Though the success of intellectual property law depends upon its ability to affect human perception and behavior, the public psychology of intellectual property has barely been explored. Over 1,700 U.S. adults took part in an experimental study designed to investigate popular conceptions of intellectual property rights. Respondents’ views of what intellectual property rights ought to be differed substantially from what intellectual property law actually provides, and popular conceptions of the basis for intellectual property rights were contrary to commonly accepted bases relied upon in legal and policy decision-making. Linear regression analysis reveals previously unrecognized cultural divides concerning intellectual property law based upon respondents’ income, age, education, political ideology, and gender.
January 2015, Vol. 67, No. 1
Reid Kress Weisbord, Trust Term Extension