Archive for the 'Copyright' Category

Copyright in the Digital Era: Building Evidence for Policy

Posted in Copyright on May 6th, 2013

The National Academies Press has released Copyright in the Digital Era: Building Evidence for Policy.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

The report describes a wide range of questions that are ripe for analysis: how incentives of creators, distributors and users are changing, what are the enablers of and impediments to voluntary licensing, what are the costs and effectiveness of copyright enforcement methods, and what are the costs and benefits of copyright exceptions and limitations. Answers to these questions will help inform decisions about copyright scope and duration, more effective licensing arrangements and enforcement mechanisms, and appropriate safe harbors and fair use exceptions.

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Library Copyright Alliance Files Brief in Georgia State University E-Reserves Case

Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, E-Reserves, Publishing, Research Libraries on April 29th, 2013

The Library Copyright Alliance has filed a brief in the Cambridge U. Press et al. v. Mark P. Becker et al. e-reserves copyright case that was prepared by the EFF and Jonathan Band.

Here's an excerpt from the EFF announcement:

In the amicus brief filed today, EFF urges the appeals court to see what the district court saw: the vast majority of uses at issue were protected fair uses. Moreover, as a practical matter, the licensing market the publishers say they want to create for e-reserves will never emerge—not least because libraries can't afford to participate in it. Even assuming that libraries could pay such fees, requiring this would thwart the purpose of copyright by undermining the overall market for scholarship. Given libraries' stagnant or shrinking budgets, any new spending for licenses must be reallocated from existing expenditures, and the most likely source of reallocated funds is the budget for collections. An excerpt license requirement thus will harm the market for new scholarly works, as the works assigned for student reading are likely to be more established pieces written by well-known academics. Libraries' total investment in scholarship will be the same but resources will be diverted away from new works to redundant payments for existing ones, in direct contradiction of copyright's purpose of "promot[ing] progress."

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House Judiciary Committee Chairman Announces Comprehensive Review of Copyright Law

Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars on April 25th, 2013

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte has announced that his committee will undertake a comprehensive review of copyright law.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

There is little doubt that our copyright system faces new challenges today. The Internet has enabled copyright owners to make available their works to consumers around the world, but has also enabled others to do so without any compensation for copyright owners. Efforts to digitize our history so that all have access to it face questions about copyright ownership by those who are hard, if not impossible, to locate. There are concerns about statutory license and damage mechanisms. Federal judges are forced to make decisions using laws that are difficult to apply today. Even the Copyright Office itself faces challenges in meeting the growing needs of its customers—the American public.

So it is my belief that a wide review of our nation's copyright laws and related enforcement mechanisms is timely. I am announcing today that the House Judiciary Committee will hold a comprehensive series of hearings on U.S. copyright law in the months ahead. The goal of these hearings will be to determine whether the laws are still working in the digital age. I welcome all interested parties to submit their views and concerns to the Committee.

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"Access, Progress, and Fairness: Rethinking Exclusivity in Copyright"

Posted in Copyright on April 24th, 2013

Nicolas Suzor has self-archived "Access, Progress, and Fairness: Rethinking Exclusivity in Copyright" in SSRN.

Here's an excerpt:

This Article examines models of supporting and coordinating cultural production without exclusivity, including crowdfunding, tips, levies, restitution, and service-based models. In their current forms, each of these models fails to provide a cohesive and convincing vision of the two main functions of copyright: instrumentally (how cultural production can be funded) and fairness (how authors can be adequately rewarded). This article provides three avenues for future research to investigate the viability of alternate copyright models: (1) a better theory of fairness in copyright rewards; (2) more empirical study of commons models of cultural production; and (3) a critical examination of the noneconomic harm limiting function that exclusivity in copyright provides

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"Private But Eventually Public: Why Copyright in Unpublished Works Matters in the Digital Age"

Posted in Copyright, Digital Curation & Digital Preservation, Privacy on April 18th, 2013

Damien McCallig has published "Private But Eventually Public: Why Copyright in Unpublished Works Matters in the Digital Age" in the latest issue of SCRIPTed.

Here's an excerpt:

Digital life is no longer only concerned with online communication between living individuals; it now encompasses post-death phenomena of inheritance, legacy, mourning and further uses of our digital remains. Scholars and practitioners seeking an appropriate legal theory to claim, control and recover the digital remains of the dead and protect post-mortem privacy interests have identified copyright as a possible surrogate.

This article explores the links between copyright and privacy in unpublished works. It charts the historical development of perpetual copyright protection in unpublished works, reviews the reasons why perpetual protection for unpublished works has been abolished and analyses some of the privacy impacts of these changes. It argues that without perpetual copyright protection and the surrogate privacy protections in unpublished works, the fear that one's digital remains will eventually be opened to societal scrutiny may lead to the fettering of personal and private communication, while alive, and may promote the deletion of one's digital remains in contemplation of death.

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"What Copyright Owes the Future"

Posted in Copyright, Digital Curation & Digital Preservation, Public Domain on April 16th, 2013

R. Anthony Reese has self-archived "What Copyright Owes the Future" in SSRN.

Here's an excerpt:

This Lecture explores the subject of preserving copyrighted works for the future in four steps. First, I look at why preserving creative works is important and valuable. Next, I examine the ways in which copyright law has traditionally encouraged—or not encouraged—the preservation of copyrighted works. Third, I explore how digital technology and computer networks, such as the Internet, pose new challenges for preserving creative works. And finally, I consider briefly how we might rethink and revise copyright law to respond to the challenges of preserving works of authorship for future audiences.

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"The Copyright Axis of Evil: The Academic Library Must Confront Threats to User Rights"

Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, Research Libraries on April 11th, 2013

ACRL has released "The Copyright Axis of Evil: The Academic Library Must Confront Threats to User Rights" as part of the ACRL 2013 Proceedings.

Here's an excerpt:

This paper will define the key copyright developments that will challenge academic libraries over the next two years (2013-15) as they seek to support teaching, learning and research at their institutions. American libraries have benefited in significant ways from the availability of fair use (section 107) and various exceptions (section 108) in the US copyright law. But a new library treaty in development at the World Intellectual Property Organization highlights the expanding influence of global copyright developments on national policies.

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"The Next Great Copyright Act: A Primer"

Posted in Copyright on April 8th, 2013

Rick Marshall has self-archived "The Next Great Copyright Act: A Primer" in SSRN.

Here's an excerpt:

In early March, U.S. Register of Copyrights Maria A. Pallante visited Columbia Law School to deliver the 26th annual Horace S. Manges lecture. Her full remarks contained an impassioned plea for Congress to overhaul the existing copyright regime and create "The Next Great Copyright Act." Much of what she said during her lecture, she reiterated in her testimony on Wednesday before the House Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet.

What follows is a primer (complete with hyperlinks) for those who lack the time to read the Register's remarks or watch her testimony.

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