Sticky Knowledge and Copyright
Wisconsin Law Review, Vol. 2011, p. 177, 2011
42 Pages Posted: 13 May 2011 Last revised: 15 Oct 2012
Date Written: 2011
Knowledge is sticky because it adheres to people along social routes, lodged within relational and collective modalities, as well as through copyright’s proverbial fixed works that can be transacted more freely. Sticky knowledge may in fact constitute a much larger body of knowledge than we usually acknowledge in intellectual property and may intersect with copyright in unexpected ways. This Article delves into sticky knowledge, which has been referenced often outside of intellectual property and sometimes within the laws of patents and trade secrets but almost not at all within copyright law. Under what circumstances will sticky knowledge encourage robust knowledge transmission – or copyright’s goal of "encouragement of learning"? Understanding the scope and reach of this kind of knowledge may point to optimal means to encourage knowledge spillovers and reliability.
Keywords: copyright, encouragement of learning, governance, know-how, open innovation, public domain, sticky information, sticky knowledge, tacit knowledge, trade secrets
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