Posted by: tkerby | August 1, 2010

IPR in the News: July 2010

By Geoffrey A. Fowler, The Wall Street Journal, June 29, 2010
“SAN FRANCISCO—Libraries are expanding e-book offerings with out-of-print editions, part of a broader effort to expand borrowing privileges in the Internet Age that could challenge traditional ideas about copyright.”

20th Session of the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights
World Intellectual Property Organization, June 29, 2010
“The World Intellectual Property Organization’s 20th Session of the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR) was held from June 21-24 2010. IFLA was represented by Winston Tabb, Stuart Hamilton, Victoria Owen and Barbara Stratton. The international library community was also represented by Electronic Information for Libraries (eIFL – Teresa Hackett, Kondwani Wella and Kathy Matsika), the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA – Janice Pilch), and the Italian Library Association (Simonetta Vezzoso).”

Response to ASCAP’s deceptive claims
By Eric Steuer, Creative Commons, June 30th, 2010
“Last week, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) sent a fundraising letter to its members calling on them to fight “opponents” such as Creative Commons, falsely claiming that we work to undermine copyright.”

Credit where it is due…
By Peter Jaszi, ©ollectanea, July 4th, 2010
“Last month, Victoria A. Espinel, the new U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator, transmitted to President Obama and Congress the 2010 “Joint Strategic Plan on Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordination” — the first report of its kind. Much of what is to be found in the 65-age document is fairly predictable — a collection of data points on the damage piracy does to the U.S. economy, a list of high level strategic goals (an intergovernmental working group to combat counterfeits in U.S. procurement, more information sharing with rightsholders, better tracking and reporting of enforcement activities, for example).”

Adrian Johns’s “Piracy: The Intellectual Property Wars From Gutenberg to Gates
By Jeffrey Rosen, The Washington Post, July 4, 2010
“In 2008, as part of a copyright suit, a federal judge ordered Google, which owns YouTube, to turn over to Viacom the viewing records of every video watched on YouTube, including the login names and computer addresses of every viewer. One corporation’s efforts to enforce intellectual property rights turned out to pose a dramatic threat to the privacy of tens of millions of users.”

Judge Reduces Student’s File-Sharing Fine by 90 Percent
By Kelly Truong, Wired Campus, July 12, 2010
“A federal judge has cut a Boston University student’s illegal file-sharing fine by 90 percent, declaring the original fee “unconstitutionally excessive.”

By Tim Jones, Electronic Frontier Foundation, July 13, 2010
“We were disappointed to read of deceptive comments made last month about EFF by ASCAP, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. Writing to its members, ASCAP claimed that EFF, Creative Commons and Public Knowledge are “influencing Congress against the interests of music creators.”

Report: Apple, Google showed interest in Palm
By Steven Musil, CNET News, July 15, 2010
“The bidding for Palm earlier this year apparently attracted interest from some prominent Silicon Valley companies, including some that were reportedly mostly interested in keeping the intellectual property out of the hands of their foes.”

A Promotion for Progress: Seeking the Third Way for Copyright
By Christina Gagnier, The Huffington Post, July 16, 2010
“A week ago, the damages award heard around the copyright world came with United States District Court Judge Nancy Gertner’s decision to slash the damages award the jury found in RIAA v. Tenenbaum against Joel Tenenbaum from $675,000 to $67,500. While a dearth of news articles and blogs are covering the obvious, that the mighty industry trade association plaintiff, the graduate student defendant and copyright scholars and activists alike are not happy with the decision, Tenenbaum stands as the most public example of where the system has allowed copyright to go.”
By Kate Taylor, The New York Times, July 16, 2010
“After it came to light last week that films and videotapes made by the artist Larry Rivers included footage of his two daughters naked, New York University informed his foundation that it did not want those materials included as part of the archive it was purchasing, said John Beckman, a spokesman for N.Y.U.”

Punjab to create IPR awareness in 18 clusters
By Vijay C Roy, International Business News, July 20, 2010
“Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) face the challenge of extracting the latent value of their intellectual property (IP) and using it effectively in their business strategies. Taking cognisance of the problem, the Punjab State Council for Science & Technology (PSCST) has identified 18 micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) clusters across the state for creating IP rights-related awareness.”

Koha Community Considers Affero License
By Eric Hellman, go to hellman, July 21, 2010
“The cost of a book is more than what you pay for it. If you intend to keep it, as libraries do, you need to pay for a shelf to put it on, some space in a building to put the shelf in, air-conditioning for the building so the book doesn’t rot away, and some labor and assorted administration expenses to make sure you know where it is.”

The Coming Entrepreneurial Tidal Wave: University Entrepreneurship 2.0
By Dave Lerner, The Huffington Post, July 22, 2010
“As I sometimes like to say- if the licensing side of the university tech transfer business is 29 years old by now, the practice of spinning-out companies based on university intellectual property is still really a teenager. The field is still young enough such that no one has written the definitive book on its application and in the meantime the field simply continues to evolve and grow at a stunning pace.”

Strong Arguments for Artists’ Rights and Copyrights
By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, July 24, 2010
The Journal of Biocommunication, a journal dedicated to serving as a showcase of proven and experimental procedures in medical art and illustration, print, photography, film, television, computer, multimedia systems, and other communication modalities applied in the health sciences, has a remarkably interesting and timely special issue that focuses on aspects of artists’ rights, including articles that discuss more recent issues surrounding existing copyright law, copyright registration, artists’ rights, and the current U.S. Orphan Works legislation.”

What New DMCA Copyright Loopholes Mean to You
By Emily Price, PC World, July 26, 2010
“The Library of Congress added five new exemptions to its Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) Monday, a copyright law that criminalizes attempts to bypass digital copyrights. Originally passed in 1998, the act is revisited every three years, with new exceptions added based on changing technology.”

Breaking Down the 2009 DMCA Rulemaking, Part 1: Victory for Vidders
By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, July 29, 2010
“Now that the dust has settled on the long-awaited announcement of new DMCA circumvention exemptions, it’s time for an explanation of what these exemptions will (and will not) do for consumers and creators.”

35 STATES IN 35 DAYS: Copyright Alliance hits the road to talk with creators across America
By M. L. Malcolm, Copyright Alliance, July 26, 2010
“WASHINGTON – The Copyright Alliance this summer will embark on an unprecedented 35-state road trip to meet creators at work around the country and talk with them about their endeavors and how copyright keeps them churning out the music, novels, photography and other works their fans love.”

Joi Ito on License Proliferation
By Cameron Parkins, Creative Commons, July 27, 2010
“Creative Commons CEO Joi Ito has a great post on his blog today about license proliferation. Drawing from his experience as a board member at both ICANN and the Open Source Initiative, Ito outlines the problems created by license proliferation:”

LCA Applauds Librarian of Congress in Broadening Exceptions to Section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act
By Lee Ann George, Association of Research Libraries, July 27, 2010
“The Library Copyright Alliance (LCA) applauds yesterday’s decision issued by the Librarian of Congress to significantly broaden the exemption for the creation of film clip compilations for classroom and educational use to all college and university faculty, regardless of academic discipline.”

Canadian Government Doesn’t See Validity in USTR Special 301 Report
By Drew Wilson, ZeroPaid, July 29, 2010
“The USTR’s Special 301 report has been well known for being essentially a wish-list put together by the US copyright industry. Over the last few years, doubts have been raised over the validity of the report by many observers. It now appears that the Canadian government also shares those doubts.

US Copyright Group Caught Red Handed Copying Competitor’s Website
By Mike Masnick, techdirt, July 30, 2010
“Why is it that the biggest “defenders” of copyright are always the ones caught infringing on others’ copyrights? As a whole bunch of you have been submitting, US Copyright Group — the publicity seeking effort from DC law firm Dunlap, Grubb & Weaver that is suing tens of thousands of people for alleged copyright infringement in an effort to get them to pay up via “pre-settlement” letters — appears to have a bit of a problem with understanding copyright itself.”

Judge to RIAA: No LimeWire asset freeze
By Greg Sandoval, cnet News, July 30, 2010
“A federal court judge has rejected a request by the music industry to freeze assets belonging to Lime Wire and founder Mark Gorton.”

In Testimony, Publishers Say Public Access Bill Would Undermine Copyright, Scholarly Journals
By Andrew Albanese, Publishers Weekly, July 30, 2010
“Publishers this week submitted testimony to the House of Representatives opposing the Federal Research Public Access Act of 2010 (FRPAA), a bill that would mandate free public access to publicly-funded research in the U.S. In testimony before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Allan Adler, the Association of American Publishers vice president for legal and government affairs, warned lawmakers that government mandates requiring free access to journal articles published by the private sector would “seriously undermine” scientific communication, translate to lost U.S. jobs, exports and would diminish copyright protection.”

Worth the Wait – installment #1
By Peter Jaszi, ©ollectanea, July 30, 2010
“So, finally, the Copyright Office and the Librarian of Congress have spoken (not quite with one voice, of which to come), in the fourth approximately triennial rule-making under Sec. 1201(a)(1) of Title 17, which we were given as part of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998. For those (perhaps wisely) haven’t been paying close attention, let me review the bidding.”
Professional Development:

Friday, November 5, 2010
The Seattle Community Colleges are partnering with CLAMS and LMDC to host a Copyright Workshop by Kenneth Crews. This will be an all day workshop.
“Kenneth Crews is a national expert in copyright, with a background in law and librarianship. He is truly an advocate for fair use, and we’re excited about this opportunity to learn from him. The workshop will focus on the needs of our community colleges, though it will also be open to others who want to join us.”
Look for registration information early in Fall Quarter!
The Global Meeting on Emerging Copyright Licensing Modalities will take place on November 4 and 5, 2010, at the WIPO’s headquarters in Geneva. The event is organized in the framework of the Development Agenda Thematic Project on Intellectual Property and Competition Policy .
“This is a digital archive of primary sources on copyright from the invention of the printing press (c. 1450) to the Berne Convention (1886) and beyond. The UK Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funded the initial phase focusing on key materials from Renaissance Italy (Venice, Rome), France, the German speaking countries, Britain and the United States. ”

The Journal of Biocommunication, Volume 36, Number 1, SPECIAL ISSUE: Artists’ Rights

Posted by: tkerby | September 1, 2011

IPR in the News: August 2011

Launch of The Public Domain Review website

By Timothy Vollmer, Creative Commons, August 10, 2011
“We’re pleased to see the launch of The Public Domain Review. The Reviewis a website with weekly updates in which scholars, writers, artists, librarians and others present an interesting or curious work (including films, photographs, texts and audio) from the public domain and write short accompanying articles about it that provide background, context, history, or other commentary or criticism.”

Posted by: tkerby | August 1, 2011

IPR in the News: July 2011

Copyright, Museums, and Licensing of Art Images

By Kenneth Crews, June 27, 2011, Columbia University Copyright Advisory Office
“This year I completed a study of museum policies and licenses funded by The Samuel H. Kress Foundation.  My work in the issues of copyright ownership, policy options, and appropriate use of art images continues, but in the meantime I am pleased to provide this consolidated list of papers that are the result of the funded project.”

Supreme Court Case Highlights Challenges of Copyright

By Rachel Hatch, Illinois Wesleyan University, June 29, 2011
“BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Understanding the ins and outs of copyright laws can be as confusing as navigating a continually shifting maze. With the U.S. Supreme Court debating legislation on copyright issues this summer, Illinois Wesleyan librarians shed light on the challenges of upholding copyright in a digital world.”

Lawsuit settled over Seattle’s dancing footprints

By Vanessa Ho, Seattlepi, June 30, 2011
“The answer might have come from an upcoming trial in a lawsuit over Seattle’s iconic “Broadway Dance Steps” sculpture. But two years after the sculptor sued a photographer over copyright infringement, the case has settled.”

