Issues of Copyright, Unrestricted Access Publishing Discussed at Open Access Week

Posted: October 10, 2013 at 5:03 am, Last Updated: October 16, 2013 at 6:29 am

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Two events tackling issues of copyright protection and public access to creative and scholarly works will take place this month during George Mason University’s International Open Access Week.

Although copyrights serve to protect creative works while still allowing them to be enjoyed by the public, overly strict copyright protection can lead to reduced access to these works. Jerry Brito, a senior research fellow at George Mason’s Mercatus Center and director of its Technology Policy Program, will discuss how three upcoming reforms to the Copyright Act will promote greater public access to cultural and scholarly works and help to rebalance copyright protections in the digital age.

Brito also serves as an adjunct professor of law at Mason. His op-eds have appeared in such publications as The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. He is the coauthor, with Susan Dudley, of “Regulation: A Primer,” and the editor of “Copyright Unbalanced: From Incentive to Excess.” His research focuses on technology and Internet policy, copyrights and the regulatory process.

Brito’s talk, Reforms to the Copyright Act, is hosted by the University Libraries. It will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 22, from 3:15–4:15 p.m. at the Arlington Campus in Founders Hall, Multipurpose Room 126. Light refreshments will be served.

On Oct. 23, Mason’s nationally ranked Forensics Team will hold a roundtable discussion on the challenges, merits and future of open access publishing. The forum, Open or Not? What You Need to Know about Open Access to Research, will focus on the risks of publishing in an open access journal, what is being done to combat predatory open access publishing, and whether open access will replace traditional scholarly publishing.

Featured speakers include civil engineering major Amelia Martin, government and international politics majors AK Komanduri and Ian Birdwell, political science graduate student Joseph Dineen, and Middle East and Islamic studies graduate student Rob Warchol.

Hosted by the University Libraries and the Department of Communication, the event will be held on the Fairfax Campus from noon to 1:15 p.m. in George’s restaurant on the third floor of the Johnson Center. A Q&A will follow the discussion. Participants may bring their lunch, and light refreshments will be served.

This will be Mason’s fifth year celebrating Open Access Week, which began as a student-led national day of action in 2007. For more information on these events or Open Access Week, visit openscholarship.gmu.edu or contact Claudia Holland at 703-993-2544; chollan3@gmu.edu.

Write to Colleen Kearney Rich at ckearney@gmu.edu

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