Show #231 — Jonathan Mayer on the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), cybersecurity and hacking — posted

For the first show posted to the *new* Hearsay Culture website, I am very pleased to post Show # 231, March 4, my interview with Jonathan Mayer, Stanford Ph.D. candidate in computer science, author of Terms of Abuse: An Empirical Assessment of the Federal Hacking Law, and How to Fix It. Jonathan’s work focuses on one of the paradigmatic, and troublesome, laws in the Internet law canon, the CFAA. Designed to address unauthorized intrusions into computer networks, it has morphed into a catch-all law that potentially ensnares all forms of computer network access, from the seemingly-authorized, to computer network research efforts, on down. In our discussion, we examined Jonathan’s empirical findings regarding CFAA litigation, as well as the prospects for reform of this flawed and ambiguous statute. In part because Jonathan is in the process of producing a comprehensive analysis of how the CFAA operates in the world, which could (or should) impact the pending efforts to create Federal trade secret law, I was delighted to have him on the show. I hope that you enjoy the discussion.


Show #206 — Prof. Orly Lobel, author of Talent Wants to Be Free — posted

I’m pleased to post Show #206, March 5, my interview with Prof. Orly Lobel of University of San Diego School of Law, author of Talent Wants to Be Free: Why We Should Learn to Love Leaks, Raids, and Free-Riding. Orly has written a timely account of the benefits of mobility of labor and ideas in the modern economy. Examining a range of issues from the impact of trade secrecy on employee mobility to new forms of innovation that rely on sharing, Orly has written an insightful examination of the under-explored area. As I see it as a wonderful and valuable extension of pioneering work by AnnaLee Saxenian, I greatly enjoyed the interview!


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 #122 — prof. sharon sandeen — posted

I’m very pleased to post Show #122, September 29, my interview with Prof. Sharon Sandeen of Hamline University School of Law, discussing trade secrets and cloud computing. The many issues related to how businesses and consumers use the cloud has not focused much on the issues associated with storing trade secrets on a server, or with a service provider, beyond the trade secret owner’s direct control. Sharon takes on this scenario, analyzing the concerns and offering practical advise on how to use such services as a trade secret owner. I enjoyed the discussion as I hope you will as well!


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!