Applying the Logic of Intellectual Property Incentives Outside the Law – Slaw

“That was then, and this is now. And for now, what encourages learning and promotes science’s progress amounts to a legal work-around that largely circumvents the law. For example, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research Open Access Policy (following the example of NIH in the US) insists that the Canadian research it sponsors be made publicly available one year after publication, rather than 50 years after the author’s death prescribed by law as a necessary incentive to stimulate science. Or consider the widespread use of Creative Commons licensing that similarly works around the automatic application of lifetime-plus restrictions to encourage the ready and free use of the content. when it comes to promoting the benefits of research and scholarship, funding agencies and universities find little incentive in the law.

In earlier blog posts, I have suggested that this is reason enough to revisit the law, and my goal for the coming academic year is to begin in earnest just such a Sisyphean uphill push for legal reform….”