July 15, 2003  ·  admin

Thanks for the many, many comments. We’ve just arrived back to Vermont after six days on the road. I appreciate all the feedback. People asked what can be done about media deregulation. I think we need to re-regulate the media that has clearly abused its authority by censoring information that should be made available to the American people. Someone asked about the Patriot Act-we should repeal those parts that violate our constitution.

In the second quarter, our campaign had over 73,000 donors. We have over 60,000 people on Meetup. Every one of them is making a difference. If everyone gets involved, we can change the political process in this country and prove there is a better way to change the country. That is what this campaign is about.

Thanks again, Howard Dean

July 15, 2003  ·  admin

Thanks for all the comments on the blog last night. I haven�t had a chance to read all of the comments� we flew up from Miami to DC last night. But I will read them.

Let me be perfectly honest. In the space of this week on the blog, I will not be able to answer every specific question. I know that people here care deeply about intellectual property. I�m here to listen.

As a doctor, I�m trained to base my decisions on facts. This President never adequately laid out the facts for going to war with Iraq�perhaps, as it turns out, because the facts were not there. I opposed the war not because I�m a pacifist�I�m not�but because the evidence presented did not justify preemptive war. I opposed needle exchanges for drug addicts until I saw the empirical evidence that showed how such exchanges reduce the spread of disease. I changed my position, and I�m proud of that. Facts are a better basis for decisions than ideology.

No matter what the issues are that we as individuals care most about– whether intellectual property, healthy care, the environment � I believe that the only way we are ever going to come to a real solution on any of these issues is if we all stand together against the special interests in Washington. There are now 33 lobbyists for every member of congress. How do we change that? By working together. One of the amazing things about this campaign is how the Internet has allowed people to meet and work together in common cause. Only by taking an active part in our democracy will we be able to restore a government of, by and for the people.

Thanks again, Howard Dean

July 14, 2003  ·  admin

It�s been a busy day, but it�s great to blog here on Larry Lessig�s blog.

I�ll be writing all week, but if there�s a day I can�t make it, Joe Trippi, my campaign manager, will fill in for me. Thank you Professor Lessig for inviting me.

The Internet might soon be the last place where open dialogue occurs. One of the most dangerous things that has happened in the past few years is the deregulation of media ownership rules that began in 1996. Michael Powell and the Bush FCC are continuing that assault today (see the June 2nd ruling).

The danger of relaxing media ownership rules became clear to me when I saw what happened with the Dixie Chicks. But there�s an even bigger danger in the future, on the Internet. The FCC recently ruled that cable and phone based broadband providers be classified as information rather than telecommunications services. This is the first step in a process that could allow Internet providers to arbitrarily limit the content that users can access. The phone and cable industries could have the power to discriminate against content that they don�t control or– even worse– simply don�t like.

The media conglomerates now dominate almost half of the markets around the country, meaning Americans get less independent and frequently less dependable news, views and information. James Madison and Thomas Jefferson spoke of the fear that economic power would one day try to seize political power. No consolidated economic power has more opportunity to do this than the consolidated power of media.

July 12, 2003  ·  Lessig

So one of the million things I’ve not had time to do while finishing this draft (answering a b’gillion emails is another) was to listen to this. As I described before, Colin Mutchler posted a guitar track to Opsound. Opsound makes its content available to others under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike license. Cora Beth, a 17 year old violinist, took the track and added a violin track. The result is this.

As Brian Flemming commented on the post, “a great way to illustrate the value of CC to someone who perhaps doesn�t quite get it.” Indeed it is. Listen to this, and you’ll can’t help but get it.

July 12, 2003  ·  Lessig

Yesterday, I completed a draft of a new book. Tomorrow, Bettina and I leave for our first vacation in a very long time (and, as we expect, the last vacation the two of us will take alone in a very long time).

So it is time for me to take a break from this space too. But I’ve arranged for a much more interesting guest blogger while I’m gone: former governor, and presidential candidate, Howard Dean.

This is, I believe, the first time a presidential candidate has been a guest blogger. But it is an obvious extension of blogs and the process of becoming President. Campaigns are all about meeting different groups and talking about ideas. Where better than a blog?

I have great respect for Governor Dean, and especially the clarity of his voice. I have even greater respect now that I see the doctor makes house calls. So Governor, welcome to this tiny server at Stanford: You’ll find perfect acoustics provided by MovableType, and an interesting mix of views provided by the readers.

And to everyone else, enjoy the week of something totally different. Dean is on starting Monday. I should be back the week following.

One ground rule: I’ve had a policy of not editing comments of others, regardless of abusiveness. That is not my policy for my guests. You may disagree with the views you read here. But if you are reading them here, then you at least should respect the fact that they are being expressed here. It is important to me that blog-space everywhere become a place where more of this kind of conversation can occur. So trolls, please save your abuse for my return.

July 8, 2003  ·  Lessig

Kim Scarborough sent this (warning: large mp3) wonderful radio show from the Columbia Workshop in 1937 about characters leaving the “copyright lane” for the “public domain.” It is a brilliantly complex and funny tale that reveals an understanding about the value of the public domain that would be hard to recognize today.

July 8, 2003  ·  Lessig

Two random questions I’d be grateful for a reply on. Reply to this disposable email address:

(1) Has anyone heard from Andrew Orlowski — via email — in the past six weeks?

(2) There’s an ad running on some network with two guys at a bar talking about drug legalization. It is an anti-legalization ad. I’d be grateful for any help in tracking it down.

July 8, 2003  ·  Lessig

Two random questions I’d be grateful for a reply on. Reply to this disposable email address:

(1) Has anyone heard from Andrew Orlowski — via email — in the past six weeks?

(2) There’s an ad running on some network with two guys at a bar talking about drug legalization. It is an anti-legalization ad. I’d be grateful for any help in tracking it down.