Mission Statement

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See Homepage and iA Wiki for more information about this wiki. This page is intended for formulating a mission statement for the copyright term reform / intellectual progress project.

Suggested mission statement

  • Intellectual progress comes from building upon a strong intellectual commons. A strong public domain is a vital part of that commons.
  • Everyone is a copyright holder.
  • Everyone is a copyright consumer.
  • Thanks to advances in technology, a lot of people are creators of publishable works who previously did not have this chance.
  • Thanks to the Internet, a lot of people are publishers who previously did not have this chance.
  • It follows that in any discussion of what copyright law should be.
  • Copyright is a balance between the rights of the copyright holder and the copyright consumer. It has historically been a good thing for the promotion of the useful arts and sciences, by allowing authors to temporarily benefit from a monopoly on their creative works.
  • Copyright law is currently not in balance.

Here's a possible reformulation of the above list. I'm not happy with the jump from public domain to the internet, perhaps these should be separated, or better merged.

  • The creative act does not happen in a vaccum; it requires the consumption of intellectual works.
  • Everyone, to some degree or another, is creative. We all create intellectual works, whether for work or pleasure.
  • Thus we all consume intellectual works, often in proportion to what we create. The more we need to create the more readily we consume the creative works of others.
  • The "public domain" is a body of creative works that are freely available for the consumption (and consequent creation) of others.
  • A strong and vibrant public domain is the key to a creative society and intellectual progress.
  • With the internet and digital technology we can directly stimulate creativity by encouraging "amateur" publishing and nich markets.
  • With the internet and digital technology we can indirectly stimulate creativity by strengthening and extending the availability of the public domain.
  • A proper balance of copyright, which includes both a strong public domain and addequate renumeration for the creative act, is the key to both direct and indirect promotion of creativity and intellectual progress.
  • Copyright law is not in balance.

Some suggestions as to what we stand for:

  • Our position on copyright terms is that, at a minimum, the CTEA must be repealed.
  • Our position on the WIPO is that it is a non-democratic institution where the overwhelming majority of both copyright holders and copyright consumers are not represented.
  • Our position on fair use is that recent restrictions necessitate a number of rights, some existing and some new, to be codified in law.

In summary, our mission is to to promote intellectual progress by:

  • Restoring the traditional balance of copyright law.
  • Reducing copyright terms to a sane level.
  • Promoting fair use rights for consumers and creators of derivative works.
  • Preserving cultural heritage and returning it to the public.
  • Protecting small copyright holders.

These are fairly general and they're just to start a discussion with something semi-concrete.


The Inception Of Information

  • Ideas and innovation.

The Creation Of Information

  • Tools
  • (perhaps discuss information "formats" (like file formats) and their legal concerns. (such as with gif)

The Ownership Of Information

  • Rights to control one's ideas
  • Profit from the efforts of innovation
  • Licenses and their philosophies and goals.
  • (perhaps discuss how only original and succesful ideas are perpetually rewarded with current systems)

The Distribution Of Information

  • Constraints: Licenses, enforcement of licensing.
  • Tools for distribution, such as file sharing or various internet issues.

The International World

  • Existant international laws
  • International law interpretations
  • international enforcement
  • Law and the internet

The Value Of Information

  • The Lifespan Of Ownership - perpetual reward?
  • Public-Domain - perpetual reward!
  • The value of information - free use is valuable for free innovation.

Current Solutions

  • Interpreting the law to protect one's intellectual property rights

Future Solutions

  • Open collaboration for free innovation.
  • Using traditional concepts, like laws, to protect or enforce newer ideas.
  • Unprotecting ideas and their future-use for future-innovation.
  • Current ideas
  • Existant righteous activism