Monday, August 27, 2012

Patent Law versus Anti-Trust

I've thought for some time that intellectual property law generally was in trouble, and as an artificial construct that requires positive law to support it, the lack of universal application certainly gives cause for concern.  In essence, the Internet allows the publication of all intellectual property, instantly, to almost everyone in the world.

Ownership of intellectual property is intangible; ideas, inventions, innovations are nebulous concepts, and to award the official title of ownership to the first person or company who has either the wit or resources to go through the registration process first (or, as kids would say, "baggsies!!") seems arbitrary.  We are social beings, and operate within a social construct.  If you invent something, say, in the shower, should the shower owner own a piece of it?  If your thought process is triggered by a movie, should the studio claim a piece?

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Lance Armstrong: A Metaphor for Modern Sport

What? Something on my nose?
Lance Armstrong's capitulation to USADA and the subsequent reaction of various factions says much about not just cycling, but about modern sports. Armstrong's move was calculated and measured, each statement carefully managed, each appearance (including yesterday's mountain bike ride) choreographed and staged.  Yesterday's messaging was all about the future - "It Will Be Great" was the theme of yesterday's press event - about charity work and get fit programmes, and the Livestrong foundation.  Livestrong has it's own lobbying firm. Several papers dutifully repeated the seeded message that donations to the Livestrong foundation were up by orders of magnitude on Friday.