The Ideological Gap Between Human-beings and Computers

Intellectual Property/Copyright V.S Our Wisdom(Ideology)

It seems to me that library is not a museum but a place for users to enjoy in/visible intellectual property as much as possible.

Five Laws of library science’ by Ranganathan Shiyali Ramamrita(1892-1972) are as follow.

  1. Books are for use.
  2. Every reader his [or her] book.
  3. Every book its reader.
  4. Save the time of the reader.
  5. The library is a growing organism.

This is one of my favorite fundamental philosophy or ideology(mission statements) of library subject. These laws are applicable to the ones in this century if we look at what Seiter writes in her book, The internet playground, Seiter(2005). She says

“ The internet is more like a mall than a library; it resembles a gigantic public relations collection more than it does an archive of scholars”.

This is my view that if books can be replaced by all virtual entities(digital information) acquired via media within cyberspace, laws of intellectual property and copyrights have to be kept challenging by our wisdom more than ever.

Intellectual Property

Attribution: By books live; Ben Williams on Flicker. Image: From Edison to iPod.

Yes, all laws of intellectual property rights and copyrights are relied on our thinking process.

Tangible Human Beings V.S Intangible Attributions

It is or will be a big problem if users step beyond those laws, and we have to know that lawyers are interested in not the content of information you get through the hyper-connected line or space but where you actually find and own it for your property when it comes to those issues.  Since there are no more definitions of primary source, secondary source and tertiary source in the regime of cyberspace compared to off-line world, the original sources of all digital in/visible products or materials gained or created through the on-line system are hardly attributable to due to the inherent mechanic system of computers, where information cannot simply belong to anywhere.

Since human-beings are tangible living things under the big assumption that we should or could in some way find or detect those sources (or originals), and so are lawyers, there are ideological gaps among computers(autonomous artificial intelligence), digital consumers/citizens including lawyers/prosecutors and policy-makers. The computer scientists do regard this fact not as ‘a mistake or deficiency’ but as something, which ‘we have worked so hard to become so’ thanks to the development of IT(Information Technology) according to Ansuz’s view. It is apparent that we should not assume or take it granted for the way that we used to manage or know how to find tangible attributions to the location of original information just like before the advent of this hyper-connected society. Such complicated or intangible reason behind this fact can be referred to the following passage by Ansuz.

 ‘If I add 39 plus 3 and get 42, and you do the same thing, there is no way that “my” 42 can be said to be different from “your” 42.  Given two bit-for-bit identical MP3 files, there is no meaningful (to a computer scientist) way to say that one is a recording of the Cage composition and the other one isn’t.  There would be no way to test one of the files and see which one it was, because they are actually the same file.’

 He actually pointed out and tried to explain how hard it is to locate and find the authentic/original record /file of the composition, whose music Ansuz’s friend would like to compress with MP3 compressor. There are so many identical records within hyper-connected society, which we assume should be exactly the same, yet are not really the same ones according to the mechanic system of computer.

Insufficient Ideological Infrastructures of Intellectual Property and Copyrights

 All matters of copyrights and intellectual property are part of or result from ideological products, which our countries or political institutions (and each citizen) have mainly established. That is to say, those conceptions or definitions of copyrights and intellectual property have been made, reviewed and revised by policy-makers according as our needs grow to be caught up with the technological development. However the infrastructure for us to live with those rights are incomplete and have so many deficiencies.

Even if we try to look at an innovative side of those laws as one of the global projects : creative commons, which is something intellectual activity or an effort of human beings in this century, you could see some fights over ‘who is responsible for the image?’among Flickr Group ; Creative Commons ; a photographer ; Virgin Mobile ad, which can be referred to the article ‘Suit exposes flaws in Creative Commons’ .

Since the economic depression in the last few years, there are more people to utilize or come to library physically/digitally in Japan, where they could enjoy intellectual resources (on/off line materials) since it is actually more cost-effective or free for them to search and get information from library than profit organizations (on/off line book or media-audio-shops). Thanks to the development of our society/culture, you could find many public libraries, where citizens are welcome to be main users. Public libraries in Japan are supervised under the ‘Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology’, which makes the overall of ‘Fundamental Laws of Education’ although local public body has more authorities over its own regulations (systems )or laws. Every citizen in our democratic society has his/her right to access /enjoy information, and to pursue or promote his/her autonomous self-directing lifelong learning.

As long as the state has such an ideology to encourage every citizen to enjoy all the information via media, those intellectual property sides of laws need to be renovated or re-established upon the certain understanding of the fact that we are not the same mechanism of computers(artificial intelligent), and completely different styles of such laws, which could challenge the present ‘copyright laws’ and enforce the idea of ‘fair use’  need to be established and implemented.

One thought on “The Ideological Gap Between Human-beings and Computers

  1. This is a challenging topic, made even more challenging by the technological ease of copying now. When we create a copy of something and upload it, who can say which copy is the original, as they are exactly the same. When google image searching, it’s almost impossible to find the original upload of a popular image because it’s been uploaded so many times by so many other people. How do we build in an understanding and appreciation for original digital works? I find it interesting that often people choose to download, and then re-upload files in their own space rather than just linking to the original file (which is my preference). How can we encourage this kind of referencing in a digital environment?

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