The Fight over Digital Rights: The Politics of Copyright and by Bill D. Herman

By Bill D. Herman

Within the political struggle over copyright, net advocacy has reshaped the enjoying box. This was once proven such a lot dramatically within the 2012 "SOPA blackout," whilst the biggest on-line protest in heritage stopped copyright debts of their tracks. For these now not already accustomed to the talk, this protest doubtless got here out of nowhere but was once the end result of an highbrow and political evolution greater than a decade within the making. This booklet examines the controversy over electronic copyright, from the overdue Nineteen Eighties via early 2012, and the hot instruments of political verbal exchange fascinated by the advocacy round the factor. Drawing on equipment from criminal reports, political technological know-how, and communications, it explores the increase of a coalition looking extra constrained copyright, in addition to how those early-adopting, technology-savvy coverage advocates used on-line communique to surprise the realm. It compares key accounts, congressional debates, and offline and on-line media assurance utilizing quantitative and qualitative ways to create a rigorous learn for researchers that also is obtainable to a basic viewers.

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Yes, they could use their videocassette recorders (VCRs) to record movies from broadcast television – or even from the rented videotape in one VCR through to a blank tape in a second VCR – in lieu of buying copies. They could record songs from the radio and even make whole copies of cassette albums using dual-cassette decks. They could make infringing photocopies of printed works, although, except for limited types of works such as sheet music, the cost of buying a licensed copy was often cheaper and remains so to this day.

In many policy arenas, there are local, state, and federal policies in play; this is true, for instance, for most debates about environmental policy. Likewise, in many policy debates, administrative agencies are central players in determining policy outcomes; again, environmental policy issues are often great examples, as these debates are often, to a very large extent, over agency policy. None of this is true of copyright. Since the 1976 Copyright Act, changes in copyright are exclusively the domain of the federal government.

1384 Before the Subcommittee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Competitiveness, 100th Cong. (1987); Digital Audio Tape Recorder Act of 1987: Hearing on S. 506 Before the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, 100th Cong. (1987). “CBS Records’ Dispute Seen,” New York Times, February 23, 1988, D19. Andrew Pollack, “Accord Clears the Way for Digital Tape Recorders,” New York Times, July 26, 1989, A1. Ibid. R. 4096/S. 2358, 101st Cong. (1990). Andrew Pollack, “Suit Seeks to Bar Sale of New Audio Players,” New York Times, July 11, 1990, D5.

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