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IPFS News Link • India

Delhi Cuts Copyright: Why Are Government Courts Involved at All?


Observing that "copyright is not a divine right", the Delhi high court on Friday allowed Delhi University to issue photocopies of major textbooks published by leading publishers. The Justice held that the act of students getting books copied from DU's library or its authorised photocopy shop enjoys protection under Section 52 of the Copyright Act, which exempts education from copyright infringement. – Times of India

We`ve written numerous times about the idiocy of state-mandated intellectual property rights and now a top court in India has summarized our argument in six words:

"Copyright is not a divine right."

In fact, it is not a "right" at all. But try to defy copyright or patent law and you may end up in jail. Such "property rights" are increasingly becoming criminalized (here).

This is because Western-style governance (which influences the world) is increasingly subservient to the scourge of technocratic corporatism (here). And those who run this increasingly robust worldwide technocracy are insistent about such rights.

Before the Civil War in the US, patents were not generally honored, nor enforced by the Courts (here). This epoch  in the US involved a ferment of discovery and free-market applications.

Government "protection" of inventors can only be seen as beneficial if one believes that government itself is instrumental in the fair and productive functioning of the marketplace. Unfortunately, the 21st century itself is showing clearly that government is almost never beneficial to any kind of productivity.

In fact, it cannot be beneficial because every law is essentially a price fix and every time you "fix a price," you distort distort commerce and damp creativity.

It is probably not necessary to give someone an extended period of time to benefit, as current laws provide. In fact, people are told that patents and intellectual property rights are for their own good, but such "rights" mostly benefit corporate holders.

Patent law and intellectual property rights provide support for an increasingly authoritarian, modern, multinational paradigm.

Along with corporate person-hood and monopoly central banking, such government enforced "rights" are responsible for modern capitalism with all its faux consumerism, warmongering and all-round (and increasing) impoverishment.

Such rights also give the world's largest entities the power to control fundamental technology. Large entities can purchase advanced technology that is then not available to others because of patent law, etc.

Now, India has cut intellectual property rights:

In a 94-page order, the court essentially concluded that if DU can photocopy content within its library to impart education to students, then similar protection is enjoyed by the contractor, Rameshwari Photocopy Service.

… A group of publishers, including Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press and Taylor & Francis, had objected in their suit to the photocopy shop selling course packs, that is, compilations of photocopied portions of different books prescribed by DU as suggested reading in its syllabus. The HC held that when texts are used by DU for imparting education and not commercial sale, it can't infringe on copyright of the publishers.

… The modest shop in North Campus was thrust at the heart of the case by international publishers who sued it for copyright infringement in 2012, resulting in Friday's landmark verdict on intellectual property rights.

"Copyright, specially in literary works, is thus not an inevitable, divine, or natural right that confers on authors the absolute ownership of their creations. It is designed rather to stimulate activity and progress in the arts for the intellectual enrichment of the public," the Justice observed.