So does the free culture take on music downloading put ethics at its center? I hadn't thought of it in that light, but ethics must weigh in. Unhindered culture not only produces prodigious material good, but participation in free culture is probably itself an ethical good in the way it [blah blah autonomy blah human spirit blah]."

But you haven't yet addressed the issue of why record company rentention of/monopolies on copyrights are bad things. That is, as it stands my downloading contravenes industry law, which is illegal and maybe slightly immoral. But for my "piracy" to bypass the 'morally neutral' stage and qualify as civil disobedience, you free-culturites must articulate some positive thesis about the good that will come of breaking such copyright monopolies. I think I can see how it might go, but you're the expert(s).

What I'm asking for, I suppose, is a statement of basic free culture principles, adapted to the music debate. If I had finished at OU I would gladly have enlisted in the Free Culture ranks. U-Maryland has no such group, so my libertarian impulses were stymied by my thesis on Truman. I'd like to get caught up.

So, if you please…

Morgan Hubbard

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