By Stephen Downes
January 26, 2004

The Tyranny of Copyright?
This is a great observation: "The recording industry is a $12 billion a year business, compared with the telephone business, which is a more than $250 billion a year business. That is what economists call a 'revealed willingness to pay,' a clear preference for a technology that allows you to participate in work, socializing and interaction in general, over a technology that allows you to be a passive consumer of a packaged good." This item comes within the context of an article depicting (oh so fairly, mind you) a copyright regime that is out of control. Or let me put it another way: in order to protect the $12 billion industry, legislators are in the process of destroying the $250 billion industry. We must be free to communicate, using words and ideas sometimes created by others. That's what strong copyright protection destroys - our ability to speak meaningfully. By Robert S. Boynton, New York Times, January 25, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

From the site: "Memigo recommends news articles you will be interested in based on your ratings and those of other users that are similar to you." This sort of thing will be huge. Forget peer review, forget gateways. This is the future of online content evaluation. By Various Authors, January, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Brewster Kahle on the Internet Archive and People's Technology
This interview with Internet Archive founder Brewster Kahle introduces readers to the concept of "universal access to all human knowledge": "I found that if you really actually come to understand that statement, then that statement is possible; technologically possible to take, say, all published materials -- all books, music, video, software, web sites -- that it's actually possible to have universal access to all of that. Some for a fee, and some for free. I found that was a life-changing event for me. That is just an inspiring goal. It's the dream of the Greeks, which they embodied, with the Egyptians, in the Library of Alexandria. The idea of having all knowledge accessible." Yeah! By Lisa Rein, OpenP2P.com, January 22, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Three items from Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL) this week, all culled from today's Academic ADL Co-Lab News Report. This first item is a lot like OLDaily - a daily selection of links and resources in the field of e-learning. The category tabs are kind of neat, but will be less useful when there are thousands of links. Because it's a relatively new site, they are still linking to staples (last Thursday's link consisted of 'Elearning Post', for example). The site needs an RSS feed, of course. By Various Authors, ADL, January, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Learning Repository Community wiki
Because this site is a Wiki, anybody could may add to it. It's a good initiative, launched by ADL. The site currently has some basic information about learning object repositories and links to a number of resources. Papers and presentations from ADL's Learning Repositories Summit, released in November, are also available here. By Various Authors, ADL, January, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Repositories Listing
From the ADL News Report: "The Academic ADL Co-Lab has released its learning repository database. This database, designed for those interested the internal policies of learning repository projects themselves, allows investigators to search for projects that use specific standards or have stated policies concerning material submission and review." The page will demand a login - ignore it; just click 'cancel' and continue on through. Or just go straight to the Repositories Listing page. ADL has another listing, in PDF, here. Word is that ADL is starting a new project called CORDRA - the Content Object Repository Discovery and Resolution Architecture. Nothing on the web, though. I do hope they contact eduSource, which is already well into work on a similar service. By Various Authors, ADL, January, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

House Panel Sparks Database Controversy
It's not law yet, but there is cause for concern after a U.S. congressional committee expressed approval for a bill that would, for the first time, allow copyright protection over data. The arrangement of publicly available information - names of people in alphabetical order, for example - had traditionally been denied protection because it represents no creative work. This bill would allow that information to become private property. By Roy Mark, InternetNews.Com, January 23, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright 2004 Stephen Downes
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