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January 20, 2005
Righting Copyright: Fair Use and "Digital Environmentalism"
The always eloquent Robert Boynton has written the book review to end all book reviews -- at least for copyfighters. It's an in-depth look at four books on the contemporary movement to restore consitutional balance to copyright:
Boynton goes well beyond typical book review territory, offering a compelling synthesis of perspectives as well as an analysis of the current state of play in the copyfight:
The cultural prong of digital environmentalism has had somewhat more success. Represented by writers like Bollier, Vaidhyanathan ..., Kembrew McLeod ..., and others, they all advocate the path of activism and resistance. Working within existing law, they propose that artists and authors aggressively exercise their intellectual property rights in the face of threats and legal challenges from overbearing copyright holders. Bollier, for one, perceives the work of digital environmentalists as benefiting from the momentum generated by legal challenges like Lessig's. "Acts of civil disobedience against the antisocial, personally intrusive claims of copyright law have only grown since the Eldred ruling, in part because of it," he writes.
A terrific, involving read, regardless of whether you've read or plan to read the books. Bravo.
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