Nina Paley, Professor Geist Recognized by Award from Public Knowledge

Public Knowledge just announced the winners of their IP3 Awards for 2010. The awards are given to individuals for work in one of three areas: intellectual property, information policy and internet protocol. Winners are deliberated on by an esteemed panel of judges.

I am well familiar with most of the winners, though Nina is the only one I know personally. I am also an admirer of the works of professors Samuelson and Geist about which I’ve written repeatedly on the web site and spoken in the podcast. I am less familiar with Susan Crawford’s work but clearly should start following it given the caliber of work from her fellow honorees.

The awards will be given, along with a special President’s Award, in mid-October here in DC. Details about the winners, judges and how to get tickets are at Public Knowledge’s web site.

IP3 Awards 2010, Public Knowledge

Is “Hot News” the Next Landgrab?

I’ve read here and there about threatened law suits over the so-called hot news right. This is the idea that those who invest in the gathering, production and distribution of news can claim some rights to exclude reference to the facts they cover. I hadn’t really considered it related to the expansion of intellectual monopoly rights, a trend I’ve been following for some time.

That is until reading James Boyle’s discussion of the idea. He does a far better job of explaining what hot news is, its history, and how it is propped up by a vague definition under common law and more recently a couple of important judicial decisions.

What strikes me most about his article is not how it resonates with the drivers behind similar, more entrenched expansion of rights. It clearly does and he pulls out the strands of why that is so, revolving around how disruptive innovation often spurs claims of new rights from incumbents. Rather it is the idea that in seeing the parallel we have an opportunity to observe the repetition of a known phenomenon from very close to its start. The implication is that we might be able to find better compromises based on what we know now, possibly through better informed rhetoric against the Internet Threat and other bugbears raised by radical changes in technology.

Climate Talks Include References to Intellectual Property

Copycense posted this link on Twitter, a story about how the US participation in climate talks makes reference to protecting IP interests.

When you dig into this, it is a little less surprising. What is at stake are patents, presumably around technological innovations to help meet proposed goals around environmental impacts. It seems like another instance of the contention between developed and developing nations over technologies that may bridge that divide. In this case, the reality is at that there is at least a chance of a socially appropriate outcome, as opposed to some of the battles over pharma and gene patents that have ultimately devolved to shaming tactics to meet a minimum standard for human rights.

Freeing Locked Down Public Data, Protecting Your Anonymous Online Speech, and More

  • Another suggestion of minimizing IP to foster reform
    Mike Masnick at Techdirt points to a piece by “Against Intellectual Monopoly” co-author David Levine. It is the first in a series of posts by Levine and his co-author Boldren on The Huffington Post. Not surprisingly, while his opinion is well substantiated, it is pretty radical. I am eager to see any reduction in intellectual property to see how well reality would match these very optimistic predictions of the economic good doing so might cause.
  • FCC hearing will reveal whether it can stand by its principles
    Public Knowledge’s Art Bordsky lays out the challenges the FCC must surpass in an upcoming general hearing. At issue is whether the commissioners will stand firm on network neutrality, stemming from Obama’s campaign promise penned by the FCC chair himself of an open internet. Failure to do so will invite industry to continue to make self interested communications policy largely unopposed.
  • How the apology to Turing came about
    A nice O’Reilly Radar post from the very person responsible for the key petition. It also demonstrates how activism can unfold differently in the UK than other places, like here in the US.
  • How to get yourself unmasked online
    At Ars, Jacqui Cheung explores recently failures of anonymous speech through cases and procedures. Counter to the articles title, there is some good advice here if you are interested in preserving the anonymity of your postings online.
  • Pleading for an online, machine readable “The Constitution Annotated”
    The Sunlight Foundation is petitioning the Government Printing Office to produce a full, XML formatted, electronic version of an extraordinary living document that contains analysis of nearly 8,000 US Supreme Court cases. Much like pleas for similar publication of the up-to-date body of our legal code, this seems reasonable and long overdue.
  • Wikileaks posts British postal-code database
    More than just the news of Wikileaks latest data acquisition, Cory gives a fair grounding in what publicly funded information is typically locked up in the UK and how access is controlled through steep licensing fees. He also considers how unusual this sort of institutional double dipping is compared to other models for funding such data entry and processing projects.
  • Massachusetts court allows secret, GPS tracking of vehicles
    This is nowhere near as scary as it seems on first blush. A warrant is still required in a manner that seems consistent with traditional wire tapping. The judges’ ruling also included comments on working to protect citizens’ privacy rights for the sort of ubiquitous, constant surveillance many might fear from granting law enforces this capability.

TCLP 2009-08-30 News

This is news cast 189.

In the intro, the final reminder I will be at Dragon*Con over Labor Day weekend. No show on the 2nd or the 6th.

This week’s security alerts are an application the exposes how insecure the Facebook apps are building on prio warnings from the ACLU though Facebook has already promised to change its policies to address the issue and a so-called 60 second crack of WPA.

In this week’s news a new rapid application development tool for Linux building on past efforts to make development more accessible, James Boyle considers what IP law should learn from software, after last year’s FCC ruling allowing them new technical specs for white space devices start to emerge, and using anti-ferromagnetism to potentially speed disk writes.

Following up this week Nina Paley shares some positive economic data on sharing her work openly and Mozilla launches Test Swarm.

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Grab the detailed show notes with time offsets and additional links either as PDF or OPML. You can also grab the flac encoded audio from the Internet Archive.

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