Lessig » good code http://www.lessig.org Blog, news, books Sat, 12 Nov 2016 16:31:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.2 fabulously cool: iFixit’s teardown platform http://www.lessig.org/2009/06/fabulously-cool-ifixits-teardo/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/06/fabulously-cool-ifixits-teardo/#comments Thu, 04 Jun 2009 13:57:48 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/06/fabulously_cool_ifixits_teardo.html iFixit has built a teardown platform. I've used the site many times to take apart Mac's I've needed to fix. But those instructions were iFixit prepared. They've now enabled anyone to build a teardown ("the act or process of disassembling") spec for any product. The site offers the structure and advice for building great teardowns. It then hosts and supports feedback. It is a fantastic example of a "hybrid," as REMIX defines the term -- and all submissions are CC-BY-NC-SA. ]]> This is fabulously cool: iFixit has built a teardown platform. I’ve used the site many times to take apart Mac’s I’ve needed to fix. But those instructions were iFixit prepared. They’ve now enabled anyone to build a teardown (“the act or process of disassembling”) spec for any product. The site offers the structure and advice for building great teardowns. It then hosts and supports feedback. It is a fantastic example of a “hybrid,” as REMIX defines the term — and all submissions are CC-BY-NC-SA.

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Jefferson’s remix of Augustine’s insight http://www.lessig.org/2009/05/jeffersons-remix-of-augustines/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/05/jeffersons-remix-of-augustines/#comments Tue, 19 May 2009 05:11:00 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/05/jeffersons_remix_of_augustines.html If nature has made any one thing less susceptible than all others of exclusive property, it is the action of the thinking power called an idea, which an individual may exclusively possess as long as he keeps it to himself; but the moment it is divulged, it forces itself into the possession of every one, and the receiver cannot dispossess himself of it. Its peculiar character, too, is that no one possesses the less, because every other possesses the whole of it. He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me. That ideas should freely spread from one to another over the globe, for the moral and mutual instruction of man, and improvement of his condition, seems to have been peculiarly and benevolently designed by nature, when she made them, like fire, expansible over all space, without lessening their density at any point, and like the air in which we breathe, move, and have our physical being, incapable of confinement or exclusive appropriation.Thomas Jefferson letter to Isaac Mcpherson, August 13, 1813, reprinted in H. A. Washington, ed., Writings of Thomas Jefferson 1790-1826, vol. 6 (Washington, D. C: Taylor & Maury, 1854), 180-81; quoted in Graham v. John Deere Company of Kansas, 383 U. S. 1, 8-9n.2 (1966). David Ellerman writes to point to an earlier version of the same point, this one penned by Augustine. As Augustine wrote:
The words I am uttering penetrate your senses, so that every hearer holds them, yet withholds them from no other. Not held, the words could not inform. Withheld, no other could share them. Though my talk is, admittedly, broken up into words and syllables, yet you do not take in this portion or that, as when picking at your food. All of you hear all of it, though each takes all individually. I have no worry that, by giving all to one, the others are deprived. I hope, instead, that everyone will consume everything; so that, denying no other ear or mind, you take all to yourselves, yet leave all to all others. But for individual failures of memory, everyone who came to hear what I say can take it all off, each on one's separate way.
Augustine Sermon; quoted in Scan Globally, Reinvent Locally: Knowledge Infrastructure and the Localization of Knowledge." In: Joseph Stiglitz and the World Bank: The Rebel Within. Chang, Ha-Joon (Ed.),London: Anthem, 2001, pp. 194-219, quoting Wills, Garry 1999. Saint Augustine. New York: Viking, p. 145. Ellerman is a researcher who had worked for Stiglitz at the World Bank. Thanks to him, Augustine is the new Jefferson.]]>
The world of American copyright scholars is very familiar with the poetic passage of Jefferson’s, written in a letter:
If nature has made any one thing less susceptible than all others of exclusive property, it is the action of the thinking power called an idea, which an individual may exclusively possess as long as he keeps it to himself; but the moment it is divulged, it forces itself into the possession of every one, and the receiver cannot dispossess himself of it. Its peculiar character, too, is that no one possesses the less, because every other possesses the whole of it. He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me. That ideas should freely spread from one to another over the globe, for the moral and mutual instruction of man, and improvement of his condition, seems to have been peculiarly and benevolently designed by nature, when she made them, like fire, expansible over all space, without lessening their density at any point, and like the air in which we breathe, move, and have our physical being, incapable of confinement or exclusive appropriation.

