Friday, September 27, 2002

Tinkerers' Champion

Lest you thought that Lawrence Lessig was the only professor battling copyright law's reduction of our civil liberties, this fascinating article from the Economist describes Edward Felten's argument for the "freedom to tinker."

It is not just libertarians who are concerned about the restrictions caused by America's latest copyright law. Edward Felten, a professor at Princeton University, argues that the “freedom to tinker”—the right to understand, repair and modify one's own equipment— is crucial to innovation, and as valuable to society as the freedom of speech.

This article also includes some info about a a bill recently introduced in Congress by Senator Fritz Hollings of South Carolina -- a bill which could "...criminalise open-source software..." I guess other folks have known about this bill for awhile, I found this March, 2002 article on the topic in Wired News -- truly scary stuff that we need to stand up and fight against!

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