IP and copyright theft are of course rather topical topics. Given as I’ve got a background in Law and Comp Sci the two most obvious avenues for studying this were closed. I decided instead to go for mathematics and economics to attack it. The little I can remember from IP law from my degree is that copyright law is old and rubbish. It’s designed to encourage innovation, but it does this by introducing something inherrently uncompetitive into a market which is based upon the idea of competition. Maybe looking at it from the economics side of things will help me understand it a bit better. As for the maths, I’ve decided to go for the Cryptography route in terms of being able to protect content from naughty people who want to steal it. It’s very hard, which is I suppose the point.
Reading wise, I’ve been told that it would help to look at number theory in order to better understand cryptography. I’ve had a little look at “A friendly introduction to number theory”, and also have got “Handbook of Applied Cryptography” which is on the recommended reading list for Stanford’s cryptography course. So it must be good. For the economics bit, I picked up “The Economics of IP law” which seems to be quite suitable given the subject choice. There are 4 volumes but I imagine that I’ll probably limit the scope to copyright (volume 1).