"Abolishing patent and copyright law sounds radical, but two
economists at Washington University in St. Louis say it's an idea
whose time has come. Michele Boldrin and David K. Levine see
innovation as a key to reviving the economy. They believe the
current patent/copyright system discourages and prevents inventions
from entering the marketplace. The two professors have published
their views in a new book, Against Intellectual Monopoly, from
Cambridge University Press.
"From a public policy view, we'd ideally like to eliminate
patent and copyright laws altogether," says Levine, John H. Biggs
Distinguished Professor of Economics. "There's plenty of protection
for inventors and plenty of protection and opportunities to make
money for creators. It's not that we see this as some sort of
charitable act that people are going to invent and create things
without earning money. Evidence shows very strongly there are lots
of ways to make money without patents and copyright."