Bipartisan Alliance Asks RNC, DNC to Free Debate Footage

Requests Footage Be Put in Public Domain

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Lawrence Lessig, a Stanford Law professor and founder of Center for Internet and Society, is leading an effort to ensure that presidential debate footage can be legally place on sites like YouTube. So far, he's getting cooperation from bloggers and web citizens on both the right and left. Press release here.

Writes Lessig: "This next political cycle will see an explosion of citizen generated political content. Some of that speech will be crafted from clips taken from the Presidential debates. Some of that will be fantastically valuable and important. Yet as the law is right now, it is extremely difficult for an ordinary citizen to understand the boundaries of 'fair use,' or the limits to copyright law."

So he's asking that the issue be simplified "by simply promising to require of any network broadcasting Presidential debates (at least) that they license the debates freely after they are initially broadcast."