucking business.

    And if a writer chooses to allow someone to buy copies of his books and to attach conditions to those voluntary transactions, then that is his business.

    The same for a film-maker: you may buy a copy of the DVD only if you agree to his conditions around copying. Otherwise, you may not buy.

    Hence property rights are not a “made up concept.” They are inherent in all free trade. Artists and companies can define whatever licensing provisions they wish, and if you don’t like them you may simply decline to deal with them.

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  10. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    “This has already started to happen, and we will never know what we lost because it simply wasn’t created in the first place.”

    Oh gawd…

    Only a libertarian could spout such unmitigated garbage.

    What happened to your professed reverence for market forces?

    Just like every other little socialist piggy you want laws and regulations to shape the market for you.

    There’s no market for buggy whips nowadays- what a tragic loss to society that is.

    Artists can make art of any kind, celluloid or whatever, any time they feel the need.

    There’s no god given right to make millions from it.

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  11. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    “And if a writer chooses to allow someone to buy copies of his books and to attach conditions to those voluntary transactions, then that is his business.”

    And it is his business to enforce that CIVIL contract, not government’s.

    Why the fuck should taxpayers be involved?

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  12. wat dabney (3,756 comments) says:

    And it is his business to enforce that CIVIL contract, not government’s.

    Well that’s a different argument.

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  13. emmess (1,428 comments) says:

    But for movies, TV shows, books and computer games, unrestricted copying and sharing can easily make it uneconomic to produce those things at all.

    It doesn’t make it uneconomic to produce those things, it just changes the economics of the production.

    People will still go to the movies
    People will still watch TV
    People will still buy books and e-books
    People will still buy games

    Its just that the business models are changing
    For example with games, the trend is clear
    Much less expensive games aimed at wider markets

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  14. tristanb (1,127 comments) says:

    Wat dabney:

    The same for a film-maker: you may buy a copy of the DVD only if you agree to his conditions around copying.

    Well then you haven’t really bought it.

    If you buy something, it’s yours. The seller should not be able to restrict what you do with the product after they’ve sold it.

    NK:

    There will be people on street corners all over Asia selling pirated copies of the Hobbit.

    Well, we can refused to trade with them… but they’ll still be doing that.

    How about we let the Chinese government sort that stuff out? In the mean time we’ll sell them milk solids (real property) and get cheap TVs (also real property) from them.

    If you’re at a desktop PC feel your mouse – you can hold it in your hand. Knock on your desk – you can touch it. It cost money to produce. I could take it from you and you would be missing a desk. That’s what property is.

    Intellectual “property” needs a government to make it exist – it’s something that’s false, made up. It is no more property than happiness could be property.

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  15. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    Too damn right its a different argument, and not one based on the clapped out doctrine of some old deranged Russian cougar who could have had her ideas written on a fucking postage stamp if she could have been educated in conciseness.

    (Seen Atlas Shrugged pt 1 yet? Well constructed from a cinematographic POV but plot is full of holes)

    Don’t it strike you as strange to see people who profess to want small government to be crying for huge government structures and huge invasions of privacy, and to have it all paid for by the taxpayer?

    Maybe if you think about that for a while (rather than just parroting doctrine) you’ll understand why intellectual property rights are a crock of shit and only a device to force taxpayers to fund the (civil) legal battles of a business model that is outmoded.

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  16. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    If you buy something, it’s yours. The seller should not be able to restrict what you do with the product after they’ve sold it.

    You’re not buying the movie – you’re buying a license to view it. That license has terms and conditions attached.

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  17. wat dabney (3,756 comments) says:

    Surely a trade partnership should just be things like “we won’t charge tariffs on your xyz if you don’t charge tariffs on our abc.”

    Have both governments hold a gun to their citizens’ heads, threatening to continue to impoverish them until the other government stops impoverishing its own?

    Where’s the logic in that?

    Again, the economic argument is that the government should unilaterally abandon such tariffs and restrictions. If other goverments continue to deprive their citizens of freedom and higher living standards then that’s their problem.

    Restricting imports is economic madness.

    And the beauty of acting according to economic logic is that we would not now be getting tied up in the agendas of other countries’ special-interest groups.

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  18. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    “You’re not buying the movie – you’re buying a license to view it. That license has terms and conditions attached.”

    Get up to speed retard, that point was made yonks ago.

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  19. tristanb (1,127 comments) says:

    You’re not buying the movie – you’re buying a license to view it. That license has terms and conditions attached.

