Intellectual Privilege: Copyright, Common Law, and the Common Good

Intellectual Privilege: Copyright, Common Law, and the Common Good

by Tom W. Bell


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Intellectual Privilege: Copyright, Common Law, and the Common Good by Tom W. Bell

A consensus has recently emerged among academics and policymakers that US copyright law has fallen out of balance. Lawmakers have responded by taking up proposals to reform the Copyright Act. But how should they proceed? This book offers a new and insightful view of copyright, marking the path toward a world less encumbered by legal restrictions and yet richer in art, music, and other expressive works.

Two opposing viewpoints have driven the debate over copyright policy. One side questions copyright for the same reasons it questions all restraints on freedoms of expression, and dismisses copyright, like other forms of property, as a mere plaything of political forces. The opposing side regards copyrights as property rights that deserve-like rights in houses, cars, and other forms of property-the fullest protection of the law.

Each of these viewpoints defends important truths. Both fail, however, to capture the essence of copyright. In Intellectual Privilege, Tom W. Bell reveals copyright as a statutory privilege that threatens our natural and constitutional rights. From this fresh perspective come fresh solutions to copyright's problems.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780989219389
Publisher: Mercatus Center at George Mason University
Publication date: 04/14/2014
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.51(d)

About the Author

Tom W. Bell is a professor at Chapman University's Fowler School of Law and an adjunct fellow at the Cato Institute. His writings include Regulator's Revenge, which he edited with Solveig Singleton; "Five Reforms for Copyright" in Copyright Unbalanced, edited by Jerry Brito; and many papers and articles. Bell holds a JD from the University of Chicago and has practiced law in Silicon Valley and Washington, DC.

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