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Intellectual property

31 January. COMP 381. Ownership and property. Rights of ownership: Blackstonian Bundle. Exclude anyone from the property. Use it as sees fit. Receive income from. Transfer property to someone else. Intellectual property: intellectual objects.

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Intellectual property

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Intellectual property31 January

COMP 381Slide2

Ownership and propertyRights of ownership: Blackstonian BundleExclude anyone from the property

Use it as sees fit

Receive income fromTransfer property to someone elseIntellectual property: intellectual objects

What is Intellectual Property?Slide3

Physical objects Zero-sum gain: one user at a timeSignificant cost in both development and replication

Intellectual objects

Used by many at onceSignificant cost in development, marginal cost in replication

Is Intellectual Property Different than Real Property? Slide4

Need for Protection

Bentham: knowledge of future ownership is incentive to increase value

Landes/Posner: need to recover the development costsSlide5

Locke’s Labor-Desert Theory

Hegel’s Personality Theory

Utilitarian: greatest good

Ethical Support for IPSlide6


Natural right to the fruits of your labor

Labor unpleasant, therefore reap rewardsLockean provisoOnly take what you needAssumption of plenitudeSlide7


Property rights essential for personal expression

What we produce is an extension of our personalitySlide8


Provide enough protection to make large investments worthwhileSlide9

Free flow of ideasFirst amendment freedom of speechCreative ideas build on society and culture

Noel Capon

Ethical Support against IPSlide10

Copying copyrighted materialsUsing copyrighted materials

Digital rights management

Business method patents and e-commerceOwnership of domain namesHyperlinks


Ethical DilemmasSlide11


Legal ProtectionSlide12

Copyright Term Extension Act1790: 14 + renew1909: 28 + renew

1976 : author + 50, corporate 75

1998: author + 70, corporate 95Digital Millennium Copyright Act (1996)Copying

Enabling copying


Physical objectsProcess, machine or composition of matterNOT laws of nature, scientific principles, algorithms


NovelNot previously describedNon-obvious



Word, phrase or symbol“Pithily” identifiesInfringement: used by someone else


Blurring – dissimilar productsTarnishment – negative or compromising


Responsibility of those enabling itSoftwareNetwork providers

Cases: software

NapsterGrocksterBit Torrent Cases: network providers


Copying copyrighted materials Slide16

Sampling: small bits of musicGood Copy, Bad


Steal This Film IIDigital manipulation

Using Copyright MaterialSlide17

Lessig’s law and codeDigital is easier to reproduce, distribute, …Software or hardware to protect

But allows content provider to

constrain who can useFair useDeCSS case

track who is viewing

Digital Rights ManagementSlide18

Processes vs. algorithmsEase of useExamples

Name Your Price (Priceline)

One-click (Amazon)Business Process PatentsSlide19

Cybersquatting.net, .org, .com, …

Punctuation (hyphenation, etc.)

Phrases, nicknamesParody, criticism, complaint (cybergriping)Property rights vs. free speechBringing people to the site under false pretenses

Including the name in the url vs. appearing to be the site

Domain NamesSlide20

Responsibility to usersMaking it clear that its another siteProtection from inappropriate material

Responsibility to other site owners

Bypassing advertisementsTicketmaster and Microsoft


What are they?Invisible content used for searching and advertisingGeting more leverage

Search engines

Banner adsTechniquesMultiple tags to get more leverage

Tags that are unrelated