Friday 1/2 13:00

Session 3: The Greying Of The Commons: IP, The Law And The Street @ Conference

Respondent: Volker Grassmuck [de]

When it comes to Intellectual Property, there is a widening gap, in Europe and elsewhere, between regulatory regimes and the everyday practices of millions of people. While recent legislation has strengthened formal IP rights, unauthorized use of protected content has sharply expanded. Uncontrolled remixing, editing and sharing of material is entrenched in digital mass culture. Attempts to control what people do with digital information, through law and/or technology, have so far proved ineffective. Referring to this gap between regulation and practice, the situation has been likened both to the American prohibition (1920-1933) and to current policies on (soft) drugs. The first analogy suggests that, sooner rather than later, legislation will have to acknowledge people's practices, whereas the second suggests a drawn-out period of repression with high social costs.

The conference takes place at Auditorium.

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