Code: And Other Laws of Cyberspace

By Lawrence Lessig | Go to book overview

FIFTEEN
the problems we face

I'VE ARGUED THAT THERE IS A CHOICE ABOUT HOW CYBERSPACE SHOULD BE, BUT THAT we're disabled from making that choice. We are disabled for three very different reasons. One is tied to the limits we place on courts, the second to the limits we have realized in legislatures, and the third to the limits in our thinking about code. If choice must be made, these limits mean we will not be making that choice. We are at a time when the most significant decisions about what this space will be must be made, yet we haven't the institutions, or practice, to make them.

In part 4, I describe these problems, and in chapter 16, I sketch three types of solutions to them. Neither part will be complete, but both should be suggestive. The problems that cyberspace reveals are not problems with cyberspace. They are real‐ space problems that cyberspace shows us we must now resolve.


PROBLEMS WITH COURTS

There are two types of constitutions, one we could call codifying, and the other transformative. A codifying constitution tries to preserve something essential from the constitutional or legal culture in which it is enacted—to protect that culture against changes in the future. A transformative constitution (or amendment) does the opposite: it tries to change something essential in the constitutional or legal culture in which it is enacted—to make life different in the future, to remake some part of the culture. The symbol of the codifying regime is Ulysses tied to the mast; the symbol of the transformative is revolutionary France.

Our Constitution has both regimes within it. The Constitution of 1789—before the first ten amendments—was a transformative constitution. It "called into life" a new form of government and gave birth to a nation. 1 The Constitution of 1791— the Bill of Rights—was a codifying constitution. Against the background of the new constitution, it sought to entrench certain values against future change. 2 The Civil

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Code: And Other Laws of Cyberspace
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 297

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.