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June 10, 2004
Study on Copynorms in First Monday
Doug Simpson links to and provides some good analysis about a recent First Monday article (Anonymity Inhibits Social Control in P2P Nets?). The article is Pirates, sharks and moral crusaders: Social control in peertopeer networks and deals with social norms, including copynorms.
The basic gist of the study is that anonymous social networks have fewer effective norms than large, closed networks. For example, child pornography is much more widely available on the open network than the closed network. Presumably, small, closed networks would have even more effective norms.
This is actually good news for copyright holders. It means that if they modify their policies to function in accord with and reinforce certain copynorms, such as the no free riding norm, they will be able to thrive. However, if they continue to fight existing and developing norms, they are likely doomed.
See also, To Save Copyright We Must Reform It.
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