What could be more urgent? column

 Every lawyer understands that the judiciary is, at least in the United States of America, in a situation that strongly resembles the notorious Great Pacific garbage patch. The political administration still pretends that it is a question of some criminal individuals that can be disposed of, in one way or other.

There is nothing new here, at least for the great majority of lawyers, who know the basic of the French Dreyfus affair (1894-1906). Even then there were claims concerning spying and treason, but finally most of the political machinery and all cultural life was turned upside down. Even that time the proceedings were started as court-martial. There was also a streak on anti-Semitism – that time still a fairly common measure of brand-marking one or another minority as unwelcome and treacherous. Next time it was U.K. and the Irish (meaning here de Valera and Eire).

What is being swept over is “the garbage”, first millions and now according to estimates possibly billions of digital messages. That is something possibly suffocating the healthy growth and killing many innocent parties, like the krill and whales.

The reader should take notice that there is no hint of substantive opinion concerning the cases above. The idea is to point out the allegorical similitude of environmental and digital hazards. We really did not know five or ten years ago that something like “administrative climate change” could be something like this. And please, remember, it started and blossomed in Iraq, Tunis, Egypt and a couple of other places.

It is proper to pay lipservice to the freedom of speech, to loyalty to one’s nation and to other huge things mentioned in the U.S. Constitution and the French Declaration of human rights. One of them is copyright.

It is not proper to say that these common goals are by no means a grocery-list of desired things. They are an organic whole. Our political system does not function without access to information, meaning even embarrassing information. Our legal system and hence our commerce will not function without the high degree of publicity presupposed both of the copyright system (publication) and patents (patent claims made public ad a justification to a monopoly of 20 years).

We seem to be up the creek. IPR-lawyers have the paddles. It is too bad that our legal system has grown both regarding constitutional law and commercial law, especially intellectual property, very largely in unison with major operators’ economic interests and all too often forgetting that the system keeps rolling only if the rational and realistic expectances of ordinary citizens and industrial small-timers are satisfied.