Open access and copyright

By Peter Suber, SPARC Open Access Newsletter, July 2, 2011
“From the beginning, OA struggled against the widespread assumption that it must violate copyright law.  But this has been a struggle against perception, not reality.  In fact, steering clear of infringement has always been easier than steering clear of this false assumption and the harm it has caused. ”

Who’s Zoomin’ Who?

By Peggy Hoon, ©ollectanea, July 5, 2011
“In a prior post, I directed your attention to the Georgia State lawsuit and its implications for higher education, particularly digitally delivered resources.”

Law Professors Come Out Against PROTECT IP

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, July 5, 2011
“Another day, another constituency speaking out against PROTECT IP and the damage that it will do. This time, it’s a large group of law professors (over 90 have signed on so far), including some big names.”

Another Fair Use Debacle: Photographer Settles Bogus Copyright Threat From Artist

By Mike Masnick, techdirt, July 6, 2011
“Last year, we wrote about the absolutely ridiculous situation in which an artist, Jack Mackie, sued a photographer, Mike Hipple, for copyright infringement.”

CC News: The Power of Open

By Jane Park, Creative Commons, July 7, 2011

“Released a couple weeks ago, The Power of Open demonstrates the impact of Creative Commons through stories of successful use of our tools by artists, educators, scientists, and institutions of all types.”

New Copyright Alerts System to Educate Consumers

By Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, July 7, 2011
“A group of content companies and Internet service providers today announced a new consumer education initiative that will coordinate efforts to notify Internet service subscribers when their accounts are being used to download infringing content.”

White House: we “win the future” by making ISPs into copyright cops

By Nate Anderson, ars technica, July 8, 2011
“The White House likes the newly announced “six strikes” voluntary agreement announced today between major copyright holders and Internet access providers. That’s no surprise—the US administration helped to broker the deal.”

I’ll get you, my pretty, and your little copyright too!

By Beth Hutchens, IPwatchdog, July 11, 2011
“Last week, the 8th Circuit handed down a ruling saying that knickknack companies can’t use Warner Brothers’ copyrighted images on their merchandise even if they use public domain elements.”

Artist Sues Artist, and Galleries, for Copyright Infringement

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, July 11, 2011
“I’m not one of those people that likes to say, “I told you so,” but I told you so. The copyright litigation roller coaster gets more interesting by the minute, especially when it involves an artist suing another artist.”

Criminal Use is not Fair Use

by Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, July 12, 2011
“The Computer and Communications Industry Association this week issued a white paper attempting to assign economic value to the fair use defense against copyright infringement by presenting combined data of industries that “depend on fair use and other limitations upon the regulatory reach of copyright laws”.”

Louis Vuitton Wins Trademark and Copyright Counterfeiting Case in Canada

By Mandour & Associates, Intellectual Property News, July 12, 2011
“San Diego – The Federal Court in Canada has recently awarded the largest ever judgment in a trademark counterfeiting and copyright infringement case.”

Setting the Record Straight on PROTECT IP

by Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, July 14, 2011
“Since the introduction of the PROTECT IP Act we frequently see articles and blog posts that severely mischaracterize and make false assertions about the legislation.”

Fashion Industry Testifies in Favor of Design Copyright Protections (Again)

By Katherine Boyle, Washington Post, July 18, 2011
“For a few moments, the fashion savants in the room must have wondered whether Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) would butcher the introduction. It wouldn’t have been the first time Lazaro Hernandez, designer and co-founder of Proenza Schouler, heard his celebrated young label mispronounced.”

The “Graduated Response” Deal: What if Users Had Been At the Table?

By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, July 18, 2011
“As was widely reported last week, several major internet access providers (including, very likely, yours) struck a deal last week with big content providers to help them police online infringement, educate allegedly infringing subscribers and, if subscribers resist such education, take various steps including restricting their internet access.”


By José Freire, Artnet, July 18, 2011
“Last week, Artnet Magazine broke the story of the copyright lawsuit between photographers Janine Gordon and Ryan McGinley.”

Fair Use Connected to Economic Strength, Study Shows

By Carrie Sager, Intellectual Property Brief, July 19, 2011
A new study shows that industries that rely on fair use have weathered the recession better than the economy as a whole, and have seen significant growth in recent years.”

Kodak Seeks to Generate Funds from Patent Portfolio Sale

By Mandour & Associates, Intellectual Property News, July 21, 2011
“San Diego – With traditional photography and photo processing becoming a thing of the past, it’s no wonder that Eastman Kodak is looking toward new opportunities whenever possible.  With its re-focus on the digital market, the 131-year-old company is seeking to sell patents to generate revenue.”

Black Macaques and a Camera Cause a Copyright Uproar

By Mark Tratos, Intellectual Property Brief, July 21, 2011
“It has always been suggested that if you put 100 chimpanzees in room with 100 typewriters, they will eventually write all the sonnets of Shakespeare.  According to photographer David Slater though, if you put a pack of macaques in the jungle with a camera, you will own the copyright to any pictures that they take.”

Crafters urged to get educated on copyrights

By Amy Lorentzen, Seattle Times, July 22, 2011
“As a crafter, you put time, talent and care into each creation. Experts say you should also spend a few moments making sure you’re not violating any copyrights and protecting your own original work.”

It Was Never About The Money, Stupid

By Rick Falkvinge, Torrent Freak, July 24, 2011
“Two reports on the copyright monopoly have caught my attention this week. The first expresses angry disbelief at the fact that people will still pirate to a large extent, even if the price per copy is under one dollar.”

Will Christian Louboutin be a Fashion Victim in Trademark Infringement Case?

By Mandour & Associates, Intellectual Property News, July 26, 2011
“Orange County – Back on April 10, we posted a story about fashion designer Christian Louboutin’s trademark infringement complaint against Yves St. Laurent’s (YSL) use of similar red-soles in its shoe line.”

Would Fashion Copyright Have Made Kate Middleton’s Knockoff Wedding Dress Illegal?

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, July 27, 2011
“Right after the big royal wedding a few months back, Susan Scafidi, the law professor who is one of the leading supporters of putting in place a totally unnecessary and economically damaging “fashion copyright,” used the wedding to support her arguments for fashion copyright.”

What the 1930s fashion industry tells us about Big Content’s “six strikes” plan

By Timothy B. Lee,  ars technica, July 28, 2011
“Does the “Copyright Alerts” system announced by major copyright holders and ISPs earlier this month run afoul of antitrust law? That possibility was first suggested to us by law professor James Grimmelmann.”


Book Launch: “Reclaiming Fair Use”

Posted by: tkerby | July 3, 2011

IPR in the News: June 2011

The Georgia State University Lawsuit Injunction: Back To The Future

By Peggy Hoon, ©ollectanea, June 7, 2011
“Readers of this blog are no doubt aware, to some degree, about the 2008 lawsuit by publishers, including non-profit university presses, against officials of Georgia State University (GSU) alleging massive copyright infringement occurring in GSU’s electronic reserves service as well as in online courses hosted through GSU’s course management system.”

Book Review: Wilkin on Orphan Works

By Peter Hirtle, Library Law, June 12, 2011
“CLIR has inaugurated a new publication series called Ruminations, and for its first report, it has published an incredibly interesting and important report by John Wilkin.”

Congress Holds Hearings on Unauthorized Public Performances [Part 1 of 2]

By Ali Sternburg, Intellectual Property Brief, June 13, 2011
“Some members of Congress are trying to get more information on legally streaming video content after several recent hearings in favor of further crackdowns on illegal streaming.”

John Steinbeck Heirs Lose Bid for Supreme Court to Hear Copyright Dispute

By Lee Ross, Fox News, June 13, 2011
“A messy legal dispute over the publication rights to many of John Steinbeck’s famous works was denied further review by the Supreme Court, the justices announced Monday.”

Nevada Judge Threatens Sanctions for Copyright Troll

By David Kravets, Wired, June 14, 2011
“A Las Vegas federal judge threatened to sanction copyright troll Righthaven, calling its litigation efforts Tuesday “disingenuous, if not outright deceitful.””

What does the law say about copyright on works of art?

By BBC, June 16, 2011
“Lawyers acting on behalf of Sir Paul McCartney have stepped in to prevent a series of his drawings from being sold at auction.”

Paul McCartney drawings withdrawn from sale at auction

By BBC Gloucestershire, June 16, 2011
“A set of drawings by Sir Paul McCartney have been withdrawn from sale at auction after a legal challenge over ownership.”

4 Stars for Metadata: an Open Ranking System for Library, Archive, and Museum Collection Metadata

By MacKenzie Smith, Creative Commons, June 17, 2011
“The library, archives and museums (i.e. LAM) community is increasingly interested in the potential of Linked Open Data to enable new ways of leveraging and improving our digital collections, as recently illustrated by the first international Linked Open Data in Libraries Museums and Archives Summit (LOD-LAM) Summit in San Francisco.”

Revised Google Settlement Can Wait—But Can Judge Chin?

By Andrew Albanese, Publishers Weekly, June 20, 2011
“What’s going on with a revised Google Settlement? Some talking, but probably not very much progress, say court-watchers, noting that the odds of seeing a revised settlement proposal in 2011 may be long.”

Artists in court over copyright payments

By Martha Lufkin, The Art Newspaper, June 20, 2011
“OTTAWA. A legal fight over artists’ copyrights in Canada may come to a head this month in a hearing scheduled for 20 and 21 June, which is likely to have wide-ranging repercussions.”

License or public domain for public sector information?

By Mike Linksvayer, Creative Commons, June 20, 2011
“Mike Masnick at Techdirt asks Does It Make Sense For Governments To Make Their Content Creative Commons… Or Fully Public Domain?

Ask Ars: which image services might commercialize my photos?

By Jacqui Cheng, ars technica, June 22, 2011
“I heard about Twitpic commercializing user-uploaded photos and became curious. There are alternatives out there, but what are the chances they all have similar terms of service? Is there anyservice that isn’t my own website that won’t commercialize my photos? Is this just a standard agreement, or what?”

U. of Michigan Tests Murky Waters of Copyright Law by Offering Digital Access to Some ‘Orphan’ Books

By Jeff Young, Wired Campus, June 23, 2011
“The University of Michigan has taken an unprecedented step into a murky area of copyright law in the name of making thousands of its library books available to campus users in digital form.”

ACLU Fights to Put Works by Picasso, Orwell, Fellini, Hitchcock Back in the Public Domain

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, June 23, 2011
“Not too much going on art law wise this summer (at least so far), but there is an interesting copyright law case that will be heard this fall by the US Supreme Court. Interestingly, it is rare in that it does not deal with fair use.”

Publishers say they are not the enemy in university copyright disputes

By Steven Lyle Jordan, TeleRead, June 23, 2011
“The Chronicle of Higher Education article re-explores the Georgia State University lawsuit against a group of academic publishers, which they describe as “part of a much bigger struggle over how scholarly communication will evolve in a digital world.””


By Linda Downs, College Art Association, June 24, 2011
“This week CAA filed an amicus brief in the case of Golan v. Holder, which the United States Supreme Court will likely hear later this year. ”

The Power of Open: Stories of creators sharing knowledge, art, & data using Creative Commons

By Jane Park, Creative Commons, June 24, 2011
“Since last fall, we’ve been talking at length to various creators about their CC stories—the impact Creative Commons has had on their lives and in their respective fields, whether that’s in art, education, science, or industry.”

Kind Of Blue: Using Copyright To Make Hobby Artist Pay Up

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, June 24, 2011
“A whole bunch of folks have been sending over Andy Baio’s tragic story of having to pay $32,500 to photographer Jay Maisel for his use of an image, which he still believes was fair use. There are all sorts of interesting things to consider in this story, so let’s break it down.”

