Book Review: Free Culture

Free Culture: How big media uses technology and the law to lock down culture and control creativity by Lawrence Lessig

Written by a professor of law from Stanford and the chair of the Creative Commons, obviously the book does advocate a shortening of the copyright length and placing limits on DCMA concerns. However, it is a very balanced look at the history of copyright and intellectual property.

As a writer, I don’t want copyright to extend beyond 56 years (the term before the Bono Act). I’m a strong believer in public domain and fair use. I love reading fan fiction and dojounishi, and hearing mash-ups.

I think the level-headed approach in this book is worth the read on both sides of the fence though. It’s well-written, easy to comprehend (despite the density of the material), and knowledge that everyone should have. This is an absolute MUST READ for: writers, artists, muscians, coders, hackers, slackers, and everyone else involved in the intellectual property debates. (It’ll also give you letters to Congress against the RIAA and MIAA more ammo…. Me? activist? bite your tongu)

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