To different crowds, I've explained my Division III in a handful of very different ways:
I want make sure people understand what the readings I've given people and understand what I feel are the important concepts in the terms of my work. In particular, cover everything except the girl scouts article which I'll come to in a moment.
People should understand:
controlto collaborative writing—namely that limitations, restrictions based around individuals make it difficult for groups to work together;
Lessig and Sclove both describe the relationship of
code/control, but stop there. Sclove, says very little at all
and Lessig, implies that the answer is
flexibility. This is why he's popular with the free/open
source software folks and applies to both the free market
libertarians, the anarchists and many people in between.
For me, this strikes me as the right start but it's not particularly satisfying. Openness and flexibility allows us to redefine the terms of, say, communication and writing we can define it for better or worse.
Information wants to be anthropomorphized.
There is a rift between the role that I believe that control of ideas and expression should be conceived and the way that control is conceived and implemented in technology.
There has become a gap between the control (esp. law & technology) and reality. Either the way we articulate control or reality needs to change.
This has everything to do with literature. Look at the content list of a 1GB file of EBooks I found in an Internet forum (the contents were offered for download elsewhere). The majority of these files are copyrighted.
I'm using the larger project to advance an idea of
control as something akin to it but more nuanced and
expansive than Lessig's idea of code. First, I want to expand it
to include socio-historic forces as well as law and
The analysis looks at the relationship of collaborative work as:
In my case, it's a much more muddled (emphasis
added for Herb) concept that includes all of these things and
focuses on the type of code/control that I feel is dangerous. I
control in part because people can imagine being
control in a way that they don't imagine being coded. I want
to use this to push us in the right direction.
My argument is that as control has been tightened as systems become highly individualized or centralized, there has been an extreme individualization of writing and creative work. This individualization blocks creative works and creates an dominant authoritarian environment for the production, distribution, and reception of ideas.
I use the discussion of control to argue for a system supportive of group work and collaborative processes.
I focus on literature (although I imagine that many other type of groups expression falls into this category, i.e software).
I chose collaborative writing because:
Why collaborative writing is important:
How collaborative writing is persistent (I won't talk about this in any depth but it's in my Div III):
So why does nobody write collaboratively? Why don't we even talk about it?
But they are all connected.
If there's time, I can paint a picture of what copyright looks like today and if it hasn't already come up.