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WEBSITE-INFO-MGT  1999

WEBSITE-INFO-MGT 1999

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Subject:

Re: Intellectual property ethics (was: Complaint from London Transport .co.uk)

From:

Brian Kelly <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Brian Kelly <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 15 Apr 1999 18:28:10 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (167 lines)

Hi David
     Thanks for the message.  Some comments in reply.

SPECIFIC POINTS ABOUT LONDON TRANSPORT

The discussion arose from London Transport's request for links to be made to
their home page.  I suggested that this may be related to advertising and
possibly their plans to develop their adverts.  I have no evidence that this
is the reason.

There is no reason to believe that London Transport will request payments
for access to their information - so it is not appropriate to draw parallels
with people who can't afford to buy books (I know that you're not making a
direct comparison but I think that's an inference which many would make).

Others have argued that London Transport provides a transport service and
that it is not appropriate for them to implement a service by which users
see their ads.  I wouldn't agree with this.  They make money by selling
advertising space on the tube - selling ad space on the web is no
different - and, as I said, they'll have to generate extra revenue to pay to
provide and maintain their web site.  How else should it be made - increase
fares, increase local taxes?  I think even Ken Livingstone is saying he
supports New Labour rhetoric these days. So I'm appealing against my 2.2 and
comments that "[I] only understands the complete private ownership of
information perspective".  My is a New Labour perspective and if David can't
differentiate between New Labour and Thatcherism then he's a unreconstructed
hard left dinosaur - low marks for you

MORE GENERAL POINTS

OK. let's forget about scoring points.

I agree with you about the stupidity of the proposed EU ban on caching (from
what I read, Nana Mouskouri (?) following lobbying from groups such as the
Spice Girls and The Corrs succeeded in getting a resolution passed which
would make caching services illegal).  I've also read that ISP have
successfully lobbied appropriate government bodies and that it's unlikely to
be passed by European parliament.  You also suggested that the UK HE
community should lobby the government.  I've been in touch with the national
caching service and made the same point, and suggested that they give an
"official view" - as UKERNA did with their response to the DTI concerning
the authentication / digital signatures proposal.

I'm thinking of how to respomnd to your other comments, but I think we're
too far apart.  When you say (clearly related to London Transport):

> If Translink in Northern Ireland had any on-line maps of their bus and
rail routes, they would
> never dream of stopping our local community networks from linking to them.

I would respond that London Transport aren't banning access to their
information - only trying to enforce a particular path through.

This is an issue for the academic community in it's provision of information
and services too.  Currently Universities (and national services) get kudos
and, indirectly, through selling a positive image, feel that students will
be attracted to their university, reassdarchers will want to study there,
etc.  We're all into advertising.  There have been discussions on a number
of lists concerning the loss of branding and visual identity which may
happen when users get information thought use of distributed searching
protocols (e.g. I get my search results using a Z39.50 hit to an information
gateway, rather than going to the information gateway's home page).  These
are real legitimate concerns.  They can't be reduced to a simplistic left v
right / private v public information argument.

Oops - it's 6.30 and I'll be late for my dinner.

Looking forward to reading your reply and views from others.

brian


> > I think you're missing something.  Owners of intellectual property are
> > entitled to due reward for their work - and copyright legislation
provides
> > protection for this.
>
> Copyright legislation in the world of paper does NOT ONLY concern itself
> with rewarding traders in intellectual work. It sets out a carefully
> balanced set of rights and duties so that writers may receive some reward

> for their effort, while not destroying society through dividing it into
> separate groups of information rich and information poor. For example,
> during the industrial revolution many municipalities set up public
> libraries so that those too poor to buy books could read them. This had
> the effect of reducing the income to the publishers. However, this was
> accepted as their duty to ensuring that we had a sufficiently educated
> workforce to develop industry. They accepted that they would have to
> renounce some worldly goods to serve the poor. This was added to the
> existing understanding that scholarship would be impossible if people
> could not use, reproduce and quote short parts of others' work.
>
> There is a concerted attempt in the world of electronic publishing to
> remove all exceptions for fair use or even the idea of fairness. Pamela
> Sanderson, Bruce Sterling and others have documented this in a number of
> articles in Wired and Communications of the ACM. The pressure is coming
> mainly from US music and film publishers. We saw the effect of their
> lobbying on MEPs, when they recently passed a plan to outlaw even
> temporary digital copies of any works, so making caching proxy servers
> illegal.
>
> >      As the costs of providing web services increase, service providers
are
> > increasingly looking for ways of covering their costs.  In the case of
> > London Transport I think it is reasonable for them to receive
advertising
> > revenue to cover their costs.  The simplest way of maximising hits on
> > advertising is to request institutions link to the main entry point.
> >      I don't see anythink wrong with this.
>
> They are a public service, with a duty to serve to poor (if not renounce
> all their worldly goods). They are not a private company. As libraries
> become replaced by electronic kiosks, are people going to be stopped from
> consulting the underground map in these kiosks? If Translink in Northern
> Ireland had any on-line maps of their bus and rail routes, they would
> never dream of stopping our local community networks from linking to them.
>
> >      I also don't agree with David Newman's  assertion that this is an
> > infringement on academic freedom.
>
> I did not make an assertion. I quoted an extract from one of series of
> serious, peer-reviewed articles published in a legal journal, in the hope
> that some of the members of the list would look there to study the serious
> discussion on the issues of electronic copyright, rather than merely
> sticking to their existing prejudices. I also changed the title, to show I
> was not specifically refering to the LT map.
>
> It is not a case of agreeing or disagreeing. It is not a matter of
> opinion. It is a case of doing research, or studying other research, to
> carefully tease out the nature of a problem and the perspectives of
> different interest groups. One way my students get poor marks is by
> demonstrating that they only understand one point of view, and have never
> made an attempt to understand any other. Unusually for him, Brian Kelly
> has demonstrated that in this case he only understands the complete
> private ownership of information perspective (52% - a low 2.2 - at least
> he expressed his case clearly, if with little evidence for why we should
> share his values).
>
> My comments on what we should campaign about concerned firstly the
> difference between quotation practice in academic publications versus
> films and TV. As stated in articles by Tim Berners-Lee, the hypertext
> reference was explicitly modelled on the academic reference. When
> commercial interests started to join our club, they accepted this as part
> of the rules of the club. Now their lawyers are trying to change these
> rules. That should be fought. But even more important is the potential EU
> directive that will outlaw temporary copying without permission of the
> copyright owners. That will need a serious campaign to match the high-paid
> lobbying of Hollywood.
>
> I am seriously worried that at many levels the "Information Society" is
> being seen only as a vehicle for electronic commerce, not as a means by
> which 100% of the population learn to think for themselves so that they
> can deal with a world where they are always being made redundant. The
> rich can stick up for themselves. Those of us in the public sector have
> other duties (see, e.g., the recommendations in "Beyond Access and
> Awareness", http://www.qub.ac.uk/mgt/cicn/beyond/).
> ----------------------
> Dr. D. R. Newman, Queen's University Belfast, Queen's School of
Management,
> BELFAST BT7 1NN, Northern Ireland (UK). http://www.qub.ac.uk/mgt/
> FAX: +44-1232-249881 Tel. +44-1232-335011 mailto:[log in to unmask]
>
>



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