Public Knowledge

The broadest coverage of PK's sphere of activities.

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7 years 23 weeks ago

September 13, 2010

15:27
A while back I wrote about the tendency of Net Neutrality opponents to insist that, even though a neutral network has gotten us this far, there is something just around the corner that is going to need a non-neutral network in order to work.  As I pointed out, this argument was disproven in the case of VoIP, disproven in the case of streaming video, and disproven in the case of gaming.  When Verizon and Google announced their framework, they added streaming 3-D video to the list (which was actually pre-disproven).In the defense of the people who put forward these arguments, for the most part they were pointing to specific technologies and at least had the courtesy to gin up some plausible-sounding technical objections read more
10:47
September 21, 2010 - 8:00am - 10:00am Location: Clyde's of Gallery Place707 7th St., NW Washington, DC 20001 Hosted By: BroadbandBreakfast.com Public Knowledge Legal Director Harold Feld will be on the panel at this Broadband Breafast Club discussion of whether broadband should be classified as Title I, Title II, or under the proposed "Third Way" approach.  Since late last year, we’ve been pushing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to place its authority to protect broadband consumers on firm legal ground.  Until it does, the FCC will have a very hard time protecting consumers and extending broadband access to all Americans.  read more
10:21
November 12, 2010 - 8:30am - 12:30pm Location: The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), Washington, DC Co-Sponsored By: Silicon Flatirons, IEEE-USA, ITIF, CTIA, New America Foundation, and FCBA Public Knowledge Legal Director Harold Feld will be presenting at this Silicon Flatirons event that has been put together to address this key unanswered question: "How should radio operating rights be defined and assigned in order to facilitate extracting the maximum benefit from wireless operations?" read more
10:21
November 12, 2010 - 8:30am - 12:30pm Location: The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), Washington, DC Co-Sponsored By: Silicon Flatirons, IEEE-USA, ITIF, CTIA, New America Foundation, and FCBA Public Knowledge Legal Director Harold Feld will be presenting at this Silicon Flatirons event that has been put together to address this key unanswered question: "How should radio operating rights be defined and assigned in order to facilitate extracting the maximum benefit from wireless operations?" read more

September 10, 2010

17:01
A recent decision by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has cast a pall over the sale of used software. Apparently, software manufacturers just need a little bit of fine print to prevent people from reselling used copies of their software. In Vernor v. Autodesk, the appeals court held that Autodesk could stop Vernor from selling copies of their software on eBay by claiming that those reslaes were an infringement of its copyrights. Ordinarily, a copyright holder can’t prevent someone from selling or otherwise distributing a lawfully made copy of the work, so long as that person owns the copy. Here, Autodesk argued that Vernor never owned the copies (which he bought used from a design firm) because Autodesk included in its sale to that firm a standardized agreement that said that the firm was only “licensing” the disks.read more
16:19
For Immediate Release:  September 10, 2010 The U.S. Appeals Court for the Ninth Circuit today issued a ruling that could restrict the resale of computer software.  The ruling is here.The following comment is attributed to Sherwin Siy, deputy legal director of Public Knowledge:“This ruling will have far-reaching consequences for consumers.  It could conceivably shut down the market for used software and computer games.“The court has blessed a system in which a publisher can use fine print to circumvent the traditional rules of first sale, maintaining control of distribution throughout the entire lifetime of the copy.“Nothing good can come of a system like this.  We look forward to this case being further appealed and to having this decision reversed.”
11:21
In today's Podcast, we discuss Apple's new iPhone app store developer agreement, NexusOne pricing that could have been, and broadband carrying the day in Australian elections.  We also celebrate fashion week by talking about the proposed fashion copyright bill with Professor Chris Sprigman. You can download and listen to the audio by clicking here (MP3) or stream it using the player below: Want to subscribe to our podcast? Click here for the MP3 feed and here for the mixed audio/video feed. read more

September 9, 2010

11:43
September 23, 2010 (All day) Location: New York Hall of Science, Queens, NY Public Knowledge Staff Attorney Michael Weinberg will be speaking on the 3:40pm panel "LAW: Open hardware licenses and norms" with Windell Oskay, Evil Mad Scientist; Wendy Seltzer, Harvard: Berkman Center for Internet & Society; Matt Stack, Liquidware; Peter Brown, Freedom Software Foundation; and Xavier Carcelle, OHANDA. read more
11:43
September 23, 2010 (All day) Location: New York Hall of Science, Queens, NY Public Knowledge Staff Attorney Michael Weinberg will be speaking on the 3:40pm panel “LAW: Open hardware licenses and norms” with Windell Oskay, Evil Mad Scientist; Wendy Seltzer, Harvard: Berkman Center for Internet & Society; Matt Stack, Liquidware; Peter Brown, Freedom Software Foundation; and Xavier Carcelle, OHANDA. The conference is dedicated entirely to the open source hardware movement.  Based on the same principles as open source software, open source hardware (OSHW) “is a term for tangible artifacts—machines, devices, or other physical things—whose design has been released to the public in such a way that anyone can make, modify, distribute, and use those things,” according to the conference’s website.  read more
10:39
September 23, 2010 - 12:00pm - 2:30pm Location: Arent Fox LLP1050 Connecticut Avenue, NW 7th FloorWashington, DC 20036 This presentation with Ross Buntrock, Arant Fox, will discuss the EU's new telecommunication regulations, their implications, and how they will affect Europeans in telecomm, media, and technology. The focus will be on the new publication "Telecommunication, Broadcasting and the Internet: EU COmpetition Law and Regulation" by Laurent Garzaniti and Matthew O'Regan of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP. Click here for more details and here to register.  This event is also available online.

