The issues of intellectual property rights are incredibly complicated and there are many schools of thought on if these rights should be protected by the government in the form of patents, trademarks, and copyrights. I was having a conversation with a friend of mine who is into IT stuff (he was my IT guy when I ran my company) and we were discussing how Google has made tons of money off of other peoples IP and really hasn’t given them anything in return. Sites like YouTube are made almost exclusively by individual and corporate users, yet Google makes the money from these activities (I am aware that some users are paid also).
I am torn into different directions on this one because on one hand I really hate government interference, but on the other hand, I as an economics guy think that people do have the right to make money off of their own labor, and IP does have economic implications that could garner some protection rights. If I have an idea to make a totally new type of nanite that can cure cancer, I should have some protection on that idea. I should have the right to bring that to someone and be able to negotiate terms for them to be able to use my idea to develop the technology and I should have the right to make money off of my idea. I think in this slim usage the government should offer protection for the idea people, I would not say that it would be applicable to someone who is working for a company, has an idea and then decides to sell it to another company. If you are employed by a company your intellectual property is owned by the company you work for.
I do not think that IP should be expanded to music, movies or plays. These types of activities are always highly dependent on the ideas of others as the video talked about standing on the shoulders of giants. Music and movies don’t really seem to have that original of ideas to justify any sort of protection under the law. Music, especially mainstream stuff is nothing but the rehashed crap over and over again it seems. I will leave you with my favorite songs that shows evidence of unoriginality.