    If you’ve agree to that – then okay. But if I buy a DVD at the Warehouse, I’m not buying a licence. I’m buying a DVD. I should be able to give it away, sell it, or put it in the toaster.

    Have both governments hold a gun to their citizens’ heads, threatening to continue to impoverish them until the other government stops impoverishing its own?

    Where’d that come from? That’s the opposite of what I was trying to say!

    I agree with free trade. And when these governments are discussing it, they should be discussing trade, not bargaining the private rights of their citizens.

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  20. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    Russell

    Your preoccupation with local bridge toll matters has understandably limited your opportunity to gain any knowledge or practical experience of matters relating to international commerce.

    International protocols and alignment of statutory regulation governing all sorts of matters including commercial and securities law, tax, foreign investment, customs issues and in this case copyright, are essential features of maximising the efficiency of global trade. Without those protocols and statutory alignments, this country would be a poorer place. That’s why governments, as proxies for taxpayers, get involved in this stuff and its also an opportunity that some countries, such as your beloved US of A, to beat up on others. That’s the little tussle that is going on at the moment.

    I appreciate that none of this would interest you though in light of your totalitarian and marxist persuasion and the clear inference that you oppose global trade and private property rights. BTW, the issue is wider than books and music DVDs. Perhaps you should contact the lovely Jane Kelsey. I’m sure you would both get along famously.

    How’s traffic downtown?

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  21. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    International protocols and alignment of statutory regulation governing all sorts of matters including commercial and securities law, tax, foreign investment, customs issues and in this case copyright, are essential features of maximising the efficiency of global trade.

    What painful soviet style crap.

    Fuck off and take your big government taxpayer funded cronyist bullshit with you.

    Let business people do trade.

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  22. wat dabney (3,756 comments) says:

    tristanb,

    If you buy something, it’s yours.

    What bhudson said. You are buying a license to view, with conditions attached. If you don’t like it, then feel free not to buy.

    Hollywood is not going to make a movie for $200 million then offer to sell it to you outright for 30 bucks.

    The seller should not be able to restrict what you do with the product after they’ve sold it.

    Why not? If a trade is voluntary then the vendor can specify any conditions he likes.

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  23. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    Let business people do trade.

    That is the point. Ignorance becomes you.

    Oh dear, now I’m starting to feel sorry for you. I promised myself not to let that happen.

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  24. wat dabney (3,756 comments) says:

    But if I buy a DVD at the Warehouse, I’m not buying a licence. I’m buying a DVD. I should be able to give it away, sell it, or put it in the toaster.

    Again, it all depends.

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  25. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    “You are buying a license to view,”

    Crap.

    The word “license” is a complete misnomer and distraction.

    It is nothing like a “license”. Licence’s are issued by state authorities.

    You are entering into a civil contract. One that is ridiculously unworkable, and that is why they seek laws and regulations and taxpayer funding to underpin it.

    “Hollywood is not going to make a movie for $200 million ”

    Good, then they can fuck off and put their money elsewhere then.

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  26. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    “That is the point.”

    The point is we have a bunch of looting regulators and bureaucrats (group 1) in country A and another like group (group 2) in country B interfering with free trade.

    If group 1 fucked off there is no need for group 2.

    They’re just parasites creating a self fulfilling circumstance and interfering in global commerce.

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  27. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Another thing the “it’s my property, I can do with it what I want” group don’t understand is that they generally can’t.

    While they might be able to buy, sell, even rent, the physical property they purchased, they generally are not permitted to make a copy of it. Certainly not for personal gain.

    For example, the Lockwood home you purchased. The BMW car. The jewelry. The Seiko watch. The Sony Playstation. The Samsung TV. The F&P fridge.

    Sure you can on-sell them. But you cannot legally make an exact replica of them, and certainly not to sell, rent or lend that. Why? Because the designers/manufacturers hold intellectual property in those designs and to copy them would infringe their IP.

    I don’t think most people would bat an eyelid at the reminder that buying a Beemer doesn’t allow them to build their own copy and sell it. But they somehow think it’s ok to copy Warner Bros’ movie.

    Even physical property doesn’t necessarily confer the rights often assumed in the property vs copyright argument.

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  28. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    Great argument.

    Intellectual copyright is a great idea because there are laws against infringing it.

    Yawn… what a waste of space.

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  29. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Red,

    I didn’t expect that you would be able to grasp it. Some things are just too much to hope for.

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  30. Redbaiter (8,801 comments) says:

    “I didn’t expect that you would be able to grasp it.”

    Grasp what?

    An argument so weak and irrelevant to the point its like something that you might expect from a ten year old?

