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> There is nothing different about the plumber and the artist. > Both would like to be paid for their work.

No. A plumber wants to be paid for work, your musician wants to be paid a rent. A plumber wants to be paid once, your musician wants to be paid for every copy.

If your musician comes to me and offers to make a song, and I agree to pay to fund it, then fine: we make an exchange just like a plumber and customer. But a plumber does not then impose restrictions that I cannot copy their pipes and stuff, or cannot allow anyone else to use them.

A plumber is not given special monopoly privileges -- that is the difference. Now, such privileges might be pragmatically justifiable as a market mechanism (as is the contention of copyright), but there is clearly a difference between having them and not.

This whole analogy is kind of weak. Hiring a plumber to come in and do a job on your sink is similar to hiring a session musician to come in and lay down a bass track on your recording, and not very similar to buying an album.

Buying an album from a musician is similar to buying a book about plumbing that a plumber wrote, and I imagine that most such plumber-writers would indeed have interest in protecting their copyright on their books.

These are entirely different business models, and we software engineers should understand them immediately. It's the difference between running a consulting business and running a product business.

No, you are twisting the analogy, but that's irrelevant.

The problem here is that a "product business" in the online world is hardly sustainable, because enforcing artificial scarcity of your product is basically impossible. Which is why the entire software industry is quickly shifting to SaaS models and consulting as fast as they can. The music business should do the same and stop whining.

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