Digital librarian, Karen Coyle, has written about controlled digital lending (warning for PDF), where an artificial scarcity is applied to digital artifacts to limit concurrent access similar to the limitations that a finite number of objects exhibit in libraries' physical collections. This concept raises a lot of questions about not just copyright and digital versus physical, but also about reading in general. Some authors and publisher associations have already begun to object to controlled digital lending. However, few set aside misinformation and misdirection to allow for a proper, in-depth discussion of the issues.
We now have another question about book digitization: can books be digitized for the purpose of substituting remote lending in the place of the lending of a physical copy? This has been referred to as "Controlled Digital Lending (CDL)," a term developed by the Internet Archive for its online book lending services. The Archive has considerable experience with both digitization and providing online access to materials in various formats, and its Open Library site has been providing digital downloads of out of copyright books for more than a decade. Controlled digital lending applies solely to works that are presumed to be in copyright.
Controlled digital lending works like this: the Archive obtains and retains a physical copy of a book. The book is digitized and added to the Open Library catalog of works. Users can borrow the book for a limited time (2 weeks) after which the book "returns" to the Open Library. While the book is checked out to a user no other user can borrow that "copy." The digital copy is linked one-to-one with a physical copy, so if more than one copy of the physical book is owned then there is one digital loan available for each physical copy.
The Archive is not alone in experimenting with lending of digitized copies: some libraries have partnered with the Archive's digitization and lending service to provide digital lending for library-owned materials. In the case of the Archive the physical books are not available for lending. Physical libraries that are experimenting with CDL face the added step of making sure that the physical book is removed from circulation while the digitized book is on loan, and reversing that on return of the digital book.
Online access obviously can reach a much wider patron base than your average physical library.
(2020) Education Groups Drop their Lawsuit Against Public.Resource.Org
(2020) Internet Archive Files Answer and Affirmative Defenses to Publisher Copyright Infringement Lawsuit
(2020) Internet Archive Ends "Emergency Library" Early to Appease Publishers
(2020) Project Gutenberg Public Domain Library Blocked in Italy for Copyright Infringement
(2020) Publishers Sue the Internet Archive Over its Open Library, Declare it a Pirate Site
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 31 2022, @01:11PM (2 children)
Nothing is more scarce than that which does not exist. We do not have to come up with a solution on how to pay people to create new things, and it is not society's job to create or protect a business model. The way things are now is clearly broken. Hopefully it does not end up with another tech-oligarch gobbling up another industry like what happened with music and is continuing to happen with movies/serials and video games, even if the masses seem to prefer that over the old ways. When NFTs were first being discussed, they seemed like a great bridging step, allowing legal coverage to the owner and a market solution to pricing, while still leaving the moral rights of authorship intact. Now of course, they are nothing but silly collectable cards to brag about on twitter.
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 31 2022, @09:32PM (1 child)
What a strange thing to say! Of course it is up to us, and it is society's job! Who else? Now, if it is a cabal of Imaginary Property owners, who are rent-seeking, and attempting to exploit society, like parasites, then it is society's job to eliminate them, maybe with some kind of de-wormer. Maybe society is not coming up a solution, but it definitely should be rejecting criminal models out of hand.
And, as for the necessity of paying workers/creators, perhaps is we abandoned the capitalism model of threatened starvation, or loss of health insurance? Marx pointed out that profits rely on surplus value that result from underpaying labor, and is able to do so because of the "vast army of the unemployed."
How about, instead, we have a society where everyone's basic needs are met, not tied to wages, and the "compensation" was along the lines of Cory Doctorow's "Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom", in terms of social "cred", much the way the free software community functioned. "Have skills, will work for Whuffie!"
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 02 2022, @02:51PM
Marx theorised that based on a proven inadequate approach to understanding value. Labour is not, as it turns out, the only input to value. Context matters - is that farmer in the market up to his nostrils in pumpkins and just desperate for someone to take them off his hands before he has to compost them? Is that chef desperate to have enough pumpkins to stock his restaurant for a pumpkin pie extravaganza? Another factor is the organisation of resources. As much as people like to complain about managers and project managers and all that stuff, chaos rapidly mounts without those functions, and efficiently-run workplaces get more done than the alternative.
If you want to theorise about alternative societies, start by understanding what Marx got terribly, horrible wrong, and move on from that foundation.