I guess sometimes it is unfortunate when you can predict the future… This is a tale written in 1997 where the author predicts future aspects of copyright (the fact the essay is called “The right to read” should provide some insight…). Regrettably, a decade after a disturbing number of ‘predictions’ have made their way into reality. Think I’m being pessimistic? Read for yourself:
For Dan Halbert, the road to Tycho began in college—when Lissa Lenz asked to borrow his computer. Hers had broken down, and unless she could borrow another, she would fail her midterm project. There was no one she dared ask, except Dan.
This put Dan in a dilemma. He had to help her—but if he lent her his computer, she might read his books. Aside from the fact that you could go to prison for many years for letting someone else read your books, the very idea shocked him at first. Like everyone, he had been taught since elementary school that sharing books was nasty and wrong—something that only pirates would do.