Tuesday 7 June 2011

Do we come to bury copyright -- or to praise it?

1709 Blog Copyright debate

in conjunction with the IPKat weblog

“Do we come to bury copyright — or to praise it?”

Tuesday 12 July 2011

What’s the debate about?

Is copyright a vital tool for protecting authors, composers and artists, and for encouraging investment in the recording and transmission of their works to the public—or is it an outdated, cumbersome barrier to the spread of information and to the stifling of the very culture which it purports to promote?

The current state and future prospects for copyright law have never been more keenly debated than today, when modern technologies and the expectations of internet users are among the forces which have called for a radical overhaul of what, for others, is a sensible and practical basis for achieving justice while facilitating business.

This debate seeks to air the issues that make us ask: do we come to bury copyright or to praise it?

Four people who are deeply committed to finding an answer to this question will be debating it.  The audience will be polled for their answers both before and after the debate, so that we can see which side has been the more persuasive.

Debating the issue (in alphabetical order):

Crosbie Fitch (An R&D software engineer,  Crosbie has been researching and developing revenue mechanisms and business models for digital artists and their audiences for more than a decade. He has concluded from his work that  copyright is not only an ineffective anachronism, but that it is unethical and unnecessary)

Emily Goodhand (Copyright and Compliance Officer at the University of Reading, Emily enjoys engaging with others on copyright and IP issues and dedicates a lot of time to raising people's awareness of copyright. She writes the copyright4education weblog. As @copyrightgirl she is listed by The Times as a Top Ten tweeter)

David Allen Green (A lawyer and writer, David is head of media at Preiskel & Co LLP, a City TMT boutique firm, and was recently selected as one of The Lawyer’s “Hot 100” for 2011.  He is also legal correspondent of the New Statesman. His “Jack of Kent” blog was shortlisted for the George Orwell Prize in 2010)

Richard Mollet (Richard has been Chief Executive of The Publishers Association—the leading representative voice for the UK's book and learned journal publisher— since October 2010. He coordinates members' views on copyright policy and anti- infringement strategies.  Richard was previously Director of Public Affairs for the BPI, the UK recorded music industry body)

In the chair

 Mr Justice Arnold (Richard was called to the Bar in 1985, became a QC in 2000 and was appointed to the Chancery Division of the High Court in 2008)

Further details

Date: Tuesday 12 July 2011; Time: 5.00pm till 7.00pm; Venue: Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, 65 Fleet Street, London EC4Y 1HT, England (please use Tudor Street entrance).

Admission is free. Refreshments will be provided after the debate.

To register, please email Jeremy Phillips here using the subject line “Copyright Debate”.  


Phil B said...

that lineup's atomic. The likelihood of any consensus or concession is lower than the probability of an actual punch-up between fitch and richard mollet, and @jackofkent copping off with @copyrightgirl. Why are there economists there to discuss the actual value of copyright to society?

Crosbie Fitch said...

Philippe, as a supporter of natural rights, I will champion the value of people's liberty and right to copy as exceeding the value of Queen Anne's annulling of that right to copy, her grant of the privilege we call copyright - albeit one highly valued by those few in a position to exploit this monopoly.

There is more to society than a wealthy and well regulated press. A people at liberty to share and build upon their own culture is vital.

People such as Anne Muir are now being given three year prison sentences and psychiatric 're-education' for their delinquency of sharing music. These penalties for infringements (illicit cultural liberties) are part of one great Milgram experiment, and the dial will be turned up beyond lethal levels...

Crosbie Fitch said...

...until, at some point, someone will dare to question the authority of those meting out the punishments and shout "Stop! This madness must cease. Abolish copyright before all law is considered to serve the tyranny of the corporate state rather than to protect the people it is empowered by"

Further reading: Insane, Repulsive: Grandmother Of Eight Sentenced To Three Years Jail For Sharing Music

Andrew Robinson said...

I'm tempted to offer my services as a substitute panelist, to be called on in the case of injuries on the pitch of sendings-off!

John R walker said...

You might read this analysis of the detail of the Hargreaves proposals

Talk about 'in order to save the village, we had to destroy the village'

Anonymous said...


You keep calling Copyright a, "privilege" and referring to a law passed in 1709. I never see any evidence that you understand the fact that Copyright is an automatic right given to anyone and everyone who creates and artistic work at the instant that work is created. Also, I never see you reference any current Copyright law.

That leads me to believe that you have no idea how modern Copyright actually works or why it is considered important by every developed nation.