Thomas Jefferson letter to Isaac Mcpherson, August 13, 1813, reprinted in H. A. Washington, ed., Writings of Thomas Jefferson 1790-1826, vol. 6 (Washington, D. C: Taylor & Maury, 1854), 180-81; quoted in Graham v. John Deere Company of Kansas, 383 U. S. 1, 8-9n.2 (1966).

David Ellerman writes to point to an earlier version of the same point, this one penned by Augustine. As Augustine wrote:

The words I am uttering penetrate your senses, so that every hearer holds them, yet withholds them from no other. Not held, the words could not inform. Withheld, no other could share them. Though my talk is, admittedly, broken up into words and syllables, yet you do not take in this portion or that, as when picking at your food. All of you hear all of it, though each takes all individually. I have no worry that, by giving all to one, the others are deprived. I hope, instead, that everyone will consume everything; so that, denying no other ear or mind, you take all to yourselves, yet leave all to all others. But for individual failures of memory, everyone who came to hear what I say can take it all off, each on one’s separate way.

Augustine Sermon; quoted in Scan Globally, Reinvent Locally: Knowledge Infrastructure and the Localization of Knowledge.” In:  Joseph Stiglitz and the World Bank: The Rebel Within. Chang, Ha-Joon (Ed.),London: Anthem, 2001, pp. 194-219, quoting Wills, Garry 1999. Saint Augustine. New York: Viking, p. 145.

Ellerman is a researcher who had worked for Stiglitz at the World Bank. Thanks to him, Augustine is the new Jefferson.

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video TOSs compared http://www.lessig.org/2009/05/video-toss-compared/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/05/video-toss-compared/#comments Wed, 13 May 2009 07:47:45 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/05/video_toss_compared.html here. ]]> Markus Weiland has compiled an interesting comparison of the different terms of service for video hosting sites. You can read the report here.

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Architects of Openness http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/architects-of-openness/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/architects-of-openness/#comments Sun, 26 Apr 2009 10:34:42 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/04/architects_of_openness.html Some scholars have been arguing that the architecture of the internet, its embrace of openness as a design principle, might revolutionize science if we could apply the same principles there -- if we could break down the legal and technical barriers that prevent the efficient networking of state funded research and data. Imagine a scientific research process that worked as efficiently as the web does for buying shoes. Then imagine what economic growth a faster, leaner, and more open scientific research environment might generate. James Boyle, What the information superhighways aren't built of, FT (April 17, 2009). (Not that the FT is the perfect architect of openness. You'll have to give away some personal information to read this wonderful essay. Don't worry. You can give it away "for free.")]]>

Some scholars have been arguing that the architecture of the internet, its embrace of openness as a design principle, might revolutionize science if we could apply the same principles there — if we could break down the legal and technical barriers that prevent the efficient networking of state funded research and data. Imagine a scientific research process that worked as efficiently as the web does for buying shoes. Then imagine what economic growth a faster, leaner, and more open scientific research environment might generate.

James Boyle, What the information superhighways aren’t built of, FT (April 17, 2009). (Not that the FT is the perfect architect of openness. You’ll have to give away some personal information to read this wonderful essay. Don’t worry. You can give it away “for free.”)

