Open Source, Open Standards, and the Future of the Internet

Tags: Content/IP

The Internet’s evolution from an academic curiosity to a transformative force of economic and social change continues to baffle observers and challenge policymakers. In the early 1990s, the government made its initial steps to embrace private enterprise in the Internet world and to encourage the development of proprietary technologies, allowing, for example, software patents and encouraging international compliance with stronger intellectual property rights. At the same time, leading standard setting bodies, such as the World Wide Web Consortium, have championed the role of open standards and open source technologies to preserve the Internet’s traditional commitment to openness and the end-to-end principle that facilitates innovation and entry at the edges of the network. As the Internet evolves, and new proprietary applications continue to take hold, companies, lawyers, and policymakers must make sense of a complex set of developments.

In this conference, we will discuss the sustainability and legal status of open source licensing as a regime for facilitating the Internet’s commitment to openness while inviting commercial development. Similarly, we will explore whether and how open standards can thrive in an environment where firms are often relying on intellectual property protection and business strategies that encourage proprietary development. To put these questions in perspective, we will hear from Michael Gallagher, the President’s top information policy advisor, as well as an array of business, legal, and policy professionals.


  • Patrick S. Ryan
    Adjunct Professor of Law, Scholar in Residence and Faculty Director
Open Source
  • Andre Durant
    CEO, Ping Identity
  • Jason Haislmaier
    Partner, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP
  • Stormy Peters
    Executive Director, Gnome Foundation
  • Maria Woods
    Corporate Counsel, StorageTek
Open Standards
  • John Card
    Director of Standards and Technology, EchoStar Technologies, L.L.C.
  • Carl Cargill
    Director of Standards, Sun Microsystems
  • Valerie See
    Senior Director of Interoperability and Industry Standards, Microsoft Corporation
  • Roger Marks
    VP of Technology Standards, WiMAX Forum
  • Chris Sprigman
    Associate Professor of Law, University of Virginia
Keynote Address

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