Show # 223 — Prof. Frank Pasquale, author of The Black Box Society — posted

I am thrilled to post Show # 223, November 6, my interview with Prof. Frank Pasquale of the University of Maryland School of Law, author of The Black Box Society: Technologies of Search, Reputation, and Finance. I am an unabashed fan and admirer of Frank’s work, and find his ability to annotate blog posts to be the gold standard. So this was a difficult interview for me, simply because I was tempted to use the classic professorial one-word prompt “discuss,” and leave the microphone open for Frank to deliver a monologue for 50 minutes.

Alas, I did not do that. Frank’s book discusses the challenges inherent in commercial secrecy from a information access and democracy perspective. Focusing on algorithmic computing, he runs through the opacity of computing and its impact on the average consumer in areas ranging from finance to Internet searches. We discussed these challenging issues and potential solutions in our discussion. These critical issues deserve the attention that Frank pays to them, and I hope that you enjoy the discussion as much as I did.


Show # 210 — Mary Wong on ICANN and international regulation of domain names — posted

I’m pleased to post Show #210, April 22, my interview with Mary Wong, Senior Policy Director at the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) on the move towards international administration of the Internet. Over the past three months, there has been much discussion about the move from US to ICANN administration of domain names. Mary, a former law professor, is at the center of this issue at ICANN, and I wanted Mary to come on the show to answer questions and dispel myths about this important procedural issue. In our discussion, we discussed the role of ICANN and what their increased role in administering domain names means and doesn’t mean. I enjoyed the discussion.


Shows #189-192 — Valentin Dander, Profs. Deven Desai and Michael Rich, and Tim Jordan — posted

New semester, and new projects, means that I’m only now posting the last four shows from the summer quarter. They are:

First, Show # 189, July 17, is my interview with Valentin Dander, PhD candidate at the University of Innsbruck, on open government data. I met Valentin at MIT8, a wonderful conference where this law professor got to meet with and learn from many fascinating communications scholars, some of whom will be future guests on Hearsay Culture. Having heard Valentin’s talk on open government data, I thought it would be a great topic for the show — and it was! We discussed the theory underlying and need for open data structures in government, and their ramifications. I greatly enjoyed the interview!

The second show, Show #190, July 24, is my interview with Prof. Deven Desai of Thomas Jefferson Law School, on 3D printing. Deven’s work focuses on the implications of 3D printing — the ability to “copy” physical objects — in the intellectual property sphere, particularly patents. The dramatic impact of 3D printing is only now beginning to be felt and weighed by scholars, policymakers and society, so I was very excited to have Deven on the show to discuss his early insights. I very much enjoyed the interview!

Additionally, I’m pleased to post the third show, Show #191, August 14, my interview with Prof. Michael Rich of Elon University School of Law, on technology and crime. Mike, who is not only a colleague but a friend, has been doing cutting-edge work on the question of how technology can be used to prevent crime, and the ramifications of using such technology. During our discussion, we focused on two of his articles examining the contours of this issue, from what we mean by “perfect prevention” of crime to the technological limitations of such efforts. As always, I greatly enjoyed by conversation with Mike and consider myself fortunate to work with him at Elon.

Lastly, I’m thrilled to post Show #192, August 23, my interview with Tim Jordan of King’s College London on hacking. Tim is (and has been) doing fascinating work on the question of how the Internet has changed communication practices. Drawing on the worlds of 19th century Australian pioneers and modern-day virtual world gamers, Internet, Society and Culture: Communicative Practices Before and After the Internet, published by Bloomsbury, was a terrific book from which to draw many enlightening and fun points of discussion. I learned much and loved the interview.

I am now in the process of setting the schedule for the Fall 2013 quarter, so please look for the schedule by the end of September (I am excited to note that the first guest will be Prof. Anupam Chander of UC Davis Law, author of the just-released book The Electronic Silk Road). In the interim, please email me at dave@hearsacyulture.com if you have any comments, questions or suggestions for future guests. Thanks for listening!

shows #163-165 — prof. lea shaver, chris soghoian, stephanie pell and marvin ammori — posted

I’m pleased to post the last three shows of the spring quarter.

