The Limits in Open Code: Regulatory Standards and the Future of the Net

Berkeley Technology Law Journal, Vol. 14, P. 759, 1999

Posted: 5 Oct 1999

See all articles by Lawrence Lessig

Lawrence Lessig

Harvard Law School; Harvard University - Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics

Abstract

This essay examines the effect that the open source, or free software movement (open code for short) might have on the regulability of behavior on the internet. I begin by distinguishing two kinds of rules, only one of which imposes constraints that individuals might ordinarily have a persistent desire to evade. I then claim that the emergence of open code movement undermines the government's ability to regulate behavior by regulating code. Open code, the argument is, thus functions as a limit on state power.

Suggested Citation

Lessig, Lawrence, The Limits in Open Code: Regulatory Standards and the Future of the Net. Berkeley Technology Law Journal, Vol. 14, P. 759, 1999. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=184870

Lawrence Lessig (Contact Author)

Harvard Law School ( email )

1575 Massachusetts
Hauser 406
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Harvard University - Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics ( email )

124 Mount Auburn Street
Suite 520N
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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