Putting the Public’s Interest Back into the “Public Interest”*

* which is related to one of Hearsay Culture’s core principles.

As I mentioned on this week’s show (which will post soon), next week I am going to have an exciting announcement about increased blogging here at Hearsay Culture. This is great news and I’m very excited about it. By the way, no need to worry about its impact on the radio show/podcast, as it will augment rather than supplant or substitute for it!

Meanwhile, in the spirit of blogging, I thought I’d post a link to an essay that I’ve published on the need to conceive the “public interest” broadly when creating intellectual property and technology law. Unfortunately, the United States Trade Representative’s first serious efforts at including the public in lawmaking (think Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement) suffers from a narrow definition of the public interest, which will move us further down the road of polarization and imbalance in the law.

This is a critical issue that is actually related to my goals for Hearsay Culture. From day one, I’ve wanted to produce a show where individuals and groups that don’t talk to each other enough can interact. That’s why Hearsay Culture’s guests are not just IP and tech law professors like me (as wonderful as those people are), but scholars from a variety of fields and people operating in the “real world” (and sometimes in ways that many don’t like). So too, policymaking cannot afford to be siloed, as we all suffer for it. We need to mix it up and be challenged in substantive ways, and often.

I hope that you enjoy my essay (or at least find it informative and thought-provoking), and look for my announcement next week!


Show #200 — Denise Howell’s interview with me — posted

At last, the big moment: here’s Show #200, Denise Howell‘s wonderful interview with me! I had a great time being on the other side of the proverbial “glass,” and developed a deeper appreciation for the great work of all 199 previous guests. Denise asked me about my history in radio, as well as my current non-Hearsay Culture substantive focus on information flow and system issues in hydraulic fracturing and international trade.

After Denise’s interview, I ran through the long list of people who have helped make Hearsay Culture possible. It is a LONG list. I am in your debt.

I hope that you enjoy the discussion, and thanks again to Denise for being a great interviewer! To that end, and most of all, thanks to YOU for listening! Here’s to 200 more.


shows #152-155 — David Perlmutter, Ethan Leib, Saul Levmore, Martha Nussbaum and Helen Nissenbaum — posted

Happy new year! A hectic December has led me to the Association of American Law Schools annual meeting, where I’ll be discussing the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement tomorrow. Meanwhile, posted are the last four shows of the Fall 2011 quarter.

The first show is Show #152, November 3, my interview with Prof. David Perlmutter of the University of Iowa, author of Blogwars and Tenure and Promotion Confidential. We discussed the media industry surrounding blogs as well as a more provincial topic of interest to a narrower range of Hearsay Culture listeners, namely, how to get tenure. David’s work spans a variety of areas, and I greatly enjoyed the interview.

Show #153, November 10 is my interview with Prof. Ethan Leib of Fordham Law School, author of Friend V. Friend. Ethan has written a fascinating book about the regulation of friendships and whether the government should play a role in encouraging friendship. The obvious relevance of this issue as manifested in social networks is explored, as well as more nuanced questions like whether government has a role in this fundamental area of private ordering. A great discussion.

The third show, Show #154, December 1 is my interview with Dean Saul Levmore and Prof. Martha Nussbaum of The University of Chicago Law School, co-editors of The Offensive Internet: Speech, Privacy, and Reputation. Saul and Martha have edited and contributed to an excellent volume on the impact of the Internet on one’s ability to protect and control one’s reputation and identity. As eminent scholars I was thrilled to have them on the show and they offered their unique perspectives on wide range of topics, from Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act to social media.

The last show of the quarter, Show #155, December 8 is my interview with Prof. Helen Nissenbaum of New York University, discussing Privacy in Context. Helen’s newest book focuses on her idea of “contextual integrity” that conceives privacy through the prism of its social constructs. An outstanding guest and scholar, I greatly enjoyed the conversation.

The schedule for the next quarter, which begins during the week of January 16, will be posted next week.

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!

show #109 — Prof. Chris Kelty — posted (with explanation)

It has been a busy few months! I am delinquent posting Show #109, February 17, my interview with Prof. Christopher Kelty of the University of California Los Angeles, author of Two Bits: The Cultural Significance of Free Software. For that I apologize, but, as consolation and explanation, I have writing to show for it, as I continue to wage war on the inappropriate use of trade secrecy in a variety of contexts (I welcome comments on the draft posted on MSU’s site, whose conference I’m honored to be attending). While I’m at it, I should add that I’ll be moderating a panel on IP and the Internet at FutureWeb 2010 in Raleigh, North Carolina on April 29, 2010. I’ve put together a great panel so I hope that you can make it!

Now that I’ve offered some explanation for my tardiness, on to my interview with Chris. Chris was a great guest, focusing on what we can learn from the free software movement beyond its mere revolutionary use in the technology context. Chris’ writing on this topic is startling for its breadth, and we were able to extend its application well beyond the technological sector. I was thrilled to have Chris on the show and hope that you enjoy the interview!

Hearsay Culture selected as one of the ABA Journal’s Blawg 100 of 2008

I am thrilled and honored to announce that Hearsay Culture has been listed in the American Bar Association (“ABA”) Journal’s Blawg 100 of 2008, as one of the “top 100 best Web sites by lawyers, for lawyers.” Specifically, Hearsay Culture was selected by the editors as one of the top five in the new podcast category. Ominously, the ABA Journal issued a “warning” about Hearsay Culture in its description: “The shows are academic and, as a result, very long.” As far as I could tell, Hearsay Culture is the only podcast that earned an explicit “warning,” an honor (as far as I’m concerned) in and of itself.

Now comes the quasi-crowdsourcing (credit: Jeff Howe) part: lawyers can vote for their favorite podcast through January 2, 2009. So, I encourage all lawyers who listen to the show and feel it worthy to vote for Hearsay Culture. I am facing some excellent competition, so regardless of your vote, I encourage all to check out the other terrific podcasts listed.

Thanks, as always, for your support of the show!

Shameless self promotion number one of 2008

I thought listeners would like to know that Hearsay Culture was listed as one of 10 podcasts that are “essential for legal professionals” in an October 10, 2008 article by Robert J. Ambrogi of Law Technology News entitled “Ten Legal Podcasts to Keep You Informed.”

I’m thrilled that the show is getting attention and has a growing audience. Thanks for listening and supporting the show!