If Jay Maisel’s Photograph Is Original Artwork, Then So Is The Pixelated Cover Of ‘Kind Of Bloop’

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, June 27, 2011
“Okay. I’m going to say right from the top that I expect some (not all) photographers are going to read this and get very angry.”


Demonizing Copyright

By Terry Hart, Copyhype, June 27, 2011
“The tagline of this site is “understanding the copyright wars.” The reasons for so much debate surrounding this subject are many, but the why of the copyright wars might be boiled down like this: “The onslaught of the new technology, combined with the introduction into the international copyright system of countries with different needs and with conflicting economic and political concepts, leaves the future of copyright very much in question.””

Posted by: tkerby | June 1, 2011

IPR in the New: May 2011

A Trove of Historic Jazz Recordings has Found a Home in Harlem, But You Can’t Hear Them

By Steven Seidenberg, ABA Journal, May 1, 2011
“The swing era lasted barely a decade—roughly the mid-1930s until the end of World War II—but it was a golden age for jazz.”

Berlin Wall artists sue city in copyright controversy

By Helen Pidd, The Guardian, May 3, 2011
“The East Side Gallery is one of Berlin’s most popular tourist attractions, a 1.3km-long brightly painted stretch of the wall which divided east and west for almost 30 years.”

Copyright Law Is Not Supposed To Protect Someone From Being Upset

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, May 3, 2011
“Susan Scafidi, a law professor focused on fashion law, has been one of the key driving forces behind one of the least needed, most pointless ideas in a long time: the march to extend copyright laws to fashion.”

ASMP to Getty Photographers: Time to Bail

By David Walker, Photo District News, May 4, 2011
“The American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) has released a memo that all but advises Getty contributors to quit the agency and find other ways to distribute their stock photographs if they can.”

Law vs. Art Criticism: Judging Appropriation Art

By Cat Weaver, Hyperalleregic, May 5, 2011
“The recent Cariou v Prince District Court decision has brought to the fore, once and for all, the elephant in the art world and courtroom, Fair Use, which had, until now, managed to avoid close scrutiny in the popular press.”

So, Does Art With Natural Elements Get Copyright Protection?

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, May 5, 2011
“Art Asia Pacific has just published a lengthy and detailed analysis of the current state of art vis-a-vis copyright through the as-yet-unsettled case of Chapman Kelley vs. Chicago Park District.”

Origami Creators Sue Artist For Copyright Infringement Concerning Crease Patterns

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, May 9, 2011
“Wow. Via Joy Garnett, we discover the latest in a long line of ridiculous copyright lawsuits.”

New Music Locker Services Fail To Recognize Full Potential

By Julie Samuels, Electronic Frontier Foundation, May 10, 2011
“Google announced today that it will join Amazon in offering consumers a cloud-based music locker service. Google’s news, which had been rumored for some time, presents an opportunity to both answer and ask some questions about the future of the music industry.”

The Massive Complexity Of Copyright Demonstrated In A Simple Question: Can Don Draper Make A Cameo In My Novel?

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, May 13, 2011
“A few weeks back, I saw Mark Fowlers really excellent blog post covering more or less everything you need to know about the legality of incorporating fictional characters into a new work.”

A nightmare scenario for higher education

By Kevin Smith, Duke University, May 13, 2011
“In anticipation of the trial starting on Monday in the copyright infringement case brought against Georgia State University by Cambridge, Oxford and Sage publishers, and partially financed by the Copyright Clearance Center, there has been a flurry of motions, mostly relating to the admission of various pieces of evidence.”

PROTECT IP Would Gut Parts Of The DMCA’s Safe Harbors [Updated]

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, May 13, 2011
“We’ve been covering the newly released “son of COICA” censorship bill, now renamed the PROTECT IP Act, this week, breaking the news of the summary version of the law as well as posting the full text.”

The Devil Went Down to Georgia

By Christine Ross, Copyright on Campus, May 15, 2011
“Three years in the making, the trial against Georgia State University (GSU) for their e-reserves practices begins tomorrow”


By Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, May 16, 2011
“WASHINGTON—Artists and creators who want to speak up about their experiences battling digital theft of their work have a new platform at”

Library Copyright Alliance Releases Statement on Copyright Reform

By Jonathan Band, Association of Research Libraries, May 16, 2011
“Washington DC—The Library Copyright Alliance (LCA) today released a statement describing the key features copyright reform proposals should include in order to constitute significant improvement over current law for libraries and their users.”

MLibrary launches project to identify orphan works

MLibrary News, May 16, 2011
“The University of Michigan Library’s Copyright Office is launching the first serious effort to identify orphan works among the in-copyright holdings of the HathiTrust Digital Library, which is funding the project.”

Why Minority Artists Need to Understand Intellectual Property

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, May 16, 2011
“I’ve mentioned the often overlooked and negative relationship between copyright and racial minorities before, specifically by those that exploit minority artists and those that profess a “free culture” movement.”

Broken pledges, bankrupt donors and sharing works of art

By Martha Lufkin, Art Newspaper, May 17, 2011
“WASHINGTON, DC. Tight museum finances, the recession and the threat that some policymakers may seek to squeeze a sector they see as elitist and wasteful, set the tone for the annual conference held last month on legal problems in museum administration organised by the American Law Institute-American Bar Association and sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution and the American Association of Museums.”

Hargreaves Review: Who has won the copyright wars?

By Rory Cellen-Jones, BBC News, May 17, 2011
“It’s the document that could, according to which lobby you believe, either kick-start innovation in the UK or deal a fatal blow to our creative industries. ”

Copyright policy based largely on “lobbynomics,” not data

By Matthew Lasar, Ars Technica, May 18, 2011
“A major new independent report to the UK Prime Minister on his country’s intellectual property laws is out.”

Copyright Troll Company Given Taste Of Its Own Medicine
By Joel Hruska, Hot Hardware, May 18, 2011
“In early 2010, a brand-new company named Righthaven began cutting deals with newspapers by promising to safeguard their content online.”

The Hargreaves Review Published Today

By James Boyle, Public Domain, May 18, 2011
“In November 2010, the Prime Minister commissioned a review of the Britain’s intellectual property laws and their effect on economic growth, quoting the founders of Google that “they could never have started their company in Britain” because of a lack of flexibility in British copyright.”

The National Jukebox, Copyright, and pre-1972 Sound Recordings

By Peter Hirtle, Library Law, May 19, 2011
“The National Jukebox, the new collection of digitized pre-1925 recordings streamed from the Library of Congress, appears to have been a big success.”

Scholasticus: When is showing a film a public performance?

By Christine Ross, Campus Copyright, May 24, 2011
“I have asked my university’s library to purchase a film that I intend to show and discuss in my class. The company selling the DVD indicates that the library must purchase the more expensive “college/university” copy so that public performance rights are secured. Is showing a film in my class a public performance?”

That famous space shuttle photo: When is sharing stealing?

By Bob Sullivan, Redtape Chronicles, MSNBC, May 24, 2011
“Short on sleep and worried about the recent loss of her job, Stefanie Gordon boarded a Delta flight from New York to Palm Beach at 6:30 a.m. on May 16.”

What Next for Google Books?

By James Grimmelmann, Laboratorium, May 25, 2011
“Now that the court has rejected the Google Books settlement, what will happen next? This conversation traces the history of Google’s audacious plan to scan the world’s books and the controversial settlement in the lawsuit filed against it by copyright owners. What does it mean for the world of e-books, and what might happen with Google’s immense digital library?”

John Perry Barlow Tells Copyright Maximalists That They’ve Got The Fundamentals Wrong

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, May 26, 2011
“A bunch of folks have been submitting the story about how John Perry Barlow went to the e-G8 event and got to sit on a panel with some copyright maximalists, and explained to them how they are arguing about the wrong thing:”

Copyright Suits Can’t Keep Potential Blockbusters Out of Theaters

By Andrew Goldberg, American Lawyer, May 26, 2011
“Copyright infringement suits hang over two highly anticipated blockbuster sequels set for release over the Memorial Day weekend.”

Academic Publishers Attempting To Eliminate Fair Use At Universities [Updated]

By Tim Geigner, Tech Dirt, May 27, 2011
“There are stories about legal battles over copyright that make you shake your head in bewilderment.”

The More Things Change…: PROTECT IP Updates

By Abigail Phillips, Electronic Frontier Foundation, May 27, 2011
“The PROTECT IP Act, known as PIPA, yesterday passed through the Senate Judiciary Committee with only minimal changes. The current draft bill is here. The good news is that the approval was quickly met by a much-welcome hold on the legislation from Senator Wyden of Oregon.”

Supreme Court Takes Up Scholars’ Rights

By Marc Parry, Chronicle of Higher Education, May 29, 2011
“When Lawrence Golan picks up his baton here at the University of Denver, the musicians in his student orchestra see a genial conductor who corrects their mistakes without raising his voice in frustration.”

Out of Fear, Colleges Lock Books and Images Away From Scholars

By Marc Parry, Chronicle of Higher Education, May 29, 2011
“A library of 8.7 million digital volumes. A trove of 100,000 ocean-science photos. An archive of 57,000 Mexican-music recordings.”

What You Don’t Know About Copyright, but Should

By Jennifer Howard, Chronicle of Higher Education, May 29, 2011
“If Nancy Sims had to pick one word to describe how researchers, students, and librarians feel about copyright, it would probably be “confused.””

The European Commission Tackles Orphan Works

By Joe Massie, Intellectual Property Brief, May 31, 2011
“Recognizing that existing intellectual property rights (IPR) regulations were out-dated “in light of new technology, the continuing rise of the Internet and innovative business models,” the European Commission recently unveiled a blueprint of IPR initiatives to be implemented during its current mandate.”

Fair Use in a Transmedia World

By Patricia Auferheide, Tribeca, May 31, 2011
“Documentary filmmakers have pioneered a more flexible, usable understanding of their right under copyright to fair use, which is the right to quote and re-use copyrighted material under some circumstances.”

Published May 2011: A Canadian Museum’s Guide to Developing a Digital Licensing Agreement Strategy.  This freely available document is helpful to any cultural heritage or corporate organization dealing with licensed content in a strategic manner.  See

Look for the July 2011 launch of Reclaiming Fair Use — a book that empowers creators of all kinds. Profs. Patricia Aufderheide, director of the Center for Social Media, and Peter Jaszi, Professor of Law in the Washington College of Law at American University, urge a robust embrace  of a principle long-embedded in copyright law, but too often poorly understood—fair use.

Upcoming Events:

June 11-12, 2011 Philadelphia
If you are involved in managing copyright and licensing, and educating those in your workplace about copyright and licensing, consider the two live sessions in Philadelphia at conference on June 11 & 12 (CCM 600 + CCM 700.)  Lots of lively discussions and practical exercises, and you earn credit towards the SLA Click University Certificate in Copyright Management (

Posted by: tkerby | May 1, 2011

IPR in the News: April 2011

Librarians Talk Google Books, Orphan Works, and What’s Next

By Jennifer Howard, Wired Campus, April 1, 2011
“Philadelphia—Like a lot of other people, academic librarians are wondering what happens now that a federal judge has tossed out the proposed settlement in the lawsuit over Google’s book-scanning project.”

Copyright Alliance Applauds Congressional Leadership For Efforts Combating Digital Theft

Copyright Alliance, April 4, 2011
“WASHINGTON–Copyright Alliance Executive Director Sandra Aistars today joined voices from across the business and labor communities and across all intellectual property industries in supporting congressional leaders for their attention to the growing problem of digital theft. ”

If You Build It, Will They Come? Customizable Licensing

By Peggy Hoon, ©ollectanea, April 8, 2011
“Several months ago, shortly after starting the IP Scholar term as well as teaching my first Digitization Course online, I posted a blog on licensing of electronic resources in the university library setting.”

