It's been well over ten years since Negativland was sued by Island Records for supposed copyright infringement, trademark infringement, defamation of character and consumer fraud contained in our 1991 U2 single. In the big wide world of the ownership of ideas, a lot has changed since then-the advent of the Internet and its worldwide empowerment of individuals through personalized interconnection, the effects of economic globalization and how it bypasses both the ideologies of local governments and the rule of their national laws, and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act with which intellectual property owners are attempting to survive as all these rugs are being pulled out from under them. There is a contemporary realization that, on one hand, the fate of all content is now in the hands of its receiving audience more than ever before, and, on the other hand, that worldwide commerce is scrambling to forge all kinds of new laws and regulations to maintain their traditional control over the fate of "their" content.
Two Relationships to a Cultural Public Domain,
66 Law and Contemporary Problems
Available at: http://scholarship.law.duke.edu/lcp/vol66/iss1/9