This essay does not attempt to specify the privacy rights that users might assert against the purveyors of DRM systems. Instead, it undertakes a very preliminary, incomplete exploration of several questions on the "property" side of this debate. What is the relationship between rights in copyrighted works and rights in things or collections of bits embodying works? In particular, as the (popular and legal) understanding of copies of works as residing in "things" becomes largely metaphorical, how should the law construct and enforce boundedness with respect to those copies? Does the calculus of property and contract allow for consideration of other rights, based neither in works nor in things, that might be weighed in the balance? I will suggest that the property justification for using DRM systems to invade privacy is far too narrow, and ignores a number of important public policy considerations.
2002 U. ILL. J.L. Tech. & Pol'y 375-383
Scholarly Commons Citation
Cohen, Julie E., "Overcoming Property: Does Copyright Trump Privacy?" (2002). Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works. 57.