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Re: [xml-dev] Re: W3C ridiculous new policy on patents

Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:

> The tragedy of the commons concept was first mentioned in the 
> context of the "Public Assets Private Profits" article by David 
> Bollier and in that article, he has difficulty working out 
> when something is public and when the public has appropriated 
> it for its own without regard to the rights of the owner.

That is because nobody from Garrett Hardin on has ever grasped how
common rights actually worked: they were *individual* rights.
Each proper user of the common had the right to exclude everyone
else from enclosing it or wasting (destroying) it, just as each
owner of private land has the right to exclude everyone else from
making any use of it at all (absent an easement).
These rights were enforceable by appropriate remedies:
claims of the form "John the Redhaired has turned out xxxiii
pigs on the common land of Bucklebury vill, contrary to the
customs of the vill and tending to the waste of the common"
were often successfully prosecuted in local or royal courts.

The termination of rights of common throughout Europe in
the 18th Century was a massive and utterly uncompensated
act of expropriation by the rich landlords in cahoots with
the rising central governments.

> It turns the W3C into a den of pirates.

A statement of the the form "You must relinquish certain
rights to be a member of our organization" does not make
the organization a den of pirates: no one is obliged
to join.

Not to perambulate             || John Cowan <jcowan@reutershealth.com>
    the corridors               || http://www.reutershealth.com
during the hours of repose     || http://www.ccil.org/~cowan
    in the boots of ascension.  \\ Sign in Austrian ski-resort hotel