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Robin Hoods or thieves? A Foucauldian analysis of international trade policies regarding software piracy
Unformatted Document Text:  Foucauldian analysis of international trade policies 22 provision in the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 is commonly referred to as Special 301, which declared that “the protection of intellectual property rights vitally affected U.S. international competitiveness, and mandated that the USTR identify countries that ‘deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights, or deny fair and equitable market access to U.S. persons that rely upon intellectual property protection’” (Krueger, 1995, p. 67-68). “Special 301 was blatantly bilateral, not only in instructing the USTR to bargain bilaterally, but in insisting on an international code of behavior that had not been agreed on internationally” (Krueger, 1995, p. 68). There are cultural obstacles, as well, a culture that “has long embraced piracy” according to Learmonth (2001, May 1). “Under the communist regime everything was for the community, says Andrey Dakhovskyy, owner of Ukrainian Records, a Kiev-based distributor. “For 70 years there was no respect for intellectual property. People don’t understand what it is. It’s like trying to sell air” (as quoted in Learmonth, 2001, May 1). “The market cannot deliver equitable access to the world’s common resources as it makes common heritage into a commercial commodity. The commodification of information and culture creates a price tag for access and use. As the capacity to purchase is unequally distributed in most societies and between societies, there is growing evidence that the market-place creates a growing disparity between rich and poor in and between societies in terms of access to information and communication resources” (Hamelink, 1997, p. 117). This relates, of course, to the point made in the Introduction, specifically, that for all the efforts to regulate international trade in the interest of fairness to poor and/or developing nations, it hasn’t happened.

Authors: Malyshev, Yuri. and Hamilton, Ann.
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Foucauldian analysis of international trade policies 22
provision in the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 is commonly referred to
as Special 301, which declared that “the protection of intellectual property rights vitally
affected U.S. international competitiveness, and mandated that the USTR identify
countries that ‘deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights, or
deny fair and equitable market access to U.S. persons that rely upon intellectual property
protection’” (Krueger, 1995, p. 67-68). “Special 301 was blatantly bilateral, not only in
instructing the USTR to bargain bilaterally, but in insisting on an international code of
behavior that had not been agreed on internationally” (Krueger, 1995, p. 68).
There are cultural obstacles, as well, a culture that “has long embraced piracy”
according to Learmonth (2001, May 1). “Under the communist regime everything was for
the community, says Andrey Dakhovskyy, owner of Ukrainian Records, a Kiev-based
distributor. “For 70 years there was no respect for intellectual property. People don’t
understand what it is. It’s like trying to sell air” (as quoted in Learmonth, 2001, May 1).
“The market cannot deliver equitable access to the world’s common resources as it
makes common heritage into a commercial commodity. The commodification of
information and culture creates a price tag for access and use. As the capacity to purchase
is unequally distributed in most societies and between societies, there is growing evidence
that the market-place creates a growing disparity between rich and poor in and between
societies in terms of access to information and communication resources” (Hamelink,
1997, p. 117). This relates, of course, to the point made in the Introduction, specifically,
that for all the efforts to regulate international trade in the interest of fairness to poor and/or
developing nations, it hasn’t happened.


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