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Every Time Copyright Is Invoked, A Fair Use Angel Loses Their Wings - Morgan Dawn Livejournal:The Here And Now
The Here And Now
Every Time Copyright Is Invoked, A Fair Use Angel Loses Their Wings
The Copyright Monopoly Was Created As A Censorship Instrument – And Is Still Used As One

"When the printing press hit Europe, royalty and clergy panicked. All of a sudden, they had lost the gatekeeper position of determining what culture and knowledge was available to the masses, and by extension, lost control of the political discourse of their time.

At the time, different regimes reacted differently to the threat. France reacted by banning book shops altogether and banning the use of the printing press under penalty of death. The ban was utterly ineffective. (Yes, you read that right: the penalty for unauthorized copying has been escalated as far as the death penalty, still without effect.)....


In this environment, [Queen Mary I of England] sought a further means to suppress free speech and political dissent. Seeing how France’s death penalty against the printing press had failed miserably, she instead opted for an unholy alliance between capital and the crown. Mary I handed out a printing monopoly on May 4, 1557 to the London Company of Stationers. In return for a lucrative monopoly of printing everything in England, the company would agree to not print anything the Crown’s censors deemed politically insubordinate.

The scheme worked to suppress dissent and free thought, and censorship was successfully introduced. The monopoly was called copyright, the word from an internal registry with the London Company of Stationers. Thus, the unholy alliance of the copyright monopoly was forged in the blood of political dissent." [A Dreamwidth post with comment count unavailable comments | Post or read on Dreamwidth| How to use OpenID]

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