With the way things are going (two birthday parties this weekend, off to South Carolina tonight) I myself may never get to read the just-released white paper from Harvard’s Berkman Center titled The Digital Learning Challenge: Obstacles to Educational Uses of Content in the Digital Age A Foundational White Paper. But for now, it’s on my required reading list. I have had the great pleasure to have heard the paper’s principal investigator William Fisher present during my trips to iLaw in years past. As with the others, he has just a brilliant mind, and I’m seriously looking forward to chewing through this at some point.
According to the executive summary, here are the four case studies developed in the paper:
- A plan to use social networking software tohelp new social studies teachers interact and share classroom resources, which confronts copyright problems when teachers incorporate third-party content into their materials;
- The need of film studies professors to bypass encryption on DVDs â€“ likely in violation of federal law â€“ in order to show selected film clips to their students;
- An effort to make a digital database of hard-to-find but important American music available on college campuses, which encountered massive obstacles in the rights clearance process;
- The shortcomings of special statutory provisions intended to benefit public broadcasters, but limited to over-the-air broadcast so that they have become nearly irrelevant as the need to distribute content on multiple digital platforms increases.
This whole copyright/plagiarism issue is something that we are going to have to have many, many conversations about as educators, and this would seem to be fuel for those discussions. Hopefully, I’ll blog more about my reactions shortly.