Our assignment for this week was to take a closer look at copyright and alternatives.
The reason for stipulating a copyright law was of course to protect something that had been created and could produce profit. If the material wasn’t protected – then there was no change of profiting from it. This brought limits to production and also probably led to the loss of many pieces of work. In retrospect one wonders if people would have chosen not to protect their material by law in order to know it would survive and spread through time. Also the benefit was greater for the publisher than the author, so the profits actually were / are smaller for the creator of the work as stated in.
Lessings presentation on
I think that the creativity aspect is one of the central issues in the copyright law, and one of the most interesting points that is stated by Lessing. How the law hinders creativity and innovation by not letting a “natural” creativity process take place. In this aspect the law certainly suppresses creativity in school where pupils have a limited source of material and are not allowed to watch films or listen to music because of the law restrictions.
In the article Towards a Global Learning Commons: ccLearn there is a good metaphor that pictures the problem with protected learning sites as Black Board or Moodle that they are “walled gardens rather than public parks” - this is quite true, but it is still a difficult issue. If one provides education for a certain group, should everybody have access to this information? I´m studying for my masters degree mostly through Moodle and I don’t know if I would like the thought of every one reading my assignments and taking part in our discussions, but I still think it would be ok for anyone to go in and read the course material. But how about the teacher who has spent time and effort to write the material – how does she/he feel about this issue. On the other hand, the teachers have made links to materials and information that others have created and published on the internet. In a way were all dependent on each other – some will gain more economically but in a wider social context everyone will gain by setting information free.