This 2005 book raises the profile of socio-political questions about the global technology and information market. It is a close study of communication flows, networks, nodes, biopolitics and the fragmentations of power. It brings to life the role played by personalities, corporate interactions, industry compromises and the regulatory incompetencies, affecting the technological world we all live in. US technology powers the internet and disseminates American culture on an unprecedented scale. Assessing this power requires an analysis of the diffuse ways that US practice, policy and law dominates, and a consideration of how influence is negotiated and resisted locally. This involves a discussion about how ideas about trade and innovation circulate; of the social power of engineers that establish conventions and protocols; of the reach of Leviathan corporations; and questions about global marketing and consumer tastes. For readers interested in intellectual property law, information technology, cultural studies, globalisation and mass communications.
• A study of the internet and how it is regulated, familiar with the US debates, but consciously positioned from outside US perspectives • A considered, practical appraisal of the limits of contemporary law making in relation to technology issues • It will appeal to a cross section of subject areas and includes a good mix of scholarly, journalistic and cultural observations
1. Introduction; 2. How productive is Silicon Valley?; 3. What drives innovation? Linux and the politics of open source standards; 4. Engineers, money, standards and protocols; 5. The role of the Leviathans: reflections on the Microsoft litigation; 6. Consumer power. Napster and its heritage; 7. Industry lobbying, cyber activism and governmental responsiveness; 8. Privacy, citizenship and freedom from technological surveillance; 9. Citizenship, technology and foreign policy; 10. Conclusion.
'It is a fascinating and enjoyable read, which has the hallmarks of a book which can be read in one sitting, although to write this risks undermining its scholarship and complexity, because it is a book which should be read closely, one which will reward return readings. … a fascinating book. It is an important one also, because of the way it engages deeply with Internet law, and the ways in which law shapes, and is understood and used by, Internet communities.' Legal Studies
'This is a well-written and highly readable book. … It is a book for large groups of academics, activists, businessmen, lobbyists, politicians and technologists … Even those who have heard them before will take something new with them from reading this book.' Web Journal of Current Legal Issues