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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter December 31, 2009

Copyright Abolition and Attribution

  • Ben Depoorter , Adam Holland and Elizabeth Somerstein
From the journal Review of Law & Economics


An increasing number of scholarly voices challenge the balance between incentives and deadweight losses created by intellectual property rights. In their book Against Intellectual Monopoly (2008), Boldrin and Levine) move beyond pragmatic calls to fine-tune the scope of intellectual property rights to question the very premises of the quid pro quo underlying the intellectual property rights system. In this brief essay, we contemplate the effects of removing traditional copyright protection. We draw upon the available literature in economic theory and copyright scholarship to examine the likely incentive effects of copyright abolition on authors, while considering the available non-legal forms of remuneration for authors. Furthermore, we contemplate a version of copyright protection grounded and limited to a mandatory right of attribution.

Published Online: 2009-12-31

©2011 Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co. KG, Berlin/Boston

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