The University Record, November 20, 2000

U hosts copyright symposium Dec. 4–6

By Wanda Monroe
Office of the Chief Information Officer

A free symposium that addresses copyright issues associated with digital media, “Copyright Dilemmas in the Information Age,” will be kicked-off

Dec. 4–6. The symposium is a joint effort of students, faculty and administrators, and will feature a presentation by John Perry Barlow, co-founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and author in such publications as Wired Magazine, MONDO, The New York Times and Time. Panel discussions featuring experts on topics of copyright also will be part of the three-day event.

Panelists representing all sides of the issue of downloading music over the Internet will present their views during “Free Music From the Internet: Sharing or Stealing?” 8–10 p.m. Dec. 4 in the Michigan Union Ballroom. Invited guests include Noah Stone from Artists Against Piracy and Susan Kornfield, intellectual property attorney. The session will be moderated by Shiri Bilik, a junior majoring in political science and co-editor in chief of Consider Magazine.

Barlow, a former lyricist for the Grateful Dead, is known for his innovative outlook on copyright. He has written several articles on the future of copyright including, “The Economy of Ideas,” and he is widely known for his “Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace.” He was a Fellow with the Institute of Politics at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and is currently a Fellow at the Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society. His presentation, “The DotCommunist Manifesto: The Practical Economics of Abolishing Virtual ‘Property,’” will be held 7–9 p.m. Dec. 5 in Mendelssohn Theatre. A reception at the Alumni Center will follow the presentation.

“Copy ‘RIGHTS’ @ the University of Michigan” will be the topic of a panel discussion 2–5 p.m. Dec. 6 in the Michigan League Ballroom. Panelists include Jonathan Alger, attorney in the Office of the General Counsel; William Gosling, director of the University Library; Josť-Marie Griffiths, university chief information officer and professor, School of Information; James Hilton, special assistant to the provost for media rights and professor of psychology; and Roberta Morris, adjunct professor of law. The session will be moderated by Paul Courant, associate provost and professor of economics and public policy. Panelists will address the daily challenges of teaching and research in the technology revolution. Attendees are encouraged to bring specific issues regarding copyright to contribute for the question-and-answer session.

The symposium is part of the continuing efforts of the University to educate the community about issues of copyright and the appropriate use of the University’s computer resources. “There are discussions on our campus as well as at other universities regarding the rights and responsibilities of those who use electronic resources under today’s copyright laws,” Griffiths says. “We continue to discuss how we might respond to the changes and challenges in the technological environment.”

“Copyright Dilemmas in the Information Age” is sponsored by the Business School, Consider Magazine, Hillel, Major Events, Michigan Union Board of Representatives, the Office of the General Counsel, the Office of the Provost, the President’s Information Revolution Commission, the Technology Management Office, the Office of the Chief Information Officer and the University Library.

The three-day symposium is the beginning of a series of informational sessions that will continue through spring 2001. Community members are invited to explore and discuss issues and practical problems with copyrights in their daily working lives. For more information, access the Web at