I just read an interesting article by Brian Fitzgerald and Kylie Pappalardo in the CT Watch Quarterly called ‘The Law as Cyberinfrastructure’. The article discusses both open content licensing and open patent licensing and highlights a number of the relevant issues and initiatives in these areas. What I specifically like about it was that it saw the potential for law to be an enabling tool as opposed to a barrier to progress. This is an approach we try to promote here at the DCC.
Here are some of the passages I particularly like on this point:
“In the realm of collaborative endeavour through networked cyberinfrastructure we know the law is not too far away. But we also know that a paranoid obsession with it will cause inefficiency and stifle the true spirit of research. The key for the lawyers is to understand and implement a legal framework that can work with the power of the technology to disseminate knowledge in such a way that it does not seem a barrier. This is difficult in any universal sense but not totally impossible. In this article, we will show how the law is responding as a positive agent to facilitate the sharing of knowledge in the cyberinfrastructure world.”What are your thoughts on this?
“Legal instruments that can match the dynamic of the technology and appear seamless and non-invasive are the goal.”
“As lawyers, we hope that the law can adapt to facilitate the very great potential cyberinfrastructure promises us. To this end, we need to think of legal tools as being part of the infrastructure and work towards providing innovative models for the future.”