The Withering Away of Property: The Rise of the Internet Information Commons
Queen Mary, University of London - Queen Mary Intellectual Property Research Institute (QMIPRI)
Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, Vol. 24, pp. 619-641, 2004
The phenomenon of volunteer produced and freely disseminated information is a significant feature of the digitally networked environment. Notwithstanding recent expansions of copyright law and the development of rights management technology the Internet remains a platform for the free distribution of information and ideas. This article argues that, contrary to the predictions of enclosure, a flourishing commons exists in respect of information that is communicated via the Internet. The commons, however, remains a relatively under-theorized concept in political and legal theory. This article explores the meaning of 'the commons' and its relationship to property and advances it as a useful explanatory tool for describing free information environments in cyberspace.
Date posted: February 29, 2008
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