September 8, 2010

14:46
To hear some big-time business columnists tell it, fighting for freedom is a bad thing.  The usually sensible Steve Pearlstein at the Washington Post notes that, “net neutrality zealots” (also known as “ayatollahs of net neutrality”) worked themselves into a “self-righteous lather” over the Verizon-Google compromise on Net Neutrality, caring more about “principles” than the “real world.” For Joe Nocera over at the New York Times, the Verizon-Google deal was a “well-meaning proposal,” that is being set upon by “fierce, unyielding proponents” of an open Internet, a group that includes Public Knowledge as part of the “net neutrality purists.” read more
11:19
For Immediate Release:  September 8, 2010 Public Knowledge, Free Press and the New America Foundation will co-host a program next week with Barbara van Schewick, associate professor at Stanford Law School, on her new book, “Internet Architecture and Innovation.” The event will take place Wednesday, Sept. 15 at 3:30 p.m. at the New America Foundation, 1899 L St. NW, Washington, D.C.Van Schewick, a member of the PK Advisory Board, approaches the current public policy debates over the future of the Internet by first analyzing the architecture of the Internet.  She wrote in her book that the interests of network providers differ from those of the public:  “Leaving the evolution of the network to network providers will significantly reduce the Internet’s value to society.”  Policy makers “will have to intervene,” van Schewick writes, although she says how best to do so is a difficult question requiring regulators to shape technology before it is deployed.read more
09:05
September 15, 2010 - 3:30pm - 5:00pm Location: New America Foundation1899 L St. NW Suite 400Washington, DC 20036 Hosted By: Public Knowledge, Free Press and the New America Foundation PK Advisory Board Member and Associate Professor at Stanford Law School Dr. Barbara van Schewick will discuss key lessons from her new book Internet Architecture and Innovation.  Participating in a panel at the event will be Gigi B. Sohn, President, Public Knowledge; S. Derek Turner, Research Director, Free Press; and Sascha Meinrath, Director, Open Technology Initiative, NAF. read more
09:01
September 9, 2010 - 10:00am - 11:00am Location: Online only.  Watch the live stream here. Public Knowledge's Deputy Legal Director Sherwin Siy will be speaking at this online-only event held by New America Foundation.  The panel, featuring speakers from around the world, will focus on international copyright laws and their impact on the open Internet. read more

September 3, 2010

13:07
It’s no secret I and others have started to question whether Genachowski has what it takes to get things done in Washington. But at the same time, I’ve continued to hold out hope that Genachowski will reassess and reposition himself in time to leave behind a serious legacy of accomplishments. The proposed September Open Meeting agenda shows that Genachowski may be preparing to do just that. In addition to an important but relatively uncontroversial E911 item, the agenda includes two items that promise to have significant impact, but will also likely generate at least some resistance from significant industry groups. read more
13:07
It’s no secret I and others have started to question whether Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Julius Genachowski has what it takes to get things done in Washington. But at the same time, I’ve continued to hold out hope that Genachowski will reassess and reposition himself in time to leave behind a serious legacy of accomplishments. The proposed September Open Meeting agenda shows that Genachowski may be preparing to do just that. read more
09:40
In addition to providing a better sense of what specific broadband service options consumers have in more narrowly drawn geographic areas, the FCC’s most recent statistics on broadband show a significant decline in new subscriptions.   See INTERNET ACCESS SERVICES: STATUS AS OF JUNE 30, 2009 (September 2010); available at: http://www.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2010/db0902/DOC-301294A1.pdf.read more
09:40
In addition to providing a better sense of what specific broadband service options consumers have in more narrowly drawn geographic areas, the FCC’s most recent statistics on broadband show a significant decline in new subscriptions.   See INTERNET ACCESS SERVICES: STATUS AS OF JUNE 30, 2009 (September 2010); available at: http://www.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2010/db0902/DOC-301294A1.pdf.read more

September 2, 2010

15:14
For Immediate Release:  September 2, 2010 The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a Public Notice today detailing the proposed agenda for its next Public Meeting, scheduled for September 23, 2010.  The following statement is attributed to Harold Feld, Legal Director, Public Knowledge: “Today’s proposals represent real, concrete steps in fulfilling the promise of the National Broadband Plan. Voting final rules for the use of the broadcast white spaces will make much needed spectrum available for broadband. At a time when cell phone providers like AT&T are building wifi hot spots in places like Times Square to meet the demand created by the iPhone and other “smart” wireless devices, making use of empty television channels for ‘wifi on steroids’ will improve broadband access from the most crowded cities to rural America.  read more
15:14
For Immediate Release:  September 2, 2010 The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a Public Notice today detailing the proposed agenda for its next Public Meeting, scheduled for September 23, 2010.  The following statement is attributed to Harold Feld, Legal Director, Public Knowledge: “Today’s proposals represent real, concrete steps in fulfilling the promise of the National Broadband Plan. Voting final rules for the use of the broadcast white spaces will make much needed spectrum available for broadband. At a time when cell phone providers like AT&T are building wifi hot spots in places like Times Square to meet the demand created by the iPhone and other “smart” wireless devices, making use of empty television channels for ‘wifi on steroids’ will improve broadband access from the most crowded cities to rural America.  read more