Digital Copyright in a User Generated World Today I attended the second day of the Knowledge Policy for the 21st Century Conference, which was on Digital Copyright in a User Generated World. Overall it was an excellent day, full of effective, interesting and fun presentations on copyright law in the new digital environment. Unfortunately once again limited internet access meant I wasn’t able to live blog the event, but I did take notes and so I thought I’d post a brief summary of the day. These are merely my notes and may contain errors or misinterpretations on my part, but hopefully they are of interest and will help promote further discussion and understanding on the key themes of the conference. Also as I had seen many of the presentations in one form or another before, my notes are not as detailed as those I took yesterday on Free/Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS) as Democratic Principle. Session 1A: Welcome and Introduction – Professor Mark Perry (UWO) and Professor Brian Fitzgerald (QUT) As was the case yesterday, Professor Perry welcomed attendees to the Conference and Professor Fitzgerald spoke of the desire for stronger collaboration between QUT and UWO in the field of copyright and intellectual property. One recent aspect of this collaboration is to look at user generated content and copyright. In particular, today highlights the work of several academics from QUT and UWO who are working in this field. Professor Perry and Professor Fitzgerald then discussed the politics of the copyright landscape today and the possibilities for the future, before opening the discussion up to the floor to help set the agenda for the day. Session 1B: Digital Copyright in a YouTube World – Jason Schultz (Electronic Frontier Foundation) Title: Will video sharing survive the online copyright wars? What YouTube has learned from Napster’s failure and Flickr’s success. Jason Schultz began by providing some history and context, starting with the legal failures of Napster and Grokster, to the success of Flickr. What was interesting, however, was the discussion of Flickr’s copyright problems due to their hosting of copyrighted material (up to 5-10% of works are probably copyrighted). So, why is Flickr not being sued? Probably because Flickr has built-up goodwill as: 1. Flickr has a very strong and dedicated response to allegations of infringement. 2. Flickr has a large buy-in from the photographic community – a number of professional photographers have had their start in Flickr. Plus, Flickr supports DRM and Creative Commons and are therefore photographer friendly. YouTube has become a phenomenon and has been sued twice – by Robert Tur and by Viacom. A recent study of YouTube suggested that only 9% of videos on YouTube have ever received copyright complaints. That 9% only account for 6% of traffic. Viacom lawsuit on two grounds: 1. direct infringement allegations – arguing YouTube is reproducing copyrighted videos and violating performance and display rights. 2. secondary infringement (contributory, vicarious, inducement) allegations. YouTube’s defenses lie in: 1. for direct infringement – volitional act. 2. for secondary infringement – remembering that there is a need to establish a direct infringement for there to be a secondary infringement. DMCA safe harbors – s 512(c). What is significant is that there has been a cultural shift – the industry is no longer fighting a “rogue nation” like Napster, but numerous “insurgent” sites and DRM is widely seen has having failed. Perhaps YouTube is an opportunity for the industry to engage with the sites like YouTube and find a way forward. Visit EFF.org for more information. Following his presentation, an excellent discussion followed with Jason Schultz on the range of issues covered in his presentation. Session 2A: Virtual Worlds, Second Life and Copyright Law – Nic Suzor (QUT) Nic Suzor delivered a virtual presentation via a video he sent over. His presentation focused on virtual environments, copyright and freedom of expression. Session 2B: DRM to Conducer – Professor Mark Perry (UWO) Theory: we are moving from a DRM structure to an economic environment where conducer’s will become more important players. Session 2C: Copyright and New Technologies: The Challenge of User-generated and Peer-produced Knowledge, Content and Culture – Peter Black and Professor Brian Fitzgerald (QUT) Find my PowerPoint slides on my blog, Freedom to Differ. Session 3: Open Access: Research and Education David Moorman (SSHRC) David Moorman discussed the SSHRC research funding in Canada and its attempts to promote open access to research in Canada. Dr Margaret Ann Wilkinson (UWO) Professor Wilkinson gave a detailed overview of the legal issues in Canada with respect to open access to research and education. Session 3: Creative Commons – Jessica Coates (CC Australia) and Marcus Bronfreund (CC Canada) Jessica Coates and Marcus Bornfreund both delivered remote presentations – Jessica by a pre-recorded video and Marcus by Skype. Both presentations provided information about the uptake and use of Creative Commons in Australia and Canada respectively. Session 4: Copyright Reform in: New Zealand – Suzy Frankel (Victoria University) Canada – Sam Trosow (UWO) Australia – Professor Brian Fitzgerald and Peter Black (QUT) All presenters gave a brief overview of the copyright reform in their respective jurisdictions.
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