William Gibson writes in his excellent novel Pattern Recognition that jet-lag happens because your soul is catching-up with you. Mine must be somewhere over Ukraine.

The first day of the Unlocking IP conference has finished, and it has been an excellent first day, perhaps with the exception of one paper given half asleep. Michael Geist and Brian Fitzgerald gave two great papers conceptualizing the commons, while Jane Anderson and Kathy Bowery gave a thought provoking paper trying to challenge the political assumptions of the commons movement, challenging the “coolness” of it all. Peter Drahos gave a highly conceptual analysis of the philosophies behind the idea of the commons, where he posited that we must defend freedom because freedom leads to diversity.

One of my favourite paper of the morning was by Melissa De Zwart, entitled ‘Future of Fair Dealing in Australia: Protecting Freedom of Communication’. This was an excellent look at the rationale for copyright and rationale for fair dealing. Of particular interest was the comparison between the use of freedom of expression/communication/speech in Europe, the USA and Australia. I was surprised to learn that FoE doesn’t exist in Australian legislation!

The other highlighted paper was Kimberlee Weatherall‘s, provokingly entitled ‘Would you ever recommend a Creative Commons license – and why?’ It was a look at all the quibbles and serious objections to the use of Creative Commons in the public sector, with some excellent replies to the problems raised by others.

After this session the caffeine stopped having an effect and I joined the lands of the living dead. Brains… grrr…argggh!

Categories: Conferences


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