Battle brewing in the art world

An article in the Globe and Mail by Val Ross discusses the controversial idea of a droit de suite which is a further diminishing of the property rights of people who have purchased copies or originals of copyrighted works.

But many in the arts community, from auctioneers to public museums, fear that licensing fees for images is only the "opening shot," in the words of John McAvity, executive director of the Canadian Museums Association. "Artists groups really want droit de suite -- that is, to profit from the resale of items in secondary markets. Droit de suite has killed most art markets in Europe. In my opinion, charging fees for images in catalogues is just the tip of the iceberg, and a step in the wrong direction."

I believe that the first sale doctrine should apply to art, and that once a copy has been authorized to be made, or that once art is sold, that the copyright holder should not have a say (or receive remuneration) from future loaning, private display, resale or other such uses of the work.

This is similar to some of the battles being fought against DRM where manufacturers of devices (platform monopolies) are trying to control (eradicate) secondary markets for purchased content, forcing people to repurchase content over and over again for each different brand or upgrade of a device, and disallowing them to loan or resell content without the permission of the manufacturer. The claim is that this permission is being asked for by copyright holders, but DRM is under the control of the platform monopolies (hardware manufacturers and software authors) and not the copyright holders of content.