Tragedy of the anticommons
The tragedy of the anticommons is a new phrase invention of Michael Heller. It says, that things can go bad if too many people have rights on a shared thing. It is related to the phrase tragedy of the commons, which says that things can go bad if not enough people have rights. It is a general phrase for problems like patent thickets, submarine patents, nail houses, and more red tapes. It is difficult to find solutions, but some of them are eminent domain, Laches, patent pools or other agreements on rights and copyrights.
Tragedy of the anticommons is one of four outcomes:
|Property rights||Common ownership or lack of property rights|
|Bad outcome/tragedy||Tragedy of the anticommons||Tragedy of the commons|
|Good outcome/cornucopia||normal case||Inverse commons|
The prevalent outcome depends on the details of the situation.
- Rose, Carol M. (1986) The Comedy of the Commons: Commerce, Custom and Inherently Public Property, 53 Univ. of Chi. L. Rev. 711, reprinted as chapter 5 in: Rose, Carol M., Property and persuasion: Essays on the history, theory and rhetoric of ownership, Westview Press 1994
- Hickman, J.; Dolman, E. (2002). "Resurrecting the Space Age: A State-Centered Commentary on the Outer Space Regime". Comparative Strategy. 21 (1): 2002. doi:10.1080/014959302317350855.
- Depoorter, B.; Parisi, F.; Schulz, N. (2003). "Fragmentation in Property: Towards a General Model" (PDF). Journal of Institutional and Theoretic Economics. 159: 594–613.
- Buchanan, James; Yoon, Yong (2000). "Symmetric Tragedies: Commons and Anticommons" (PDF). Journal of Law and Economics. 43: 1. JSTOR 725744.
- The Tragedy of the Anticommons (Abstract, with link to complete paper)
- Can Patents Deter Innovation? The Anticommons in Biomedical Research (full text of article)
- The comedy of the commons, speech by Lawrence Lessig (Lawrence Lessig)
- Heller's talk in the Authors@Google series
- Website complementing gridlock economy: How Too Much Ownership Wrecks Markets, Stops Innovation, and Costs Lives