In this lecture, Professor Lessig will outline the proper scope and limits for copyright, emphasizing its critical importance in some fields of creative enterprise, and its hinderance to others.
- Lawrence Lessig is a Professor of Law at Stanford Law School and founder of the school’s Center for Internet and Society. Prior to joining the Stanford faculty, he was the Berkman Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, and a Professor at the University of Chicago. He clerked for Judge Richard Posner on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and Justice Antonin Scalia on the United States Supreme Court. For much of his career, Professor Lessig focused on law and technology, especially as it affects copyright. He represented website operator Eric Eldred in the ground-breaking case Eldred v. Ashcroft, a challenge to the 1998 Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act. His current academic work addresses a kind of ‘corruption’. He has won numerous awards, including the Free Software Foundation’s Freedom Award, and was named one of Scientific American’s Top 50 Visionaries, for arguing “against interpretations of copyright that could stifle innovation and discourse online.” Professor Lessig is the author of Code v2 (2007), Free Culture (2004), The Future of Ideas (2001) and Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace (1999). He is CEO of the Creative Commons project, and is on the board of MAPLight and the Sunlight Foundation. He has served on the board of the Free Software Foundation, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Public Library of Science, and Public Knowledge. He was also a columnist for Wired, Red Herring, and the Industry Standard. Professor Lessig earned a BA in economics and a BS in management from the University of Pennsylvania, an MA in philosophy from Cambridge, and a JD from Yale. Professor Lessig teaches and writes in the areas of constitutional law, contracts, and the law of cyberspace.