Arnold Kling

Copyright Luddites

Arnold Kling, Great Questions of Economics
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The movie industry has joined the fight to ban technology that has the potential to undermine copyright enforcement. As Dan Gillmor puts it,

If the business people who rule the entertainment industry had been as powerful 25 years ago as they are today, you'd be breaking the law if you set your videocassette recorder to tape your favorite Olympic event for later viewing. The VCR, assuming the entertainment industry would have allowed a manufacturer to sell it, would not have a fast-forward button because it would let you skip through the commercials without viewing them.

Discussion Question. Do you think that banning technologies such as personal videorecorders will help or hurt the U.S. retain its market leadership in the entertainment industry?

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