Chairman Howard Dean
Democratic National Committee
430 S. Capitol St. SE
Washington, DC 20003
Dear Chairman Dean:
I am writing in strong support of a letter from a bipartisan coalition of academics, bloggers and Internet activists recently addressed to you and the Democratic National Committee. The letter asks that the video from any Democratic Presidential debate be available freely after the debate, by either placing the video in the public domain, or licensing it under a Creative Commons (Attribution) license.
As you know, the Internet has enabled an extraordinary range of citizens to participate in the political dialogue around this election. Much of that participation will take the form of citizen generated content. We, as a Party, should do everything that we can to encourage this participation. Not only will it keep us focused on the issues that matter most to America, it will also encourage participation by a wide range of our youth who have traditionally simply tuned out from politics.
The letter does not propose some radical change in copyright law, or an unjustified expansion in “fair use.” Instead, it simply asks that any purported copyright owner of video from the debates waive that copyright.
I am a strong believer in the importance of copyright, especially in a digital age. But there is no reason that this particular class of content needs the protection. We have incentive enough to debate. The networks have incentive enough to broadcast those debates. Rather than restricting the product of those debates, we should instead make sure that our democracy and citizens have the chance to benefit from them in all the ways that technology makes possible.
Your presidential campaign used the Internet to break new ground in citizen political participation. I would urge you to take the lead again by continuing to support this important medium of political speech. And I offer whatever help I can to secure the support of others as well.
Source – BarackObama.com
This is awesome! As it stands right now US government works are not copyrightable. If the government creates it (a government for, of and by the people) the resulting works become part of the public domain. Why should political debates be any different?
Letters other than Obama’s have been sent to the heads of both the DNC and the RNC. Both letters were signed by numerous people and can be read onlessig.org.
I do not know much about Obama’s politics or where he stands on issues that are important to me but, at least he understands the world that bloggers live in. I publish all of my content under a Creative Commons license. I believe that information should be free.
The Creative Commons license I use allows for copying of my work as long as you don’t sell it and you provide credit back to me as the original writer.
The political proccess should be free in the USA. Obama is on the right track with this one.