Back to the drawing board on piracy solutions
Re: "Thai's victory in US court 'could boost product prices'," News, March 21.This is a case of two-tiered pricing of a royalty imposed inside and outside the United States. Rightly practised by the publisher, US residents should pay higher prices than poorer citizens abroad for licensed books. (Those whining foreigners at the Temple of the Emerald Buddha please note). However, our Thai mathematics professor put his knowledge into practice in having no reluctance to import the cheaper but same version into a richer market to make profit (and most likely using that profit to see America). What's wrong with that? The US Supreme Court said that was clever and not illegal.
That loophole can easily be covered by eliminating two-tiered pricing. The case would not affect American consumers, but poor Thai students may now have to pay US prices. With US pricing and the rise of e-books, piracy would be back again in full force. The publishers must be laughing to themselves at their original initiative of this two-tiered pricing for books, CDs and DVDs, which was meant to discourage pirated copies. It was meant to encourage poorer nations to buy cheaper but legal copies than take risks with piracy. Now the publishers have to go back to the drawing board of what to do next.
The technicalities of your report on licensing and online trading are airy-fairy and high-powered but irrelevant to the issues.