ALA Washington Office to host CopyNight

On Tuesday, May 25, the ALA Washington Office will host DC’s “CopyNight” group for an evening with special guest Carl Malamud about the future of public information. 

Malamud is the founder of Public.Resource.Org, a foundation dedicated to making public information accessible. His latest project is an effort to bring all of the United States primary legal sources, such as legal codes and case law, online for free public access. Currently, access to many legal sources is only available through commercial databases that are extraordinarily expensive to use — making these materials inaccessible to most of the public. Malamud has been holding a series of public workshops and symposia, with help from a variety of thought leaders in law and technology, presenting the issues and challenges facing the project. 

He’ll also talk about the International Amateur Scanning League, a group of DC-area volunteers digitizing government-produced DVDs currently only available from the National Archives in College Park, which he is making available through YouTube, the Internet Archive, and Public Resource’s own Public Domain Stock Footage Library. 

These are only the latest of Malamud’s projects. An Internet pioneer, author, and information access activist, he was responsible for the first internet radio station, putting the SEC’s EDGAR database online as well as 5 million pages from the Government Printing Office, holding the Internet 1996 World Exposition. He has written eight books, and contributed his talents to several organizations devoted to information freedom and technological progress.

CopyNight is a monthly social gathering to encourage people from a variety of professions and backgrounds to meet for lively discussions about restoring balance to copyright law. The Washington, DC, chapter’s previous guest speakers have included OITP’s Carrie Russell and library policy expert Jonathan Band. If you’d like to receive announcements or participate in the DC chapter, please join the Google Group. To find (or start!) a CopyNight in your city, visit http://copynight.org for more information.

The event will start at 6:30 p.m. at the ALA Washington office; refreshments will be served, so RSVP to copynightdc@googlegroups.com if you’re coming. Hope to see you Tuesday night!

Kat Walsh
OITP Policy Analyst

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