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Using CODE v2 http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/using-code-v2/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/using-code-v2/#comments Sat, 25 Apr 2009 14:02:14 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/04/using_code_v2.html Norwich University (VT) reports his class has just completed 3.5 weeks with CODE v2 in his Politics of Cyberspace course. As he writes,
the files in the LECTURES section include more than 100 specific questions for discussion and exams that they may find helpful in preparing their own courses.
You can download the entire set here. Thanks for the work making my own more useful. ]]>
Mich Kabay of Norwich University (VT) reports his class has just completed 3.5 weeks with CODE v2 in his Politics of Cyberspace course. As he writes,
the files in the LECTURES section include more than 100 specific questions for discussion and exams that they may find helpful in preparing their own courses.

You can download the entire set here.

Thanks for the work making my own more useful.

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From Stanford’s Center for Internet & Society http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/from-stanfords-center-for-inte/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/from-stanfords-center-for-inte/#comments Sun, 12 Apr 2009 10:30:18 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/04/from_stanfords_center_for_inte.html The above is about the conference described below:
PLAY MACHINIMA LAW DATE: April 24-25, 2009 LOCATION: Stanford Law School Register now at http://cyberlaw.stanford.edu/playmachinima Machinima. ...It has been hailed as the art form of the 21st century. ...It is redefining music videos. ...And reinventing the videogame. ...It might be the future of cinema. But there's a catch: if you make machinima, you might be breaking the law. Or are you? Find out at Stanford University. "Play Machinima Law" from April 24-25, 2009. This two-day conference will cover key issues associated with player-generated, computer animated cinema that is based on 3D game and virtual world environments. Speakers include machinima artists/players, legal experts, commercial game developers, theorists, and more. Topics include: game art, game hacking, open source and "modding," player/consumer-driven innovation, cultural/technology studies, fan culture, legal and business issues, transgressive play, game preservation, and notions of collaborative co-creation drawn from virtual worlds and online games. Films will be shown throughout the conference, including: Douglas Grayeton's Molotov Alva and His Search for the Creator and Joshua Diltz' Mercy of the Sea.
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The above is about the conference described below:

PLAY MACHINIMA LAW

DATE: April 24-25, 2009
LOCATION: Stanford Law School

Register now at http://cyberlaw.stanford.edu/playmachinima

Machinima.
…It has been hailed as the art form of the 21st century.
…It is redefining music videos.
…And reinventing the videogame.
…It might be the future of cinema.

But there’s a catch: if you make machinima, you might be breaking the law.

Or are you?

Find out at Stanford University. “Play Machinima Law” from April 24-25, 2009. This two-day conference will cover key issues associated with player-generated, computer animated cinema that is based on 3D game and virtual world environments. Speakers include machinima artists/players, legal experts, commercial game developers, theorists, and more. Topics include: game art, game hacking, open source and “modding,” player/consumer-driven innovation, cultural/technology studies, fan culture, legal and business issues, transgressive play, game preservation, and notions of collaborative co-creation drawn from virtual worlds and online games. Films will be shown throughout the conference, including: Douglas Grayeton’s Molotov Alva and His Search for the Creator and Joshua Diltz’ Mercy of the Sea.

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seeing relationships, seeing influence? http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/seeing-relationships-seeing-in/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/seeing-relationships-seeing-in/#comments Tue, 07 Apr 2009 20:01:04 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/04/seeing_relationships_seeing_in.html Center for the Study of Complex Systems at the University of Michigan have come up with a fantastically suggestive way of seeing the relationships between "money and government." Here for example is contributions to the Senate by industry and sector. Here you can see contributions by entities that received TARP funding. Wonderful work that will feed lots of insight and reflection. ]]> The good souls at the Center for the Study of Complex Systems at the University of Michigan have come up with a fantastically suggestive way of seeing the relationships between “money and government.” Here for example is contributions to the Senate by industry and sector. Here you can see contributions by entities that received TARP funding. Wonderful work that will feed lots of insight and reflection.

