Anne Stevenson-Yang: The Idea-Stealing Factory

Idea Illus From The Time Asia:

China has grown into the world’s made-to-order contract manufacturer, source of more than half the world’s output of toys, radios, DVD players, telephones, cameras, and much more. But while most of that production is legitimate”China’s factories are paid by foreign companies to mass-produce the latter’s ideas and designs”much of it is illicit. The nation has deployed its prodigious replication skills to flood world markets with pirated goods and fakes, from designer clothing to consumer electronics. China’s trading partners tell themselves that this blatant disregard for the intellectual property of others is natural for a former command economy at an early stage of free-market development. The problem, they say, will ease over time as legal institutions and Chinese entrepreneurs mature and the country begins to attach the same importance to property rights as do Europe and the U.S.

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