The SCL Annual lecture 2009 given by William Patry, Senior Copyright Counsel, Google Inc.
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Introduction and tribute to Sir Hugh Laddie QC by The Rt Hon the Lord Hoffmann.
The Lecture expands upon a statement of Sir Hugh Laddie's that we do not need a strong copyright law, but rather an effective copyright law. William Patry highlights the contrast between those who want copyright law to deliver on its promises (Macaulay in 1841, Gowers in 2006, and Sir Hugh Laddie in his 2007 UCL speech) and those who make what he calls rhetorical claims that we must grant expanding rights because it is ‘just’ (Talfourd in 1841 and those in the UK in 2006-2008 calling for an increase in the term of protection for sound recordings). He addresses what has been called ‘market myopia’: the failure of copyright owners to focus on consumers, why historically they are concerned with control instead and why this has frequently led them to be anti-innovation.
William Patry is Senior Copyright Counsel at Google Inc. He formerly served as copyright counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on the Judiciary, as a Policy Planning Advisor to the Register of Copyrights, and as a law professor. In private practice, he argued copyright cases before the US. federal courts. He is the author of six books on copyright, most recently, "Patry on Copyright," an 8 volume, 6,000 page treatise that is the largest work ever published on copyright; the forthcoming "Patry on Fair Use" (April 2009), and the forthcoming "Metaphors, Moral Panics, and Folk Devils in the Copyright Wars" to be published by Oxford University Press in late summer 2009.