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highly recommended: Fred on the President’s gift to the Queen http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/highly-recommended-fred-on-the/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/04/highly-recommended-fred-on-the/#comments Mon, 06 Apr 2009 10:00:15 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/04/highly_recommended_fred_on_the.html a fantastic essay on the complexity in knowing whether the President's gift to the Queen violated the law. Does anyone doubt it is time to begin a formal and serious discussion about how best to craft a copyright law for the 21st century? Does anyone think such a law should yield such ambiguity to such a simple question? ]]> Fred von Lohmann has a fantastic essay on the complexity in knowing whether the President’s gift to the Queen violated the law.

Does anyone doubt it is time to begin a formal and serious discussion about how best to craft a copyright law for the 21st century? Does anyone think such a law should yield such ambiguity to such a simple question?

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Earmark reform http://www.lessig.org/2009/03/earmark-reform/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/03/earmark-reform/#comments Wed, 04 Mar 2009 10:05:15 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/03/earmark_reform.html
Hoyer to W.H.: Hands off our earmarks - Alex Isenstadt - POLITICO.com
Herein brews perhaps the first important battle of reform for this President. I have long thought the President should resign his membership in the Democratic Party -- not because he doesn't or shouldn't share the values of the Democratic Party, but because it is time we recognize we need a President above either partisanship (which got us the "Contract with America") or bipartisanship (which got us the Iraq War). But Hoyer's behavior here makes the point most starkly. Earmarks are a cancer: Not because they consume a large part of the budget -- they don't; not because we shouldn't be spending money -- we should. But because they feed the system of corruption that is the way Washington works. They are the cornerstone of a system feeding the worst of the lobbying mafia (another plug here for So Damn Much Money), which itself is the cornerstone of K St. capitalism. It was a mistake for Obama not to join McCain in targeting them during the campaign. It is a fantastic thing that he is beginning to target them now. Cancers can be benign or malignant. This cancer is malignant when it feeds K St. capitalism. It is benign when it is simply a locally informed direction to how the government's money (aka, the people's money) should be spent. And apropo of the benign form of this cancer: I've agreed to help Congresswoman Jackie Speier with an experiment for earmark reform. (Decidedly and clearly progressive) Congresswoman Speier voted against the appropriations bill because of the earmarks in the bill. But as reported in the SF Chronicle:
Speier is now trying a novel experiment: She's put together a citizen's oversight panel to recommend projects for federal funding, chaired by Stanford law professor Lawrence Lessig, a critic of earmarks, and including local elected, business and labor leaders. If the model works, she may offer legislation to expand it nationally.
The panel will meet in 3 or 4 public hearings over the next month of so to review earmark proposals. We will then report our recommendations back to her. The citizen panel idea is completely Speier's. It is a brilliant idea with enormous potential. More on the potential soon. ]]>
Hoyer to W.H.: Hands off our earmarks - Alex Isenstadt - POLITICO.com

Herein brews perhaps the first important battle of reform for this President. I have long thought the President should resign his membership in the Democratic Party — not because he doesn’t or shouldn’t share the values of the Democratic Party, but because it is time we recognize we need a President above either partisanship (which got us the “Contract with America”) or bipartisanship (which got us the Iraq War). But Hoyer’s behavior here makes the point most starkly.

Earmarks are a cancer: Not because they consume a large part of the budget — they don’t; not because we shouldn’t be spending money — we should. But because they feed the system of corruption that is the way Washington works. They are the cornerstone of a system feeding the worst of the lobbying mafia (another plug here for So Damn Much Money), which itself is the cornerstone of K St. capitalism. It was a mistake for Obama not to join McCain in targeting them during the campaign. It is a fantastic thing that he is beginning to target them now.

Cancers can be benign or malignant. This cancer is malignant when it feeds K St. capitalism. It is benign when it is simply a locally informed direction to how the government’s money (aka, the people’s money) should be spent.

