Internet Freedom and Protection of Authorship: A Winning Ticket

SFHH Logo 250X250Recently the 225th anniversary of the drafting of the copyright clause of the Constitution wsa marked.  Our Founders recognized that in order to realize their vision for a free and democratic society they must encourage the development and success of a creative class of innovators and artists, creators, and inventors.    This was not a politically divisive concept – it was proposed and supported by delegates to the U.S. Constitutional Convention as varied as James Madison, Charles Pinckney and David Brearley.

This week also marked the 46th nominating convention held by the Democratic Party (the first was in 1832).  In Charlotte, the Democratic Party nominated President Obama and Vice President Biden as candidates for the White House, and set the agenda for the Party, just as the Republicans nominated their candidates and set their agenda the week prior in Tampa.  I mention this, because modern day nominating conventions – while a celebratory and historically significant tradition – inevitably also ratchet up partisanship, with each side drawing battle lines, and defining issues in an inflammatory manner.

Notably, however, the concept of a free and open internet, where both freedom of expression and protection of authorship are respected, is one that both parties have embraced.    And that is how it should be.  Although some have tried to paint the so called “internet freedom plank” as an issue that should divide creators in our country along tech versus arts lines, for the artists, creators and innovators who comprise the Copyright Alliance, copyright without free expression would be a moot point.   We firmly support both internet freedom and protection of authorship, and we are glad that both the Republican and Democratic Parties continue to recognize that these principles must remain intertwined, as they were 225 years ago.

Throughout our history, the creative class has exposed truths, brought injustice to light and promoted worthy causes, relying on the First Amendment and protection of authorship to do so.  Today, more than ever, artists, creators and innovators are reaching out on the internet, collaborating and sharing their works with the world. Let’s continue to advocate for openness, freedom and above all: fairness, in all of our daily endeavors, online and off.

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