The Politics and Legalities of Street Art

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, April 8, 2011
“Last night, I had the distinct pleasure of participating on a panel concerning the legal and policy perspectives on street art.”


David Bryne, April 11, 2011
“Singer/songwriter David Byrne and Index Music Inc. have resolved their lawsuit against former Florida Governor Charlie Crist, Charlie Crist for United States Senate, The Stevens and Schriefer Group, Ltd., and Red October Productions, Inc.”

ACRL 2011: A Rallying Cry for Leadership and Risk Taking in the Copyright Wars

By Michael Kelley, Library Journal, April 11, 2011
“Two papers presented at the recent 2011 Association of College and Research Libraries Conference in Philadelphia drove home the shaky use and understanding of copyright law on university campuses.”


Who Owns The Copyright On A Tattoo?

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, April 12, 2011
“Here’s a fun hypothetical concerning copyright and tattoos: ”

Public Knowledge Brings 3D Printing To Washington

Public Knowledge, April 13, 2011
“Public Knowledge is sponsoring a half-day conference April 28 on one of the newest emerging technologies – 3D printing, which allows “printers” to create objects much as traditional printers produce documents.”

YouTube Copyright School Now in Session

By Chloe Albanesius, PC Magazine, April 14, 2011
“You’ve heard of traffic school, but copyright school? YouTube on Thursday announced that users who have received copyright notices on any of their videos will be required to attend “YouTube Copyright School.””

YouTube Sends Users To Copyright School: Will Content Owners Have to Go, Too?

By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, April 15, 2011
“YouTube announced its new and “improved” copyright policies yesterday, and it’s a mixed bag for YouTube users: they have a new opportunity to remove strikes on their accounts, but they have to watch some copyright propaganda first. ”

Why Righthaven’s Copyright Assignment Is A Sham – And Why It Matters

By Kurt Opsahl, Electronic Frontier Foundation, April 18, 2011
“For several weeks EFF and co-counsel Fenwick & West have been trying to persuade a federal district court to unseal a critical document Stephens Media produced in Righthaven v. Democratic Underground.”

At Last, Loud and Clear: Fair Use and Licensing

By Peggy Hoon, ©ollectanea, April 18, 2011
“It has been said that there is nothing so compelling as an idea whose time has come. Perhaps we should add a problem or situation whose continued persistence, despite reasonable proposed solutions, is so costly, so time-consuming, so unnecessary that it compels outcry, it compels our attention, and it compels a rational solution now. Now.”

Whither the dream of the universal library?

By Peter Singer, The Guardian, April 19, 2011
“Scholars have long dreamed of a universal library containing everything that has ever been written.”

With Google Settlement in Limbo, Universities Press Ahead With Research on Digitized Books

By Marc Parry, Wired Campus, April 19, 2011
“Now that a judge has rejected the Google Books settlement, one of the unanswered questions is what will happen to universities dreams’ of conducting research on the huge archive that Google has created.”

World Intellectual Property Day 2011 – Designing the Future

WIPO, Geneva, April 21, 2011
“This year’s World Intellectual Property Day on April 26 celebrates the role of design in the market-place, in society and in shaping the innovations of the future. Across the world, IP Offices, associations, businesses and technology institutions have announced –through the WIPO website or through the IP Day Facebook page – numerous activities to mark the day, including competitions, exhibitions and public discussions.”

Chicago court denies artist’s copyright appeal

By Martha Lufkin, The Art Newspaper, April 21, 2011
“The Chicago federal appeals court that denied an artist’s rights claim for damage to a work made of living wildflowers has refused to rehear the case.”

Giacometti Foundation: Intellectual Property Law Is Largely Ignored by the Art World

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento , Clancco, April 23, 2011
“Véronique Wiesinger, director of the Alberto and Annette Giacometti Foundation in Paris, writes about The Giacometti Foundation’s (the majority holder of Alberto Giacometti’s copyright) refusal to grant John Baldessari permission to duplicate a sculpture by Giacometti for an installation called “The Giacometti Variations” commissioned by the Prada Foundation in Milan (allegedly, French artist Daniel Buren has fully supported this position).”

Samuelson on Legislative Alternatives to the Google Books Settlement

By James Grimmelmann, The Laboratorium, April 24, 2011
“Berkeley’s Pam Samuelson continues to demonstrate why she is the most signifcant copyright scholar thinking about the Google Books settlement.”

Canadian Political Parties Clarify Their Positions on Copyright

By Drew Wilson, ZeroPaid, April 26, 2011
“It’ll be May 2nd when Canadians head to the polls, and the positions on copyright can be rather muddied at times.”

Geeks Are the Future: A Program in Ann Arbor, MI, Argues for a Resource Shift Toward IT

By Michael Kelley, Library Journal, April 26, 2011
“Reference is dead and libraries need more geeks.”

Administration Bangs The Drum In Support Of Needless Protectionism On World IP Day

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, April 26, 2011
“Well, today was “World Intellectual Property Day,” and I had hoped to just ignore the whole thing, but, as was expected on such a day, the politicians were out in force, talking up the importance of “protecting intellectual property,” with none of them really discussing the key issues: whether or not that sort of protectionism really is good for the economy, or the growing body of economic research that shows it is not.”

Making Sense of Derivative Works, Transformative Uses and Fair Use

By Peggy Hoon, ©ollectanea, April 28, 2011
“Higher education is one of the many lands where copyright questions flourish and esoteric responses don’t.”

Upcoming Events:

Copyright Clearance Center:

Copyright & Commerce: Guarantees or Promises?

Location:  The Newseum, Washington, DC, May 9, 2011

“This marks the 35th anniversary of the Copyright Act of 1976, when Congress took into account how television, radio, sound recordings, and other then cutting edge innovations like the photocopier had wrought unimaginable change since the previous legislation was written – in 1909!”

Posted by: tkerby | April 1, 2011

IPR in the News: March 2011

On Capitol Hill, a Good Dialogue on IPEC’s Progress

By Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, March 1, 2011
“Victoria Espinel, the U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator, testified today at an oversight hearing of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet.”

Could 2011 Be The Year? A Look at the 2011 Patent Reform Act

By Julie Samuels, Electronic Frontier Foundation, March 2, 2011
“It’s starting to look like 2011 could be the year that Congress finally passes patent reform legislation. This week, the full Senate begins debate on the Patent Reform Act of 2011, a bill that is receiving a lot of press, mostly for its funding and first-to-file provisions.”

Scholasticus: On streaming video

By Christine Ross, Campus Copyright, March 3, 2011
“May a faculty member who is teaching online digitize and stream documentary and Hollywood produced films in their entirety in order to illustrate a theme being covered in that class?”

In Copyright, The Enemy of My Enemy Is My Friend

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, March 6, 2011
“Photographer John Harrington, of Black Star Rising, has a very interesting take on how photographers — and by implication, visual artists — will team up with large corporations to protect their copyrights.”

Supreme Court Deciding Whether Congress May Copyright Public Domain Works

By David Kravets, Wired, March 7, 2011
“The Supreme Court agreed Monday to decide whether Congress may take works out of the public domain and grant them copyright status.”

Supreme Court to Hear Challenge to Law That Removes Works from the Public Domain

By Julie Samuels, Electronic Frontier Foundation, March 7, 2011
“Today the Supreme Court agreed to hear an important case about whether Congress has the power to “restore” copyright protection to works that already exist in the public domain.”

Library Rights Are at Stake in New Supreme Court Copyright Case

By Marc Parry, Wired Campus, March 8, 2011
“Does Congress have the right to restore copyright protection to foreign works that have fallen into the public domain?”

WIPO Launches New On-line Tool to Facilitate Brand Searches

WIPO, March 8, 2011
“A new on-line tool launched by WIPO on March 8, 2011, will make it easier to search over 640,000 records relating to internationally protected trademarks, appellations of origin and armorial bearings, flags and other state emblems as well as the names, abbreviations and emblems of intergovernmental organizations.”

Abramovic wins two-year copyright battle

By Gareth Harris and Roxana Azimi, The Art Newspaper, March 9, 2011
“PARIS. Performance art grande dame Marina Abramovic has won a two-year legal action against a French film-maker who committed copyright infringement by making two films, mainly based on her 1992 Biography piece, that misrepresented her work.”

Street artist Mr Brainwash sued over “copied” image

By Anny Shaw, The Art Newspaper, March 9, 2011
“LOS ANGELES. Street artist Thierry Guetta, better known as Mr Brain­wash, is being sued by a photographer for copyright in­fringement over a well-known image of rap group Run DMC (which we were unfortunately not allowed to reproduce for this article).”

Even a talent like Titian couldn’t resist copying

By David Eskerdjian, The Art Newspaper, March 9, 2011
“Alleged copyright infringements abound today (see related story), but neither the practice of artistic borrowing nor its potential legal ramifications are a novelty.”

AP Files New Copyright Lawsuits Against Clothing Retailers

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, March 12, 2011
“That’s right, it’s not over. The Associated Press is not done with Shepard Fairey and his Obey Clothing Company. ”

David Cameron’s ‘Google-model’ vision for copyright under fire

By Adam, Sherwin, The Guardian, March 14, 2011
“It was a speech delivered last autumn by David Cameron, setting out his vision for a “Silicon Roundabout” in Shoreditch, east London, that first gave ammunition to the conspiracy theorists.”

In Case You Missed It: IPEC Recommendations Released

By Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, March 15, 2011
“The IPEC’s White Paper on Legislative Recommendations to Congress has just been released.  See the report here”

Library of Congress Sets Goals in Digital Preservation Report, Including Push for Copyright Change

By David Rapp, The Library Journal, March 16, 2011
“The Library of Congress (LC), in a new report [PDF] on its National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program (NDIIPP) released last week, laid out several plans for the future, including increased advocacy for changes in copyright law and digital-preservation tax incentives for private institutions.”

CHIN Kit: Digital Rights Management

Canadian Heritage Information Network, March 16, 2011
“Do you know your intellectual property rights? Which ones were granted to you and which you can obtain?”

Once in Public Hands, Now Back in Picasso’s

By Adam Liptak, The New York Times, March 21, 2011
Supreme Court arguments often concern not just the narrow issue in the case but also the implications of a ruling. You sometimes catch the justices squinting, trying to see over the legal horizon.”

Fair Use For the Win in Righthaven Case

By Kurt Opsahl, Electronic Frontier Foundation, March 21, 2011
“Last Friday, a judge in the Nevada federal district court patiently explained why fair use disposes of Righthaven’s copyright claim arising from the republication of an entire news article by a nonprofit organization.”

Appropriation Artist Richard Prince Liable for Infringement, Court Rules

By David Walker, Photo District News, March 21, 2011
“A federal court judge in New York ruled on Friday that appropriation artist Richard Prince and his gallery infringed photographer Patrick Cariou’s copyrights by creating a series of paintings and a collage from photographs torn from Cariou’s book titled Yes, Rasta.”

Judge Rules Against Richard Prince in Copyright Case

By Randy Kennedy, Arts Beat, March 21, 2011
“A federal judge in Manhattan has ruled against the artist Richard Prince in a closely watched copyright case, finding that Mr. Prince – who is well known for appropriating imagery created by others – violated the law by using photographs from a book about Rastafarians to create a series of collages and paintings.”

Copyright troll Righthaven achieves spectacular “fair use” loss

By Nate Anderson, Ars Technica, March 22, 2011
“Whoops—in its bid to sue hundreds of bloggers, commentors, and website operators from posting even a few sentences from newspaper stories, the copyright zealots at Righthaven have just scored an own goal.”


