In 2001, American law professor Glynn S. Lunney Jr wrote an article called ‘The Death of Copyright: Digital Technology, Private Copying, and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act’ in which he predicted that the DMCA legislation would “kill” copyright as a law that served a public rather than a private purpose.
As you may have guessed, he’s not a paid-up supporter of the creative industries’ view on copyright legislation and related issues. Anyway, he’s just written a new paper called ‘Copyright Lost’ in which he updates his views for the streaming era, complete with analysis of Spotify hits. But his overall views are pretty stark.
“The copyright of my dreams is dead. It may in fact never have existed,” he wrote, in relation to music. “It did not increase creative output or make music more widely available. It reduced both the quantity and quality of music created; and for the music that was created, copyright limited its availability. It is time to stop pretending otherwise… Rather than promote culture, in the recording industry over the last fifty years, strong and effective copyright protection diminished our cultural patrimony.”
There’s plenty more in that vein: we hope some industry bodies and researchers / economists within music companies give the study a read, and perhaps respond with their alternative opinions.