Weblog on the Internet and public policy, journalism, virtual community, and more from David Brake, a Canadian academic, consultant and journalist
12 January 2004

Prof “Lessig”:http://www.lessig.org/ gave another barnstorming performance in a visit to a small, packed room full of LSE media and regulation students. I had heard much of his presentation before last year at a presentation he made in Oxford but there were some interesting new factoids in the latest version – notably:

* The average time a book remains in print is about one year.
* There are 100k titles “alive” in Amazon but 26m titles that have been printed and are available in the Library of Congress.
* Products from one part of a big corporation tend to get used in movies and other programmes made by that company not necessarily because of straightforward plugging but simply because the process of copyright clearance is easier with products from inside those corporations than outside.
* Before the 1976 copyright act in the US, copyright holders had to re-assert their copyright periodically. Only 10-20% of them did so.
* Whoever managed the ebook distribution of his book “The Future of Ideas”:http://the-future-of-ideas.com/ set the DRM flag in Acrobat not to allow anyone to copy text from, print or even have the book read aloud. Talk about an own goal!


  1. Can the last nazi who made their PDF file inaccessible to blind people by locking it as discussed in this weblog entry please stand up so that I can smear you in meat sauce and have my guide dog savage you? Before I sue you, that is.
    (have had one too many inaccessible PDF files come my way today at work … how am I supposed to read important work files and stay up to speed with my colleagues if some idiot goes and ticks a box when creating a PDF? It’s that simple)


    Comment by Damon — 14 January 2004 @ 3:08 am

  2. Truly hard to believe some of those stats. Only 1 year in print! actually, considering how many books get printed every year, i guess it’s understandable.

    Comment by Rick — 15 January 2004 @ 6:04 am

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