February 19: Luncheon Series: “Reclaiming Fair Use for Scholars and Teachers,” Lewis Hyde


Guest: Lewis Hyde, Berkman Fellow and Professor of Creative Writing, Keynon Collegehyde.jpg
Topic: “Reclaiming Fair Use for Scholars and Teachers”

Tuesday, February 19, 12:30 pm
Berkman Center Conference Room

23 Everett St., 2nd Floor, Cambridge MA

“Fair use” is a legal doctrine creating what has been called a “situational public domain” within the exclusive rights that copyright gives to content owners. Fair use rights have turned out to be hard to exercise in practice, however, partly because the fair use statute is vaguely worded and partly because specific guidance has arisen only from narrowly-focused case law.

How might fair use be reclaimed as an expressive right? One answer has been for particular creative communities to articulate their own “best practices” in fair use, to reclaim, that is, the breadth of expression that the statute was intended to allow by clearly stating their own norms regarding the circulation of knowledge.

Lewis Hyde’s talk will review the history of fair use, describe work now being done on the best practices model, and propose for discussion an “educational fair use project” targeted to teachers and scholars in American higher education.


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This event will be webcast live. Webcast viewers can join the discussion through IRC text chat or in the virtual world Second Life. If you miss the live chat, catch the podcast audio & video at MediaBerkman.

Please RSVP to Amar Ashar at  rsvp at cyber.law.harvard.edu if you plan to attend.

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