Business Week has a great profile of the copyfighting law prof Tim Wu, whose essay on open handsets inspired Google's mobile phone project. Tim's a smart cookie -- and we went to elementary school together!
Wu's work exploring the nexus of communications and the law has made him the field's most important new voice. Lawrence Lessig, a Stanford University law professor who has been the leader in arguing for reduced restrictions on what can go up on the Internet, predicts that Wu will become even more influential than he himself has been: "The second generation always has a bigger impact than the first."
At Columbia, Wu brings a quirky sensibility to the job. On a recent afternoon, he strolled into the classroom with a furry mouse costume. Wu brought the prop as a visual aid to discuss copyright law. He slipped on a pair of mittens and asked the class: "Do I have copyright protection?" A few students correctly said no. Then Wu put on a giant mouse mask and waved his hands in the air like some surreal Disneyland character. "Do I have copyright protection now?" he asked. The class erupted into laughter. Wu's point was that because costumes are useful articles, not works of art, they do not merit copyright protection.
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Update: Spencer Ante, who wrote the article, sez, "Thanks for the link to the profile I wrote about Tim. But it would be nicer if you actually mentioned my name instead of just BusinessWeek!"
Neglected public payphones in New York City are being turned into “GuyFi” stations: a place where one can rub one out for the sake of “stress relief.” Annalee Newitz reports on the wank booths from a company named “Hot Octopus”… The company reported that at least 100 men used the booth on its opening day […]
You’d be forgiven for thinking the videocassette format long-dead, but it turns out that Betamax is still around. Sony is finally going to withdraw tapes from sale, bringing a 40-year story to an end. The last recorders were sold in 2002. ベータビデオカセットおよびマイクロMVカセットテープ出荷終了のお知らせ [Sony; via The Verge]
A leaked Comcast memo discloses that the company’s consumer data caps have nothing to do with network congestion, contrary to its public claims. The internet service provider has often complained (such as when lobbying against net neutrality) that it must impose limits on service to prevent network congestion. The argument suggests that these measures are […]
It’s 2016 and we like our technology really small. Our phones fit in our pockets, our remotes are lighter than ever, and even our cars seem to be shrinking. So your new drone shouldn’t be an exception. This Axis VIDIUS Drone is 21% off right now and it’s so little, your biggest problem won’t be […]
You’ve heard the news: cyber security is the new and very scary frontier. Hackers are out there just waiting for you to relax for a second and let them in. But that’s not going to happen to you. With a lifetime premium subscription to ZenMate VPN, you’re completely protected from anyone out there who wants […]
Remember back to the time when people thought java was just a hip way to talk about coffee? Or you vaguely remembered from geography class that it’s an island in the South Pacific? We’ve come a long way since then and now that we’ve rocket blasted into the tech future, you’re going to need to […]