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Rights and Responsibilities of Participants in Networked Communities Dorothy E. Denning and Herbert S. Lin, Editors Steering Committee on Rights and Responsibilities of Participants in Networked Communities Computer Science and Telecommunications Board Commission on Physical Sciences, Mathematics, and Applications National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C. 1994
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NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This report has been reviewed by a group other than the authors according to procedures approved by a Report Review Committee consisting of members of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. Support for this project was provided by core funds of the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board. Core support for the CSTB is provided by its public and private sponsors: the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Apple Computer, the Advanced Research Projects Agency, Digital Equipment Corporation, the Department of Energy, IBM Corporation, Intel Corporation, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Science Foundation, and the Office of Naval Research. Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 94-66575 International Standard Book Number 0-309-05090-1 Additional copies of this report are available from: National Academy Press 2101 Constitution Avenue, NW Box 285 Washington, DC 20055 800-624-6242 202-334-3313 (in the Washington Metropolitan Area) B-456 Copyright 1994 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America
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STEERING COMMITTEE ON RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF PARTICIPANTS IN NETWORKED COMMUNITIES DOROTHY E. DENNING, Georgetown University, Chair ANNE WELLS BRANSCOMB, Harvard University MITCHELL D. KAPOR, Electronic Frontier Foundation STEPHEN T. KENT, Bolt, Beranek, and Newman Inc. GEORGE M. PERRY, Prodigy Services Company MARJORY S. BLUMENTHAL, Director HERBERT S. LIN, Senior Staff Officer LAURA OST, Consultant LESLIE WADE, Project Assistant GLORIA BEMAH, Administrative Assistant
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COMPUTER SCIENCE AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS BOARD WILLIAM A. WULF, University of Virginia, Chair FRANCES E. ALLEN, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center JEFF DOZIER, University of California at Santa Barbara DAVID J. FARBER, University of Pennsylvania HENRY FUCHS, University of North Carolina CHARLES GESCHKE, Adobe Systems Inc. JAMES GRAY, San Francisco, California BARBARA GROSZ, Harvard University DEBORAH A. JOSEPH, University of Wisconsin RICHARD M. KARP, University of California at Berkeley BUTLER W. LAMPSON, Digital Equipment Corporation BARBARA H. LISKOV, Massachusetts Institute of Technology JOHN MAJOR, Motorola ROBERT L. MARTIN, AT&T Network Systems DAVID G. MESSERSCHMITT, University of California at Berkeley WILLIAM PRESS, Harvard University CHARLES L. SEITZ, Myricom Inc. EDWARD SHORTLIFFE, Stanford University School of Medicine CASMIR S. SKRZYPCZAK, NYNEX Corporation LESLIE L. VADASZ, Intel Corporation MARJORY S. BLUMENTHAL, Director LOUISE ARNHEIM, Senior Staff Officer HERBERT S. LIN, Senior Staff Officer JAMES MALLORY, Staff Officer RENEE A. HAWKINS, Staff Associate GLORIA BEMAH, Administrative Assistant KIMBERLY STRIKER, Project Assistant LESLIE WADE, Project Assistant
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COMMISSION ON PHYSICAL SCIENCES, MATHEMATICS, AND APPLICATIONS RICHARD N. ZARE, Stanford University, Chair RICHARD S. NICHOLSON, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Vice Chair STEPHEN L. ADLER, Institute for Advanced Study JOHN A. ARMSTRONG, IBM Corporation (retired) SYLVIA T. CEYER, Massachusetts Institute of Technology AVNER FRIEDMAN, University of Minnesota SUSAN L. GRAHAM, University of California at Berkeley ROBERT J. HERMANN, United Technologies Corporation HANS MARK, University of Texas at Austin CLAIRE E. MAX, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory CHRISTOPHER F. McKEE, University of California at Berkeley JAMES W. MITCHELL, AT&T Bell Laboratories JEROME SACKS, National Institute of Statistical Sciences A. RICHARD SEEBASS III, University of Colorado LEON T. SILVER, California Institute of Technology CHARLES P. SLICHTER, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ALVIN W. TRIVELPIECE, Oak Ridge National Laboratory NORMAN METZGER, Executive Director
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The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Bruce Alberts is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Robert M. White is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Kenneth I. Shine is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Bruce Alberts and Dr. Robert M. White are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the National Research Council.
