Carolus wrote:Peter raises a most interesting point. Photocopying is a huge problem, which has only been exacerbated by publishers' active practice of copyfraud and barratry. I wonder if IMSLP's real crime in UE's mind had less to do with a few Bartok and Schoenberg scores than it did with exposing the facts of copyright laws to the light of open, publicly available knowledge. UE would very much like to create the impression that Bartok and Schoenberg are protected worldwide - even if it's not the truth. When copyright laws are obscure, semi-secret tomes written in dense legalese whose meaning is understandable only to a select priesthood, a climate of ignorance-based fear and intimidation is more easliy maintained.
Such enforcement schemes ultimately backfire, though. Music students and others, sent the message that all music is copyright (and thus illegal to photocopy), rebelled and photocopied all the more - even to the point where a special tax is now imposed upon the sale and operation of photocopiers in many places around the world. Thus, the type of behavior exhibited by UE actually increases the photocopying of works that are legitimately under copyright. So the vicious cycle continues: UE and its allies demand longer terms, more taxes and mandated fees, etc. - which in turn leads to more rebellion against the very idea of intellectual property.
Excellent point made!