Promises to Keep
Technology, Law, and the Future of Entertainment
By William W. Fisher, III
(Stanford University Press, Hardcover, 9780804750134, 340pp.)
Publication Date: August 15, 2004
List Price: $34.95*
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"Digital technologies have given society an extraordinary cultural potential. If that potential is to be made real, we must reconcile it with the legitimate and important claims of copyright. In this beautifully written and careful work, Fisher, more completely than anyone else, maps the choices that we might make. He argues for a choice that would produce enormous social good. And while not everyone will agree with the conclusions he draws, no one who cares seriously about creators or culture can ignore the framework that he has set. There are choices that we as a society must make. And as Rawls did in political theory, or Milton Friedman did in economics, Fisher provides an understanding that will color policy analysis for the generations to come."—Lawrence Lessig, Stanford Law School
"The strength of this book is Fisher's willingness to step above the political fray to solve problems. He has produced one of the most important books in media studies and law in some years. It is refreshing, bold, and provocative. We need it badly." —Siva Vaidhyanathan, Director of Communication Studies, Department of Culture and Communication, New York University
"This book provides the first comprehensive, accessible overview of the conflict surrounding music distribution and the emergence of digital communications networks, working towards a detailed proposal for how we could radically transform the way in which our society funds its music and film industries."—Yochai Benkler, Yale Law School
"Fisher's proposal might be the best thing that ever happened to the cultural commons: the creators would be paid, while every individual would have unlimited access to every cultural creation." —The New York Times (January 25, 2004)
"Harvard University Professor Terry Fisher has completed the first comprehensive examination of various alternative [compensation] models....Our thanks to Professor Fisher for his exhaustive research in making our choices clear."—The Register (February 1, 2004)