November 8th & 9th, 2024
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Things That Go Bump In the Night: IP Law For Kids

SeaGL 2016

If you don’t talk to your kids about IP law, then who will? VCs who just want the patented carcass of their start-up dreams? The MPAA, who–let’s face it–never think about anyone but themselves?

You may not know how to explain how copyrights and patents work, but your children will need to know. They deserve to know. The cycle of IP law fear and confusion can end with you and the world can be a better place.

This talk will help you explain why a smell can be trademarked. You’ll learn why math can, no… can’t, well… maybe gets patented. You’ll be able to answer most questions your youngster is likely to have about fair use and how long copyright lasts (hint, longer than your Uncle Joey if he doesn’t quit smoking!). Finally, you’ll be able to answer the age-old question, “but where does IP law come from?” with confidence and hopefully a minimum of swearing.


Deb Nicholson

Deb Nicholson, SeaGL

Deb Nicholson is a free software policy expert and a passionate community advocate. She is the General Manager at the Open Source Initiative which stewards the Open Source Definition and works to raise awareness and adoption of open source software. She is also a founding organizer of the Seattle GNU/Linux Conference, an annual event dedicated to surfacing new voices and welcoming new people to the free software community. She lives with her husband and her lucky black cat in Cambridge, Massachusetts.