As some may have noticed this blog is NOT under a (c) copyright protection. I’m putting all my content on the blog under a Creative Commons (CC) license, cc-by-nc-sa. The CC license I use means that you are allowed to use all my material as long as you mention you got it from me and share your derivative work under the same license, but you are not allowed to use it for a commercial purpose. This flexible use of work under a CC-license is often misconceived and seen as “free”. The person using my work still has obligations toward me even though allowed to change and modify it as they want. CC doesn’t mean I can’t make money on the work, only that I can’t make money on people using it for “personal use”. If someone wants to use it commercially they still need to contact me and pay for it. Enough on Creative Commons for now, I only wanted to explain an alternative a bit more before talking about copyright.
The thought behind copyright, as I see it, is that it is a one-way monologue where the viewers are meant to only take in the work and can’t channel the work into something new. This restricts the flow of communication and creation that would otherwise occur. I believe copyright was a good system but that it is outdated today and should be changed or removed.
Before copyright existed a lot of good work was created (or compiled) e.g. The Illiad, Macbeth, The Garden of Earthly Delights. This shows that copyright is not needed in order to be creative, as many persons usually claim. During this period it was hard to copy work and it took a lot of time.
The period after copyright was invented is when it made sense and was a useful system. The cost of copying something was cheaper, both in time and material e.g. copying a book required a printing press. Mass media worked in a one-to-many relationship and intellectual property needed to be copied and re-produced for a cost of time and material in order for more persons to consume it.
The need for copyright changed when information could be digitalized, the cost of making a copy suddenly decreased to almost zero (both in time and material cost) and re-production could be shared and used by many at once. The way that the society worked had also changed from the traditional broadcasting of media to be more interactive (2.0 terms) where “passive viewers” became participants and creators. Letting information flow freely would benefit these creators and more creative work would emerge, both from derivative works and own creations.