The Networks Should Be Selling Soap Not the Soapbox
Despite "a call for broad distribution of presidential debate video" to allow voters to "upload it, YouTube it, share it, splice it, and 'remix' it online," ABC News has restricted reposting to thirty-second clips. In "a call on the RNC & DNC to eliminate unnecessary regulation on political speech," Lawrence Lessig put forward an argument for placing such footage in the public domain on first amendment grounds. However, The New York Times has reported in "Snippets of Debate Abounded Despite ABC’s Ground Rules" that the network's constraints have been widely ignored. Based on watching Comedy Central skewer the triviality of many of ABC's questions to the candidates, I would agree that cable news stations seem to have "treated the restrictions as mere requests."