To opt out or not to opt out? This is the question that UofT and Western are currently facing, as the initial term of their license agreements with Access Copyright is about to end, but will be renewed automatically unless they choose to terminate by the end of the next month. The question may not be as existential as Prince Hamlet’s, but like the him, the universities will have to decide whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous Agreement, or to take arms against a sea of troubles, and by opposing end them? 

Locke and I: Part 3 Continued from Locke and I: Part 2   “[A]s all things that are good in this act, the Company of Stationers minding nothing in it but what makes for their monopoly.” John Locke (1693) When I called John Locke the following day he was much more cheerful than he was in our previous conversations. “Good morning Ariel, I’m so glad you called back,” he said when he answered the phone. “Your explanations about Access Copyright’s latest moves allow me to start making sense of it. But you still have to explain to me what you meant …

The Company of Stationers Minding Nothing But What Makes for Their Monopoly Read more »

Locke and I: Part 2 Continued from Locke and I: Part 1 [T]he Company of Stationers have obtained from the Crown a patent to print all, or at least the greatest part, of the classic authors, upon pretence, as I hear, that they should be well and truly printed. … but by this act scholars are subjected to the power of these dull wretches, … unless they pay them 6s. 8d. a book for that leave. John Locke (1693) Locke did not wait until the next day. A couple of hours after our previous conversation–I was still in my office–he called …

Scholars are Subjected to the Power of These Dull Wretches Read more »

Locke and I: Part 1   “By this act England loses in general, scholars in particular are grounded, and nobody gets, but a lazy, ignorant Company of Stationers, to say no worse of them.” John Locke (1693) A few days ago my phone rang. John Locke was on the line. Yes, the John Locke. The philosopher. John and I call each other once in a while. We usually talk about our current work, we discuss some politics (he likes to talk about the Queen, I talk about the Middle East), and we almost always end up talking about copyright issues, culminating in him …

A Lazy, Ignorant Company of Stationers, To Say No Worse of Them Read more »

Volume 27(3) of the Berkeley Technology Law Journal is now published. This issue is based on last year’s Orphan Works & Mass Digitization: Obstacles & Opportunities Symposium. It contains eight papers, by Register of Copyright Maria Pallante, Randal Picker, Stef van Gompel, Jennifer Urban, Lydia Pallas Loren, Molly Shaffer Van Houweling, Matthew Sag, and myself. Here’s the symposium issue webpage. The title of my paper is The Orphans, the Market, and the Copyright Dogma: A Modest Solution for a Grand Problem, and it can be downloaded from here. Here’s the abstract: