Public Domain Enhancement Act (HR 2408)

I’m a little late catching this, but Rep. Lofgren has introduced the Public Domain Enhancement Act (HR 2408). The law would require copyright owners to pay $1 after 50 years (and each 10 years thereafter) to maintain their copyright; otherwise,…

Wal-Mart Won’t Print Photos If They Are Too Good

Because copyright is a strict liability tort, “photofinishers” who print photos (like Wal-Mart and Kmart) can be liable if the customer asks to print photos owned by third parties. As a result, photofinishers are now bouncing photos that look professional…

Judge Patel: Maintaining An Index of Downloadable Files is Not “Distributing” the Files

By John Ottaviani Although there was some confusion over Judge Patel’s May 11th ruling in the Napster investor litigation, her May 31 ruling leaves no doubt that the Section 106(3) distribution right is not infringed merely by maintaining an index…

BitTorrent Bust and the ART Act

A few days ago the Feds busted the Elite Torrents, who were warez traders using BitTorrent. The target: sites trading the Revenge of the Sith. The timing of this makes me wonder–is the passage of the ART Act, reinforcing criminal…

Madison on Creative Commons

Mike Madison provides a thoughtful post on why some copyright owners might resist Creative Commons. UPDATE: John Dvorak writes a powerful critique of Creative Commons. Some of John’s arguments are wrong as a matter of law, but his points are…

Revenge of the MPAA — First Test for the Family Entertainment and Copyright Act?

(Eric Goldman is travelling and lecturing until June 13, and will be able to post only occasionally during this time. In his absence, John Ottaviani will continue to guest-blog from time to time.) The media has been reporting the availability…

New Ruling From Judge Patel in Napster Investor Suit

By John Ottaviani There’s been some discussion and misconceptions about Judge Patel’s latest ruling in the long-running Napster saga. Although her May 11 order has been described as holding that the Section 106(3) distribution right does not extend to maintaining…

Racine Man Plans to Fight RIAA

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports on Dave Bink, a Racine dad who was sued by the RIAA because of KaZaA downloads made by his 13 year old daughter. He has decided to fight the lawsuit in court because (a) his daughter…

Orphan Works Comments, Round 2

After the first 716 comments on orphan works, you’d think the Copyright Office would have had enough. Instead, they allowed the filing of “responses” to the initial 716 comment salvo and got another 145 comments. Whew! That’s a lot of…

Copyright Office RSS Feeds

The Copyright Office has launched four RSS feeds. I’ve been an email subscriber of NewsNet for a while, but I think the other feeds provide us with new ways to monitor the Copyright Office’s activities. Kudos to the Copyright Office…