Elon Law scholar’s column warns of ‘significant’ changes to copyright law

Professor David S. Levine's "Changing copyright law under cover of darkness – we deserve better" in WRAL TechWire shines a light on legislation sponsored by a North Carolina senator and signed into law in late December by President Trump.

Professor David S. Levine

An Elon Law scholar who teaches and researches on issues related to privacy, intellectual property, and internet law authored a column for WRAL TechWire that raises concerns about changes to copyright law that were rolled into omnibus government funding legislation signed December 27, 2020, by President Donald Trump.

“Changing copyright law under cover of darkness – we deserve better” by Professor David S. Levine looks at how two separate and unrelated copyright bills sponsored by North Carolina Sen. Thom Tillis were rolled into legislation that affected continued federal government operations.

“These are significant changes with broad impact and wide potential consequences for all who use the internet,” Levine writes. “They deserved proper discussion, debate, and consideration. Unfortunately, they were not given the broad analytical attention that they deserved, or the public discussion that is warranted when liberty is put on the line.”

WRAL TechWire is a daily news source covering companies in the Carolinas “with a focus on the growth industries of broadband and mobile computing, life sciences, and on entrepreneurs and their venture funding.”

Levine joined the Elon Law faculty in 2009 and has developed an international reputation for his legal research into the areas of lawmaking, trade secrecy, and the ways in which corporations and governments use the law to control access to intellectual property.

An affiliate scholar at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School, Levine also was a fellow at Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy from 2014-2017. He is the founder and host of Stanford University’s KZSU-FM “Hearsay Culture,” an information policy, intellectual property law and technology talk show, and he co-authored the 2019 textbook “Information Law, Governance, and Cybersecurity.”

In recognition of his scholarly work, Levine was named the Jennings Professor and Emerging Scholar at Elon Law for 2017-2019. During October, Levine will be presenting and discussing his COVID-19 work in events hosted by the University of New Hampshire Franklin Pierce School of Law and the Third World Network.