Cell Phone Unlocking: A Legal Primer
Google Books Litigation Family Tree
A New Day for Website Archiving 2.0
Memorandum discussing legal issues in website archiving.
Golan v. Holder: A Farewell to Constitutional Challenges to Copyright Laws
On January 13, 2012, the Supreme Court by a 6-2 vote affirmed the Tenth Circuit decision in Golan v. Holder. The case concerned the constitutionality of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (URAA), which restored copyright in foreign works that had entered into the public domain because the copyright owners had failed to comply with formalities such as notice; or because the U.S. did not have copyright treaties in place with the country at the time the work was created (e.g., the Soviet Union)
Membership Meeting 2011 (Spring): WIPO AND LIBRARIES
Presented at the 158th ARL Membership Meeting, May 2011.
A Guide For the Perplexed Part IV: The Rejection of the Google Books Settlement
On March 22, 2011, Judge Denny Chin rejected the proposed settlement in copyright infringement litigation over the Google Library Project. Judge Chin found that the settlement was not "fair, reasonable, and adequate" as required by the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Judge Chin issued the decision over a year after the fairness hearing he conducted. His opinion agrees in large measure with the objections to the settlement asserted by the U.S. Department of Justice at the hearing and in its written submissions. This paper discusses the opinion and where it leaves Google Books Search.
GBS March Madness: Paths Forward for the Google Books Settlement
This chart attempts to diagram some of the possible paths forward following the fairness hearing on the Google Books Settlement.
Issue Brief: Streaming of Films for Educational Purposes
The Impact of the Supreme Court's Decision in Costco v. Omega on Libraries
On December 13, 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Costco v. Omega in a manner that eliminated none of the uncertainty caused by the lower court's ruling in that case. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit had ruled that the copyright law's "first sale doctrine" did not apply to copies manufactured abroad. This ruling cast doubt on a library's ability to circulate books and other materials manufactured outside of the United States.
A Guide for the Perplexed Part III: The Amended Settlement Agreement
On Friday, November 13, 2009, Google, the Authors Guild, and the Association of American Publishers filed an Amended Settlement Agreement (ASA) in the copyright infringement litigation concerning the Google Library Project. The amendments proposed by the parties are designed to address objections made by the U.S. Department of Justice and copyright holders to the original proposed settlement agreement. While many of the amendments will have little direct impact on libraries, the ASA significantly reduces the scope of the settlement because it excludes most books published outside of the United States. This paper describes the ASA's major changes, with emphasis on those changes relevant to libraries.
A Guide for the Perplexed Part II: The Amended Google-Michigan Agreement
On May 20, 2009, Google and the University of Michigan (Michigan) entered into an amendment that expanded the 2004 agreement that allowed Google to scan books in the Michigan library for inclusion in Google's search database. The new agreement (the Amendment) addresses the provisions of the proposed settlement agreement between Google and the plaintiffs in the Google Book Search litigation.
A Guide for the Perplexed: Libraries and the Google Library Project Settlement
How Fair Use Prevailed in the Harry Potter Case
In a highly publicized decision issued on September 8, 2008, US District Court Judge Robert Patterson ruled that Steven Vander Ark's Harry Potter Lexicon infringed J.K. Rowling's copyright. Although J. K. Rowling prevailed in the litigation, the big winner actually was fair use.
Educational Fair Use Today
Three recent appellate decisions concerning fair use should give educators and librarians greater confidence and guidance for asserting this important privilege. In all three decisions, the courts permitted extensive copying and display in the commercial context because the uses involved repurposing and recontextualization. The reasoning of these opinions could have far-reaching implications in the educational environment.
The Google Print Library Project: A Copyright Analysis
On August 11, 2005, Google announced that it would not scan copyrighted books under its Print Library Project until November, so that publishers could decide whether they want to opt their in-copyright books out of the project. Given the confusion in press reports describing the project, publishers should carefully study exactly what Google intends to do and understand the relevant copyright issues. This understanding should significantly diminish any anxiety publishers possess about the project.
A New Day for the DMCA: The Chamberlain and Lexmark Decisions
Recent circuit-level decisions in Chamberlain v. Skylink and Lexmark v. Static Control Components interpreted the Digital Millenium Copyright Act in a manner that will prevent its use to restrict legitimate competition in after-market components. By placing on plaintiffs the burden of proving intent to infringe copyright, judges on both panels not only dictate the correct outcome in these cases, but also provided defendants in other cases a way to short-circuit litigation when infringement is nowhere to be seen. Published in Electronic & Commerce Law Vol. 9 No. 45 (November 2004).
The Digital Millenium Copyright Act
On October 12, 1998, Congress passed the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), a complex piece of legislation which makes major changes in U.S. copyright law to address the digitally networked environment. This memorandum discusses the law's five titles.