John Perry Barlow, EFF co-founder: I am still optimistic. I didn't expect that the entire wealth of the industrial period would gracefully allow us to render them irrelevant. They're putting up a spirited fight, but I don't think they'll win. Victory comes to the patient. The content industry used to call me the devil, now the same people come to me for advice on how to make it work for them, they're abandoning their King Canute strategy. I don't think there's proof that downloading has cost the record industry billions, for the same reason that hearing a song on the radio doesn't cost a sale. There are lots of studies, but no one can say for sure. Last year I asked Cary Sherman if he'd co-design a study with EFF to give fair insight into what the losses or gains are from downloading. He said, "I don't think we can do that. I don't believe my constituents would allow that because it might turn out that you're right." Wouldn't they want to know? "No, I don't think it's like that with them." It's a matter of religious belief. They're near retirement, they can have any religion they want. They'll be replaced by the electronic Hisbollah they've created with their Draconian strategies, the wild-eyed 17-year-olds who hack DRM will beat the 55 year olds in posh cars in Bel Air.Link to my notes, Link to talk precis
Can we come up with a regime for regulating the economy of ideas and the way of getting paid for work you do with your mind that doesn't treat thought as a noun and therefore subject to being treated as property. The IP system is a gigantic kludge of patches that have been laid on in different regimes, as it all goes to bits, it needs to be harmonized with a regime that recognizes that this regulates the relationship of the creator and the audience.
I write books. My latest is a YA science fiction novel called Homeland (it's the sequel to Little Brother). More books: Rapture of the Nerds (a novel, with Charlie Stross); With a Little Help (short stories); and The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow (novella and nonfic). I speak all over the place and I tweet and tumble, too.