Third day in Faverges

/ 8 September 2005

Another long day, but this time with some sparks and energy in it. Cees Hamelink gave a fabulous presentation about the consolidation of media ownership and its implications for intellectual property. He was really fun to listen to, and clearly has a grasp on the wider context these issues need to live within.

One of the more powerful elements of his presentation had to do with the differences between dealing with issues from an "intellectual property" perspective, vs. dealing with them in terms of protecting "creative expression." The latter allows us to say far more in positive, constructive terms, and makes a clear case for the moral and integrity rights of authorship, putting them in the context of the international human rights declaration -- while at the same pointing to the responsibilities, or "copyduties" (apparently Lessig's term) that come along with authorship. Hamelink also made important use of complexity theory to talk about creative expression issues as part of a larger institutional ecology, and to advocate for multi-stakeholder discussions on how to resolve various elements of the potential conflicts.

After that we had a variety of case study reports: S.T. Kimbrough on the Global Praise program, Barry Creech on his experiences as a communicator in the PCUSA organization; Rebekah Chevalier on the issues in Canada; Prosper Deh on the issues in Africa; and Victoria Rudebark on her experiences with the Wild Goose resources publications committee (which manages IP issues for the Iona community). We concluded late tonight with small group discussions trying to collect insights for eventual use in a WCC consultation document.