I’ve spoken and published on IP theory so much, even I have trouble figuring out which of my various presentations is the best. I still agree with my Against Intellectual Property (published originally 2001) but it has some extraneous information I would now delete, is slightly dated, and I have in the meantime tightened up the language used in the argument and found a few additional arguments. Plus it’s fairly long.
I did a 2009 piece The Case Against IP: A Concise Guide, but it is not really a presentation of the case against IP—it’s more of a guide to the literature on this topic.
In a way I think the best case against IP is encapsulated in this short post: Intellectual Property Rights as Negative Servitudes.
Among my longer recent articles, the best pieces are:
1. “Law and Intellectual Property in a Stateless Society,” Libertarian Papers 5 (1) (2013): 1-44
2. “The Case Against Intellectual Property,” in Handbook of the Philosophical Foundations of Business Ethics (Prof. Dr. Christoph Lütge, ed.; Springer, 2013) (chapter 68, in Part 18, “Property Rights: Material and Intellectual,” Robert McGee, section ed.)
3. “Intellectual Freedom and Learning Versus Patent and Copyright,” The Libertarian Standard, Jan. 19, 2011 (also published as “Intellectual Freedom and Learning Versus Patent and Copyright,” Economic Notes No. 113 (Libertarian Alliance, Jan. 18, 2011). See also the speech which was the basis of this article, KOL062 | “Intellectual Freedom and Learning versus Patent and Copyright” (2010).
4. “Against Intellectual Property After Twenty Years: Looking Back and Looking Forward” (May 12, 2022)
5. “Intellectual Property and Libertarianism,” Mises Daily (Nov. 17, 2009)
6. “Introduction” in J. Neil Schulman, Origitent: Why Original Content is Property (Steve Heller Publishing, 2018), a breezy and fun little piece; also, the chapter “Conversation with Schulman about Logorights and Media-Carried Property”
7. KOL253 | Berkeley Law Federalist Society: A Libertarian’s Case Against Intellectual Property
8. KOL 037 | Locke’s Big Mistake: How the Labor Theory of Property Ruined Political Theory
9. KOL364 | Soho Forum Debate vs. Richard Epstein: Patent and Copyright Law Should Be Abolished
10. KOL341 | ESEADE Lecture: Should We Release Patents on Vaccines?, including: An Overview of Libertarian Property Rights and the Case Against IP [Speech + Transcript]
11. “Intellectual Property and Economic Development,” Mises University 2011 (July 27, 2011) [Speech + Transcript]
12. “KOL236 | Intellectual Nonsense: Fallacious Arguments for IP (Libertopia 2012)” (Feb. 10, 2018) and “KOL237 | Intellectual Nonsense: Fallacious Arguments for IP—Part 2 (Libertopia 2012)” (Feb. 12, 2018) [Speech + Transcript]
(all available here http://www.stephankinsella.com/publications/)
Among my talks—I don’t know. I have too many for me to sort out. Other than those above, here are some other recent ones:
- KOL268 | Bob Murphy Show: Law Without the State, and the Illegitimacy of IP
- KOL341 | ESEADE Lecture: Should We Release Patents on Vaccines?, including: An Overview of Libertarian Property Rights and the Case Against IP
- KOL172 | “Rethinking Intellectual Property: History, Theory, and Economics: Lecture 1: History and Law” (Mises Academy, 2011)
- KOL217 | Intellectual Property is the Bastard Child of the Gatekeepers
- KOL184 | Intellectual Property is the Root of All Evil (PorcFest 2015)
- KOL190 | On Life without Patents and Copyright: Or, But Who Would Pick the Cotton? (PFS 2015)
- KOL101 | The Future (the End?) of Intellectual Property (Open Science Summit, 2011)
- KOL 037 | Locke’s Big Mistake: How the Labor Theory of Property Ruined Political Theory
- KOL013 | “Intellectual Property and Libertarianism,” Mises University 2009
And a few selected blog posts:
- Intellectual Property and the Structure of Human Action
- Intellectual Property Rights as Negative Servitudes
- Classical Liberals and Anarchists on Intellectual Property
- Locke’s Big Mistake: How the Labor Theory of Property Ruined Political Theory: Transcript
- The “If you own something, that implies that you can sell it; if you sell something, that implies you must own it first” Fallacies,
- “Legal Scholars: Thumbs Down on Patent and Copyright”
- “The Overwhelming Empirical Case Against Patent and Copyright”
- Intellectual Nonsense: Fallacious Arguments for IP (Libertopia 2012)
- “The Non-Aggression Principle as a Limit on Action, Not on Property Rights”
- “IP and Aggression as Limits on Property Rights: How They Differ”
Until I write a new book from scratch—tentatively titled Copy This Book—this will have to do.
See also my You Can’t Own Ideas: Essays on Intellectual Property: A Skeletal E-book (Papinian Press, 2023).
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