CopyrightX: Glasgow 2019

CopyrightX: Glasgow class 2019.
Image credit: GU-IPS.

Copyright X is an intensive twelve-week networked course that has been offered annually since 2013 under the auspices of Harvard Law School, the HarvardX distance-learning initiative and the Berkman Klein Centre for Internet and Society. As part of the affiliate course community, CopyrightX: Glasgow (coordinated by Dr. Thomas Margoni and Amy Thomas) joins around 20 other countries in delivering the affiliate course since 2017.

This year’s group of enthusiastic LLM students engaged in lively discussions on copyright law, theory and practice in weekly meetings. Hailing from a variety of international backgrounds, students also provided interesting insights from their own jurisdictions, allowing them to compare, contrast and better assess the global copyright landscape. These efforts culminated in a group project examining the right of Communication to the Public, where students presented their own research and posed several important questions: how should we interpret the ambiguous definition of “public”? What is the relationship between the knowledge criteria and direct or indirect liability? What are the implications of the BGH Thumbnail III decision?

Students’ experiences have been shared on the Glasgow University student IP Society website. In detailing their perspective on the CopyrightX course students describe an “exceptional experience” and “exciting program”. In a more reflective piece on the “Top 3 Differences Between EU and US Copyright Law” they critically assess important distinctions in copyright exceptions, policy goals and contractual relationships.

Another very welcome development of CopyrightX is the annual CopyrightX Summit. The 2019 event took place at Harvard Law School on the 14th of May and was designed for CopyrightX students, alumni, teaching fellows, and affiliate leaders. It was a fantastic opportunity to discuss some of the most challenging developments in the field of copyright from a global perspective. It featured presentations from some of the most prominent international copyright experts and a keynote by Maria Strong, Director of Policy & International Affairs, U.S. Copyright Office. The event was followed the next day by a closed-door meeting, where the CopyrightX teaching community had an opportunity to exchange ideas about the current developments in copyright law and their impact on the way the course will be taught in the future.

CopyrightX is certainly an extremely successful course judging by the enthusiasm with which students take it every year. But it wouldn’t be correct to consider it just as a copyright course. It is an entirely new way to teach and learn copyright on a global level. And this is not only thanks to the scientific and pedagogic excellence guaranteed by the course creator and faculty, but also – and in a very important dimension – thanks to the global community of experts (teachers, fellows and students) that the course enables. Thank you Prof. Fisher, the IP global community is looking forward with excitement to your next “X” project!

For more information on the CopyrightX course see CREATe blogpost “New CopyrightX: Glasgow Course” and report on the CopyrightX Summit 2017.

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