Who should own access rights? A game-theoretical approach to striking the optimal balance in the debate over digital rights management

Artificial Intelligence and Law 15 (4):323-356 (2007)
The development of access rights as, perhaps, a replacement for copyright in digital rights management (DRM) systems, draws our attention to the importance of ‚the balance problem’ between information industries and the individual user. The nature of just what this ‚balance’ is, is often mentioned in copyright writings and judgments, but is rarely discussed. In this paper I focus upon elucidating the idea of balance in intellectual property and propose that the balance concept is not only the most feasible way to examine whether past solutions to copyright problems are fair, but it also provides the ability to predict what will be the better solution for all affected parties. Based upon an envy-free contribution towards predicting the efficient balance, game theory is applied in a novel manner to the DRM problem to infer where and what might be the optimal balance in the debate over the nature of access right.
Keywords access right  balance in intellectual property  Digital rights management  game theory  prisoner’s dilemma
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