Copyrights and Copy Wrongs: Learning from the Legal Precedents Set by Jeff Koons, Shepard Fairey, and Others

By Emma Allan, Artinfo, March 22, 2011
“Patrick Cariou’s victory last Friday in his copyright suit against artist Richard Prince — which determined that Prince’s work did not sufficiently transform or comment on Cariou’s original — signaled another startling development in the troubled and troubling history of fair-use rulings concerning the arts.”

Google Books Decision: “The Privacy Concerns are Real”

By Cindy Cohn, Electronic Frontier Foundation, March 22, 2011
“A federal district court in New York today issued a long-awaited ruling in the Google Books case,Authors Guild v. Google, rejecting the proposed settlement between the parties.”


Google Books: Copyright Settlement Rejected

By Kenneth Crews, Columbia University Libraries, Copyright Advisory Office, March 22, 2011
“Judge Denny Chin of the federal district court in New York City has handed down his long-anticipated ruling on the proposed settlement of the Google Books litigation.”

Research Libraries See Google Decision as Just a Bump on the Road to Widespread Digital Access

By Jennifer Howard, The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 23, 2011
“Tuesday, a federal judge tossed out the proposed settlement in the lawsuit over Google’s vast book-digitization project.”

A Copyright Expert Who Spoke Up for Academic Authors Offers Insights on the Google Books Ruling

By Marc Parry, The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 23, 2011
“Pamela Samuelson played a lead role in voicing academic authors’ concerns over the Google Books settlement.”

Good and Bad in Google Book Search Settlement Decision

By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, March 23, 2011
“Yesterday’s decision rejecting the proposed settlement in the Google Books case, Authors Guild v. Google, got a number of things right”

Thank You, Judge Chin
Why the Google Books setback is an opportunity to reassert academic values

By Siva Vaidhyanathan,  The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 24, 2011
“When federal Judge Denny Chin rejected the complex settlement among Google, large commercial publishers, and the elite Authors Guild this week, he may have set back Google’s plans to digitize millions of books and offer them for sale online, thereby establishing monopoly control over the sale of electronic versions of the vast majority of those published in the 20th century.”

When Appropriation Masquerades as Reconceptualized Art

By Eric Felten, The Wall Street Journal, March 25, 2011
“Richard Prince has long reveled in his pose as a postmodern pilferer of other people’s images—in being what’s known as an “appropriation artist.”

The Catch-22 of Google Books

By John C Abell, Reuters, March 28, 2011
“It’s almost a Zen Koan: How many books does a library make?”

Singel-Minded: To the Whingers Go the Spoils in the Google Books Decision

By Ryan Singel, Wired, March 29, 2011
“Federal court judge Denny Chin gave a thumbs down last week to a settlement between Google and the Authors Guild that would have paved the way for the search giant to create an online library and bookstore on a scale previously seen only in science fiction.”

Posted by: tkerby | March 1, 2011

IPR in the News: February 2011

EFF Files Comments with Copyright Office on Pre-1972 Sound Recordings

By Abigail Phillips, Electronic Frontier Foundation, February 1, 2011
“EFF yesterday filed comments in response to the Copyright Office’s recent Notice of Inquiry regarding the “desirability and means of bringing sound recordings fixed before February 15, 1972, under Federal jurisdiction.””

Lawyer can’t handle opposition, gives up on P2P porn lawsuit

By Nate Anderson, ars technica, February 1, 2011
“An angry Texas lawyer has dismissed a file-sharing lawsuit on behalf of a pornographic German film called Der Gute Onkel, all thanks to those meddling kids at the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Public Citizen.”

New Study Reveals Piracy Sucking Up One-Fourth Of Bandwidth

By Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, February 1, 2011
“Unlawful trafficking of copyrighted material accounts for almost one-fourth of Internet traffic worldwide, according a study released Monday.”

Art That is Free, and Art That is Not

By Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, February 2, 2011
“The Oscar-winning director Francis Ford Coppola has caused a bit of a stir this week with some comments he made to The 99% about whether artists should make money.”

Tech-savvy students prompt colleges to revamp rules

By Denny Carter, eSchool News, February 2, 2011
“Tony Brown didn’t set out to overhaul his college’s policies on intellectual property.”

All Bark, No Bite: Settlement Reached in Balloon Dog Dispute

By Kate Taylor,  The New York Times, February 3, 2011
“Clowns everywhere can breathe easier: Jeff Koons’s lawyers have backed down in an intellectual property dispute over balloon dog-shaped bookends.”

(Secret) US cables reveal: ACTA was far too secret

By Nate Anderson, ars technica, February 3, 2011
“US government cables published by WikiLeaks show us that it wasn’t just “the usual blogger-circles” (as the US Embassy in Sweden called them) complaining about the secrecy of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).”

Access to Knowledge in the Age of Intellectual Property: understanding the state of play in global knowledge politics

By Cory Doctorow, BoingBoing at 6:23 AM Thursday, Feb 3, 2011
“Access to Knowledge in the Age of Intellectual Property is a book and free download from MIT press:”

White House will propose new digital copyright laws

By Declan McCullagh, Cnet News, February 7, 2011
“The Obama administration has drafted new proposals to curb Internet piracy and other forms of intellectual property infringement that it says it will send to the U.S. Congress “in the very near future.”

IPEC Issues First Annual Report on Intellectual Property Enforcement

By Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, February 7, 2011
“The U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel this afternoon released her office’s first annual Report on Intellectual Property Enforcement.”

EFF to Judge: Watch for Fairness in Mass Copyright Suits

By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, February 7, 2011
“One of the major problems with the mass copyright lawsuits we seen over the last year is that the judges hearing the cases often aren’t aware of the full legal and practical context of the litigation.”

Mardi Gras Indians Ready to File Copyright Lawsuits

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, February 7, 2011
“It’s that time again for…Mardi Gras and, yes, copyright infringement law suits. Almost a year ago I wrote of the New Orleans based Mardi Gras Indians and their interest in protecting their costumes from commercial exploitation by commercial photographers.”

MPAA sues Hotfile for “staggering” copyright infringement

By Jacqui Cheng, ars technica, February 8, 2011
“File locker has found itself the next target of the Motion Picture Association of America’s war on file sharing.”

More Good News from the Obama Administration

By Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, February 9, 2011
“The Obama Administration yesterday issued an Executive Order establishing two Advisory Committees on Intellectual Property Enforcement.”

Is It Copyright Infringement To Pass A DMCA Notice On To ChillingEffects?

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, February 9, 2011
“Tom Rubin, who happens to be Microsoft’s chief counsel for intellectual property strategy, has a blog post up at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford, where he highlights the worrying trend of filers of DMCA takedown notices forbidding the recipient to publish or pass the notice on to third parties like ChillingEffects.”

Can cable block the Google TV revolution?

By Matthew Lasar, ars technica, February 9, 2011
“Behind the scenes at the Federal Communications Commission, a quiet war is being waged over the future of television.”

DMCA Copyright Policies: Staying in the Safe Harbors While Protecting Your Users

By Julie Samuels, Electronic Frontier Foundation, February 11, 2011
“One of the less-heralded issues in a series of prominent cases (here, here, and here, for example) testing the limits of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) safe harbor provisions is the question of when and how service providers must terminate the accounts of “repeat infringers.””

Why Is President Obama Setting Up IP Enforcement Committees Rather Than IP Effectiveness Committees?

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, February 11, 2011
“The White House recently announced that President Obama has signed an executive order creating two new, very high level “intellectual property enforcement committees.””

Court confirms: IP addresses aren’t people (and P2P lawyers know it)

By Matthew Lasar, ars technica, February 14, 2011
“Wrapping up the last of the United Kingdom’s notorious copyright infringement “pay up” letter cases, a UK patent and copyright judge has had a major revelation.”

Not Quite Fair Use: Canada’s Fair Dealing Exception to Copyright Infringement in the Political Spotlight

By David Kluft, Trademark & Copyright Law, February 14, 2011
“When the Canadian Conservative Party released a raft of attack ads last month against Liberal Party leader Michael Ignatieff, it was the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (“CBC”) that led the counterattack.”

Would the Bard Have Survived the Web?

By Scott Turow, Paul Aiken and James Shapiro, The New York Times, February 14, 2011
“ARCHAEOLOGISTS finished a remarkable dig last summer in East London. Among their finds were seven earthenware knobs, physical evidence of a near perfect 16th-century experiment into the link between commerce and culture. ”

Court: Not All Conceptual Art May Be Copyrighted

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, February 16, 2011
“Breaking news. The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals (“7th Circuit”) delivered their long-awaited Chapman Kelley vs. Chicago Park District decision today and ruled that Chapman Kelley’s art installation, consisting in part of flowers, “is neither ‘authored’ nor ‘fixed’ in the senses required for basic copyright, [thus] it cannot qualify for moral rights protection under [the Visual Artists Rights Act].””

Don’t Mess With Texas: Another Texas Judge Scrutinizes Mass Copyright Litigation

By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, February 15, 2011
“Looks like the Texas courts are no place to file suit if you want to bypass due process. A few weeks ago, we reported that Mick Haig Productions had dismissed its copyright infringement lawsuit against 670 “John Does,” complaining that the court’s appointment of attorneys from EFF and Public Citizen had impeded its ability to prosecute its case.”

The clones cometh: the App Store is full of copycats, and it’s indies who suffer

By Andrew Webster, ars technica, February 16, 2011
“Sadly, Halfbot’s tale is not an isolated one. Wolfire Games recently came across a suspicious looking game in the Mac App Store. The studio’s game Lugaru—which Wolfire was selling in the App Store under the nameLugaru HD for a few weeks—was suddenly available in two flavors: the $10 HD version and a much cheaper one without the high definition label.”

The Senate Judiciary Committee Convenes on Digital Theft

By Sandra Aistars, Copyright Alliance, February 16, 2011
“The Senate Judiciary Committee today convened a diverse group of stakeholders in the internet economy for the first of what will no doubt be many public conversations in Congress this year on the topic of digital theft of American intellectual property.”

What Can the Jeff Koons Lawsuit Teach Us About Copyright Law? A Guest Post

Kal Raustiala and Chris Sprigman, Freakonomics, The New York Times, February 17, 2011
“Kal Raustiala, a professor at UCLA Law School and the UCLA International Institute, and Chris Sprigman, a professor at the University of Virginia Law School, are experts in counterfeiting and intellectual property. They have been guest-blogging for us about copyright issues. This week, they write about a recent Jeff Koons controversy.”

Copyrights and Copywrongs

By Wendy Kaminer, The Atlantic, February 16, 2011
“I wonder if co-authors Scott Turow, Paul Aiken, and James Shaipro managed to retain copyright in theirNew York Times op-ed lamenting the decline of copyright and stressing the relationship between intellectual property rights and the creation of intellectual property.”

Running In Circles: Copyright, Licensing, and the Educational Environment

By Peggy Hoon, ©ollectanea, February 19, 2011
“Recall the famous scene at the end of the classic Clint Eastwood western, “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.””

Why Google Is Slamming A Little-Known Search Engine Called IsoHunt

By Joe Mullin,, February 21, 2011
“Google is still locked in a legal battle with Viacom (NYSE: VIA) over how it handled users who violated copyright rules on YouTube. So a copyright enemy of Viacom would be a friend of Google’s, right? No. ”

3D printing’s first copyright complaint goes away, but things are just getting started

Cory Doctorow, BoingBoing, February 21, 2011
“More news on the first-ever DMCA threat for violating a copyright in a 3D object — Ulrich Schwanitz has rescinded his complaint and will release his shape into the public domain today.”

Swedish Court Fines File-Sharer $7 per Song

By Jared Moya, ZeroPaid, February 22, 2011
“Convicted for illegally sharing 33 copyright songs, serving as a stark reminder of how US verdicts, with a fine of $62,500 per song in the case of Jammie Thomas, are out of tune with reality.”

Presumed Guilty

By Jamie Boyle, The Public Domain, February 22, 2011
“My new FT column is up. Shakespeare, copyright, Scott Turow and a shadowy group of law professors..  What could be more fun? Ungated version after the jump.”

Recognizing Creativity and Innovation in 3D Printing

By Michael Weinberg, Public Knowledge, February 22, 2011
“The world of 3D printing was in a tizzy last week discussing a DMCA takedown notice received by the website Thingiverse, a website that allows users to share and discuss their 3D printed designs.  It was something of a milestone because it was the first DMCA notice received by the site.”

Conference: Contemporary Art and Copyright: Copyright or Right to Copy?

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco February 23, 2011
“Avid Clancco reader and art law attorney Elisa Vittone just e-mailed us with information concerning a conference on copyright and contemporary art, which she claims is the “first conference in Italy concerning the relationship between Contemporary Art and Law.”

WIPO Director General Addresses the Future of Copyright

WIPO, February 24, 2011
“WIPO Director General Francis Gurry today said that copyright needs to evolve to current technological realities or risk becoming irrelevant.”

TRLN Digitization Strategy Advocates Flexible Approach to Intellectual Property Rights of Large Collections

By Josh Hadro, Library Journal, February 24, 2011
“Go forth and digitize: so says a recent report from the Triangle Research Libraries Network (TRLN), which urges libraries to make large-scale special collections available online, even if some question about the copyright status of certain elements remains.”

Alan Turing’s Papers Saved by 11th-Hour Donation

By Duncan Geere, Wired, February 25, 2011
“LONDON — Wartime codebreaker Alan Turing’s papers have been saved by a last-minute donation from the National Heritage Memorial Fund of $345,000.”

Music Studios Lose Copyright Case Against Australian Company

By Jack Korba, Intellectual Property Brief, February 27, 2011
“The Australian company iiNet has recently scored a landmark copyright victory over a group of music studios, which brought suit alleging copyright infringement.”

JRR Tolkien novel Mirkwood in legal battle with author’s estate

By Dalya Alberge, The Guardian, February 26, 2011
“The estate of JRR Tolkien is embroiled in a fierce legal battle over an American novel that uses the author of The Lord of the Rings as a central character.”

“IP Briefly” Is Here!

By Dana Nicoletti, Intellectual Property Brief, February 28, 2011
“The American University Intellectual Property Brief (IP Brief) is proud to announce that we are now providing a weekly email digest.”

Poking a Hole in Design Patents

By Jeff Kettle, Intellectual Property Brief, February 28, 2011
“Opposite the normal role of the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC), in Vanguard Identification Sys., Inc. v. Kappos the court affirmed a USPTO Board of Patent Appeals and Inferences (BPAI) decision reversing an obviousness determination in Vanguard Identification Sys. Inc. v. Bank of America Corp.”

Warner Music Mutes MP Angus’ Radio Documentary On Youtube

By Michael Geist, Michael Geist, February 28, 2011
“In recent years, Warner Music has become infamous for “muting” the sound on hundreds of YouTube videos that include music over which they hold copyright.”

Tolkien Estate Says Just Mentioning Tolkien Infringes; Tolkien Censorwear Appears In Response

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, February 28, 2001
“We’ve been mentioning a bit about how the estate of JRR Tolkien has been overaggressive in trying to enforce (sometimes non-existent) intellectual property rights related to Tolkien.”

A Library Written in Disappearing Ink

By Barbara Fister, Inside Higher Ed, February 28, 2011
“I’ve been mulling over the bizarre new move by a major publisher to get more blood out  of a turnip – or rather, to try and get more money out public libraries at a time when their budgets are being slashed.”

Posted by: tkerby | February 1, 2011

IPR in the News: January 2011

Hip-Hop and Copyright Law in the Classroom

By Ben Wieder, Wired Campus, January 5, 2011
“Kembrew McLeod’s youthful interest in 1980s hip-hop became a life-long scholarly pursuit when some of the groups he’d listened to as a teenager were sued in the early 1990s for using samples of previously recorded music.”


Canadian Record Labels Pay $45 Million to Settle Piracy Claims

By Jared Moya, ZeroPaid, January 11, 2011
“Artists win case centered around the practice of record labels using “Pending Lists” where they “presume” that a “license can be obtained from the copyright owner” and use their copyrighted works without their expressed permission.”


The Real Problem With China

By David Leonhardt, The New York Times, January 11, 2011
“When China’s president, Hu Jintao, visits here next week, the exchange rate between Chinese and American currency will inevitably become a big topic of conversation.”


AP And Shepard Fairey Settle Lawsuit Over Obama Image; Fairey Agrees To Give Up Fair Use Rights To AP Photos

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, January 12, 2011
“It appears that much of the lawsuit involving copyrights and the iconic Obama poster by Shepard Fairey has come to an end, as Fairey and the Associated Press have settled their lawsuit*.”

California Continues Protecting Hollywood: Imposes Greater Fines On Infringement Based On Faulty Reasoning

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, January 12, 2011
“It appears that, as of January 1st, California (rather quietly) greatly increased (mostly doubled) the fines for “piracy” and “counterfeiting,” while expanding the definitions of what qualifies for these new fines, by passing two laws (pdf) late last year,…”

Associated Press Settles Copyright Lawsuit Against Obama ‘Hope’ Artist

By David Kravets, Wired, January 12, 2011
“Street artist Shepard Fairey and The Associated Press are settling a copyright dispute over who owned the rights to the iconic Obama “Hope” poster, the two said in a joint statement Wednesday.”

Erotic Art Museum Comes Up With Bizarre Justification For Suing Photographer For $2 Million

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, January 13, 2011
“Davis Freeberg pointed us to a blog post on Thomas Hawk’s website, about how he was being sued for $2 million by the World Erotic Art Museum.”

That Jeff Koons twist goes beyond balloon dogs

By Jonathan Jones, Guardian, January 13, 2011
“Koons’s influence is everywhere, but seldom acknowledged. He may tilt at balloons, but does he watch Toy Story in bitter rage?”

Interview With Nina Paley: The More You Share, The More Valuable Your Works Become

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, January 14, 2011
“Regular Techdirt contributor Nina Paley has a fascinating interview (pdf) in the latest edition of Radical History Review. The issue is all about “new approaches to enclosures,” so a discussion on enclosures around content and ideas seems absolutely appropriate.”

Applying Copyright’s Fair Use Through Semiotics

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, Clancco, January 15, 2011
“H. Brian Holland, Associate Professor of Law at Texas Wesleyan School of Law, is publishing Social Semiotics in the Fair Use Analysis in a forthcoming issue of the Harvard Journal of Law and Technology. I haven’t had time to read it yet, but here’s a bit from the abstract.”

Can Your Camera Phone Turn You Into a Pirate?

By Nick Bilton, The New York Times, January 15, 2011
“MY wife and I sat cross-legged on the floor of a local Barnes & Noble store recently, surrounded by several large piles of books.”


FilmOn Founder Forming Class Action Suit Against CBS, CNET

By Jared Moya, ZeroPaid, January 17, 2011
“Solicits copyright holders who have been harmed by the LimeWire file-sharing software over the years to join in a “class action lawsuit against CNET for distributing the software with malicious intent to infringe,” and that they could share in damages that will likely be in the “many billions of dollars.””

Dispute Over Use of Jimi Hendrix’s Image and Likeness Leads to Debate Over Constitutionality of Expanding State Right of Publicity Statutes

By Ashley Kobi, Intellectual Property Brief, January 17, 2011
“This past week, U.S. District Judge Thomas Zilly heard arguments debating the constitutionality of recent amendments to a Washington state law that grants deceased celebrities’ estates expansive right of publicity protections.”

Conservative tech policy goal: ramp up IP enforcement

By Nate Anderson, Ars Technica, January 18, 2011
“Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), who has already introduced a bill to gut the FCC’s net neutrality rules, this morning issued a tech policy call to arms for her fellow conservatives.”

Fuzzy Boundaries: The Potential Impact of Vague Secondary Liability Doctrines on Technology Innovation

Legal Analysis, Electronic Frontier Foundation, January 19, 2011
“Last year, Ninth Circuit Chief Judge Alex Kozinski and Josh Goldfoot from the DoJ’s Criminal Division directly confronted some of EFF’s concerns about overreaching theories of secondary copyright infringement.”

TechFreedom: A New Think Tank Championing Freedom in the Next Digital Decade

By Berin Szoka, Tech Freedom, January 19, 2011
“Debates over net neutrality, online privacy, cybersecurity, copyright, free speech, media consolidation, and “openness” are all part of a larger conflict between two visions of freedom—and how to protect it.”

Sony v. Hotz: Sony Sends A Dangerous Message to Researchers — and Its Customers

By Corynne McSherry and Marcia Hofmann, Electronic Frontier Foundation, January 19, 2011
“For years, EFF has been warning that the anti-circumvention provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act can be used to chill speech, particularly security research, because legitimate researchers will be afraid to publish their results lest they be accused of circumventing a technological protection measure.”

Why Canada’s Fair Dealing Rules May Impede Free Speech: The Conservative Ads, the CBC, and Copyright

By Michael Geist, Michael Geist, January 19, 2011
“This week the Conservative party began airing a series of ads criticizing the opposition, including three that included short video clips from a CBC program.”

Universal Music Donates Master Recordings To Library Of Congress… But Keeps The Copyright

By Michael Ho, Techdirt, January 20, 2011
“charliebrown was the first of a few of you to send in the recent news of how Universal Music had decided to donate over 200,000 master recordings to the Library of Congress:”

A Key Myth That Drives Bad Policy: Stronger IP Laws Mean More Creativity

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, January 20, 2011
“Ars Technica has an article highlighting Rep. Marsha Blackburn’s “conservative tech policy goals,” which has a heavy focus on ramping up intellectual property laws and enforcement.”

The Right to Research Coalition’s Nick Shockey: Open Education and Policy

By Timothy Vollmer, Creative Commons, January 20, 2011
“Nick Shockey is the Director of the Right to Research Coalition (R2RC) and the Director of Student Advocacy at the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC).”

Know Before You Go, Part 2: Burning Man Improves Ticket Terms But Retains Takedown Powers

By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, January 20, 2011
“At EFF, we like to give credit where it is due. Over the past few years, we’ve repeatedly called out the Burning Man Organization (BMO) for using online ticket terms to require participants to assign to BMO, in advance, the copyrights to any pictures they took on the playa.”

Belgian and Israeli Courts Grant Remedies to CC Licensors

By Matt Liebenson, Creative Commons, January 21, 2011
“Litigation involving CC licenses is infrequent even though we’ve been around almost a decade and hundreds of millions of creative works are published under CC licenses.”

Francis Ford Coppola On Art, Copying And File Sharing: We Want You To Take From Us

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, January 21, 2011
“Paul Tamm points us to a really wonderful interview with filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola, which touches on a whole variety of different topics, but a couple of quotes are likely to be interesting to folks around here.”

Defamed by Copyright Registration?

By Mark Tratos, Intellectual Property Brief, January 22, 2011
“No matter how many times your law school professor tells you to read the entire decision by the court, you still never really do it.”

Poets Seize Their Fair Use Rights

By Patricia Aufderheide, Center for Social Media, American University, January 28, 2011
“Poets have now created a code of best practices in fair use, to help them exercise their fair use rights. They did it with help from CSM, the Poetry Foundation, the Washington College of Law and the University of California, Berkeley School of Law.”

