James Boyle @ NESTA Open Innovation Meeting

I am live-blogging this…hence the sketchiness and the typos…
James Boyle – Prof of Law Duke Law School

Starts off by both apploauding NESTA and Welcome Trust

Open Innovation in Culture and Science
Cultural Agoraphobia…..fear of open methods to develop innovation and science
e.g. if someone had proposed Wikipedia as a business plan –>no funding
e.g. IBM making more money from open innovation than closed innovation

Are there new methods for achieving open innovation? Purpose of the workshop to elucidate that question.

Creative Commons
as a way to distribute creative work in the face of copyright law
make open sources searchable and findable
INITIAL EXPECTATION: CC licences allows the distibution of copyrighted works
NOT EXPECTED: people can actually make money from CC licenced works (CC licences not a panacea – what makes this work)
What is it that allows people to make money from CC licenced works??
Think of licence components as switches – turn some of them on and off(e.g. remixing, commercial expolitation etc….) how can these be used most productively
Need structured research into how these tools can be used

Science is different from culture
CC knows to little about science to map CC ont science
Reasons for starting Science Commons –> illustrated by the development of the WWW by a SCIENTISTS
WWW works better for porn, sales etc than for science
most of the into on the WWW is wrong –>idiots…
why does resarch on the web still work?
search engines bring us the place where knowledgeable people think there is value e.g. amount of linking
THE VALUE IS IN THE METADATA – it’s the second layer of linkage that makes the web useful
That second layer of lnkage is not available for science….becuase scientific knowledge is bound up behind firewalls…we cannot get the second layer of linkage done
other example: get from a revoew f the book to a book on Amazon
same doesn’t work for science: e.g. no linking from the components of an xperimental to the compnents….
BARRIERS to scientific innovation on the web have not been thought through….we can make science work better on the internet
“It is a crime how our government funders etc have failed to understand how innovation depends on infrastructure”
“The network is not the cable along which innovation travels – the network is the cables along which the innovation travels”
Is it good to publicly fund research and then lock it down behind firewalls
Is it good to not fund infrastructure?
We need experimentation. Suggestions:
Admit that we know less than we thought. DO EXPERIMENTS WITH OPEN INNOVATION.
Academia has been much less innovative to make its materials open than many commercial entities, particularly the media.
Research: we need to move away from well-founded assumptions to solid research about what works and what doesn’t.

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