Prof. Bill Herman’s Book

Now Available: The Fight over Digital Rights

Hot off the presses at Cambridge University Press, it’s The Fight over Digital Rights: The Politics of Copyright and Technology, by Bill D. Herman.

'The Fight over Digital Rights' cover photo

About the Book
In the political fight over copyright, internet advocacy has reshaped the playing field. This was shown most dramatically in the 2012 “SOPA blackout,” when the largest online protest in history stopped two copyright bills in their tracks. For those not already familiar with the debate, this protest seemingly came out of nowhere, yet it was the culmination of an intellectual and political evolution more than a decade in the making.

This book examines the debate over digital copyright, from the late 1980s through early 2012, and the new tools of political communication involved in the advocacy around the issue. Drawing on methods from legal studies, political science, and communication, it explores the rise of a coalition seeking more limited copyright, as well as how these early-adopting, technology-savvy policy advocates used online communication to shock the world. It compares key bills, congressional debates, and offline and online media coverage using quantitative and qualitative methods to create a study that is rigorously researched yet is also accessible to a general audience.