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Intellectual Property Security WAS:copyright

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Charley,

I'm reminded of the saying, "Locks keep honest people honest."

I hate to say this but the only good defense of a copyright is the
consistent legal defense of the copyright.  Unfortunately, this almost
always means contacting a lawyer.  I'm not sure if people don't have a
concept of intellectual property (as indicated by the MANY supporters of
Napster's copying schemes), or they just don't have respect for others'
property, intellectual or otherwise.

Like so many things, property rights are really a gentleman's agreement.
Yes, we can prevent the theft and, yes, we can prosecute when someone
steals.  Given the ease of theft, the cost of either typically exceeds the
cost of the original item.  Hence, society only works when people just agree
to not injure each other.

Mark,
  I hate to be a hard case but I'd recommend the full law suit right from
the get go.  I had a previous employer which tried the "nice guy" approach.
We wrote a letter to the contractor explaining our property rights.  The
response was, "Sure, Sure".  When it happened again, the response was, "OH!
I thought you meant I couldn't copy THOSE drawings."  The contractor didn't
get it because he didn't want to get it.  Realistically, there was no
incentive for him to stop.  He had proven that he was without honor, so the
honor system would not work with him.


Mark Jones
Jacobs Engineering

Disclaimer:They don't pay me enough to speak for the company.