Intellectual Property and the Free Market
Intellectual Property (IP) is a subject that divides the Liberty community greatly. I'm not gonna say that's a bad thing because it's another opportunity to develop ourselves and reach a morally progressive truth. As a matter of fact, I think we should be focusing on these differences in the name of consistency.
This is gonna be a long one, and I hope worthwhile to you. This post is inspired by a talk in the famous trollbox with @amicus. I suggest we discuss via posts rather than comments to maximize reach and earnings potential. If you disagree, disregard the suggestion. If you agree, drop links in the comments fam.
(I made that pic myself. Steal it. It's the #anarcho-steemian badge)
So let's talk about intellectual property
Intellectual property: noun
a work or invention that is the result of creativity, such as a manuscript or a design, to which one has rights and for which one may apply for a patent, copyright, trademark, etc.source
I'm looking to develop a free market viewpoint. Y'all know what that means, so you know my base essential opinion.
I understand the belief in IP. I've been there and believed it too. It's safe. But at it's core, intellectual property is communism. At very least it's a slippery slope that leads to communism. Protectionism is not a free market principle.
People will tell you all day long that they're pro-market. That they're pro-liberty. That they want the government out of their pockets. And many will continue to tell you that they want the government to protect their favorite markets by way of tarriffs, trade wars, and market regulations. They will advocate that the government rule by way of licenses and permits on whether another player can enter the market and compete. They'll even demand that a business that may be able to offer a more favorable product be ran out of the market because it creates competition.
It is to be pointed out, however, that protectionism, socialism, and communism are basically the same plant in three different stages of its growth. All that can be said is that legal plunder is more visible in communism because it is complete plunder; and in protectionism because the plunder is limited to specific groups and industries.Frederic "OG Freddy B" Bastiat, The Law
Bastiat is a great moral and logical authority here. I recommend without hesitation that everyone reading this post go read The Law. The link above goes to a complete online text of it. The world would be a better place if you did.
See, when you stifle competition, you stifle the driving force of economy. Protectionism in whatever form seeks to stifle competition in some way. To protect the status quo. And the status quo is stagnation not progress.
Supporters of IP "rights" claim that the competition of their favored business is cheating by copying aspects of a certain successful business model. Is it bad that other businesses try to compete and integrate successful aspects of other businesses in an attempt to do so? Should they be required by law (read "by force") to reinvent the wheel each time a new wheel company is started?
Granted, it's not a wise business move to copy every aspect of your competition. You need to improve the model, process, or design you seek to compete with. That puts the copier in a reactive position, playing catch-up with the market. But studying the competition (a popular approach that's approved by Sun Tzu . Read 9 and 13. It's competitive market tactics.
But I get it. If your company can be protected legally by the force monopolizer, you're set. You can't lose. That's a disconnect I see there inside the free market circles. Copyrights, patents, legal protection against true free market competitors.
Stay competitive. Stay relevant. I look forward to this talk.