The first, Show #163, May 22 is my interview with Prof. Lea Shaver of Hofstra Law regarding her article Illuminating Innovation. Lea focuses on the story of Edison’s invention of the lightbulb, but draws some surprising conclusions about its import to intellectual property law and, through discussion of less well-known aspects of the story, reaches some surprising results. Drawing on Lea’s deep knowledge of the issues surrounding one of the seminal inventions of the modern era, I very much enjoyed the discussion.

The second show, Show #164, May 29, is my interview with Christopher Soghoian and Stephanie K. Pell, co-authors of Can You See Me Now?: Toward Reasonable Standards for Law Enforcement Access to Location Data that Congress Could Enact. Chris and Stephanie discuss the largely unknown (and not understood) issues surrounding the use of technological location data (think, GPS on your cell phone) by law enforcement. Their combined knowledge, drawn from the worlds of technology/security and law enforcement, respectively, makes for an unusually thorough examination of this challenging issue. We discussed the technology, how its used, and what to do about it. I learned from and enjoyed the interview.

Finally, the last show of the spring quarter, Show #165, June 5, is my interview with Marvin Ammori, author of First Amendment Architecture. Marvin has written an exhaustive analysis of how architecture, be it technological or physical, or as Marvin calls them, “spaces,” play into the law surrounding the First Amendment. This important but under-theorized issue is critical to the ability to maintain and protect the ability to speak in a technologically unstable time. The issue of spaces is thoroughly analyzed in Marvin’s article, and we discussed his theories and their ramifications going forward in this fun and enlightening discussion.

I am in the process of finalizing the schedule for the summer quarter, so look for that on Monday!

Shows 159-162 — Profs. Julie Cohen, Jennifer Holt, Hamilton Bean and Daniel Margocsy — posted

May brings the combined professor’s pincer of grading and writing deadlines. So it is that I submitted my 3L grades yesterday and now I’m posting (finally!) four new shows.

The first, Show #159, March 16, is my interview with Prof. Julie Cohen of Georgetown Law, author of the book Configuring the Networked Self. Julie has written a fascinating and forward-thinking critique of our relationship to technology and the primary challenges facing consumers of technology as they navigate the increasing intrusions of technology into our everyday lives. We covered a variety of topics in this discussion, from social constructs to secrecy, and part two (to be scheduled) will focus on a major portion of the book that was not covered here: privacy. I greatly enjoyed the interview.

Show #160, April 17 is my interview with Prof. Jennifer Holt of the University of California Santa Barbara, author of the book Empires of Entertainment. Jennifer looks at the period just prior to the explosion of the commercial Internet, 1980-1996, and focuses on the changes and consolidations that occurred during that tumultuous time in the history of the entertainment industry. Jennifer examines not just the business environment during this era, but also the legal and social contours that lead to where we were at the dawn of the Internet, and in that way has made a unique contribution to the literature on this era. We covered not just that recent history, but also some current events like the battle over SOPA and PIPA. The interview was fun and I hope that you enjoy it as well.

The third interview, Show #161, April 24 is my interview with Prof. Hamilton Bean of the University of Colorado Denver, author of the book No More Secrets: Open Source Information and the Reshaping of U.S. Intelligence. Hamilton has written a first-of-a-kind analysis of the use of public information (i.e., open source) in the collection and analysis functions of the US intelligence community. Drawing on many first-hand interviews, he focuses on the mystique and myths around secrecy in the intelligence community and the challenges of institutionalizing the use of open source information. Given the increasing study of “secrecy” as a field, I was excited to have Hamilton on the show and enjoyed the interview.

Finally, Show #162, May 1 is my interview with Prof. Daniel Margocsy of Hunter College, co-editor of States of Secrecy, a new volume of the British Journal for the History of Science. Daniel has brought together many great contributors, including several former guests on Hearsay Culture like Mario Biagioli and Peter Galison to analyze secrecy as a political, legal and social construct in the scientific community. Drawing on the history of the theory of secrecy, we (in some measure) continued the discussion from the previous week to focus on what secrecy means to the continued flow of knowledge and information to and from the scientific community. This was yet another interview that I found personally illuminating and fun.