And apropo of the benign form of this cancer: I’ve agreed to help Congresswoman Jackie Speier with an experiment for earmark reform. (Decidedly and clearly progressive) Congresswoman Speier voted against the appropriations bill because of the earmarks in the bill. But as reported in the SF Chronicle:

Speier is now trying a novel experiment: She’s put together a citizen’s oversight panel to recommend projects for federal funding, chaired by Stanford law professor Lawrence Lessig, a critic of earmarks, and including local elected, business and labor leaders. If the model works, she may offer legislation to expand it nationally.

The panel will meet in 3 or 4 public hearings over the next month of so to review earmark proposals. We will then report our recommendations back to her.

The citizen panel idea is completely Speier’s. It is a brilliant idea with enormous potential. More on the potential soon.

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FairShare launches http://www.lessig.org/2009/03/fairshare-launches/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/03/fairshare-launches/#comments Wed, 04 Mar 2009 09:47:29 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/03/fairshare_launches.html
FairShare -- Watch how your work spreads. Understand how it is used.
Identify your Creative Commons content to FairShare, a project of Attributor, and the service will track and report how content is being used on the web. The service is free and the technology (Attributor) is amazing. Watch (to understand or for those who want, to profit) free content spread. ]]>
FairShare -- Watch how your work spreads. Understand how it is used.

Identify your Creative Commons content to FairShare, a project of Attributor, and the service will track and report how content is being used on the web. The service is free and the technology (Attributor) is amazing. Watch (to understand or for those who want, to profit) free content spread.

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Carl should head the GPO http://www.lessig.org/2009/02/carl-should-head-the-gpo/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/02/carl-should-head-the-gpo/#comments Fri, 27 Feb 2009 18:56:08 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/02/carl_should_head_the_gpo.html YES WE SCAN Carl Malamud has launched -- and we all should support -- a campaign to become head of the GPO. I can't imagine a more exciting appointment. Sometimes an agency needs STASIS. Sometimes it needs CHANGE. Gov't tech is certainly in the second category, and no one I know of could more effectively deliver on the commitment to open government than he. Join the campaign.]]>
YES WE SCAN

Carl Malamud has launched — and we all should support — a campaign to become head of the GPO. I can’t imagine a more exciting appointment. Sometimes an agency needs STASIS. Sometimes it needs CHANGE. Gov’t tech is certainly in the second category, and no one I know of could more effectively deliver on the commitment to open government than he.

Join the campaign.

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Colbert is mad http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/colbert-is-mad/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/colbert-is-mad/#comments Thu, 22 Jan 2009 11:44:26 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/01/colbert_is_mad.html ]]>

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travel accounting (aka, dopplr is cool) http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/travel-accounting-aka-dopplr-i/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/travel-accounting-aka-dopplr-i/#comments Tue, 20 Jan 2009 20:24:06 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/01/travel_accounting_aka_dopplr_i.html Here's my Dopplr report for 2008. My flights were the equivalent of 5.4 Hummers, and I travel as fast as a Kangaroo. I can deploy offsets to deal with the first problem. Not sure what can be done about the second. Update: So I missed the most troubling feature of this initially. According to Dopplr, I have a much higher velocity and much larger carbon footprint than Obama in 2008. Though he spent more nights away from home (then again, he doesn't live in California). ]]> dopplr.JPG

Here’s my Dopplr report for 2008. My flights were the equivalent of 5.4 Hummers, and I travel as fast as a Kangaroo. I can deploy offsets to deal with the first problem. Not sure what can be done about the second.

Update: So I missed the most troubling feature of this initially. According to Dopplr, I have a much higher velocity and much larger carbon footprint than Obama in 2008. Though he spent more nights away from home (then again, he doesn’t live in California).

