Investigating intellectual property on the web through Economics and Law.   no comments

Posted at 2:03 pm in Economics,Law,Uncategorized

The web has changed the way we consume content, and I want to investigate this change through the disciplines of Economics and Law. There are several related questions I hope to address.

How has the law evolved (or not) in response to the shift from print to web-based media? How and why has consumer behaviour changed with regards to content on the web? How do the two relate to each other? Is the current intellectual property regime in inevitable conflict with the economic decisions of content consumers?

I’m going to start by reading some textbooks. So far (with thanks to Alison), I have begun to leaf through Information Technology Law, by Andrew Murray (in particular, Part III: “Digital Content and Intellectual Property Rights”). I imagine that after attempting to read the whole IT law textbook I’ll end up having to get some more basic understanding of the law from additional sources. I’m also hoping to get in contact with some people who Alison recommended, namely:

  • Professor Steve Saxby (head of IT law research in Southampton)
  • Laura German (2nd year Phd Web Science, from a Law background)
  • Dr Roksana Moore (who gives lectures on IT law this term)

As for economics, I’m going to read the straightforwardly titled Economics, by Paul Samuelson and William Nordhaus (apparently a classic introductory textbook). I also have Modern Industrial Organization, Dennis W. Carlton, Jeffrey M. Perloff, in particular, Chapter 16:Patents and Technological Change”, again thanks to Alison.

Finally, because my interest is in consumer behaviour and economic decision-making with regards to the consumption of digital content, I would also like to look at ‘behavioural economics’. An Introduction to Behavioral Economics, by Nick Wilkinson and Matthias Klaes, will hopefully give me the relevant background. I also hope to get in contact with Professor David Gill from Southampton’s Economics department, who specialises in behavioural economics.

Written by rb5g11 on October 25th, 2011

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