Justice O’Connor, in Harper & Row v. Nation Enterprises (1985), called copyright “the engine of free expression.” This was not a novel idea. The Justice was merely summarizing a well-established relationship between an author’s copyrights and the freedom to express herself as she wishes. Freedom in artistic expression requires that the author have a degree of personal economic liberty, which ...

On September 30, the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing to discuss the Copyright Office report, published in May, commenting on the efficacy of Section 512 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Section 512 provides conditional immunity to online service providers for copyright infringements conducted by users of their services. (For a basic summary of conditions, see page here.) ...

A new business called OmniQ has filed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to grant cert in ReDegi v. Capitol Records, alleging that the Second Circuit’s opinion in December 2018 effectively brings an end to the First Sale doctrine.  The company is developing a patent pending model that (presumably) would facilitate an online market for “used” and hard-to-find motion pictures.  Its brief ...

Many years ago while still in college, I was on the train to New York City—a beautiful ride along the eastern banks of the Hudson River.  Several rows from me sat a family of American tourists who caught my attention when I heard the dad say, “Look kids, there’s Alcatraz.”   Reasonably confident that Alcatraz sits on an island in San Francisco ...

At the same AI and copyright round-table referred to in my last post, Stephen Carlisle of Nova Southeastern University posed this question:  Is the application of “transformative” analysis under the fair use doctrine threatening to extinguish the derivative works right?  This grabbed my attention, partly because it jibed with comments I made in at least two posts about Brammer v. ...

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