Odyssey Online

Entries from July 2010

Creative Commons, the Case Against

July 22nd, 2010 · Comments Off on Creative Commons, the Case Against

…to conclude this summer’s blog about the Creative Commons, a sampling of those on the other side of the fence. Of course, not everyone believes that the kind of reform folks involved with the CC wish to bring about is in the best interests of readers and writers.  One of the most impassioned defenses of copyright and challenges to the CC was written by Mark Helprin (who has written a number of novels and several collections of short stories), and was published in the form of a book titled Digital Barbarism: A Writer’s Manifesto.    Helprin states his book is “..an affirmation of human nature versus that of the machine, via  a defense of copyright, the rights of authorship, and the indispenability of the individual voice.” (xii)  The “rights of authorship” for Helprin boil down to truth: The rights of authorship, the most effective guarantor of which is copyright, protect fact  from casual manipulation; slow the rush to judgment; fix responsibility; encourage conscience in assertion and deliberation; and protect the authority of the individual voice, without which we are little more than nicely yoked oxen. (66)  Helprin doesn’t say “maybe,” and this is a well written book very much worth the time in a serious contemplation of the Creative Commons.

Vacation is now upon Odyssey Online, so look for the posts to cease for a little while…back in mid-August with blogging on the full spectrum of stuff that catches our attention here…

Tags: Books · Creative Commons

Summer Blog, Creative Commons

July 19th, 2010 · Comments Off on Summer Blog, Creative Commons

…when thinking about what the CC is trying to do with/for digital mediums, one should think about open source computing, and what open source is trying to accomplish.  A seminal figure in the creation of open source programs is Richard Stallman, who developed GNU, and open source operating system.  Along with his incredible work as a programmer (see Rebel Code: The Inside Story of Linux and the Open Source Revolution by Glynn Moody for a lucid description of Stallman’s work and accomplishments…) he is the author of the Free Software Definition.  While the title is exceedingly prosaic, this is in fact one of the most important statements for access to software as a right, as an essential part of living in our society.  If you are interested in thinking about ownership and access to media this short document should receive careful review, and certainly figures into thinking about the CC…

Tags: Creative Commons · Essay on Technology

Summer Blogging, Creative Commons

July 12th, 2010 · Comments Off on Summer Blogging, Creative Commons

…a week ago was it, I blogged about Steven Harnard’s vision for online repositories of scholarly journals, and how it forms a “sort of” precursor to the CC.  Another piece to consider in, if you will, immediate ancestors of the CC is Selling Wine Without the Bottles by John Perry Barlow.  Mr. Barlow was one of the techno-utopians of the 1990’s who foresaw revolutionary positive change coming from the Internet. Written in 1993, this piece predicts that the Internet will render copyright obsolete, and while as prediction it’s off base, Barlow’s thoughts on who really owns an idea are fascinating, and a good precursor of the CC.

Tags: Creative Commons

Summer Blogging, Creative Commons

July 7th, 2010 · Comments Off on Summer Blogging, Creative Commons

…just a little ahead of the Creative Commons came Steven Harnard.  Out on a listserv Mr. Harnard published a short post called A Subversive Proposal for Electronic Publishing (the text of said and much commentary from others on his ideas can be found here).  In a word, Harnard calls upon scholars to forgo the traditional model of publishing in a scholarly journal, and instead calls on them to make their work available through a new freely available peer review system, to be built on the Internet.  While there is much scholarship now available on the Internet (as Google Scholar so ably reveals), the wholesale conversion Harnard hoped for never happened. However, he is an interesting precursor to the Creative Commons, and speaks to one of the glaring needs the CC tries to address.

A background on the unfortunate economics of scholarly journal publishing can be found here…

Tags: Creative Commons · Essay on Bibliography · Essay on Technology

Summer Blogging, The Browsing Collection

July 2nd, 2010 · Comments Off on Summer Blogging, The Browsing Collection

…with summer reading season in full swing, here is a reminder about the SLU Libraries Browsing Collection. Located just in front of our Special Collections area in ODY, the Browsing Collection is made of up of both nonfiction and fiction, and is assembled with the serious reader in mind.  A sampling of current titles in the Browsing Collection includes (picked to emphasize variety):

The Browsing Collection is available to anyone with borrowing privileges, and, again, these titles which are all on display are suggested to hopefully suggest the breadth of what is available.  Check ’em out!

Tags: Books · SLU Library Event