Distributed Intellectual Product Rights Common Rights, Collective Rights and Intellectual Property
Distributed Intellectual Product Rights
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© 1999-2005
Nicholas Bentley

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Intellectual Property Rules

In this section I list the regulations that would have to apply to the Distributed Intellectual Property Rights system and the digital intellectual products described above.

As the Author and Consumer Rights Offices make-up the fundamental structure that records and identifies the rights and property ownership of both the creators and the consumers they would require high levels of security and maximum legal protection against fraudulent use or attack. Some of the legal requirements would be:

  • Author Rights Offices would have a legal responsibility to register only products that have a legal owner and record only the valid licence identifications they are given during a transaction.
  • Consumer Rights Offices would be required to only licence products to their own registered users and record only the valid product and rights information that is given to them during a rights transaction. Consumer Rights Offices would not subsequently be allowed to change the owner of individual products.
  • Both offices would be required to hold personal and commercial information in confidence.
  • There will be product ownership verification rules that each office will have to adhere to.
  • Secure transactions between offices would also be legally protected.

I foresee that these legal regulations for the administrative offices could be quite onerous, like regulations for banks and stock exchanges, but I also foresee that these stringent regulations should not impinge on the day-to-day use of the system by consumers.

The identified digital manifestations of the intellectual products will also be regulated but in a concise way so that it is clear to everyone what can and cannot be done. For example:

  •     The intellectual component of the digital product is not allowed to be reproduced separately from the Property Rights Descriptor (PRD). (Although the digital product may be reduced to the PRD alone).
  •     The digital product cannot be traded or used in any commercial form without obtaining express permission from the creator. This, I believe, would be a departure from current copyright law where copyrighted work can be sold-on. This ‘first sale’ article was enacted to promote the dissemination of information. In this digital age there are not the same problems of distributing information as there were 200 years ago. (More on this in the next section under the ‘first sale’ heading).
  •     The consumer who owns an identified manifestation of a digital product may lend a copy to another consumer, who would be identified in the DIPR environment as a consumer claiming their common rights, but this third party has no rights over the physical digital product only the unregulated common right to the intellectual component. The lender would be responsible for identifying the recipient in the DIPR system.
  •     The digital product can be converted form one digital medium to another providing both mediums support the PRD structure and the intellectual content and its PRD are not modified in the process.
  •     Modifying the digital product, which is made up of the intellectual component and a PRD is only allowed if special rules are adhered to.

Today there is a time limit on copyrightable material and this should continue in the DIPR system but I believe the PRD identification should stay with the product indefinitely, either as the original existing PRD, or maybe a better solution would be to have an Author Rights Office available to issue free PRD to products with lapsed copyright or collective right status.

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© 1999-2007 Nicholas Bentley Updated: May 2007