De l'économie de la piraterie

Imaginez la scène. Vous n’êtes pas à votre première présentation devant public, vous avez déjà partagé la scène avec deux bibliothécaires nationaux devant un parquet de près de mille personnes, mais cette fois c’est différent. Vous ne parlez pas devant un public de collègues d’un sujet que vous maitrisez. Il s’agit d’un groupe sélect d’experts internationaux dans un sujet pointu que vous tentez d’appréhender. Seriez-vous nerveux de présenter le fond de votre pensée ?

Alors, lorsqu’un de ces collègues, surtout celui qui a présenté la conférence plénière, vous approche pour discuter, vous écoutez (traduit de l’américain de ce moment gravé dans ma mémoire).
– Pourquoi n’explorez-vous pas les textes traitant de l’économie de la piraterie dans votre exploration de la bibliothéconomie ?
Malaise nerveux du jeune doctorant qui est quand même un bibliothécaire.
– Je trouve malcommode de lier les services de bibliothèques et la piraterie…
– Dommage, de répondre le vénérable prof d’économie arborant un sage sourire, vous seriez agréablement surpris des réflexions que Leibowitz et moi avons exploré au cours des années 1970 concernant l’appropriation in directe (ou de l’anglais « indirect appropriability« )

Waldman souriait car il savait que ces mots étaient maintenant gravés dans ma mémoire. Je les aient transcrits dès que j’ai eu accès à un papier et un crayon. Une seconde plus tard, j’étais sur Google. Stan Leibowitz est prof en économie à Dallas au Texas. À visiter, sa page sur l’économie des biens d’information et surtout, sa liste de lectures.

Liebowitz, S.J. (1985), “Copying and Indirect Appropriability: Photocopying of Journals,” Journal of Political Economy, 93, pp. 945-957.

Merci prof. Wladman pour ces quelques mots!

Ce contenu a été mis à jour le 15 août 2013 à 9 h 12 min.


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15 août 2013 à 9 h 12 min

Course Readings

Module 1 Price Discrimination, Versioning, Tie-Ins Sales and Bundling

*Shapiro and Varian, Chapter 3.

*Material in your old micro text (such as Landsburg) that talks about elasticity, monopoly, and price discrimination

*Amy Cortese “The Power of Optimal Pricing” Business 2.0, September 2002 click here

*Stigler, G. « A note on block booking », The Supreme Court Review, 1963. click here

Liebowitz, S. « Tie-In Sales and Price Discrimination, » Economic Inquiry, July, 1983. Also: click here

Schmalensee, R. « Commodity Bundling by Single-Product Monopolies, Journal of Law and Economics, April 1982. click here

Module 2 Public Goods and Intellectual Property

Landsburg: Chapter 14.2, Public Goods

*Liebowitz S. “Intellectual Property” forthcoming in the Concise Encyclopedia of Economics click here

*Julie E. Cohen “Copyright and the Perfect Curve” 53 Vand. L. Rev. 1799 click here

* Stan Liebowitz and Steve Margolis “17 Famous Economists Weigh in on Copyright: The Role of Theory, Empirics, and Network Effects.” Working Paper click here

Demsetz H. « The Private Production of Public Goods », Journal of Law and Economics, October 1970. Or click here

Liebowitz, S. « Some Puzzling Behavior by the Owners of Intellectual Products, » Contemporary Policy Issues, July, 1987, pp. 44-53. Or click here

Play God – determine the ideal copyright length

A. The Economics of Copying
*Rethinking the Network Economy: Chapter 7

*Hal R. Varian “Copying and Copyright” Forthcoming in Journal of Economic Perspectives, draft June 4, 2004 click here

*Liebowitz, S. J., « Copying and Indirect Appropriability: Photocopying of Journals, » Journal of Political Economy, October 1985, 945-957. Also: click here

Benjamin D. and Kormendi, R. « On the Interrelationship between Markets for New and Used Durable Goods, » Journal of Law and Economics, Oct. 1974, pp. 381-402. click here

Liebowitz, S. J., « Durability, Market Structure and New Used Goods Models, » American Economic Review, September, 1982, pp. 816-824. Also: click here

Shapiro and Varian, Chapter 4

B. The Impact of File-sharing: Napster and its offspring.
*Stan Liebowitz “Will MP3s downloads Annihilate the Record Industry? The Evidence so Far” Advances in the Study of Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Economic Growth, V. 15, 2004, pp. 229-260.” Click here

*Felix Oberholzer and Koleman Strumpf “The Effect of File Sharing on Record Sales: An Empirical Analysis” working paper, 2004 click here

*Stan Liebowitz “Pitfalls in the Analysis of file-sharing” click here

“Appeals Court Blocks RIAA Efforts to Identify Music Downloaders” WSJ click here

“How record companies could embrace Napster and maintain profits” From Linux World, March 20, 2000, Nick Petreley click here

Brian Ploskina “Numbers Rock ‘N’ Roll in Napster Dispute”, Inter@ctive Week, June 19, 2000 click here

Lee Gomes “Judge Orders Napster to Stop Downloads of Copyrighted Music” Wall Street Journal, July 27, 2000 and “Napster Appeal Is on Legal Fast Track After a Stay That Delayed Closing Site” July 31, 2000. Click here

