Confusion Between Sharing Being Vilified As Stealing

The confusion between sharing being vilified as stealing is always… ALWAYS a confusion between the nature of physical objects in a physical world VS the nature of information in the information world. And the big copyright industries knows this and they exploit this confusion PERFECTLY……….. Let me explain.

You Exchanged it for Money
When you sell me an apple, that apple becomes my property. Once you’ve sold the apple to me it is mine.
I don’t care how much effort you spent growing that apple, You give up your right to control this apple because it is no longer yours. You exchanged it for money.

Now this apple of mine I will share it if I want to. I will even COPY my apple (i.e. throw it in the replicator from Star Trek) then share the copies to starving children. It becomes none of your business what I do with my own apple. This is no different with pieces of information. Once you’ve sold me a piece of information, that COPY, (just that one copy) becomes MINE. You give up your right to control THIS copy because you exchanged it for money.

Then what is theft of intellectual property? Imagine if I hacked into your server with the intent of retrieving a copy of your game directly from your server…. Now if I really did that, then yes. That would amount to true stealing (i.e. hacking to bypass a paywall). In such a scenario it would indeed be like a real theft of intellectual property. It would be robbery and it is not to be tolerated.

Expanding further, imagine if I broke into your house while you were asleep and I modified the code in YOUR copy of a game. Wouldn’t that be a form of trespass? I am exercising control of your property without your permission, not only is it trespass, it is also a form of vandalism. Now contrast with this scenario: Say if I purchased a copy from you… what if… I take this copy, I go to my computer and I make modifications to my copy. Would that still be trespass or vandalism? Not at all! Because me modifying MY copy affects only MY copy. Your copy is unaffected. Even if I upgraded my copy to version 1.1, yours is still at version 1.0! That is why no conflict occurs over the use of property, each exercises control over their own copy.

Enter Copyright
Now as a society we can agree to give up certain rights to our own property in order to promote the progress of learning, hence why copyright was invented [see Statute of Anne]. Copyright is the limited time, limited suspension of the PEOPLE’s RIGHT to Copy. With copyright, that right we all have, the right to exercise control over our own copy, that right is taken away and given over to the copyright holders for their commercial exploitation thereof. (hence copyright ‘holders’. they hold YOUR right to copy. Not copyright owners). Copyright is the ability to use the State’s branch of coercion to forcefully shut down competing printers. That is why Falkvinge calls it a ‘monopoly’ because mechanically it is one. (history reveals copyright as monopoly. Read your history books.) Even the US Supreme Court calls it that.

Making Money in the World of Ideas
If you want to try and make money by producing in the world of information, realize that in this world, one copy sold can be split into a million copies. Therefore, don’t try to make money like you’re selling bottles of milk. Okay?
Use this strategy: This is the formula to making money on the net.

Revised from a comment on Falkvinge’s post: