Sunday, March 11, 2018

Protecting copyright with blockchain?

I've been reading articles discussing how blockchain can be used to "protect" the interests of copyright and patent holders.  While I agree this technology would be helpful, we need to recognise that this is a philosophy of "protection" that is the opposite to technological measures such as encrypted media.

Blockchain provides a decentralised database technology, ensuring that records that have been added can't be faked, removed, etc without detection. While blockchain provides a level of authenticity and immutability.of the data not seen before, we are still talking about an enhanced database technology.

I've discussed the flaw in copyright law a few times, which is the outdated interpretation of Berne Article 5 used to claim that there can never be formalities with copyright such as registration.

Blockchain would be a great technology to use, along with modernisation of copyright law, to solve problems ranging from the orphaned works problem to the "not available for sale" problem which I believe is the root cause of a majority of copyright infringement.

Without the modernisation of copyright law, these technologies won't be all that helpful.  The technology would only provide a small benefit for copyright holders who are already visible, while the major problems in copyright law are with works where the copyright holders and licensing options have been kept hidden.

Post a Comment