Archive talk:General Purpose Pamphlet

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Revision as of 20:58, 23 January 2005 by Nicholasbs (talk | contribs) (Thoughts on Amanda's additions)
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I don't like the way that Eben Moglen divided the movement up in his speech, so that Free Culture only applies to copyright reform. I think that Free Culture covers every category he touched on in his speech.

Also, I would like one of the first sentences of the pamphlet to explain why we focus on technology, something like "we work towards these goals through the democratizing power of digital technology and the internet," or "digital technology and the internet are empowering both individuals and communities, and it's part of a growing democratizing trend" or something. -- Nelson 10:53, 11 Jan 2005 (EST)

Under "goals," some thoughts:

I think the first point should look more like this, albeit shorter and prettier:

We see a world in which sensible copyright law protects creators, allowing them to control their work, yet allows others to modify, critize, and build upon the original work, with clearer and broader guidelines than currently exist. We also believe that works should pass into the public domain in a shorter time period than they do, further restoring the balance between private incentive and public benefit.

The second point should be reworded to focus more upon the benefits of understanding what having a "cultural commons" means, rather than the need to educate "ordinary people," which is the way it comes off now.

Three should be much more concise, give the sense that technologies were given more time in the past than they are now, and probably reference the Betamax decision, though maybe not nessecarily with the words "Betamax decision" but rather "substantial non-infringing uses." We may want to add something like "We believe consumers, given the choice, will choose products that enable them" to do new and exciting things and would never voluntarily pay for things that actually take their rights away, e.g. DRM, broadcast flag (unless they get screwed by government regulations / government-granted monopolies / cartels).

Four should be reworded and expanded so it focuses (and explains) how we benefit when we contribute rather than just consume.

Possible additions:

  • Patents. We see a Patent Office that is under-funded, under-staffed, and unprepared to deal with today's technology. We believe in a higher standard than the current for granting new patents, and in a lesser burden for companies/individuals challenging patents. We believe software does not constitute a mechanical process and should not be patentable.
  • Open Access. We believe citizens should have access to the work they paid for. Federally-funded research and its fruits should be freely available to anyone. Government documents should be similarly freely available. This information should be easily accessible, including on the Internet, in non-proprietary file formats.

Somewhere in the pamphlet we might want to mention some of the economic benefits -- think the section in Free Culture where Lessig talks about the Clint Eastwood retrospective and the "costs" of our current system of litigation, clearance, etc., so we don't come off as entirely ideological, but practical as well. (I believe 100% that you could make arguments to a Democrat, a Republican, or a Libertarian that each support free culture -- whether you're talking about protecting the rights of the little guy, unnessecary governmental regulation, or government overstepping its bounds.) --Gavin 01:17, 17 Jan 2005 (EST)

Thoughts on Amanda's additions

1) I think creativity or something similar might be a good replacement for the word copyright. Of course, starting off by saying we're for "PRO-creation" might evoke the wrong idea :D

2) I like this sentiment here, "PRO-Innovation. The founders had it right: The purpose of intellectual property rights is to encourage the progress in science and the useful arts. We are against extreme laws that lock down our ability to tinker with the products we buy." But we must must must avoid using the term intellectual property! Perhaps we could use something more like, "The Founders had it right: Government should only regulate innovation to the extent that it fosters more of it." Nicholasbs 15:58, 23 Jan 2005 (EST)