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REVIEW: "CyberRegs", Bill Zoellick

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  • Rob, grandpa of Ryan, Trevor, Devon & Ha
    BKCBRRGS.RVW 20051202 CyberRegs , Bill Zoellick, 2002, 0-201-72230-5, U$39.99/C$59.95 %A Bill Zoellick %C P.O. Box 520, 26 Prince Andrew Place, Don
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 6, 2006
      BKCBRRGS.RVW 20051202

      "CyberRegs", Bill Zoellick, 2002, 0-201-72230-5, U$39.99/C$59.95
      %A Bill Zoellick
      %C P.O. Box 520, 26 Prince Andrew Place, Don Mills, Ontario M3C 2T8
      %D 2002
      %G 0-201-72230-5
      %I Addison-Wesley Publishing Co.
      %O U$39.99/C$59.95 416-447-5101 fax: 416-443-0948 bkexpress@...
      %O http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0201722305/robsladesinterne
      %O http://www.amazon.ca/exec/obidos/ASIN/0201722305/robsladesin03-20
      %O Audience i Tech 1 Writing 2 (see revfaq.htm for explanation)
      %P 307
      %T "CyberRegs: A Business Guide to Web Property Privacy and Patents"

      The introduction states that the nature of the Web is in flux. Those
      who take too strong and doctrinaire a stance on the character of the
      Internet will be subject to failures in their attempts to do business
      there. In addition, the author states his opinion, based on the
      research conducted for the book, that attempts to apply regulation to
      the net should be sparing.

      Part one deals with copyright. Chapter one reviews the past history
      of copyright legislation and purposes, and also the recent case of
      Napster. (The book was completed before the Napster case concluded.)
      "DVD Jon" and the DeCSS case is the topic of chapter two. The
      author's experiences with the publishing and sale of special reports
      forms the basis for an examination of licensing, in chapter three, and
      also the balance of rights between publisher and user/consumer. The
      development and shift in copyright regulations and perspectives is
      given in chapter four. Chapter five lists further reading on the
      topic: an annotated bibliography of text and online sources. The
      works are well chosen and the annotations provide good overviews of
      the material.

      Part two addresses patents. Chapter six outlines the Amazon "1-Click"
      patent, and the issue of an idea versus a specific implementation. A
      variety of other patents and lawsuits are examined in chapter seven.
      Chapter eight deals with the issue of patentability of an entity or
      item. The issue of patenting business methods is dealt with in
      chapter nine. Chapter ten examines the impact of patents on the
      Internet. Walker Digital and the business of creating and holding
      business patents is in chapter eleven. Recent US legislation amending
      patent concepts and applicability is covered in chapter twelve.
      Chapter thirteen opines about the future and fourteen closes off the
      topic with the reference section.

      Part four surveys electronic signatures and the E-Sign act. Chapter
      fifteen discusses the provisions of the act itself, including the fact
      that it doesn't (in any significant way) define what an electronic
      signature can be, thus obviating the need for many of the functions of
      a signature. (This is followed by a brief section entitled "A Deeper
      Look" that explains the technical concept of digital signatures.)
      Business will increase because of the act, says chapter sixteen.
      Chapter seventeen makes the case (rather weakly, perhaps) that E-Sign
      is a good act, because it doesn't impede allowable technologies.
      Eighteen is the references chapter for electronic signatures.

      Part four moves in on privacy. Chapter nineteen cites a couple of
      cases of the market for private information. US legal precedents
      regarding the right to privacy are in chapter twenty. Consumer
      concerns, in chapter twenty-one, are followed up by "A Deeper Look" at
      cookies and Web bugs, and by another on the Platform for Privacy
      Preferences Project (P3P). US legislative moves regarding privacy are
      discussed in chapter twenty-two. (It is interesting to note that
      Zoellick quotes a legislator stating that privacy acts would be passed
      before 2002. This did not happen. In addition, of the various
      aspects discussed in the chapter, bill S.1789, before the Senate as
      this review is being written, addresses only access and enforcement.)
      Chapter twenty-three tries, without much success, to propose a
      framework for privacy. Again, twenty-four contains references.

      An epilogue finishes out the book by opining that businesses can, and
      should, work at understanding the Web better, so that they can shape
      its future development. As long as they develop it the way the author

      Oddly, this work does not seem to add materially to other discussions
      of Internet law. That it examines intellectual property issues in
      such depth is interesting, but not illuminating. However, Zoellick
      does have a much more engaging writing style than other authors who
      have written on legal topics in relation to the net, and the text is
      much more readable than most such books. There is a good deal of
      valuable information in this volume on the subjects examined: but
      there is a lot of opinion as well.

      copyright Robert M. Slade, 2005 BKCBRRGS.RVW 20051202

      ====================== (quote inserted randomly by Pegasus Mailer)
      rslade@... slade@... rslade@...
      Like one who takes away a garment on a cold day, or like vinegar
      poured on soda, is one who sings songs to a heavy heart. Prov. 25:20
      http://victoria.tc.ca/techrev or http://sun.soci.niu.edu/~rslade
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