From Soup to Nuts: Copyright, Electronic Surveillance and Social Networking Technologies (Invited Paper)

This was the only invited paper session that I attended. The content was useful. I wish it would have happened a bit earlier in the day. It was given during the last time slot on Saturday and I was mentally wiped out by 4:30. Tracy Mitrano is the Director of IT Policy and of Computer Policy and Law Program at Cornell University. Her talk covered many of the concepts included in information literacy competency standard 5. I found the portion of her discussion on copyright to be the most interesting.

She started by talking about how copyright has not kept pace with technology and how our users want to use and reuse content. The AAP's letter to Cornell about course reserves was discussed along with the development of Cornell Electronic Course Content Copyright Guidelines (PDF). She recommended that we read Digital Learning Challenge: Obstacles to Educational Uses of Copyright Material in the Digital Age from the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School. A recent public policy report, Intellectual Property And Free Speech In The Online World (PDF), provides an overview of P2P file sharing lawsuits brought by the RIAA and how IHEs are handling the situation.

The remainder of Tracy's talk covered social networking and electronic surveillance (Patriot Act). The social network portion included familiar ground: students putting things on their profiles they shouldn't; criminals using these tools to commit crimes (e.g. pedophiles on Myspace); and politicians over reactions to ban social networking sites. The electronic surveillance section provided a concise review of how we went from the Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986 to the USA Patriot Act.  

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