Copyleft in the Age of Information Society: Drawing on Global Social Capital to Address the Informational Needs of a Community of Professionals

Dr Daniel Teghe,
Prof. Bruce Allen Knight
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This article presents findings from a (2004) case study that investigated how the needs of a community of professionals to access a specific set of informational resources on demand could be addressed through the development and distribution of a resources CD-ROM. The article outlines difficulties encountered when collecting and collating the information resources on the CD-ROM. Some of these difficulties were of a political nature, such as when the process to obtain permission to conduct the study was hindered by bureaucratic processes and resistance from interest groups. Other difficulties presented when seeking permission to reproduce resources from independent sources. However, useful knowledge was also obtained about the processes and means through which a project such as the one described in the case study might be completed successfully. For example, the researchers found that information which can be reproduced without permission (copyleft material) exists to such a great extent on the www that it is rarely necessary to seek permission to reproduce equivalent but copyrighted material, thus avoiding the laborious and often futile process of obtaining permission to reproduce it. This also prompted the authors to discuss the possibility that this is a positive effect of globalisation, because capitalising on freely available and reproducible information can circumvent the barriers to access information on demand. Interestingly, the increasing availability of copyleft informational material suggests a practical representation of an increase in globally accessible social capital which is made possible by an expanding Information Society.

Keywords: Copyleft, Copyright, CD-ROM, Globalisation, Social Capital
Stream: Technology in Community
Presentation Type: Virtual Presentation in English
Paper: Copyleft in the Age of Information Society

Dr Daniel Teghe

Lecturer, School of Social Work and Welfare Studies, Central Queensland University

Prof. Bruce Allen Knight

Associate Dean (Research), Faculty of Education and Creative Arts, Central Queensland University

Ref: T05P0080