Monday, October 13, 2008


As the Los Angeles Times reports in yesterday's "'Saturday Night Live' yanks, then reposts, controversial bailout sketch," the show removed a piece that seemed to blame the crisis on Congress that had already aired from the clips posted on the web under pressure from Democratic sympathizers. As video is archived by television networks on sites that feature advertising, pressures can also be exerted by web sponsors to avoid displaying objectionable content.

Speaking of takedowns of online videos, one of my students in my digital rhetoric class, points to an article called "McCain Fights for Right to Remix on YouTube," which describes how the candidate would like to preserve McCain commercials on YouTube that are being taken down because of supposed copyright violations, on the grounds that they contain clips from network news broadcasts. The title of the argument may be something of a misnomer, because McCain voted for the Digital Millennium Copyright Act that makes this conduct potentially illegal, and -- as Electronic Frontier Foundation attorney Fred von Lohmann argues in the update to the article -- the McCain campaign's solution to the problem would only empower candidates to use this material while actual voters would be barred from making similar commentaries. Nonetheless, it looks like Gigi Sohn, the president of the digital rights group Public Knowledge is taking the McCain campaign's side.

(I won't identify the individual student in my digital rhetoric class, but visitors can check out the profiles that they created, an idea that I borrowed from Alan Liu. The students also collaboratively designed the course website, which originally looked like this.)

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home