[pp.int.general] where is the manifesto?

Ole Husgaard pirat at sparre.dk
Sun Dec 28 10:33:25 CET 2008

Richard M Stallman skrev:
>     and investigate the reason for such a right. Some human rights provisions
>     can be changed by a (complicateed) democratic process, but others can't,
>     like the first 20 articles of the German constitution - which include the
>     "protection of property" provision.
> I can see two ways around that:
> * To declare that copyrights are not property, so this does
> not apply.
At least in danish copyright law, it has never been declared a property
right. It is, and has always been, defined as "exclusive right" (in
danish "eneret"; a right that you have, but others don't have). I think
the same may apply in other countries.

Calling intellectual rights "intellectual property" is relatively new.
It was (almost) never used before the 1960ies. Another more recent
example is "copyright violation is theft". No, it does not legally
become theft just because some people say so. And just like intellectual
rights did not become "intellectual property" because an organisation
called World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) was created,
copyright violation does not become theft just because an organization
called "Federation Against Copyright Theft" (FACT in the UK) is created.
This is imho typical orwellian wordplay trying to change the mindset of
people by using incorrect words (like "war is peace").

Because law systems change slowly, compared to our culture and language,
I would not be surprised if no copyright system anywhere in the world
has been changed to legally make copyright or patents a form of
property. Such a change is rather fundamental, and raises a lot of
issues that have to be adressed. For example, what when the copyright or
patents expire? Is that a kind of expropriation, where he rights holders
have to be compensated?

Best Regards,

Ole Husgaard.

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