Derek E. Bambauer
University of Arizona - James E. Rogers College of Law
April 9, 2012
30 Cardozo Arts & Ent. L.J. ___ (2012)
Brooklyn Law School, Legal Studies Paper No. 276
In “Region Codes and the Territorial Mess,” Peter Yu presents a case study of the rising trend of private ordering of intellectual property rights through technological means. The article marries a compelling description of the power of crude, yet effective, technological self-help with a searching normative assessment of the legitimacy and desirability of such measures. The distribution of works in digital formats, particularly via the Internet, has given rise to ever more sophisticated mechanisms of fine-grained control over copyrighted works. This Essay points to three puzzles implicit in Yu’s article: technological determinism, the uncertainty underlying utilitarian accounts of copyright, and the current tension between firm notions of intellectual property rights and inchoate visions of user rights. It argues that “Region Codes” questions the Panglossian assumptions of copyright enforcement, showing that for DVDs, at least, everything is not necessarily for the best. The Essay concludes by suggesting that Yu’s piece charts an initial vision of how these issues might be addressed.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 9
Keywords: copyright, DVD, region code, price discrimination, utilitarianism, technological determinism, digital rights management, circumvention, IP, intellectual property, enforcement, Internet, cyberlaw, incentives, motion pictures, movies, SOPA, DMCA, Digital Millennium Copyright Act, user rights, censorshAccepted Paper Series
Date posted: April 9, 2012
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