Mind forg'd manacles


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The story of how communities of practice such as filmmakers, educators and librarians have journeyed from a permissions culture to one of free expression and claiming of rights, enabling them to meet mission better, by understanding their fair use rights under copyright.

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  • Copyright users have problems accessing copyrighted material to make new work, from takedowns on YouTube to scary messages from MPAA to harsh licensing terms from major league sports.
  • Fair use and copyright exemptions generally are escape hatches to the owner’s monopoly in copyright.
  • Meanwhile, judges love it and encourage people to use it. They ask three questions.
  • Can you add landscape background to this one?
  • Rather it’s having a counterproductive effect—scaring people out of using the rights they have and claiming more space for flexibility and freedom of expression
  • Can you add landscape background to this one?
  • What we need is a civil rights agenda for copyright users around rebalancing the copyright act. We need for the rights that corporations have used for decades to be extended to the rest of us. The tools are already within the law. We need to assert our right to use them.
  • That’s where it becomes important to have some standards to refer to, to tell you what is typical, normal, necessary and appropriate in your kind of cultural practice.
  • Documentary filmmakers designed a code of best practices in fair use, through their five national organizations. We were funded by the Rockefeller and MacArthur Foundations.
  • The results were dramatic, and immediate.
  • Teachers came to us because they had a common problem whenever they taught using popular culture, and especially when they taught “media literacy”—criticism and analysis of popular culture.Once again we conducted research, and discovered teachers were overcomplying, avoiding teaching with this material when they used it, closed the classroom door and swore their students to secrecy. Used bad or inadequate material, e.g. making up their own ads to simulate common advertising. They too worked through their organizations to determine norms of interpretation, and again a legal advisory board looked over their work. The Ford Foundation paid for this.
  • Their situation changed dramatically as well.
  • Open Course Ware code on left, on right the words Open Course Ware Designers
  • A page that looks like the others that says “RESULTS 31 new courses at MIT alone in one year Previously rejected for OpenCourseWare
  • We’ve just begun working with librarians—certainly the largest, most pervasive constituency we’ve worked with.—thanks to the Mellon Foundation.
  • The major spokesperson for the fair use movement is Peter Jaszi, who argues for making the balancing features of the law accessible to everyone.
  • Mind forg'd manacles

    1. 1. MIND-FORG’D MANACLES:Fair Use, Free Speech, and Political ActionPat AufderheideCenter for Social MediaAmerican University
    2. 2. Mind-forg’d manacles
    3. 3. A TALE OF THREE JOURNEYS• Inside people’s heads• From submission to agency• From agency to action
    4. 4. FAIR USE:The Escape Hatch!
    5. 5. JUDGES LOVEFAIR USE• Did you transform the use?• Did you use the appropriate amount to satisfy the transformative use?PLUS: What are your community’s expectations?
    6. 6. JOURNEY #1
    7. 7. JOURNEY #2
    8. 8. Open CourseWare Designers
    9. 9. RESULTS • 31 new courses at MIT alone in one year • Previously rejected for Open Course Ware
    10. 10. JOURNEY #3