Copyright Lessons From Waffle House

To round out my week of quoting stories from, today I’m putting forward this one about intellectual property (originally from Critical Montages):

Ever notice the Waffle House menu’s insistence that Double Waffle is for “dine-in only, no sharing”? A common prohibition at low-end restaurants, it’s also a small-print reminder of what capitalism is all about.

From enclosure to enforcement of intellectual property rights, capital’s message is always No Sharing.

Products of intellectual labor, unlike land and waffles, can be shared by all without diminishing their use value for anyone, however. “Copies” are as perfect as “originals” for the most profitable products — such as drugs and software — in the age of mechanical production, withering the aura of private property and making the revolutionary act of sharing and sharing alike irresistible. Capital, of course, tries to stop it, but, in doing so, it makes visible the “invisible hand” of the market, demonstrating that it is not scarcity but state power at capital’s disposal that prevents us from having what we want — even what we need to save our lives.

One thought on “Copyright Lessons From Waffle House

  1. I work at Waffle house, and I can assure you, you can share the double waffle all you want. we aren’t waffle nazis that will watch to make sure you don’t share. So share away without fear.

    As for the dine in only thing goes, many resturants do not have features or specials for togo. The waffle house also does not do senior/childrens prices for to go. I myself really see no problem with that. It’s a resturant that does not have to have these special prices at all.

    They very well could charge full price for seniors and children. So perhaps we should be happy for the small price cuts that we do get to take advantage of instead of complaining.

Comments are closed.