Copyright Protection Is A Limit Theory For Copyright

1771 Words8 Pages
Copyright protection has no single theory that fully justifies its existence, nor can it. No two authors are the same and as such they are all motivated and incentivised in different ways; any justification for copyright in Anglo-American jurisprudence must be multifaceted to be able to fully justify the use of copyright. This essay will first explore the economic incentive theory for copyright, praising its effectiveness in commercial areas but ultimately finding that, especially in the age of the internet, it is lacking as a singular justification for copyright. The natural theories of labour and expression will then be examined in light of the gaps left by the incentive theory; it will be discussed how well both theories, especially expression, work in the private sphere. All three theories will then be examined together with regard to modern society and its needs for copyright protection and this essay will conclude that no single theory could fully justify copyright due to the wide variation of authors that require its protection, instead a collection of theories is most appropriate and effective in fully justifying copyright. The costs of producing works can be high and time consuming. Once a work is created it can then be easily copied for a fraction of the cost and in a fraction of the time. (or even no cost in no time) Without the protection of copyright preventing such copying there would be no incentive to (for) the author to create works in the first place. The incentive theory is the most popular theory justifying copyright in Anglo-American Jurisprudence, where its advantages in protecting more commercially minded works and authors is evident. It is effective in the way that it incentivises authors with the prospec... ... middle of paper ... alone can function effectively as a singular justification. Whilst economic incentives are the most popular in modern law, it does not justify the protection of copyright in all situations in which protection may be applied. Both Lockean and Hegelian natural theories also suffer from the lack of ability to cover all potential authors. This is due to the fact that copyright covers works ranging from industrial to artistic and thus the motivations of the authors involved will vary and therefore, so must the justifications for providing their works with protection. As a result of this, copyright can have no single theory that fully justifies its existence. The optimum approach to justifying copyright is to combine both economic and natural rights into a more flexible theorem that could justify protection across a range of authors and their differing motivations.
Open Document