(by Stephanie Vu, Colorado Law 3L, and Stefan Tschimben, Interdiscliplinary Telecom Program student)
On October 20th, the TLPC and the ATLAS Institute at the University of Colorado held a screening and panel discussion of the documentary The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz. The documentary follows the life and death of Internet activist and programing prodigy Aaron Swartz. Aaron played a part in the creation of web feed format RSS (Really Simple Syndication) and was a co-founder of Reddit. Aaron was best known to some for his political activism against the Stop Online Piracy Act and his crusade for the open access to information. This crusade led to a two-year legal battle and ultimately his death at age 26. The documentary explores the relationship between civil liberties and technology and gives a heartfelt account of a young man whose life work has benefited almost everyone who has ever used the internet.
According to Professor Blake Reid, “Aaron’s life and death have left an indelible mark on public policy surrounding technology, digital civil liberties, and access to knowledge. The Internet’s Own Boy is a window into Aaron’s legacy through which anyone interested in the future of our democracy in an information age should take a careful and thoughtful look.”
Congratulations to the winners of the 2014 CU Fall Technology Policy Challenge! The winning team consisted of four TLPC members. From left to right: Molly McClurg (Colorado Law 2L), Amber Williams (Colorado Law 3L), Stefan Tschimben (CU Interdisciplinary Telecommunications Program student), and Vickie Stubbs (ATLAS Institute student).
Learning the craft of regulatory advocacy remains largely an apprenticeship experience. Few resources or formal courses focus on navigating the regulatory process as it relates to technology policy. The existing compilation document is a small contribution toward creation of a helpful “how to” resource concerning technology advocacy.
In January 2010, members of the Cybertelecom list were asked if they knew of “an excellent text or starter set of materials concerning the ‘how to’ advocacy aspects of technology law policy?” It took the group just a week and fifty two responses to collectively say, “no.” Happily, the collective answer went further. Members of the list set about helping fill what appears to be at least a partial literature gap. This resulted a set of ideas which makes progress toward creation of a document which provides guidance to newcomers concerning technology policy advocacy.
This document is an open source creature. Input and additions are welcome. As is, the document is a helpful checklist of considerations within a useful conceptual framework. It remains, however, two dimensional for those who have not done it before. Concrete stories and illustrations from technology policy would be particularly helpful and welcome. This document will be updated on a monthly basis through Colorado Law’s Samuelson-Glushko Technology Law & Policy Clinic.