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Really great news from YouTube http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/really-great-news-from-youtube/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/really-great-news-from-youtube/#comments Fri, 16 Jan 2009 16:45:09 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/01/really_great_news_from_youtube.html
click2download.JPG
Notice an important new feature in the world of YouTube -- a "Click to download" link. YouTube is rolling this out slowly, initially with content that aspires to be consistent with principles of open government. I'm told it will be offered more generally. In any case, it is an important development. There have always been hacks for slurping down YouTube videos. But it is a valuable step that YouTube encourage and support this sharing. ]]>
click2download.JPG

Notice an important new feature in the world of YouTube — a “Click to download” link. YouTube is rolling this out slowly, initially with content that aspires to be consistent with principles of open government. I’m told it will be offered more generally. In any case, it is an important development. There have always been hacks for slurping down YouTube videos. But it is a valuable step that YouTube encourage and support this sharing.

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missed (and fantastic) news: Boucher and Telecommunications http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/missed-and-fantastic-news-bouc/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/missed-and-fantastic-news-bouc/#comments Fri, 16 Jan 2009 09:38:22 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/01/missed_and_fantastic_news_bouc.html
boucher.JPG
Rick Boucher is taking over the Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet (renamed Telecommunications Subcommittee). This is great news. Boucher is an inspiration in the House. This is a critical committee for change. ]]>
boucher.JPG

Rick Boucher is taking over the Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet (renamed Telecommunications Subcommittee). This is great news. Boucher is an inspiration in the House. This is a critical committee for change.

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IBM’s WSJ Op-ed: Exactly Right http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/ibms-wsj-op-ed-exactly-right/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/ibms-wsj-op-ed-exactly-right/#comments Wed, 14 Jan 2009 12:28:15 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/01/ibms_wsj_op-ed_exactly_right.html Let's Spend on Broadband and the Power Grid":
We shouldn't undertake projects simply for the sake of creating economic activity. Rather than just stimulate, we should transform.
The point could be made more strongly: If we're lucky, we get the chance for this kind of transformation once a generation. It would be a scandal on the scale of the last 8 years to fritter it away. ]]>
From the op-ed in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal by IBM chairman and CEO Sam Palmisano, “Let’s Spend on Broadband and the Power Grid“:
We shouldn’t undertake projects simply for the sake of creating economic activity. Rather than just stimulate, we should transform.

The point could be made more strongly: If we’re lucky, we get the chance for this kind of transformation once a generation. It would be a scandal on the scale of the last 8 years to fritter it away.

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The coolest and hardest job in DC: Kagan as SG http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/the-coolest-and-hardest-job-in/ http://www.lessig.org/2009/01/the-coolest-and-hardest-job-in/#comments Tue, 06 Jan 2009 19:46:40 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2009/01/the_coolest_and_hardest_job_in.html Now that she won’t be my Dean, I am free to say the following. And I am inspired to say the following by my sense that there’s a misperception among some about exactly why Elena Kagan’s appointment is so important.

Everyone knows the Solicitor General is the government’s path to the Supreme Court. But some write as if the job is about arguing in the Supreme Court. That’s a mistake. No doubt, that’s a part, though historically the SG has argued a small percentage of the cases (sometimes as low as 1 or 2 a term).

Much more important is the policymaking function of the office. The SG must decide on the strategy for interacting with the Supreme Court. He or she must decide which issues to push, which to hold back, how to frame the issues, and how best to maintain the (deserved) reputation of the office as a principled expositor of the (administration’s view of the) law.

Having known Elena since I began teaching (she and I started together at Chicago), I can say that I can’t imagine a better choice for this job. Granted, she is not an oral advocate — though again, that’s not the job, and having seen her teach (always at the very top at Harvard and Chicago), I have no doubt she’ll be superb as an oral advocate.

But she knows the administration cold (after years in the Clinton administration, and many more years studying and teaching administrative law), and, more importantly (and extremely rare for an academic), she has an extraordinary ability to productively engage disagreement. That’s the real success from her time at Harvard (I used to think it was impossible to be loved as Dean of Harvard; Elena is loved by everyone). She is a straight talking, brilliant strategist and strong negotiator, who holds herself to insanely high standards. People see that and respect that — one bit to the key of her success.

