59 minutes | Dec 8, 2020

You Bought It, But Do You Own It? | 006

Chris Lewis joins EFF hosts Cindy Cohn and Danny O’Brien as they discuss how our access to knowledge is increasingly governed by "click-wrap" agreements that prevent users from ever owning things like books and music, and how this undermines the legal doctrine of “first sale” – which states that once you buy a copyrighted work, it’s yours to resell or give it away as you choose. They talk through the ramifications of this shift on society, and also start to paint a brighter future for how the digital world would thrive if we safeguard digital first sale. In this episode you’ll learn about: The legal doctrine of first sale—in which owners of a copyrighted work can resell it or give it away as they choose—and why copyright maximalists have fought it for so long; The Redigi case, in which a federal court held that the Redigi music service, which allows music fans to store and resell music they buy from iTunes, violated copyright law—and why that set us down the wrong path; The need for a movement that can help champion digital first sale and access to knowledge more generally; How digital first sale connects to issues of access to knowledge, and how this provides a nexus to issues of societal equity; Why the shift to using terms of service to govern access to content such as music and books has meant that our access to knowledge is intermediated by contract law, which is often impenetrable to average users; How not having a strong right of digital first sale undermines libraries, which have long benefited from bequests and donations; How getting first sale right in the digital world will help to promote equitable access to knowledge and create a more accessible digital world. Christopher Lewis is President and CEO at Public Knowledge. Prior to being elevated to President and CEO, Chris served for as PK's Vice President from 2012 to 2019 where he led the organization's day-to-day advocacy and political strategy on Capitol Hill and at government agencies. During that time he also served as a local elected official, serving two terms on the Alexandria City Public School Board. Chris serves on the Board of Directors for the Institute for Local Self Reliance and represents Public Knowledge on the Board of the Broadband Internet Technical Advisory Group (BITAG). Before joining Public Knowledge, Chris worked in the Federal Communications Commission Office of Legislative Affairs, including as its Deputy Director. He is a former U.S. Senate staffer for the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy and has over 18 years of political organizing and advocacy experience, including serving as Virginia State Director at GenerationEngage, and working as the North Carolina Field Director for Barack Obama's 2008 Presidential Campaign and other roles throughout the campaign. Chris graduated from Harvard University with a Bachelors degree in Government and lives in Alexandria, VA where he continues to volunteer and advocate on local civic issues. You can find Chris on Twitter at @ChrisJ_Lewis Please subscribe to How to Fix the Internet via RSS, Stitcher, TuneIn, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or your podcast player of choice. You can also find the Mp3 of this episode on the Internet Archive.  If you have any feedback on this episode, please email podcast@eff.org. You’ll find legal resources – including links to important cases, books, and briefs discussed in the podcast – as well a full transcript of the audio at https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2020/12/podcast-episode-you-bought-it-do-you-own-it. Audio editing for this episode by Stuga Studios: https://www.stugastudios.com. Music by Nat Keefe: https://natkeefe.com/   This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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