Copyright winds of warning

The arrest of Megaupload’s Kim Dotcom (self titled)- is the latest hint of the voracity of the US copyright agencies in protecting their IP. Now wait for them to cross the ditch and who will be the next victim in Australia (after iiNET)? The issue of cloud storage in relation to IP and copyright is ongoing- but the media seem more concerned with the security issues and potential loss of data rather than copyright. The growth of cloud storage services over the past year (just Google ‘file sharing’)- has been one of the IT success stories- but the range of providers is emblematic of the intentions underlying their business models: to make a quick buck or provide a genuine systemic & integrated IT service.  The Googles/Microsoft/Apples maybe fall into this later category while there are a hundreds of small third party providers, giving ‘dump’ access to anyone and anything. So while we wait for the next move from the US studio custodians- we should also be more guarded about what is happening in our own schools re: file sharing. In NSW schools Edmodo & Dropbox would have to rate as one of the killer apps for 2011. However DEC still agonises over trialling its own cloud storage solution the ‘eBackpack’ (not to be confused with its US counterpart), and the potential copyright issues for this solution are considerable, especially for sharing files. Apart from a message on upload-there is no restriction to what licensing the uploaded material has. Add to this the anniversary copying nightmare and you are faced with a solution which needs to be represented as a ‘workspace’ solution rather than storage.  Good luck. Time has marched on waiting for this service and schools have gone it alone with whatever other solutions they can use. But someone needs to ask the question- what is the escalating risk in terms of both data and litigation?


About thand

I'm a currently working at NSW Departrment of Education & Training, Connected Classrooms Program, Sydney.
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