Tuesday, May 04, 2004

For an interesting discussion on copyright infringment. I tend to be on the side of a market adjustment argument (as Arnold King briefly mentions), but on the whole I just don't know. After all, a market adjustment would probably mean, at least temporarily, many fewer artists and some sort of musical shift. It's hard to determine what's better (though with much of the music being produced today, any different should be a pretty good step towards better), but ultimately, I don't think that it's a government problem. The whole idea of a copyright law is probably necessary for this type of music industry to exist...but I'm not sure that the problem hasn't gone outside of the government's practical ability to enforce. Practically, I'm on the side of the market (which is certainly not rigid government regulation, no matter what RIAA tries to argue), but idealistically, I'm just confused.

The problem is that there is simply a disconnect between the traditional music market people want and the unfettered access to music, which they also want. Ultimately, it's not the government's job to enforce (I think), but the people's choice (as is enumerated through the free market). If they want more of one than the other, then the other will have to change. Even if the result is sucky, it'll have to change. What the RIAA needs to do is simply educate people (good luck) on what type of change will happen. Outside of the discussions these lawsuits create, legal recourse just seems rather silly.

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