- Elgar Law, Technology and Society series
Edited by Anne S.Y. Cheung and Rolf H. Weber
Chapter 8: Cloud computing and copyright
Cloud computing (CC) has significantly changed the way in which information is collected, stored, handled and distributed by individuals, businesses and government agencies. In a recent study, Gartner identifies the top ten strategic technology trends for 2014, and three of them are directly related to CC technology. Like many other technology developments, CC brings us both opportunities and risks. One recent study by International Data Corporation (IDC) predicted that CC will generate as much as $1.1 trillion in annual revenue by 2015. On the other hand, CC poses significant questions about how the collection, handling and distribution of content and personal information are appropriately undertaken in this new environment. It brings new challenges for the existing content regulation (such as copyright law) and traditional models of commercializing and protecting copyright work. This chapter examines the recent development of national CC policies and strategies and examines whether existing content regulation provides sufficient legal certainty for the development of the content industry in the new cloud environment. Section II provides an overview of the recent development of CC and its benefits. Section III examines and compares the recent development of CC-related national Information and communications technology (ICT) policies and strategies in major jurisdictions, such as the US, the UK, the EU, Japan, China, and Australia. Sections IV and V explore issues relating to copyright liability of CC users and providers respectively. It examines whether the existing content regulations, particularly Internet service provider (ISP) safe harbour law, are sufficient to address these challenges.
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