The current era can be described as the age of information. Today’s society is driven by data and knowledge that determine the pace and direction of global development. Furthermore, information equally becomes the subject of trade, both domestically and internationally. It attracts attention and contributes to the development of leisure and professional activities within society. As a result, information products obtain an unprecedented value because of their undeniable impact. The replicability of data is another critical component of its value because its use and transmission are not limited to one owner. As such, intellectual property (IP) is subject to theft and misuse that are more difficult to identify and trace due to the replicability potential of the product. Those in possession of the IP rely on the principles of copyright to prevent fraudulent actions. However, observations suggest that copyright infringements remain frequent in the current environment. At the same, the seriousness of these actions is often underestimated, as the rightful owner does not lose possession of the property. This essay argues that copyright infringement and misuse of others’ intellectual property are dangerous actions that undermine the values of society.
The law procedures surrounding intellectual property and copyright infringements are associated with serious issues that impede justice. First of all, the very identification of such infringements is a complicated matter. The amount of information and content produced in today’s world is unprecedentedly large. Millions of people are engaged in creative and professional activities that lead to the creation of intellectual works. Tracing all these activities is time-consuming and often impossible, which is why many instances of copyright infringement remain unnoticed. This problem is acknowledged by Zhang et al. (2018), who refer to crowdsourcing as one of the potential solutions. For example, with the help of crowdsourced viewers, the infringements of copyrights during numerous livestreams can be detected. In this case, justice is ensured by the awareness of the people.
On the other hand, the identification of copyright infringements is merely the first step toward justice. The next stage comprises the necessity to prove the fact of intellectual property theft. This procedure often becomes complicated because the property itself is copied rather than stolen. Therefore, the theft is not as evident as in the case of physical property. Under these circumstances, plaintiffs are faced with the ultimate objective of proving the guilt of the other party. Loren and Reese (2020) refer to this issue as the burden of proof that plaintiffs bear in copyright infringement litigation. They have to provide sufficient evidence that another person’s creative work was, indeed, a product of the intellectual property theft. However, the prejudices of the public impede this process, thus indirectly contributing to the growth of copyright infringements in the world. As such, it appears vital to revise the copyright legislation framework on a global level in order to promote fair play and transparency in creative industries.
Overall, the legislation in terms of copyright protection lacks shape in the current environment. The very parameters of copyright infringement remain vague and require further elaborations. In addition, the detection of such violations is a demanding task that cannot be performed without external help. Once the infringements are detected, the next stage is to overcome doubts and mistrust in order to prove them in litigation. Today, the owners of intellectual property face numerous barriers that prevent society from fully adhering to the principles of copyright.
Loren, L. P., & Reese, R. A. (2020). Proving infringement: Burdens of proof in copyright infringement litigation. Lewis and Clark Law Review, 621.
Zhang, Y. Z., Li, Q., Tong, H., Badila. J., Zhang, Y., & Wang, D. (2018). Crowdsourcing-based copyright infringement detection in live video streams. IEEE.