    Good grief Hudson, no wonder insults and sneers are your normal stock in trade. If you ever venture from that infantile modus operandi you’re plainly floundering.

    And you’re pretty pitiful at the former as well.

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  31. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    no wonder insults and sneers are your normal stock in trade

    Oh, the ironing

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  32. Azeraph (604 comments) says:

    It doesn’t matter what laws you put down on paper. Digital copying will continue regardless and who cares about the Hobbit, i don’t, it has no bearing on us other than making us look like idiots internationally for jumping up and down over it. We embarrassed ourselves for such hyped up coverage.

    So, is everyone still touting the TPP as a free trade deal? Honestly it wouldn’t surprise me to see it go through, it’s just one step away from celebrating Sir Ed’s birthday as a holiday to coincide with the american holiday of July 4th and then slightly altering it’s perception to reflect that coincidence. Any Americans here? or is it just wannabe’s. Love my conspiracy theories.

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  33. Azeraph (604 comments) says:

    Actually Sir Ed is the only Sir that is worth having that title in the last 50 years. I can’t see actors climbing Everest.

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  34. tristanb (1,127 comments) says:

    I don’t think most people would bat an eyelid at the reminder that buying a Beemer doesn’t allow them to build their own copy and sell it. But they somehow think it’s ok to copy Warner Bros’ movie.

    If I smash a headlight – I don’t buy one from Nissan – I buy an imitation one from a cheaper manufacturer. I don’t

    People buy cars from scratch all the time – they’re allowed to sell them too – they can’t call them a BMW if they’re not – but there’s nothing stopping someone buying a chassis, panels, and engine, interiors and making something that looks like a BMW. (At least there should be anything stopping doing this.)

    I don’t care if it costs Hollywood $200 million to make a movie. It costs me $2.00 in bandwidth to download and nothing to copy – that’s the cost of creation. They’re not obliged to sell me at that rate, they can charge whatever they like, but I can go to an alternative supplier if I want.

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  35. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    They’re not obliged to sell me at that rate, they can charge whatever they like, but I can go to an alternative supplier if I want.

    If that supplier is legally entitled to sell you the product, sure. Else you are both risking detection and some rather stiff penalties, if the recent US cases are anything to go by.

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  36. Viking2 (11,467 comments) says:

    wat dabney (2,155) Says:
    December 8th, 2012 at 2:33 pm

    tristanb,

    “If you buy something, it’s yours.”

    What bhudson said. You are buying a license to view, with conditions attached. If you don’t like it, then feel free not to buy.

    Hollywood is not going to make a movie for $200 million then offer to sell it to you outright for 30 bucks.

    “The seller should not be able to restrict what you do with the product after they’ve sold it.”

    Why not? If a trade is voluntary then the vendor can specify any conditions he likes.
    ———————————
    and with that goes the inherant right to take civil action if those conditions are infringed. Why is there any need what so ever for Govt. and the Taxpayers to be involved in a private civil contract?

    Every time you down load most computer software you tick a box saying you have read the conditions. That’s a civil contract between seller and buyer. If that is infringed then the civl contract is the document that the transaction hangs upon. The seller can enforce that contract in a court of law at their own expense. (note. lawyers would just luv to collect their fees for this.)
    Its not the taxpayers job to either do that nor to pay for that any more that its the taxpayers responsibility to fund or enforce in any way the investigation of the breach of that contract.
    Its not even the Governments job to control the content of that contract.

    Now you may argue that the Govt. should place some rules around this but clearly the rules should be the game rules that the two parties to the contract may play by. Any more than that is unwarranted.

    No different to sport. Anyone for NZ cricket?

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  37. gopolks (52 comments) says:

    Once again the left wing protest movement proved how
    violent and disgusting they’re are.

    Two police officers got assaulted, one female officer
    was repeatedly kicked in the head, by a female
    protestor.

    The usual suspects were involved in this ugly protest,
    Green party MP Catherine Delahunty, activist John
    Minto, the other 148 protestors were from the usual
    Socialist/communist parties and various anti Israel and
    various union groups.

    Jane Kelsey who (organized the protest)
    like most socialists tried to blame the police.

    The protest was against free trade, and as usual, they
    tried to burn the American flag.

    Well here is a message to all those protestors who
    protested…

    You guys aren’t the 99%, you guys arent even the 1%
    your a handful of people who have an ideology that
    99.9% of kiwis DISAGREE with.

    How dare you, try to dictate to the country, how this
    country should be run, and how dare you be violent
    towards the police and members of the public.

    YOU DON’T GET TO DO THAT!!!

