Copyright Czar Agrees That The Gov't Should Let Business Models Decide Winners, Rather Than Legislation

from the time to walk the walk dept

While I certainly have my disagreements on a variety of points with US Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel, I will say that she’s always been open to talking about the issues (unlike many others). She’s also worked hard to really listen to people on all sides of the debate around intellectual property, and from what I can tell, take most of their opinions quite seriously, rather than just brushing them off. While I disagree with where she’s ended up on an awful lot of issues, I respect her willingness to listen, and still have high hopes that she’s coming around to realizing that strict enforcement often isn’t the best answer. In the past, she’s specifically reached out to us to discuss different business models and different ways that people can make money without relying on intellectual property, and it appears that she’s been thinking even more about that lately. In a talk at the World Copyright Summit in Brussels, she made it clear that a lot of the issues can be taken care of through business model innovation, rather than legislation:

“The U.S. government doesn’t need to pick winners and losers and the last thing we should think about doing is messing up the Internet with inappropriate regulation,” she told the World Copyright Summit in Brussels.

She also talked up the value of new services, including various “cloud” services from Amazon, Google and Apple (which is interesting, since the record labels still seem to be hinting that Amazon and Google’s services may not be legal, in their minds).

So, kudos to Espinel for making such a statement.

That said, it would be nice if we could see a bit more walking the walk, beyond just talking the talk. Espinel has certainly had a role to play in the PROTECT IP Act, which many people are warning could “mess up the internet,” through its messing with DNS. On top of that, Espinel was also the driving force behind the new bill we recently spoke about that could make embedding and linking to infringing material a felony by extending the coverage of criminal copyright law to include “public performances.” This sort of law does lead to the government picking winners and losers, and is totally unnecessary.

The focus really should be on encouraging the embrace of new business models, rather than ramping up enforcement. The recent SSRC study highlighted clearly the fallacy of ramping up enforcement as a means of dealing with infringement, as it simply doesn’t work and has massive unintended consequences. Hopefully, Espinel will begin moving away from pushing new legislation like these recent efforts, and really will focus on helping content creators and others in the industry to move towards smart new business models instead.

Filed Under: , , , ,

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “Copyright Czar Agrees That The Gov't Should Let Business Models Decide Winners, Rather Than Legislation”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment

Re: Rather than seeing the pendulum swing back

I would like to have seen the pro-IP forces push things so ridiculously far that things snap back to normal with no chance of ever going back to how they presently are and are headed.

that may work in other places, but in america we dearly love our perpetual “lash out -> backlash -> counter backlash” cycles.


Re: Re: Rather than seeing the pendulum swing back

“that may work in other places, but in america we dearly love our perpetual “lash out -> backlash -> counter backlash” cycles.”

Actually, we just need to have a single short 10 year backlash against copyright maximalism. After that the content creators that can’t adapt will be bankrupt, and the new content creators, that embrace new business models, will be in control. The one thing both sides need to remember is, that the cost of content to the consumer is going to zero.



Illegal is illegal. Wrong is wrong. If you compare the two in a Venn diagram, you’d see that the two intersect, but do not overlap entirely. You often use false dichotomies in your arguments though, don’t you?

A law that supports your ideals doesn’t make it right and the those that oppose that law are not necessarily wrong. You don’t get to have laws that regulate in your favor at the detriment of everyone else. The 1st, 4th, and 13th amendments disagree greatly with the type of legislation you desire.

Ron Rezendessays:


“It sets such a better example when you encourage people to set up businesses based on illegal activity”… and draconian laws that prop up outdated business models with government granted monopolies that serve no other purpose than to make sure the deep pockets stay deep, as long as the money flows through Washington DC in the form of campaign contributions, lobbying funds, and outright bribes including well paying jobs after the politicians “public servant” sentence ends.

See what I did there? Now it reeks of truth and will surely burn the retinas of trolls and industry shills alike!

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...
Older Stuff
13:40 It's Great That Winnie The Pooh Is In The Public Domain; But He Should Have Been Free In 1982 (Or Earlier) (35)
12:06 Norton 360 Now Comes With Crypto Mining Capabilities And Sketchy Removal Process (28)
10:45 Chinese Government Dragnet Now Folding In American Social Media Platforms To Silence Dissent (14)
10:40 Daily Deal: The 2022 Ultimate Cybersecurity Analyst Preparation Bundle (0)
09:29 A Fight Between Facebook And The British Medical Journal Highlights The Difficulty Of Moderating 'Medical Misinformation' (9)
06:29 Court Ruling Paves The Way For Better, More Reliable Wi-Fi (4)
20:12 Eighth Circuit (Again) Says There's Nothing Wrong With Detaining Innocent Minors At Gunpoint (15)
15:48 China's Regulatory War On Its Gaming Industry Racks Up 14k Casualties (10)
13:31 Chinese Government Fines Local Car Dealerships For Surveilling While Not Being The Government (5)
12:08 Eric Clapton Pretends To Regret The Decision To Sue Random German Woman Who Listed A Bootleg Of One Of His CDs On Ebay (29)
10:44 ICE Is So Toxic That The DHS's Investigative Wing Is Asking To Be Completely Separated From It (29)
10:39 Daily Deal: The 2022 Complete Raspberry Pi And Arduino Developer Bundle (0)
09:31 Google Blocked An Article About Police From The Intercept... Because The Title Included A Phrase That Was Also A Movie Title (24)
06:22 Wireless Carriers Balk At FAA Demand For 5G Deployment Delays Amid Shaky Safety Concerns (16)
19:53 Tenth Circuit Denies Qualified Immunity To Social Worker Who Fabricated A Mother's Confession Of Child Abuse (35)
15:39 Sci-Hub's Creator Thinks Academic Publishers, Not Her Site, Are The Real Threat To Science, And Says: 'Any Law Against Knowledge Is Fundamentally Unjust' (34)
13:32 Federal Court Tells Proud Boys Defendants That Raiding The Capitol Building Isn't Covered By The First Amendment (25)
12:14 US Courts Realizing They Have A Judge Alan Albright Sized Problem In Waco (17)
10:44 Boston Police Department Used Forfeiture Funds To Hide Purchase Of Surveillance Tech From City Reps (16)
10:39 Daily Deal: The Ultimate Microsoft Excel Training Bundle (0)
09:20 NY Senator Proposes Ridiculously Unconstitutional Social Media Law That Is The Mirror Opposite Of Equally Unconstitutional Laws In Florida & Texas (25)
06:12 Telecom Monopolies Are Exploiting Crappy U.S. Broadband Maps To Block Community Broadband Grant Requests (7)
12:00 Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of 2021 At Techdirt (17)
10:00 Gaming Like It's 1926: Join The Fourth Annual Public Domain Game Jam (6)
09:00 New Year's Message: The Arc Of The Moral Universe Is A Twisty Path (33)
19:39 DHS, ICE Begin Body Camera Pilot Program With Surprisingly Good Policies In Place (7)
15:29 Remembering Techdirt Contributors Sherwin And Elliot (1)
13:32 DC Metro PD's Powerful Review Panel Keeps Giving Bad Cops Their Jobs Back (6)
12:11 Missouri Governor Still Expects Journalists To Be Prosecuted For Showing How His Admin Leaked Teacher Social Security Numbers (39)
10:48 Oversight Board Overturning Instagram Takedown Of Ayahuasca Post Demonstrates The Impossibility Of Content Moderation (10)
More arrow
This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it