As one reflects upon the fact that the most entrenched disagreements the Obama administration will face over the next 8 years will be with a conservative Court that doesn’t need to be reelected, it is quickly apparent that the role of the SG is going to be critical. On a list of many (if not all) fantastic appointments by Obama, this one is brilliant. Everyone is saying as much, but few, I think, recognize just how brilliant this is.

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within the top 3 http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/within-the-top-3/ http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/within-the-top-3/#comments Wed, 24 Dec 2008 03:50:52 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2008/12/within_the_top_3.html

We’re in the top 3, but there’s still over a week of voting. Consider this carefully, and then register and vote.

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Blow up the FCC (or so was this titled when I submitted it in October) http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/blow-up-the-fcc-or-so-was-this/ http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/blow-up-the-fcc-or-so-was-this/#comments Wed, 24 Dec 2008 02:20:32 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2008/12/blow_up_the_fcc_or_so_was_this.html
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help wanted: video cartoonist? http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/help-wanted-video-cartoonist/ http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/help-wanted-video-cartoonist/#comments Wed, 10 Dec 2008 12:34:58 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2008/12/help_wanted_video_cartoonist.html Update: Thanks for the responses so far. Two important clarifications -- I don't actually need a cartoon that looks like the Simpsons. I mean only something that could be used in the wonderfully ambiguous way that the Simpsons is used to be serious and not in the same spin. Also, the critical thing here is animation -- I need an animated cartoon to make the point I'm trying to make. Thanks again. ]]> I’m working on a presentation that could really use a Simpsons-esque like section. I emailed Matt Groening, but he didn’t respond (no, I didn’t really email Matt Groening). Anyway, if any of you are the next Matt Groening, and want to work on a short cartoon segment for a global warming/corruption related preso (all to be ccFree), email me at lessig at pobox dot com? It wouldn’t be long, and it is easy to describe. Thanks in advance.

Update: Thanks for the responses so far. Two important clarifications — I don’t actually need a cartoon that looks like the Simpsons. I mean only something that could be used in the wonderfully ambiguous way that the Simpsons is used to be serious and not in the same spin. Also, the critical thing here is animation — I need an animated cartoon to make the point I’m trying to make. Thanks again.

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apture http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/apture/ http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/apture/#comments Mon, 08 Dec 2008 22:18:00 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2008/12/apture.html This is very cool functionality, building nicely on the free (culture) web. ]]>

This is very cool functionality, building nicely on the free (culture) web.

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maybe the best cc-licensed video yet http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/maybe-the-best-cclicensed-vide/ http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/maybe-the-best-cclicensed-vide/#comments Thu, 04 Dec 2008 19:55:14 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2008/12/maybe_the_best_cclicensed_vide.html
Mizuka and Joi's Wedding from Joichi Ito on Vimeo.]]>

Mizuka and Joi’s Wedding from Joichi Ito on Vimeo.

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Open Transition Principles http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/open-transition-principles/ http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/open-transition-principles/#comments Tue, 02 Dec 2008 19:00:01 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2008/12/open_transition_principles.html As I indicated yesterday, I was very encouraged by the decision by the Obama transition team to freely license change.gov (not actually a .gov entity, so not exempt from the rights of copyright). But over the weekend, a bunch of us got together to begin (actually, continue) the process of framing "open government principles." The first round is described at Politico by Ben Smith. You can read the rationale for the principles at open-government.us. Put briefly, the three principles are:
1. No Legal Barrier to Sharing (law (copyright law) should not block sharing); 2. No Technological Barrier to Sharing (code (limitations on downloads, for example) should not block sharing; 3. Free competition (no alliances should favor one commercial entity over another, or commercial over noncommercial entities).
Some have framed these as "demands" made of the administration. That's like saying the mouse can make demands of the lion. We're not making demands; we're describing good policy. Or at least, good policy as we see it. ]]>

As I indicated yesterday, I was very encouraged by the decision by the Obama transition team to freely license change.gov (not actually a .gov entity, so not exempt from the rights of copyright).

