A fascinating read @ 35,000 feet

I picked up Wired at the airport before boarding the plane. The cover story on Manga was extremely interesting and offered up some excellent thoughts, especially related to copyright, intellectual rights and the rise of dojinshi :
(Note: Emphasis below is mine)

"This odd situation exposes the conflict between what Stanford law professor (and Wired contributor) Lawrence Lessig calls the "read only" culture and the "read/write" culture. Intellectual property laws were crafted for a read-only culture. They prohibit me from running an issue of Captain America through a Xerox DocuColor machine and selling copies on the street. The moral and business logic of this sort of restriction is unassailable. By merely photocopying someone else's work, I'm not creating anything new. And my cheap reproductions would be unfairly harming the commercial interests of Marvel Comics.

But as Lessig and others have argued, and as the dojinshi markets amply confirm, that same copyright regime can be inadequate, and even detrimental, in a read/write culture. Amateur manga remixers aren't merely replicating someone else's work. They're creating something original. And in doing so, they may well be helping, not hindering, the commercial interests of the copyright holders. Yet they're treated no differently from me and my hypothetical Captain America photocopies. The result is a misalignment between the emerging imperatives of smart business and the lagging sensibilities of old laws."

The full article is long, but is well worth reading from a cultural, historical (manga /graphic novels) and even economic standpoint - Japan, Ink: Inside the Magna Industrial Complex

PS: This distinction between the "read-only" and "read/write" cultures is huge! Just think about the impact to libraries... collection development ... services ... etc. when everything has the potential to become participatory and remixable. Hmmm ... [off to think some more]

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