Intellectual Property Rights in Digital Media: A Comparative Analysis of Legal Protection, Technological Measures and New Business Models under E.U. and U.S. Law


The production of digital content is a phenomenon which has completely changed the conditions of access to knowledge. Within this framework it becomes even more important to find and to formulate a new settlement for intellectual property rights balancing contrasted rights. Owners of the old technology and policy makers have found two different solutions and remedies for intellectual property rights: legal and technological. When both remedies work together any rights that a consumer may have under copyright law could be replaced by a unilaterally defined contractual term and condition. To balance this inequity this article analyses different solutions under U.S. and E.U. law, with particular attention paid to the relationship between contract law and copyright law. Ultimately this article suggests seeing technological protection measures as a souped-up standard form contract, and demonstrates how some business models are able to solve the problem of safe diffusion of digital media.


Comparative and Foreign Law | Consumer Protection Law | Intellectual Property Law | Internet Law | Science and Technology Law

Date of this Version

May 2005