Culture Wars on the Net: Intellectual Property and Corporate Propriety in Digital Environments

Special issue “Culture and the Law” edited by Gaurav Desai. Reprinted in William T. Gallagher, ed., Intellectual Property (a volume in the International Library of Essays in Law and Society, Aldershott: Ashgate Publishing, 2007) 579-608.

100.4 South Atlantic Quarterly 919-947

29 Pages Posted: 10 Jul 2014

Date Written: 2001

Abstract

The function of trademark law is to discursively construct and institutionally enforce particular notions of corporate identity as a property right. Intellectual property laws structure a field of meaning-making and thereby shape forms of symbolic practice. They create proprietary rights in a cultural commodity or commodity-sign — the trademark — and capacities to control its potential meaning and interpretation. The interconnected relationship between property and propriety is examined through an array of examples: from contestations over domain names, absolute ownership over trademarks and censorship, the emergence of digital communities comprising fan subcultures, as well as others. Ultimately, the Web has emerged as a digital battleground for corporate trademarks driven by the strategic logic of commodity fetishism, and counterhegemonic expressions of creativity, cultural meaning and identity formation, consumer choice, and labor rights structured through a guerilla logic of the populace.

Keywords: Trademark, Technology, Identity, Propriety

Suggested Citation

Coombe, Rosemary J. and Herman, Andrew, Culture Wars on the Net: Intellectual Property and Corporate Propriety in Digital Environments (2001). Special issue “Culture and the Law” edited by Gaurav Desai. Reprinted in William T. Gallagher, ed., Intellectual Property (a volume in the International Library of Essays in Law and Society, Aldershott: Ashgate Publishing, 2007) 579-608., 100.4 South Atlantic Quarterly 919-947, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2463794

Rosemary J. Coombe (Contact Author)

York University ( email )

4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
Canada

HOME PAGE: http://www.yorku.ca/rcoombe/publications.htm

Andrew Herman

Independent

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
87
Abstract Views
1,145
rank
363,651
PlumX Metrics