Posted: October 30th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: PGA | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on MEDIA AND TECHNOLOGY POLICY-MAKING IN THE 21ST CENTURY

Producers Guild of America – New Media Council East

Presents the

2008-2009 Panel and Salon Series

Wednesday, November 5, 2008 7pm – 9pm



The convergence of media and technology in the 21st century has led to such accelerated pace of change in the behaviors of consumers that both content producers and device manufacturers have had to adapt in nothing less than a paradigm-shift-per-day schedule. The men and women who help shape government policy for the U.S. media industry are facing enormous challenges in the development of regulations and frameworks for an industry whose audience has seemingly more control than ever before.

With a new administration entering the White House in January, 2009, and the looming February 17, 2009 digital t.v. switch-over upon us, the landscape for new media is exploding with opportunity – and potential policy headaches galore. From the future of the Internet and Net neutrality to open source development and content syndication and the battle over digital copyright, the environment in which content producers find themselves today is more weighted with intellectual property questions and policy issues than ever before.

The Producers Guild of America New Media Council East presents a snap-shot of the future of media policy, and the coming changes in Washington’s outlook on the role that new technology plays in media, with some of this country’s leading technology policy experts.

Eli M. Noam, Professor of Economics and Finance at Columbia Business School

Eli Noam has been Professor of Economics and Finance at Columbia Business School since 1976. In 1990, after having served for three years as Commissioner with the New York State Public Service Commission, he returned to Columbia. He is the Director of the Columbia Institute for Tele-Information. CITI is an independent university-based research center focusing on strategy, management, and policy issues in telecommunications, computing, and electronic mass media. In addition to leading CITI’s research activities, Noam initiated the MBA concentration in the Management of Entertainment, Communications, and Media at the Business School and the Virtual Institute of Information, an independent, web-based research facility. He has also taught at Columbia Law School and Princeton University’s Economics Department and Woodrow Wilson School. Noam has published over 19 books and 400 articles in economic journals, law reviews, and interdisciplinary journals. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Justin Hughes, Professor of Law, Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law

Justin Hughes is a law professor at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in New York City. He also serves as Director of the law school’s Intellectual Property Program. In 2003, he was the Hosier Distinguished Visiting Professor in Intellectual Property at DePaul College of Law in Chicago. From 1997 to 2001, Professor Hughes worked as an attorney-advisor in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, focusing on the Administration’s initiatives in Internet-related intellectual property issues, Eleventh Amendment immunity issues, intellectual property law in developing economies, and copyright appellate filings for the United States (including the Napster litigation).

At the policy level, Professor Hughes is frequently credited with slowing down legislative proposals for “database protection” that circulated in Washington following the European Union’s 1996 Database Directive. On the other hand, the Congressional Record names him as one of the administration officials who helped craft the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. (DMCA)

Since 2006, he has been chairman of the board of the Thomson Foundation for Cinema and Film Heritage, the corporate foundation of Paris-based Thomson SA, the parent company of Technicolor.

Jonathan Askin, General Counsel, Enterprises

Jonathan Askin is General Counsel to Enterprises, which controls approximately 20 operating companies touching various aspects of IP-based communications. Mr. Askin oversees the legal, policy, and regulatory affairs for the enterprises including Free World Dialup, LibreTel, pulver Innovations, pulver Radio, pulver Consulting, WHP Wireless, VON Magazine, and the VON Conferences. He is also an adjunct associate professor of law at Brooklyn Law School.

He also is the Executive Director of the Global IP Alliance, the international consortium of IP-based communications providers. Before joining, he was President and General Counsel to the Association for Local Telecommunications Services, the leading national trade association representing facilities-based competitive local exchange carriers.

Before that he was a senior attorney in the FCC s Common Carrier Bureau. Prior to the FCC, he was a Deputy Public Advocate with the New Jersey Public Advocate and Ratepayer Advocate, where he represented the public on telecommunications and cable issues. Mr. Askin also practiced law with the New York offices of Davis, Polk and Wardwell.

Ray Beckerman, Partner, Vandenberg & Feliu, LLP

Ray Beckerman is a partner at Vandenberg & Feliu, LLP, practicing complex commercial and copyright litigations. Additionally, he supervises litigations and other proceedings taking place in other geographical areas, advises businesses and not-for-profits, incorporates start-up entities, negotiates contracts, and assists in obtaining copyrights and trademarks.

Ray began his legal career with Phillips Nizer Benjamin Krim & Ballon, and then went on to serve as a litigation associate with Lowey Dannenberg & Knapp P. C. and Squadron Ellenoff Plesent & Lehrer, as the sole principal of Ray Beckerman P.C., and as a partner in Gallet Dreyer & Berkey and Beldock Levine & Hoffman, before finding a home at Vandenberg & Feliu, LLP.

In 2004 Ray became a ‘blogger’, first creating the blog “Ohio Election Fraud” relating to the 2004 presidential election in Ohio. In 2005 he created the blog “Recording Industry vs. The People,” ( which collects information about the copyright infringement litigations prosecuted by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) against owners of internet access accounts that are linked to peer-to-peer file sharing.

Moderator: Chris Pfaff, President, Chris Pfaff Tech/Media LLC; board delegate, PGA New Media Council

A board delegate of the PGA New Media Council since 2006, and a PGA NMC member since 2004, Chris Pfaff leads a consultancy – Chris Pfaff Tech/Media LLC – that represents some of the leading service providers, audio/video technology firms, networking vendors, and media companies in the world, from PRIMEDIA and Eastman Kodak to Cantor Telecom. A veteran of the venture world, Chris helped launch more than 20 ventures from the Lucent New Ventures Group, including iBiquity Digital; Flarion; Lucent Digital Video, and GeoVideo Networks, among others. In addition, he has helped launch AT&T’s Internet strategy; the Viacom New Media division of Viacom, Inc.; Sony Electronics’ Digital Betacam format, and Sharp Electronics’ LCD product division.

Wine and light refreshments will be served during a networking mixer prior to the programming.

Wollman Hall

Eugene Lang Building

The New School

65 West 11th Street, 5th floor

(enter at 66 West 12th Street)

New York City

Space is limited so a confirmed RSVP for this event is required.   Please email: rsvp@pga-ny.orgto request a seat. All RSVPs are for one person only. All RSVPs must be re-confirmed to be considered valid.

Event hosted by The Producers Guild of America, New Media Council, New York Chapter.

The Producers Guild of America (PGA) is the premier industry association for entertainment producing professionals.

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