Empirical investigation of public usage of the word "progress" in the United States of 1789 demonstrates that the word meant "dissemination." The original meaning of art. I, sec. 8, cl. 8, therefore, is that Congress has the right to grant only such temporally limited exclusive rights in writings and new technology as encourage the dissemination of knowledge and new technology to the population. This article explains the major differences between current United States positive intellectual property law and the logical dictates of this original constitutional meaning. Additionally, the article asserts that the original meaning of clause 8 supports modern calls for a public-empowering First Amendment doctrine, as suggested by scholars such as Jack M. Balkin.
- intellecutal property,
- public domain,
- first amendment,
- free speech,
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/malla_pollack/9/