The distribution of power and wealth can be, and usually is, highly arbitrary and independent of ‘marginal productivity’, ‘risk taking’ or, indeed, any personal characteristic of those who rise to the top.
Many things were already said about how Internet makes distribution faster and cheaper and how this is putting under the question rationale for intellectual property rights. But Internet through...
Kurt Laitner's insight:
via aleph acrylicist, an interesting commentary saying that the reasons for IPR and the mitigation of the risks it ordinarily offsets are no longer valid in the age of advance funding by the customer with margins 'built in' or accepted in advance - not sure I agree as the current exemplar, kickstarter, leaves IPR to the side, it has no formal contract between contributor and creator, IPR may or may not exist in advance (though if it doesn't the public disclosure now precludes it) and the creator is permitted to sell beyond the customers of the kickstarter campaign - on the other side there is nothing preventing someone from taking a kickstarter idea and developing it outside of kickstarter based on the public disclosure through kickstarter (unless formal IPR pre-exists the kickstarter campaign) - this will be further complicated when crowdfunding becomes crowd investing under the jobs act and shareholder's rights and fiduciary responsibility come into play
governments the world over are making adjustments to preserve the illusion of the rule of law while preparing to go to war with their own people - reminding us that property rights exist with the threat of force - this brinkmanship by the wealthy elite captured state is a worrisome trend- moving toward a systemic adjustment to create fairer outcomes seems not to be on the agenda
WE are beginning to witness a paradox at the heart of capitalism, one that has propelled it to greatness but is now threatening its future: The inherent dynamism of competitive markets is bringing costs so far down that many goods and services are becoming nearly free, abundant, and no longer subject to market forces. While economists have always welcomed a reduction in marginal cost, they never anticipated the possibility of a technological revolution that might bring those costs to near zero.
excellent review of history and current trajectories of political economy - ending with the shift to a global plutonomy and an interesting historical note about adam smith's invisible hand being originally an argument against neo-liberal globalization as destructive to local economies to the benefit of global industrialists. prescient.
When the technology for downloading musical audio files was first introduced, many visionaries thought this would open up a whole new relationship between musicians and their audience. No longer w...
Kurt Laitner's insight:
the scare mongering baby & bathwater is inevitable (music sharing and hackers, bitcoin and drug dealers...), just wait until we get into synthetic biology and personal pharmaceuticals, and the big pharma and big agriculture folks lobbies get wound up... you can always expect protectionist behavior from the establishment - and no, I don't think 3D printed guns (especially when fully functional) are a good thing, nor do I think some wack job making custom biology in the garage two doors down is a good thing, but we can expect slippery slope and FUD arguments to shut down anything that threatens established revenue streams - there is a place for regulation here, and as always I believe creators need to be compensated fairly, through mechanisms other than regulatory capture by vested interests using media to scaremonger a population into giving up its rights
If the government thinks your patent-pending invention has national security implications, it can slap a secrecy order on it that prevents you from developing it. More than 5,300 such orders have been issued, with some of them in effect for decades.