Story about RIAA beginning to prosecute students click here

« Nipping It In The Bud: Monsanto isn’t just talking tough on seed piracy; it’s taking action. » Story about Monsanto’s genetically engineered seeds and how it keeps farmer from making ‘copies’. click here

Alejandro Zentner “Measuring the Effect of Online Music Piracy on Music Sales” working paper 2004 click here

C. Alternatives to Copyright
*Chapter 6 in William Fisher’s forthcoming book on Intellectual Property:

*”Alternative Copy Systems: The Problems with a Compulsory License”, Stanley J. Liebowitz, (Vol. 1, No. 2, May 6, 2004

“Impose a Noncommercial Use Levy to Allow Free P2P File-Swapping and Remixing”, Neil Weinstock Netanel, click here

Module 3

A. Network Effects, Standards, and Lock-In.
*Rethinking the Network: Chapters 1, 2, 3

*W. Brian Arthur, Positive Feedbacks in the Economy, Scientific American, Feb. 1990 also at: along with other Arthur papers.

Shapiro and Varian, Chapters 5, 6, 7, 8, 9.

Katz, M. L., and Shapiro, C., « Systems Competition and Network Effects, » Journal of Economic Perspectives (Spring 1994). click here

Leibenstein, Harvey, “Bandwagon, Snob, and Veblen Effects in the Theory of Consumers’ Demand” Quarterly Journal of Economics May 1950. Available in the electronic journal section of McDermott Library

Brynjolfsson, Erik and Kemerer Chris F., “Network Externalities in Microcomputer Software: An Econometric Analysis of the Spreadsheet Market,” Management Science, December 1996. Click here

David, Paul A. “Path dependence and the quest for historical economics: one more chorus of the ballad of QWERTY”. Click here

B. Cases: QWERTY, Betamax, and so forth
*David, Paul. A. 1985. « Clio and the Economics of QWERTY », 75 American Economic Review, 332-7 (May). Click here

*Liebowitz, S. J. and Margolis, S. E. « The Fable of the Keys, » JLE, April 1990, pp. 1-26. Click Here. WLM chapter 2.

“Product Quality and the Economic Performance of Firms,” Stan Liebowitz, report for McKinsey and Company, October 15, 1999. Available at: .

Liebowitz and Margolis, WLM Chapter 6, 7, 8.

“Economists Decide to Challenge Facts of the QWERTY Story” Lee Gomes, Wall Street Journal, February 25, 1998 Click here or “The QWERTY Myth”, The Economist, April 3, 1999. Click here

Shapiro and Varian, Chapter 9, 10

Module 4

A. Internet Business Model and the Meltdown
*Rethinking the Network: Chapter 4, 5

*“So Long , Supply and Demand: There’s a new economy out there — and it looks nothing like the old one”, by Thomas Petzinger Jr., 01/03/2000, The Wall Street Journal, Page S1. Click here

* “Will the Net Turn Car Dealers into Dinosaurs? State Limits on Auto Sales Online” Solveig Singleton at

Wired News “Webvan’s $1 Billion Soup Job”, Joanna Glasner, July 9, 1999, Available at:,1367,20646,00.html .

Telser, L. G., « Why Should Manufacturers Want Fair Trade? » Journal of Law and Economics, October 1960

*“How the Internet Bubble Broke Records, Rules, Bank Accounts” Greg Ip, Susan Pulliam, Scott Thurm, and Ruth Simon, Wall Street Journal, July 14, 2000 Click here

B. Advertising on the Net
*Rethinking the Network: Chapter 6

“Are Click-Through Rates Really Declining?” Jim Meskauskas,, January 16, 2001, at:

* »Prices for ad banners fall » Andrea Petersen, WSJ Interactive Edition, February 24, 1999 click here

*Millward Brown Interactive 1997 Online Advertising Effectiveness Study:

“The Great Net Giveaway Gimmick” Jennifer Mack, ZDNet News, October 24, 1999 2:21 PM PT, click here

US Online Ad Spending: The Roller Coaster Continues, David Hallerman, Emarketer, 13 November 2002, US Online Ad Spending

“Pop-Under Web Ads May Backfire, Says Jupiter” Reuters, Jul 26, 2001 at:,1902,28294,00.html

Module 5 Antitrust

Landsburg: pp. 398-400

*Liebowitz and Margolis, WLM Antitrust Appendix; Epilogue in paperback.

*The Wall Street Journal “Time Warner, AOL Are Criticized by European Antitrust Enforcers” John R. Wilke August 31, 2000 click here

*The Wall Street Journal “AOL Competitors Lobby FCC Over ‘Advanced’ Messaging” Julia Angwin December 29, 2000. click here

Antitrust Abuse in the New Economy: The Microsoft Case by Richard L. Gordon, Edward Elgar (October 2002)

McGee, John. « Predatory Price Cutting: The Standard Oil Case », Journal of Law and Economics, October 1958

Stanley Sporkin, United States v. Microsoft Corp., 159 F.R.D. 318, 333-38 (D.D.C. 1995) (Sporkin, J.), rev’d, 56 F.3d 1448 (D.C. Cir. 1995). Available at: .

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