Sunday, September 6, 2009

Copyright: Taking the higher ground

Copyright symbolImage via Wikipedia

Recently, I've had some discussions with people around copyright. These conversations were with academics, and the talk revolved around what they were allowed to do under the terms of their employment. It had to do with their intellectual contributions being declared as works-for-hire. Which led to a discussion of all-rights-reserved. Which lead to a discussion of joint copyright and social media licensing.

I've always tried to discuss copyright from an, it's the right thing to do perspective. This conversation on what they were allowed to do, however, seemed to resonate. These people seemed to be generally surprised that their terms of employment effectively prohibited them from participating, in a professional sense, in the conversations taking place in social media sites (e.g. Wikipedia). We also talked about how their institution's copyrights effectively prevented them from using images from Flickr, etc. that were licensed with Creative Commons share-alike provisions.

Does this level of the debate deserve further examination? I'd be happy to go there if there is an interest.


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