2021/04/04

Superdistribution, blockchain and the concept of NFTs

 Finally the concept of superdistribution by Roichi Mori comes into being: 


This is copied from the following website

Superdistribution

"Lets consider a different approach that might work for any form of computer-based information. It is based on the following observation. Software objects differ from tangible objects in being fundamentally unable to monitor their copying but trivially able to monitor their use. For example, it is easy to make software count how many times it has been invoked, but hard to make it count how many times it has been copied. So why not build an information age market economy around this difference between manufacturing age and information age goods?

If revenue collection were based on monitoring the use of software inside a computer, vendors could dispense with copy protection altogether. They could distribute electronic objects for free in expectation of a usage-based revenue stream.

Legal precedents for this approach already exist. The distinction between copyright (the right to copy or distribute) and useright (the right to 'perform', or to use a copy once obtained) is long-established in copyright law. These laws were stringently tested in court a century ago as the music publishers came to terms with broadcast technologies such as radio and TV.

When we buy a record, we acquire ownership of a physical copy. We also acquire a severely limited useright that only allows us to use the music for personal enjoyment. Conversely, large television and radio companies often have the very same records thrust upon them by the publishers for free. But they pay substantial fees for the useright to play the music on the air. The fees are administered by ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) and BMI (Broadcast Musicians Institute) by monitoring how often each record is broadcast to how large a listening audience.

Dr. Ryoichi Mori, the head of the Japanese industry-wide consortium, JEIDA (Japanese Electronics Industrial Development Association) is developing an analogous approach for software. Each computer is thought of as a station that broadcasts, not the software itself, but the use of the software, to an audience of a single 'listener' [MORI]. The approach is called superdistribution because, like superconductivity, it lets information flow freely, without resistance from copy protection or piracy.

Its premise is that copy protection is exactly the wrong idea for intangible, easily copied goods such as software. Instead, superdistribution turns ease of copying into an asset. It actively encourages the free distribution of information age goods via whatever distribution mechanism you please. You are positively encouraged to acquire superdistribution software from networks, to give it away to your friends, or even send it as junk mail to people you've never met. Broadcast my software from satellites if you want. Please!

This generosity is possible because the software is actually 'meterware'. It has strings attached that make revenue collection independent of how the software was distributed. The software contains embedded instructions that make it useless except on machines that are equipped for this new kind of revenue collection. The computers that can run superdistribution software are otherwise quite ordinary. In particular, they run ordinary pay-by-copy software just fine. They just have additional capabilities that only superdistribution software uses."

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