But over the weekend, a bunch of us got together to begin (actually, continue) the process of framing “open government principles.” The first round is described at Politico by Ben Smith.

You can read the rationale for the principles at open-government.us. Put briefly, the three principles are:

1. No Legal Barrier to Sharing (law (copyright law) should not block sharing);

2. No Technological Barrier to Sharing (code (limitations on downloads, for example) should not block sharing;

3. Free competition (no alliances should favor one commercial entity over another, or commercial over noncommercial entities).

Some have framed these as “demands” made of the administration. That’s like saying the mouse can make demands of the lion. We’re not making demands; we’re describing good policy. Or at least, good policy as we see it.

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change.gov set free http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/changegov-set-free/ http://www.lessig.org/2008/12/changegov-set-free/#comments Mon, 01 Dec 2008 17:33:57 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2008/12/changegov_set_free.html change.gov.jpg Consistent with the values of any "open government," and with his strong leadership on "free debates" from the very start, the Obama team has modified the copyright notice on change.gov to embrace the freest CC license. This is great news about a subject that's harder than it seems. One might well ask why is this an issue at all? The one thing copyright law is pretty good at is exempting works of the government from copyright protection. Why should the published work of a transition, or a President, be any different? I don't think it should be, but I get why this is a hard issue. Whether or not one was free to republish works printed by the GPO, the freedom that digital technologies enables here is certainly enough to give one pause. I'm fine with the pause; I'd be happy to defend the freedom explicitly. But it is understandable that this is something that any administration would have to think through. I'm glad the thought in this administration led to the right conclusion, so quickly, and in the midst of so much else going on. ]]>
change.gov.jpg

Consistent with the values of any “open government,” and with his strong leadership on “free debates” from the very start, the Obama team has modified the copyright notice on change.gov to embrace the freest CC license.

This is great news about a subject that’s harder than it seems. One might well ask why is this an issue at all? The one thing copyright law is pretty good at is exempting works of the government from copyright protection. Why should the published work of a transition, or a President, be any different?

I don’t think it should be, but I get why this is a hard issue. Whether or not one was free to republish works printed by the GPO, the freedom that digital technologies enables here is certainly enough to give one pause. I’m fine with the pause; I’d be happy to defend the freedom explicitly. But it is understandable that this is something that any administration would have to think through.

I’m glad the thought in this administration led to the right conclusion, so quickly, and in the midst of so much else going on.

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On the legacy of Chairman Kevin Martin http://www.lessig.org/2008/11/on-the-legacy-of-chairman-kevi/ http://www.lessig.org/2008/11/on-the-legacy-of-chairman-kevi/#comments Thu, 06 Nov 2008 22:42:30 +0000 http://lessig.org/blog/2008/11/on_the_legacy_of_chairman_kevi.html imposing network-neutrality-like rules on Comcast. But it is the unanimous decision freeing "white space" spectrum that will, I think, ultimately be the most important. The decision is not only right. It shows a liberation from a rigid and flawed understanding of the best way to maximize the economic value of "spectrum." This clear thinking needs to expand beyond these bands. But it is an important start. ]]> So a new President means (the chance of a) new Chairman of the FCC. Before he passes, it is timely to begin to reflect a bit upon the chairmanship of the current chairman, Kevin Martin.

A clue that this is an interesting and important chairman is the fact that he’s an equal opportunity anger-er — the left has loved and hated him, the right has loved and hated him. I’m an increasingly strong admirer. His contribution to sensible thinking about infrastructures was established with his taking the lead in imposing network-neutrality-like rules on Comcast. But it is the unanimous decision freeing “white space” spectrum that will, I think, ultimately be the most important. The decision is not only right. It shows a liberation from a rigid and flawed understanding of the best way to maximize the economic value of “spectrum.” This clear thinking needs to expand beyond these bands. But it is an important start.

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