James Boyle

James Boyle

On February 29, 2012 James Boyle, the William Neal Reynolds Professor of Law and co-founder of the Center for the Study of the Public Domain at Duke Law School talked about "Cultural Agoraphobia: Why Most of What You Know About the Internet is Wrong."

You can listen to his talk on our audio streaming website.

Boyle’s lecture is the first of three talks he delivered on the Wash U campus for the Interdisciplinary Project in the Humanities Lecture Series.

On January 18, 2012, Congress received a strong warning from online information providers that going forward with two pending anti-piracy bills will severely limit the Internet’s open, dynamic environment. That same day, the bills’ sponsors began backing down. This is the latest salvo in the ongoing legal war that pits protection of intellectual property against the desire for unfettered access.

One of the leading scholars on the side of open access is James Boyle, whose research shows that ever-tightening restrictions on reasonable access is preventing the world’s collection of intellectual and artistic concepts from entering the public domain, to the detriment of society.

Boyle is the author of numerous publications, including Shamans, Software and Spleens: Law and Construction of the Information Society and The Shakespeare Chronicles, a novel about the search for the true author of Shakespeare’s works. His latest book, The Public Domain: Enclosing the Commons of the Mind, was named the 2009 Book of the Year by the American Society for Information Science and Technology.

He is a co-founder of the Center for the Study of the Public Domain at Duke. He was one of the original board members of Creative Commons, which develops, supports and stewards legal and technical infrastructure that maximizes digital creativity, sharing and information.

Boyle graduated from the University of Glasgow and earned his law degree from Harvard University.