JOHN WEST has been the managing partner and owner of two law firms, practiced civil rights and employment law, and worked as a public defender. John is currently in the process of preparing an intense lobbying effort in various state legislatures where issues of patients' rights, especially Death With Dignity, are being debated and decided. The Last Goodnights Organization is the support arm for his efforts in this regard. The Last Goodnights is his first book.
In the memoir, The Last Goodnights, John West revealed for the first time a secret, which he'd kept from everyone, including his two sisters, for ten years. West helped each of his terminally ill parents commit suicide, a crime in the state of California, where the deaths took place.
"A world organized around centralized control, strict intellectual property rights, and hierarchies of credentialed experts is under siege. A radically different order of society based on open access, decentralized creativity, collaborative intelligence, and cheap and easy sharing is ascendant." - from VIRAL SPIRAL
A global brigade of techies, lawyers, artists, musicians, scientists. businesspeople, innovators, and geeks of all stripes are dedicated to creating a digital republic committed to freedom and innovation.
From free and open-source software, Creative Commons licenses, Wikipedia, remix music and video mashups, peer production, open science, open education, and open business, the world of digital media has spawned a new "sharing economy" that increasingly competes with entrenched media giants.
I will also ask David to comment on the recent - and upcoming - bailouts, from the perspective of citizens and the commons. In other words, rather than fearing socialism, what are we getting for our "common" contributions to giant corporations -- and what should we be demanding?
DAVID BOLLIER is Senior Fellow at the Norman Lear Center at the USC Annenberg Center for Communication and co-founder of Public Knowledge, a Washington policy advocacy organization dedicated to protecting the information commons. His latest book is VIRAL SPIRAL: How the Commoners Built a Digital Republic of Their Own.