On the Value of Copyright Theory
23 Pages Posted: 14 Aug 2010
Date Written: August 12, 2006
Arguments favouring conferring property rights on intellectual creations are manifold. They contain great value for development of intellectual property systems and shaping their limits. This Article argues that any system of property rights, in particular systems allocating exclusive rights in cultural and authorial commodities, will properly address the many social concerns emerging from this allocation, only if a balance between theory and practice is established. I shall argue that theoretical considerations should be invited into contemporary discussions on the future of intellectual property regimes more often.
This Article argues that theoretical considerations are the building blocs of every ideology of intellectual property, and defends the argument that isolating the practical development of intellectual property laws from theoretical considerations runs the risk of widening the gap between perceived benefits and social costs. This Article holds the view that theory and practice have to be balanced. It reviews the main approaches dominating the landscape of copyright theory and highlights the benefits we can exert from theory when we talk copyright law and policy.
Keywords: copyright, theory, natural law, utilitarianism
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