Thanks for your patience and look for more new shows on the way soon!

show # 149 — Prof. Susan Shirk — posted

I’m pleased to post the last show of the summer quarter, Show #149, August 31, my interview with Prof. Susan Shirk of the University of California – San Diego, editor of the book Changing Media, Changing China. Susan has edited a book comprised of essays about China’s media landscape by some of China’s leading journalists and academics, as well as other experts. As a scholar with decades of experience living in and studying Chinese media, Susan was an outstanding guest with whom to discuss the complex and somewhat counter-intuitive relationship between the Chinese government and the media, which ranges from government to private entities. I greatly enjoyed the conversation!

shows #123-125 — fred stutzman, prof. peter lee and prof. tim wu — posted

I am pleased to post three new shows in this hectic semester. The first, Show #123, October 27 is my interview with Fred Stutzman, doctoral candidate at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s School of Information and Library Science. Fred is doing cutting-edge work on the impact of social media and, as a software designer, has also authored an application that kills social media on your computer for a fixed period of time. In our interview, we discussed Fred’s work and the role that social media plays in the life of current teenagers. I greatly enjoyed the interview.

The second, Show # 124, November 3 is my interview with Prof. Peter Lee of UC-Davis School of Law, discussing technology transfer and innovation. Peter focuses on issues involving the murky world of university research and regulation. Our discussion focused on the competing values of the traditional university and modern commercialization efforts and the law surrounding this complex dichotomy. Peter shed light on a number of considerations key to this issue and I enjoyed having the discussion.

The final show being posted today is Show #125, November 10, my interview with Prof. Tim Wu of Columbia Law School, author of The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires. Tim’s book focuses on the environments in which entities can control the flow of information. We discussed a variety of topics ranging from the role of the FCC in information regulation to the threat posed by Apple. I enjoyed Tim’s book and our broad discussion.

Three more shows coming soon!

Academics call for halt to ACTA negotiations

I am pleased to have contributed to the drafting of a letter calling for the Obama administration to allow for meaningful public input on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), a topic previously discussed on Hearsay Culture with Jeremy Malcolm and Prof. Michael Geist, before it is concluded. The text of the letter and more information can be found here.

shows 113 and 114 — Prof. ken wark and greg nojeim — posted

I am pleased to post two new shows. The first, Show # 113, May 26, is my interview with Prof. Ken Wark of the Eugene Lang College at the New School. Ken’s work is widely known in the technology field, and we discussed a variety of topics, including the cultural understanding of hackers and new media. In addition to discussing his recent works, I greatly enjoyed chatting with Ken.

The second, Show # 114, June 30, is my interview with Greg Nojeim, Senior Counsel at the Center for Democracy and Technology. Greg has been at the forefront of policy battles on technology and law enforcement for years, so we spent our time discussing his views of federal wiretapping, datamining and criminal law and policy. Greg’s wealth of knowledge on both the substance and politics of these issues made the discussion fascinating.

The summer schedule for Hearsay Culture is now posted and I hope that you find the summer’s guests educational and exciting, whether you listen while procrastinating, jogging, or running!

shows #111 and 112 — Profs. Bobbi Kwall, Danielle Citron and Frank Pasquale — posted

I have been woefully delinquent in posting these two new shows, as this year has been insanely busy (the major items: I had a couple of conferences with papers, taught two courses that I had not taught in a few years, bought a house and continued to be a dad to two wonderful young boys and a husband to a wonderful wife). So, while these shows are available on iTunes, I have been late posting them here. My apologies.

Show # 111, April 28 (!) is my interview with Prof. Bobbi Kwall of DePaul College of Law, author of The Soul of Creativity. Bobbi has written an insightful analysis of what is best called the moral rights position of copyright law. In her book, she analyzes this perspective from a variety of angles, from traditional copyright to religious studies. Bobbi is one of the leading copyright scholars in the country and I was thrilled to have her back on the show to discuss her fascinating work.

Show #112, May 19 is my interview with Profs. Danielle Citron of University of Maryland School of Law and Frank Pasquale of Seton Hall School of Law discussing Fusion Centers. Fusion Centers are an unusual and relatively new law enforcement vehicle where state and local authorities can investigate a variety of illegal activities, from terrorism to insurance fraud, by datamining information provided by the public and private sectors. If this sounds concerning, it is; and Danielle and Frank are the two leading scholars analyzing Fusion Centers. I am a huge admirer of both of their work so I hope that you find the interview educational and enjoyable (if not unnerving).

New shows will commence June 30, so please check the schedule to see the upcoming guests! I will be finalizing the schedule in the later part of June. Thanks much, and look for my interview with Prof. Ken Wark of Eugene Lang College at The New School soon!