[LINK] Can ideas be stolen?

David Boxall david.boxall at hunterlink.net.au
Wed Oct 22 12:15:51 EST 2008

> Microsoft launches aggressive pursuit of pirates
> Microsoft has launched a devastating attack against alleged counterfeiters and pirates, taking simultaneous legal action in Australia and 48 countries on six continents for what they declared to be “Global Anti-Piracy Day”.
> Pirates scoff at Microsoft's anti-piracy day
> The same day that Microsoft launched its global " Anti Piracy Day" the crazy "pirates" from Sweden that run the Pirate Bay, self defined as the "World's largest BitTorrent tracker" decided to scoff at the software giant's initiative.

At first, this comment (from the first article) seemed somewhat valid to me:
>  unlike much of what might be stolen in a burglary, you can't replace stolen ideas
Then I asked myself: can an idea really be stolen?

Beyond that; after a while, doesn't a successful idea become part of our 
culture?  For how long can an idea be rightly said to belong to its 

My conclusion is that the excesses of "Intellectual Property" succeed in 
negating any legitimacy the comment in question might have had.

David Boxall                    |  My figures are just as good
                                 |  as any other figures.
                                 |  I make them up myself, and they
                                |  always give me innocent pleasure.
                                |                     --HL Mencken

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