5) ISSUES IN THE PRESS 4

I. Before you watch a news broadcast of your choice (at CBS news http://www.cbsnews.com/sections/eveningnews/main3420.shtml for example) , try to learn the press terms on my website so that you can talk about the news with more confidence: http://debseslexercises.yolasite.com/the-press.php

IV: Copyright infringement and Google’s Online Library: Can you imagine having online access to virtually any book whenever you need it? Google is in the process of digitizing millions of books many of which are no longer in print and that can only be viewed in traditional libraries around the world. Its goal is to make much of the world’s knowledge available to everyone. People will be able to search for quotes and key passages, annotate pages with their own thoughts and notes, and share passages with friends and colleagues. This virtual library would never close and like Google’s search engine, information would only be one mouse click away. But information has become a consumer product whether it be contained in books or in newspapers (re: Rupert Murdoch is suing Google for “stealing” their news) and Google is being suing by authors, booksellers, libraries, and countries for copyright infringement. What do you think? Do you think Google’s online library is a good thing? Do you think we should pay for information and that “free” libraries should no longer exist? Do you think we have lost our common sense when it comes to copyright?

Before reading the article and watching the videos, do the vocabulary exercise on my website in order to familiarize yourselves with legal jargon: http://debseslexercises.yolasite.com/copyright-infringement-laws.php.

Before watching the videos, read this article entitled “Germany criticizes Google for Copyright Infringement” at: http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSTRE5991L120091010

Practice your pronunciation by reading along with me: Germany criticizes Google for Copyright Infringement

Now watch these 2 videos and be prepared to discuss this in class or via e-mail.

Does Google violate the “Fair Use” law  (allows limited use of copyrighted material without requiring permission from the rights holders, i.e. authors, songwriters, etc.) which governs the transmission of information and culture in the US? Watch the video and you decide.

Is Rupert Murdoch right when he says that people should “pay” for news on the internet? Watch the video and you decide.

To understand what most Americans define as “Fair Use” laws, listen to a lecture given by Larry Lessig, director of the Edward J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics at Harvard University and a professor of law at Harvard Law School, formerly a law professor at Stanford University entitled: “How creativity is being strangled by the law”. He gives us a historical overview and shows us some examples, some which are very provocative especially the one about the relationship between Bush and Blair, of how “Fair Use” laws fosters creativity. Do you agree with his analysis?

 

For a more in-depth understanding of this issue, go to the “Democracy Now” site and listen to the interview of Herbert Kahn, Brewster Kahle, founder of the non-profit internet library Archive.org, who discusses the different facets of this controversy. To make sure you understand everything, you can listen and read the script which is located right below the video screen.

http://www.democracynow.org/2009/4/30/google_faces_antitrust_investigation_for_agreement

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