from the Library of Maura

Interesting Info from the Interwebs

June 19th, 2009 by Maura A. Smale · 1 Comment

I swear that this isn’t going to turn into Maura’s Copyright Blog, but a couple of copyright-ish things have crossed my desk(top) recently and it seemed selfish not to share:

1. A coalition of student groups across the U.S. recently released the Student Statement on The Right to Research. The statement asserts that “scholarly knowledge is part of the common wealth of humanity,” and argues for open access to scholarly research (as opposed to a subscription-based model for journal publishing). It’s great to see students involved in the open access movement. The footnotes on the statement feature lots of great reads, too.

2. I’m sure many have seen this already, but just in case not, here’s marketing guru Seth Godin’s rant against the high prices of college textbooks. A quick, punchy read (just like you’d expect from a marketer), and it’s hard to disagree with him, too. I’d add an admittedly obvious note to the list of impracticalities: when libraries buy textbooks (as we may do since it can be difficult for our students to afford them), we’re left with “expired” content when the next edition is published as well as the need to buy the new edition.

3. This week’s Information Week has an article about a recent paper out of the Harvard Business School that attempts to unpack the complexities of copyright protection and the entertainment industry. The authors suggest that, while sales have fallen over the past decade, the number of new works (music, film, books) being produced has actually risen, as have revenues from ancillary streams like concerts. Thus, they conclude that file-sharing “has not discouraged creative artists from producing new works.”

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