Copyright Office Proposes Amendments to Regulations on Deposit Requirements for Electronic Registration of Automated Databases Consisting Predominantly of Photographs

U.S. Copyright Office, Issue 410, January 28, 2011
“The Copyright Office is proposing to amend its regulations governing the deposit requirements for applications for automated databases that consist predominantly of photographs.”

iPhone App Raises Questions About Who Owns Student Inventions

By Tushar Rae, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Wired Campus, January 31, 2011
“An iPhone app designed by a team of students for a contest at the University of Missouri at Columbia has helped lead the institution to rewrite its intellectual-property policies.”

Library Copyright Alliance Releases Paper on Impact of Costco v. Omega

By Jonathan Band, Association of Research Libraries, January 31, 2011
“Washington DC—The Library Copyright Alliance today released “The Impact of the Supreme Court’s Decision in Costco v. Omega on Libraries.””


Upcoming Publications : March 2011

Creative License: The Law and Culture of Digital Sampling

Authors: Kembrew McLeod, Peter DiCola
Contributors: Jenny Toomey, Kristen Thomson
Duke University Press

Posted by: tkerby | December 31, 2010

IPR in the News: December 2010

Improving the Flipside of Notice-and-Takedown: Counternotice

By John Bergmayer , Public Knowledge, December 2, 2010
“On paper, the DMCA’s “notice and takedown” provisions are a decent compromise between the interests of creators, content hosts, and Internet users. But the implementation has been lacking.”

Viacom Says YouTube Ruling Will ‘Completely Destroy’ Copyright

By David Kravets, Wired, December 3, 2010
“Viacom appealed Friday its unsuccessful $1 billion copyright lawsuit against Google’s YouTube in a case testing the depths of copyright-infringement protection under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998.”

Supreme Court Poised To Move In The Right Direction On IP

By Ben Doernberg, Public Knowledge, December 3, 2010
“While Net Neutrality has grabbed the headlines this week, that doesn’t mean things have been quiet on the intellectual property front.”

An Opportunity for Copyright Office Modernization

By Michael Weinberg, Public Knowledge, December 6, 2010
“Marybeth Peters, the Register of Copyrights, is stepping down at the end of this year.  That means that very soon, for the first time since 1994, there will be someone new in charge of the Copyright Office.”

MPAA Sends Letter to Thousands of Colleges About Copyright Rules

By Jeff Young, Wired Campus, December 6, 2010
“The Motion Picture Association of American began sending letters to thousands of colleges and university presidents today, alerting them that the industry group will start notifying colleges whenever it detects illegal trading of Hollywood films and hit TV shows on their campuses.”

U.S. Pushed Spain to Adopt French-Style Three Strikes Law

By Sherwin Siy, Public Knowledge, December 8, 2010
“Among the thousands of documents revealed to the press through WikiLeaks are apparently a number that deal with copyright issues.”


Copyright and Your Student Aid: MPAA Sends Letters to Universities About Copyright Provisions In the Higher Education Opportunity Act

By Greg Lultschik, Intellectual Property Brief, December 9, 2010
“If you took a poll of people’s opinions on the public relations success of various industries, the RIAA would probably rank alongside the oil and gas industry during the gulf disaster. This fact seems to be lost on the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) however, which has decided to mimic its musical counterpart’s tactic of pressuring universities to police student piracy.”

Federal Ban of WikiLeaks Website Embroils Librarians

By Leonard Kniffel and Beverly Goldberg, American Libraries, December 10, 2010
“Reaction continues to pour in from all over the world since the Library of Congress confirmed December 3 that it was blocking access from all LC computers to the WikiLeaks website in order to prevent unauthorized downloading of classified records as ordered by the Office of Management and Budget.”


Supreme Court Rules Against ‘First-Sale’ Copyright Doctrine

By David Kravets, Wired, December 13, 2010
“The Supreme Court on Monday said Costco could be liable for copyright infringement for selling foreign-made watches without the manufacturer’s authorization.”

New copyright-like rights considered harmful

By Mike Linksvayer, Creative Commons, December 13, 2010
“Today a new German site launched, IGEL (“Initiative gegen ein Leistungsschutzrecht”; in English, “initiative against a related right”).”


By Betty Leigh Hutchenson, College Art Association, December 14, 2010
“CAA will highlight intellectual property and copyright in two back-to-back sessions at the 2011 Annual Conference.”

A Mixed Ninth Circuit Ruling in MDY v. Blizzard: WoW Buyers Are Not Owners – But Glider Users Are Not Copyright Infringers

By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, December 14, 2010
“The Ninth Circuit today issued its decision in the second of a trio of cases that raise the critical legal question of whether “magic words” in a end-user license agreement (EULA) slapped onto a consumer product can turn buyers (or gift recipients) into mere licensees, rather than owners.”

University of Glasgow Decides to Give Away Its Research to Those Who Can Use It Best

By Mark Tratos, Intellectual Property Brief, December 15, 2010
“Over 30 years ago, the Bayh-Dole Act was seen as a surefire way to increase research and development in the US.  By enabling universities to retain the titles to their federally-funded research, Congress hoped that universities would be more inclined to advance science and file patents.”

Creative Commons files comments in U.S. Department of Commerce’s Inquiry on Copyright Policy, Creativity, and Innovation in the Internet Economy

By Timothy Vollmer, Creative Commons, December 15, 2010
“Creative Commons has filed comments in the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Inquiry on Copyright Policy, Creativity, and Innovation in the Internet Economy. The Department received nearly 900 submissions over the comment period, which ended December 10.”

Supreme Court Should Uphold the First Sale Doctrine

By Rebecca Jeschke, Electronic Frontier Foundation, December 15, 2010
“Today EFF joined with Public Knowledge and other groups to urge the Supreme Court to reject a bogus copyright theory, and uphold your right to resell or even give away the products you own — even if they were originally sold abroad.”

Clearing Up the Copyright Confusion: Fair Dealing and Bill C-32

By Michael Geist, Michael Geist, December 15, 2010
“Fair dealing has played a prominent role in the hearings on Bill C-32, with education and creator groups debating the merits and impact of the proposed reforms.”

Liberals Stake Out Positions on Bill C-32

By Michael Geist, Michael Geist, December 16, 2010
“In the aftermath of the “No iPod Tax” event earlier this week, the Liberals have come forward this morning with specific positions on Bill C-32.”

Not-So-Gentle Persuasion: US Bullies Spain into Proposed Website Blocking Law

By Gwen Hinze, Electronic Frontier Foundation, December 17, 2010
“It’s no secret that the US government has used its annual Special 301 Report to intimidate other countries into adopting more stringent copyright and patent laws by singling out particular countries for their “bad” intellectual property policies, and naming them on a tiered set of “watch lists”.”

New Report “Fair Use Challenges in Academic and Research Libraries” Now Available

Brandon Butler, Association of Research Libraries, December 20, 2010
“Washington, DC—The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is pleased to announce the release of Fair Use Challenges in Academic and Research Libraries, a report that summarizes research into the current application of fair use and other copyright exemptions to meet the missions of U.S. academic and research libraries.”


Law Professor Explains How Even When A Site Copies An Entire Article, It May Still Be Fair Use

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, December 20, 2010
“Berkeley law professor Jason Schultz has filed an excellent amicus brief in one of the many Righthaven lawsuits, pointing out that using an entire article does not preclude fair use (pdf), and then going on to explain why the use of an entire article in this particular case (which Righthaven brought against the Center for Intercultural Organizing) was almost certainly fair use.”

Newspaper Lawsuit Factory Sues Over ‘Death Ray’ Image

By David Kravets, Wired, December 21, 2010
“Righthaven, the Las Vegas copyright troll formed this spring, has moved beyond lawsuits over newspaper articles and begun targeting websites for the unauthorized reposting of images.”

Geist: The year in tech law and policy

By Michael Geist, Toronto Star (The Star), December 23, 2010
“The past twelve months in law and technology were exceptionally active, with the passage of anti-spam legislation, record penalties for violating the do-not-call list, and relentless lobbying on new Canadian copyright legislation. A look back at 2010 from A to Z:”

A response to the Harvard Crimson’s “A Sensible Compromise”

By Parker Higgins, Free Culture, December 23, 2010
““A Sensible Compromise,” an editorial published in the Harvard Crimson last week, described the actions of the MPAA in urging universities like Harvard to develop a “written plan to effectively combat the unauthorized distribution of copyright material by users” of the university network in compliance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008.”

Permission Culture And The Automated Diminishment Of Fair Use

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, December 27, 2010
“The very point of fair use is that it’s supposed to allow for creativity without permission. Even in a society dominated by copyright, at least our courts and regulators recognized the need for creativity built (in part) on what came before, without having to go through the tollbooths of requiring permission to create.”

Looking at the cloud from both sides now

By Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, December 28, 2010
“Sure, I can store my data and preserve friendships on a faraway server I can access from anywhere in the world, but what if the company decides to stop maintaining the server or goes out of business?”

Uncertainty About ‘Fair Use’ Is Hurting Academic and Research Libraries, ARL Report Says

By Michael Kelley, Library Journal, December 28, 2010
“A lack of consensus about how to apply the fair use provision of copyright law is consistently impairing the mission of academic and research libraries, according to a new report.”

Would Twitter Be Liable For Links To Infringing Material?

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, December 28, 2010
“One of the issues that bothers many folks who pay attention to copyright issues is the growing belief by many copyright supporters that simply posting a link to copyright infringing material could itself be considered infringement.”

2010 Trend Watch Update: Fair Use of Trademarks

By Corynne McSherry, Electronics Frontier Foundation, December 29, 2010
“At the beginning of this year EFF identified a dozen important trends in law, technology and business that we thought would play a significant role in shaping digital rights in 2010, with a promise to revisit our predictions at the end of the year.”

WIPO Global Meeting on Emerging Copyright Licensing Modalities explores solutions to current issues

American Libraries Association, District Dispatch, December 30, 2010
“The WIPO Global Meeting on Emerging Copyright Licensing Modalities was held in Geneva on November 4 and 5, 2010.”

Posted by: tkerby | December 1, 2010

IPR in the News: November 2010

Copyright Office Exploring Issue Over Pre-1972 Sound Recordings & Copyright

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, November 1, 2010
“In the past, we’ve covered how pre-1972 sound recordings are not covered by federal copyright law, because Congress, back in 1909, felt that the Constitution did not allow copyright to cover sound recordings because such recordings did not qualify as “writings.””

Brazilian Librarians: Copyright Is A Fear-Based Reaction To Open Access To Knowledge

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, November 1, 2010
“David Weinberger recently had an interesting blog post about his attendance at a conference of Brazilian university librarians, where he was very encouraged to learn of the many ways in which the librarians are embracing the internet to improve access to knowledge, and are hoping this leads to much greater things.”

Boucher Defeat a Loss for Tech Policy World

By Gigi Sohn, Public Knowledge, November 2, 2010
“Whatever the final results of this election night, nothing will be more shocking or sad for Public Knowledge and me personally then the defeat of Rep. Rick Boucher (D-Va), the current Chair of the House Subcommittee on Communications, Technology & the Internet.”

Trial Opens Over Damages in Oracle Copyright Case With SAP

By Verne G. Kopytoff, The New York Times, November 2, 2010
“OAKLAND, Calif. — The dispute between the software giants Oracle and SAP, in one of the most closely watched court cases in Silicon Valley history, is not over whether SAP engaged in a copyright infringement scheme, but over how much damage was done to Oracle.”

Going to school at Georgia State!