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Preface In 1990, the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board (CSTB) decided to conduct a strategic forum on the rights and responsibilities of participants in networked communities. The board was motivated by the observation that participation in electronically networked communities was, even then, growing by leaps and bounds, in environments including the Internet, commercial network service providers, local bulletin boards, and company- and/or office-based networks. In November 1992, a small invitation-only workshop was held in Washington, D.C., for prominent researchers and policy analysts to explore some of the issues that have arisen in this area; much of the background information in this report is drawn from that workshop. Participants in the workshop examined user, provider, and other perspectives on different types of networked communities, including those on the Internet, on commercial information services such as PRODIGY and America OnLine, and on grass-roots networks (e.g., those based on home electronic bulletin boards). Addressed were such questions as: What policies, laws, regulations, or ethical standards apply to the use of these services; who sets them; how are they developed; and how are they enforced?
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What are users' expectations regarding privacy and protection of other proprietary interests? What are the rights, responsibilities, and liabilities of providers or operators of these services? What are the rights, responsibilities, and liabilities of users of these services? What problems arise from connecting systems offering these services to systems that operate under different policies? The forum, held in February 1993, had a somewhat different structure and aim. Although many of these same issues were addressed, the forum was organized around a set of hypothetical scenarios designed to illuminate how issues related to and associated with free speech, electronic vandalism, the protection of intellectual property interests, and privacy might emerge. The intent was to focus primarily on the concerns that policymakers in government and the private sector might have. As a result, much of the forum discussion involved questions of law and how the current legal regime helps to define the boundaries of what is or is not acceptable conduct on electronic networks. The themes of the forum were heralded in a keynote speech by Congressman Edward Markey, chairman of the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and Finance of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. He noted the technological convergence of computer, communications, and entertainment technologies and pointed out that historical approaches based on differentiating these technologies may create problems for policymakers in the future. He underscored the importance of fundamental human values even in the new electronic medium of networks, and he argued strongly that policymakers have to address the negative as well as the positive aspects of the new medium. This report is based on material drawn from the November 1992 workshop, the February 1993 forum, deliberations of the steering committee, and other material and events that have appeared in the interim. The workshop of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Bar Association, "Legal, Ethical, and Technological Aspects of Computer and Network Use and Abuse," held on December 17-19, 1993, was particularly germane. The 1993 forum provided some background material on technology, legal underpinnings, and the then-current policy environment, much of which is incorporated into Chapters 1 through 3. Chapters 4 through 7 are devoted primarily to discussions of the scenarios. Chapter 8 focuses on the deliberations of the steering committee, although comments from other speakers and participants are liberally included. The five
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appendixes provide information about network technology (Appendix A), the agendas for the workshop and forum (Appendixes B and C), Mr. Markey's keynote speech (Appendix D), and biographies of the steering committee (Appendix E). As the report of a workshop/forum event, this report does not attempt to draw conclusions, find definitive answers, or make specific recommendations; rather, its purpose is to illuminate, to question, and to articulate thorny and problematic issues that arise in this domain, thus helping to lay a foundation for more informed public debate and discussion. Where possible, CSTB has checked with individuals quoted in this report to ensure that their quotes are used in context. The steering committee and editors are responsible for the synthesis and analysis contained in this report. In addition, Chapter 1 and Appendix A are based in part on remarks made by Mitchell Kapor at the February forum, while Chapter 3 draws heavily on Anne Branscomb's presentation to the forum and her subsequent work. Finally, Laura Ost, an independent writer, developed the initial drafts of Chapters 4 through 7, and James Mallory of the CSTB staff contributed to Appendix A. The comments and criticisms of reviewers of early drafts of this report and of its anonymous reviewers are gratefully acknowledged. The CSTB will be glad to receive comments on this report as well as any suggestions for further work in this area. Please send them via e-mail to CSTB@NAS.EDU, or via regular mail to CSTB, National Research Council, 2101 Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20418.
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Contents EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 1 1 THE NATURE OF ELECTRONIC NETWORKS 6 2 NETWORKS AND SOCIETY 17 3 LEGAL CONSIDERATIONS FOR ELECTRONIC NETWORKS 31 4 FREE SPEECH 55 5 ELECTRONIC VANDALISM 69 6 INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY INTERESTS 85 7 PRIVACY 99 8 COMMON THEMES 113 APPENDIXES A Network Technology 123 B Workshop Schedule and Session Descriptions 137 C Forum Statement of Purpose and Agenda 142 D Keynote Speech: Networked Communities and the Laws of Cyberspace, by Edward Markey 146 E Biographical Sketches 158
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