There is no such thing as “intellectual property.” Take copyright: if we are to look at creative works as property, then it is the property of the commons (that is, public domain), and copyright is simply a limited duration monopoly on works extended to creators as an incentive and reward. Patents likewise are of limited duration.
Only trademarks can be legitimately regarded as property that might be owned in perpetuity. Provided the trademark is maintained and defended, it is theoretically of unlimited duration. However, since it’s already got a name, there’s no need to create another term for it. “Intellectual property” is a weasel phrase used to pass off a highly questionable proposition as an established fact.
It is with this understanding that I read with interest a piece on the Ars Technica site, reporting that NBC/Universal general counsel Rick Cotton believes that our society is disproportionately concerned with actual property crime compared to “intellectual property” crime, given that crimes against “intellectual property” amount to a gazillion bajillion dollars a year (the figures RIAA shills come up with are always bogus), whereas actual property crime can be measured in more modest numbers.
Are the RIAA and member labels simply evil, or are they actually insane? I had assumed they were exercising a deplorable but at least comprehensible form of egregiously avaricious bastardly evilness, but this latest dispatch causes me to at least wonder if they’ve crossed some sort of line into a crazy twilight zone world. Let’s hope they don’t succeed in dragging the rest of us along with them.
~~ )o( ~~
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, don’t skimp on the power supply when buying or building a computer. Astronauts aboard the International Space Station are just recovering from power supply related problems after a mysterious surge. The spaceflightnow.com article suggests that plasma is to blame (don’t you hate it when that happens?), but earlier speculation centered around the possibility that too much current had been brought online thanks to the addition of more solar arrays.
So, don’t skimp on power surge protectors either. Especially if you’re an astronaut. If you’re out in space, you might think, “I’m going to save a few bucks and get something cheap, since the danger of a lightning strike out here is non-existent.” Still, play it safe and buy quality. You just never know when you’re going to run into unusual plasma conditions, or electric space eels, or whatever.