Do you like someone else copying your work or creation? Let’s put it to a different level, when you were in high school did you like people copying your answers in exams? The answer is no, no one loves their work to be copied by others. That’s why there is a law stated in the 1710 the Statue of Queen Anne, the first appearance of Copyright Law. The first copyright law grants owners monopoly for 14 years after publication and after that it is not secured any more Follow by Berne Convention 1886, also known as the foundation of the modern copyright changed it to 50 years after author’s death. And now the current US Copyright Law is 70 years after author’s death and if there is a corporate authorship it can go up to 120 years after creation or 95 years after publications.
Okay, after knowing how the copyright work in the society, now we look into the society we are in. No longer are books and newspaper our basic source of information. There is not much of authorship in publishing books that need to be protected, so what is the current Copyright Law protecting? The answer is ‘Information’, in the modern industries obtaining information is the key to all success. There many types of information in the society, for example like medical information, political information and others. “The most common type of information systems used in business organizations are those designed for electronic and mobile commerce, transaction processing, management information and also decision support.” (Stair, Reynolds & Reynolds 2009)
What is so important about information? Many wants information to be free and many also want to charge others for information. According to Barbieri (2012), he looks into the information of biology. He defines information as “heredity and natural selection simple do not exist in the world of chemistry and this creates a contrast with the idea that “life is chemistry”.” As we can see many difference department will view information in a different way base on their speciality In past, information is scarce and hard to find, to put it simple people have to pay for information. But with new technology rises, people no longer looking into the perspective of paying anymore. According to Creese (2007) users are starting to ask questions of why they need to have certain applications or pay certain site where there is Google that consist of all information. Even Copyright Law can’t play its role properly with the amount of people accessing the internet.
For an example, we could look into the role of music in the industry. In the early 1950s, the cassette player was created and artists were selling their records with that. Than in the 1982, Sony creates the first CD player and soon it also becomes a big hit in the music industries. But it also didn’t last long till the next modern technology was introduced to the society, The MP3. “MP3 stands for MPEG Audio Layer III and it is a standard for audio compression that makes any music file smaller with little or no loss of sound quality.” (‘History of MP3 Technology’ n.d.) With this websites has created an endless amount of MP3 songs for users to download without paying. So now think about it, why would we want to pay for an album where we can download everything for free?
Image URL: http://thomaslauer.com/images/music/jb3.jpg
With all this, copyright created an artificial scarcity that controls over the access modes of users. They uses the concept of few-to-many and hierarchy in the society of networks. But with all this what happens to the value of information? It is also stated that every digital operation involves copying, like when we go on-line the computer copied everything we do, and the internet is soon called the “Copy Machine”. Internet has become the new medium towards the society, but there is a newer social networks coming up as more people wants information to free and obtainable, will the society and government let it be? Will authors lose their power in copyright? Or maybe people will take the advantage of copyright like the image below.
Image URL: http://www.offthemarkcartoons.com/cartoons/2009-05-06.gif
- ‘History of MP3 Technology’ n.d., Scribd, accessed 13/9/2012, http://www.scribd.com/doc/17036417/History-of-MP3-Technology
- Barbieri, M 2012, ‘What is Information?’, Biosemiotics, vol.5, no.2, pp147-152, accessed 13/9/2012, http://link.springer.com.ezproxy.uow.edu.au/static-content/0.5455/pdf/298/art%253A10.1007%252Fs12304-012-9142-8.pdf?token=1349932725799–4a5d57dbc78503c201c0ac8fea669734083d0c78c96d15a2cf81c0abb785bd2e6d1120a9f8e6f90294c8e3afe972747f80a6a36970de39699d216711dcb754fe&doi=10.1007%2Fs12304-012-9142-8&contentType=article
- Creese, G 2007, ‘Information Scarcity to Information Overload’, DM Review, vol.17, no.1, pp21, accessed 13/9/2012, http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.uow.edu.au/docview/214677834
- Stair, RM, Reynolds, G & Reynolds, GW 2009, Principles of Information Systems, Cengage Learning, United State of America, accessed 13/9/2012, http://books.google.com.my/books?id=TlQCvdWQkfEC&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false