Thursday, August 11, 2005

The End of Innovation?

On openp2p.com, Richard Koman interviewed Lawrence Lessig on his talk "Preserving the Innovation Commons".

"The Internet under its original design built a platform that induced lots of innovation in applications and content. And it did this by embracing an end-to-end principle, which meant that the network would remain as simple as possible and push all of the intelligence and, therefore, innovation to the end. This is the vision that is now enabled by a peer-to-peer architecture, and it's the environment that has inspired the greatest amount of innovation around the Internet in its history.

Now this architecture threatens existing interests, business interests and Hollywood interests, and in response to that threat there have been a number of changes that have occurred in both the technical and legal environment, aiming to undermine this platform for innovation, aiming to change it into a platform where it's easier for certain interests to exercise control over innovation on that platform. And the changes at the technical level include changes to the architecture, enabling network owners to exercise more control or discrimination over content that flows across their network or for applications that run on the network. And in the legal environment, the change is brought about by changes in copyright law essentially -- also patent law, but let's start with copyright law -- that radically increase the extent to which copyright holders can exercise control over their content."

Read the entire interview.

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