Pinterest: The Pirate Bay IPO

If Instagram is the teen-age bedroom wall of the Internet, then Pinterest ($PINS) is the scrap book.

This would be fine, so long as most of the content was original. But it’s not. It’s a model that rewards image theft.

So, it’s not unfounded to say that $PINS’ IPO is akin to having The Pirate Bay IPO on the NYSE. At least TPB is honest about their intentions.

Let’s do a quick thought experiment. Suppose TPB did IPO, what would the reaction be? Hollywood lobby rage, for starters. And that would likely be enough to stop it, in its tracks.

But if it’s only photography, then who cares, right? Particularly if said images come from amateurs, students, or obscure local pros.

If the market is telling us that it’s all good to profit from unlicensed image copies, then end copyright. Drop intellectual monopoly. Open-source everything. Reform laws to fit the 21st Century, at least.

But that would need a bottom-up movement that top-down legislators responded to. Bottom-ups have advocates and practitioners, but not pocket-stuffing lobbyists. It would also need legislators who weren’t intellectual and moral bankrupts. Fat chance.

Unfortunately, we’re likely to get IP laws, that serve illiberal interests. None of them will help independent artists. This is the dilemma, when abstract universalism and fractal localism are in conflict. So what are people left with?

Creative Commons and the some rights reserved option is a place to start. But questions about its efficacy are reasonable.

There are no easy answers, other than to follow Warren Buffet’s suggestion to never buy an IPO… particularly if it’s a digital scrap book of stolen images, with a fluffed market cap of $13.7B on $-0.20 EPS.

Bubbles, we’re blowing bubbles.

Some Rights Reserved

I have switched the copyright license for most of my published work, on my blog and website. It will be a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International.

This means that you’re free to share, remix, or use. But it must be non-commercial, attributed to me, and shared with the same license. Some of my official digital copies are available to download and share, from Ascribed.io

Client work will remain All Rights Reserved, for the agreed to embargo on extra use.

My reason for this is simple. The world has changed. However, bad actors or patent trolls are, once again, being too aggressive with their IP rent-seeking. I’m looking at you Disney and more recently, Microsoft.

You can use centralized databases or emerging decentralized tech. But we all have the right to own our data and content, sharing or selling it however we choose. Copyright infringement – if we’re going to have IP laws at all – should at most be a civil matter, rather than criminal. Anything more, is barbaric.

 

Free PDF Copy: Against Intellectual Monopoly