By Peter Jaszi, ©ollectanea, November 3, 2010
“As I’ve suggested before, we don’t really have much direct information from the courts, which have the last word on this matters, about what constitutes fair use in an educational setting.”

How The DMCA Is Restricting Online Radio In Ridiculous Ways

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, November 2, 2010
“When webcasting first started to become popular, as with any new and useful offering, the RIAA was quick to try to kill it off with ridiculously high licensing fees.”

Trademark Law (Once Again) Getting In The Way Of Fan Art

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, November 2, 2010
“Rose M. Welch points us to this recent story about how the popular homemade crafts website Etsy has had to balance trademark issues, since many people like to make “fan art” and often would like to sell it on the site.”

“Tweakers” and “Pioneers” in the World of Innovation

By Freakonomics, The New York Times, November 3, 2010
“Kal Raustiala, a professor at UCLA Law School and the UCLA International Institute, and Chris Sprigman, a professor at the University of Virginia Law School, are experts in counterfeiting and intellectual property.”

Wikileaks Creator, In Geneva, Denounces US Abuse Of Human Rights

By Catherine Saez, Intellectual Property Watch, November 4, 2010
“In a police-secured, airless room full of Geneva journalists, Julian Assange, creator and director of Wikileaks, today gave details of what he described as United States abuse of human rights in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, as well as an alleged muzzling of US press on those subjects.”

What the new Congress means for Public Knowledge

By Ernesto Falcon, Public Knowledge, November 5, 2010
“The aftermath of the election has a lot of people guessing at what it means for a litany of issues, including those of interest to Public Knowledge and our friends.”

When a Writer is Pilfered

By Patrick Ross, Copyright Alliance, November 5, 2010
“Repeat after me: “The web does not equal public domain.” Again: “The web does not equal public domain.” There, I knew you could say it.”

Thomas-Rasset Damage Award: The Strange, Unpredictable World of Copyright Damages

By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, November 5, 2010
“After a brief deliberation, a jury this week awarded $1.5 million in statutory damages ($62,500 per recording) to the record label plaintiffs in Capitol v. Thomas-Rasset.”

Mark Twain’s Autobiograpy: In the Public Domain Before the Public’s Hands?

By Mark Tratos, Intelletual Property Brief, November 5, 2010
“Mark Twain (a.k.a. Samuel Clemens) was a man of principle and people knew it.  So when he said that he did not want his autobiography published until 100 years after his death, the world knew he meant it.”

Chief Patent Judge Feigns Ignorance Of How Often Patents Are Used To Hinder Innovation

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, November 5, 2010
“Law professor Doug Lichtman’s latest “IP Colloquium” podcast is an interview with Judge Randall Rader, who’s the chief Judge of CAFC, the appeals court that handles most patent cases.”

Lessig Asks WIPO To Overhaul Copyright; Not Designed For When Every Use Is A Copy

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, November 5, 2010
“It’s become pretty clear that most country governments (with very few exceptions) are not interested in looking to fix the problems of copyright, often because of regulatory capture by those who benefit from stronger copyright.”

Lessig Calls For WIPO To Lead Overhaul Of Copyright System

By Kaitin Mara, Intellectual Property Watch, November 5, 2010
“Influential copyright scholar Larry Lessig yesterday issued a call for the World Intellectual Property Organization to lead an overhaul of the copyright system which he says does not and never will make sense in the digital environment.”

The U.S. Influence on Bill C-32 Hits House of Commons Debate

By Michael Geist, Michael Geist, November 5, 2010
“One of the most notable aspects of the House of Commons debate on Bill C-32 thus far (debate continues today) has been the recognition by opposition MPs of the influence of the U.S. on the  bill’s digital lock rules.”

United Kingdom Reviews Copyright Laws

By Jack Korba, Intellectual Property Brief, November 9, 2010
“British Prime Minister David Cameron has announced that the United Kingdom will review its copyright laws to allow them to fit better in the age of the Internet.”

3D fabbers: don’t let the DMCA stifle an innovative future

By Nate Anderson, Arstechnica, November 10, 2010
“Last week, while unloading my dishwasher, I had a “eureka!” moment in which I suddenly understood why the machine had not been adequately cleaning up the cups and baby bottles in the upper rack: a small rubber tube had split open, and much of the water meant for the upper rack was spilling over the plates below instead.”

Court Recognizes That DMCA Process Goes Against Basic Copyright Concepts

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, November 12, 2010
“We already wrote about the recent court ruling issuing a temporary restraining order on a furniture company for abusing the DMCA.”

Image Rights vs. Free Speech in Video Game Suit

By Katie Thomas, The New York Times, November 15, 2010
“When Sam Keller, a former quarterback at Arizona State, sued the video game publisher Electronic Arts last year, he was seeking compensation for himself and other college athletes whose names were not used but whose images he contended were being illegally used by the company.”

Artist’s copyright versus curator’s freedom of expression

By Daniel McClean, The Art Newspaper, November 17, 2010
“LONDON. The relationship between “documentation” and “performance” is slippery in performance art.”

Patent Office to Reissue Narrowed Version of Patent on Internet Music Files

By Cindy Cohn, Electronic Frontier Foundation, November 17, 2010
“Another partial victory for EFF’s Patent Busting Project: the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has announced that it will reissue a narrowed version of a patent on Internet music files after we asked the PTO to take a second look. So far nine of the original Top Ten Patents named in our campaign have been busted, invalidated, narrowed, or had a reexamination granted by the PTO.”

Joseph Beuys Estate Flexes Copyright Muscle

By Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento,  Clancco, November 17, 2010
“The Joseph Beuys Estate has just won a legal battle keeping the Stiftung Museum Schloss Moyland from exhibiting photographs of a Joseph Beuys performance.”

Professors Publish Guide to Copyright Issues of Multimedia Projects

By Paige Chapman, Wired Campus, November 17, 2010
“Students often create multimedia projects for classes that blend in clips from YouTube videos or hit songs, and many want to post their creations online for a wider audience. But does that violate copyright law?”

Is WIPO Really The Right Organization To Fix Copyright?

By Mike Masnick, Techdirt, November 17, 2010
“We recently pointed to a Larry Lessig speech, in which he argued that WIPO should lead efforts for copyright reform, noting that separate country governments were unlikely to lead copyright law in the right direction, since they tended to be beholden to the interests of legacy industries who benefited from strengthened copyright law.”

Righthaven Says It Will Stop Suing Over News Excerpts

By David Kravets, Wired, November 18, 2010
“Copyright troll Righthaven this week promised to narrow its lawsuit campaign in the face of a courtroom defeat, when a judge ruled that a real estate website made “fair use” of a newspaper article from the Las Vegas-Review Journal.”

MP3Tunes ‘Safe Harbor’ Challenge Is Legal Test for Cloud Storage

By Sam Gustin, Wired, November 19, 2010
“A key test of digital-copyright law will be heard soon in New York federal court: whether online music storage services and search engines can be held liable when users upload copyright material. The outcome could have far-reaching implications for so-called “cloud-based” services, which allow users to store their content on remote servers accessible on the internet.”

Law and the GeoWeb, a workshop on IP and geographic data in the internet era sponsored by Creative Commons and the United States Geological Survey

By Jane Park, Creative Commons, November 19, 2010
“A workshop on “Intellectual Property and Geographic Data in the Internet Era” sponsored by Creative Commons and the United States Geological Survey (USGS) in conjunction with the annual meeting of AAG, April 11, 2011, Seattle, Washington. The workshop will be held at the campus of Microsoft Research, and will be streamed live on the Internet.”

Harsh Digital Copyright Bill Stopped — for Now

By Paul Suarez, PC World, November 20, 2010
“A single senator on Friday stalled a bill that would give the federal government the ability to shut down websites allegedly participating in copyright infringement.”

EMI Seeks to Bar EFF From Cloud-Music Case

By Sam Gustin, Wired, November 23, 2010
“Billion-dollar record label EMI has asked a New York City federal judge to bar a non-profit legal rights group from filing a friend-of-the-court brief in a closely watched internet copyright case that could have broad implications for the future of cloud computing.”

Le Google Strikes Deal in La France: Largest French Publisher to Provide Books to Be Scanned by Google

By Alex Diaz-Ferguson, Intellectual Property Brief, November 22, 2010
“On November 17, 2010, The New York Times reported that Internet giant, Google, had a major breakthrough in its Digital Library project”

SAP to pay Oracle $1.3 billion in damages

By Julianne Pepitone, CNNMoney, November 23, 2010
“NEW YORK ( — Business software maker SAP said Tuesday it has been ordered to pay $1.3 billion to Oracle for copyright infringement by its now-defunct software maintenance unit.”

EFF Calls on European Commission to Protect Internet Users’ Rights by Requiring Court Order Before ISP Takedowns

By Gwen Hinze, Electronic Frontier Foundation, November 23, 2010
“To provide greater protection for Internet users’ freedom of expression and privacy rights, EFF recommended that the European Commission (EC) should preserve limitations on liability for Internet intermediaries and clarify that Internet intermediaries should not be considered to have “actual knowledge” requiring them to takedown content unless they have received a court order or notification in comments filed recently as part of the EC’s long-awaited public consultation on the workability of the 2000 EU eCommerce Directive.”

Judge Bars ‘Fair Use’ Defense in Xbox Modding Trial

By Kevin Poulsen, Wired, November 23, 2010
“A California man charged with violating the DMCA by modifying Xbox 360 consoles won’t be allowed to claim “fair use””

Pirate Bay Appeal Trial Reaffirms Copyright Infringement Charges

By Jared Moya, ZeroPaid, November 26, 2010
“Sweden’s Svea Court of Appeal gives three of the four co-founders varying lengths of prison time, and requires them to jointly compensate copyright holders 46 million kronor ($6.57 million) in damages for the BitTorrent tracker site’s alleged facilitation of copyright infringement.”

U.S. Government Seizes 82 Websites: A Glimpse at the Draconian Future of Copyright Enforcement?

By Corynne McSherry, Electronic Frontier Foundation, November 29, 2010
“Over the past few days, the U.S. Justice Department, the Department of Homeland Security and nine U.S. Attorneys’ Offices seized 82 domain names of websites they claim were engaged in the sale and distribution of counterfeit goods and illegal copyrighted works.”

U.S. Shutters 82 Sites in Crackdown on Downloads, Counterfeit Goods

By Sam Gustin, Wired, November 29, 2010
“The United States government has significantly ramped up its efforts to combat counterfeiting and piracy, shutting down dozens of websites linked to the sale or distribution of fake goods, as well as sites that facilitate online file-sharing.”

Music File-Sharing Award Left Intact by High Court

By Greg Stohr, Bloomberg, November 29, 2010
“The U.S. Supreme Court refused to question a $27,750 award to music companies in a suit against a woman who was 16 when she illegally downloaded 37 songs using a file-sharing network.”

Intellectual Property Appears to Figure Prominently In Wikileaks Cablegate

By Michael Geist, Michael Geist, November 29, 2010
“Intellectual property policy has long been closely linked to U.S. trade policy, so it should come as little surprise to find that it appears to figure prominently in the cables obtained by Wikileaks.”

U.S. Moves to Block Sites Selling Counterfeit Items

By The Associated Press, The New York Times, November 29, 2010
“WASHINGTON (AP) — On one of the busiest Internet shopping days of the year, the federal government announced a crackdown that blocked 82 domain names of far-flung commercial Web sites to keep them from selling counterfeit merchandise and illegal copies of music and software.”

WikiLeaks: Interpol issues wanted notice for Julian Assange

By David Leigh, Luke Harding, Afua Hirsch and Ewen MacAskill, Guardian, November 30, 2010
“The WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, is tonight facing growing legal problems around the world, with the US announcing that it was investigating whether he had violated its espionage laws.”

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