Although he has a high-profile seat at the DNC, having joined Vice President Joe Biden in his suite at the Time Warner Cable Arena to watch First Lady Obama speak to the delegates Tuesday evening, he planned to spend just 24 hours at the confab.
And his appearance reflects the different approaches to these gatherings by the tech industry — Google has a giant pavilion made of shipping containers, and Facebook and Twitter have a heavy presence — and the film biz.
Dodd issued a statement Tuesday praising the Democratic party platform, which calls for protections of Internet freedom as well as protection of intellectual property. He also praised the Republican platform language last week. But neither platform gets into the specifics that would trigger the kind of the outcry that greeted the Stop Online Piracy Act anti-piracy legislation, which stalled in the face of an Internet protest in January.
“I think what a lot of people realize is that legislation had some problems with it,” Dodd said. “But the underlying principle — that the creative innovation of the film and television industry ought to be respected, and therefore striking that balance between a free and open Internet, and simultaneously protecting the intellectual property of this creative industry — that we ought to be able to strike that balance. Whether that bill did it or not, it’s over. It’s history.”
Dodd cited Google’s announcement that it would alter its search algorithms to give less prominence to sites selling pirated goods as something that he “appreciates immensely.”
“I think there’s a growing effort in the industries themselves to find some common ground on how we manage to satisfy both industries going forward, and also some thought that if we need some sort of legislation, we are going to do it cooperatively if we can,” he said. “I am not looking for a brawl. I don’t think the technology industry is either.”
Dodd added, “There is a lot of conversation going on between industry leaders and technology leaders on how to find that common space that we need for both of these industries to complement each other.”
Dodd publicly supports President Obama. Asked how his job would change if Mitt Romney is elected he said, “I hope you are wrong.”
But Dodd rejected the notion that he would be at a disadvantage if Romney is elected and Republicans control all of Congress.