    Heres hoping justice will be done, and the people
    who attacked the police will be bought to justice.

    I anit holding my breath though.

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  38. Scott1 (548 comments) says:

    clearly we dont treat intelectual property the same as physical property because for pragmatic reasons the ownership of intelectual property ans state mandaded expiry dates. if we believe that property is a fundimental right we clearly dont think intelectual property shares exactly the same state….

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  39. Viking2 (11,467 comments) says:

    Like you they have in NZ the right to protest. If they break the law then the law can deal with that.

    How dare you, try to dictate to the country, how this country should be run,
    YOU DON’T GET TO DO THAT!!!

    Irony much.

    Did you bother read and analyse what you wrote?

    Another lefty with a control freak mind.

    Oh where is your evidence for this??

    You guys aren’t the 99%, you guys arent even the 1%
    your a handful of people who have an ideology that
    99.9% of kiwis DISAGREE with.

    Making shit up!

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  40. Manolo (13,746 comments) says:

    Jane Kelsey who (organized the protest)
    like most socialists tried to blame the police.

    The aging communist cow should go to jail.

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  41. gopolks (52 comments) says:

    Over at “The Standard” this was posted by someone who calls themselves “Viper73″

    I hope the policewoman apologizes for any damage done to the protestors foot.

    Disgusting, now the left are supporting violence against woman.

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  42. UglyTruth (4,551 comments) says:

    Scott1 (69) Says:
    December 8th, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    clearly we dont treat intelectual property the same as physical property because for pragmatic reasons

    All property has the quality of exclusive possession.
    Intellectual property is a misnomer.

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  43. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    The Intellectual property protection is a difficult one.

    If protection is taken away – then say goodbye to new drugs as no one in their right mind would spend millions developing new drugs only to have them copied without penalty.
    But on the other hand parallel importing does have its advantages to a point. However parallel importing is going to lead to a position of there being no support – and no legal protection – for a whole range of products as international developers cease to have local agents.

    The big problem with digital stuff is that its so easy to copy – if unprotected. And thats the crunch point – protection. I think the producers of digital material have a to take some steps to protect their own production.

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  44. UglyTruth (4,551 comments) says:

    Barry,

    People who want to protect their ideas or creative works from exploitation can simply restrict disclosure to parties that they know that they can trust.

    People that don’t work for Sony, for example:

    http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2005/11/sonys_drm_rootk.html

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  45. Scott1 (548 comments) says:

    interesting question..

    can the anti virus companies legitimatly protect you from the virus that they know about and know how to deal with (as they are promise to do when you buy their product) that was semi legally installed on your computer as part of a package that sony sent you without telling you exactly what it did or the problems it was going to give you…

    Maybe they can’t since it amounbts to tampering with somthing that you dont own (their code) even though it is inseperable from the thing that you do own (your computer and its setup)…

    the sort of question that i guess will be become more and more important into the future.

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  46. Scott1 (548 comments) says:

    interesting question..

    can the anti virus companies legitimatly protect you from the virus that they know about and know how to deal with (as they are promise to do when you buy their product) that was semi legally installed on your computer as part of a package that sony sent you without telling you exactly what it did or the problems it was going to give you…

    Maybe they can’t since it amounts to tampering with somthing that you dont own (their code) even though it is inseperable from the thing that you do own (your computer and its setup)…

    the sort of question that i guess will be become more and more important into the future.

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  47. UglyTruth (4,551 comments) says:

    Scott1,

    Ownership of digital content is a fallacy, what is owned is the physical media that it is stored on. Anti-Virus companies can legitimately provide virus removal services, whether or not they should remove a Sony root kit depend on the agreement between them and the user.

    The idea of ownership of digital content is used in what appears to be a conspiracy between CBS/CNET and media companies
    like Time Warner. This “conspiracy” (for lack of a better word) was originally descibed in Mike Mozart’s video…

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2011/12/23/the-great-sopa-conspiracy-theory/

    The central idea behind the video (I’d watch the entire thing if you can manage it), is that for years, sites like CNET and Download.com were the principle distributors of piracy software like Kazaa, Bearshare and Limewire, with each downloaded hundreds of millions of times. Not only that, but they literally provided instructions on how to download songs, even going so far as to recommend what copyright material to download and providing links to it on their sites.

    The issue? CNET is owned by CBS, one of the chief supporters of SOPA. The allegation in the video is that all these media companies, from Viacom to Time Warner to Disney, let consumers run wild with this software for years, and now get to step back saying “look at all this piracy!” when it’s their sites that distributed the software to illegally download content for decades.

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