The Sociology of Ownership

May 14, 2008

Copyright law guru William Patry takes a look at Robert Merton’s thoughts on the ownership of ideas.

The moral of the story: the notion of originality (and therefore ownership in some sense) is vastly overrated.

Patry links to a number of Merton’s essays as well as his ASA Presidential address. I’ll be following up since I’m long overdue to read a lot more Merton.

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