Posts by Meredith Whipple

Charles Duan on Blurred Lines and Patterns in Music

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In light of the lawsuit between Robin Thicke, Pharrell Williams, and T.I. vs. Marvin Gaye regarding whether “Blurred Lines” infringes the copyrights to “Got to Give It Up,” Meredith Whipple interviews Charles Duan as he takes us through music history to demonstrate common patterns in songs, why these exist, and how that’s a good thing for music.

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Rural Advocacy Organizations Tell FCC to Pass Set-Top Box Proposal

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Today, eight rural advocacy organizations filed a letter with the Federal Communications Commission in support of Chairman Wheeler’s proposal to open up the set-top box market for consumers. The letter emphasizes the importance of competition and choice from cable and satellite providers for rural communities, which often have limited access to to over-the-air broadcasters and broadband access.

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White House Takes a Stand Against Bill Riders Targeting the FCC

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Members of Congress adding unnecessary policy language or amendments, known as “riders,” to government appropriations bills is nothing new; it is a well-known tactic for getting controversial policies passed. Appropriations bills provide funding to government agencies, so they must be passed by Congress in order to keep everything moving. Some members of Congress use this as a loophole to try to sneak in language or amendments that will hurt existing policies and agencies.

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PK in the Know Podcast: 3D Printing and #3DDC2016

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Courtney Duffy and Meredith Whipple can barely contain their excitement about the 5th annual 3D/DC conference and exhibition. The nation's premiere 3D printing event is only two weeks away. Courtney, the Fractured Atlas Arts and Technology Fellow and Public Knowledge, is organizing 3D/DC this year, and gives listeners a preview of what public policy hot topics will be the focus of #3DDC2016.

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Chairman Wheeler Unveils Plan to Protect Consumer Privacy

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Today, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler announced that he is circulating a proposal to protect consumers’ data from unauthorized uses by Internet Service Providers. The proposal will be be considered by the Commission during its March 31st meeting. Chairman Wheeler also released a fact sheet outlining the basics of his proposal, and the need for strong consumer protection.

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Happy Birthday Net Neutrality! Where Do We Stand One Year Later?

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One year ago today, the Federal Communications Commission enacted the strongest net neutrality rules in history. It was a day of celebration in the Internet policy community, after a daunting year of fighting against big Internet Service Providers like Verizon and Comcast that took advantage of a court’s decision to rule against the net neutrality rules we had at that time.

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Revving Our Engines on DMCA Reform in 2016

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One of our top issues we tackled in 2015 was reforming Section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). To recap, Section 1201 makes it illegal to break digital locks in order to access copyrighted works (like the movie on a DVD or software in a device), even for legitimate purposes. Every three years, public interest groups spend time and money petitioning the Copyright Office to exempt certain uses and technologies from this law. The Library of Congress released the most recent decisions for this triennial process in October 2015. One example that affects many people that we have yet to touch on is vehicle use. You may not have thought about how copyright law regulates your car. However, cars are increasingly powered as much by software as they are by motors.

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PK In The Know Podcast: Spotify, Licensing, and the Future of the Music Industry

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What do player piano rolls from 100 years ago have to do with modern streaming services? How do musicians get the rights to record a cover song? Why is Spotify getting sued? How is it different from AM/FM radio? What is the future of the music industry? Raza Panjwani answers all of Meredith Whipple's questions and more in this week's episode.

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PK In The Know Podcast: Charter/Time Warner Cable Merger and Blizzard World of Warcraft Lawsuit

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Meredith Filak Rose joins Meredith Whipple to discuss how the proposed Charter/Time Warner Cable merger with impact broadband consumers and competition and how it fits in to this year's "merger mania." She also chats about a new lawsuit involving World of Warcraft.

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Public Interest Groups Ask Appeals Court to Consider Public Interest in Apple v. Samsung Case

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This afternoon, Public Knowledge and the Electronic Frontier Foundation filed an amicus curiae brief in the Apple v. Samsung litigation before the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. In that case, Samsung is asking the Federal Circuit to reconsider its decision authorizing an injunction prohibiting the sales of certain Samsung cell phones.

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New Paper by PK President Demonstrates Importance of Existing Antitrust and Economic Regulation

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Thanks to recent antitrust enforcement and communications regulation, consumers continue to reap the benefits of exploding Internet entertainment, as well as educational and business opportunities. By facing down the proposed merger between Comcast and Time Warner, and by establishing strong net neutrality rules, the Department of Justice and Federal Communications Commission have protected Internet users from discrimination and promoted broadband innovations that are critical to our democracy and essential to freedom of expression.

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PK Experts Answer Your Burning Questions on Net Neutrality and Title II

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After the leak of FCC Chairman Wheeler's plan for net neutrality last week, it was apparent that the excitement also brought with it a lot of confusion. Public Knowledge decided to host a Ask Me Anything forum (AMA) on Reddit to try and help alleviate any confusion. We told people to ask us anything they were curious about - even such divisive questions such as dog's or cats - and we promised to do our best to answer. PK experts John Bergmayer, Edyael Casaperalta, Kate Forscey, Jodie Griffin, Chris Lewis, Sherwin Siy, and Michael Weinberg answered a wide range of questions from Redditors.

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Internet Slowdown Day and Net Neutrality

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Today, advocates, nonprofits, companies, and people just like you are taking part in a day of action to demonstrate what the Internet might look like if the Federal Communications Commission does not implement meaningful net neutrality rules. Websites like Netflix, Etsy, Wordpress, Fourquare, and Vimeo are displaying a continuous site-loading icon as part of Internet Slowdown Day, in order to protest any rules that would create Internet fast lanes.

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Knight Foundation Releases Visualization of Themes from Net Neutrality Comments

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Many interesting data visualizations have been published since the FCC released the data from the 1.1 million net neutrality comments they received. The release of the machine-readable bulk data file from the Open Internet docket allows journalists, researchers, and others to analyze the data and offer a clearer understanding of public opinion on net neutrality.

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Public Knowledge Supports Guidelines for Open Government Data

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Public Knowledge has joined ten other organizations in support of a set of existing guidelines for releasing public government data in the United States, entitled “Open Government Data: Best-Practices Language for Making Data ‘License-Free’”.


The guidelines were first published in August 2013 and a new and improved version was released today. The document states:

…it is essential that U.S. federal government agencies have the tools to preserve the United States’ long legal tradition of ensuring that public information created by the federal government is exempt from U.S. copyright and remains free for everyone to use without restriction.

Data that has no restrictions on reuse is referred to as “license-free”. License-free government data promotes both a transparent democracy and entrepreneurial innovation. For instance, license-free data can be accessed, analyzed, visualized, and shared by academics, journalists, businesspersons, and voters.

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