Copyright History and the Future: What's Culture Got to Do with It?

Journal of the Copyright Society of the USA, vol. 47 (2000), pp. 209-264

56 Pages Posted: 25 Sep 2000 Last revised: 9 Aug 2016

Paul Edward Geller

Independent - Attorney

Date Written: 2000

Abstract

In the light of history, this article seeks to prompt thought about future copyright lawmaking. Its part I analyzes three historical phases: pre-copyright, when works were disseminated orally and in manuscripts and artifacts, but hardly as public goods; the emergence of copyright, when the advent of printing increased risks of piracy, and European states in time responded with copyright laws; modern copyright law, starting in the nineteenth century, when treaties began to globalize such law, allowing industrialized media to release more and more works into ever-larger markets. Part II of the article considers copyright issues likely to arise in the near future, as the patchwork of media markets worldwide melds into one networked marketplace: it is argued that, in resolving these issues, lawmakers should increasingly harmonize and simplify copyright rules, and judges tailor the scope of rights at the level of remedies. Part III of the article then critiques established utilitarian and natural-rights rationales of copyright to clear the way for new solutions.

Keywords: copyright, history, print, internet, harmonization, remedies

JEL Classification: K11, K19, K39, L82, Z1

Suggested Citation

Geller, Paul Edward, Copyright History and the Future: What's Culture Got to Do with It? (2000). Journal of the Copyright Society of the USA, vol. 47 (2000), pp. 209-264. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=243115 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.243115

Paul Edward Geller (Contact Author)

Independent - Attorney ( email )

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