Masthead CMC Magazine / May 1, 1996
 A Framework for Electronic Publishing Issues, by John December

Economic and Intellectual Property Issues of Electronic Publishing

Intellectual property has developed into a hot topic online. While debates over intellectual property have often grounded in generalities based on little or no experience in online practice, this volume delivers a valuable essay--Brian Kahin's, "Scholarly Communication the Networked environment: Issues of Principle, Policy, and Practice."

Kahin looks at the important legal and ethical issues involved in authorship and distribution of online works. He points out that the scholarly community has a unique opportunity to possibly come to a consensus on issues of intellectual property because academics rarely gain (for the most part) no money from their publications. Instead, their concerns revolve around proper attribution and dissemination of their ideas.

Kahin traces issues of communication and prepublication. For example, he explores rights in computer conferencing, including questions of reuse and derivative works.

Kahni's chapter is insightful because he grounds his discussion in specifics of current practice. While leaving out just-emerging issues such as ownership and fair use of interactive content such as Java applets, he nonetheless presents a thorough framework for the topic of intellectual property online. *

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