image © Jason PuckettOn Friday, October 17, 2014, the US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit issued its ruling in the Georgia State University (GSU) case concerning the use of excerpts of academic books for electronic course reserves. The Eleventh Circuit reversed and remanded the decision to the district court. In doing so, the court upheld the importance of the flexible application of fair use. Importantly, the Eleventh Circuit did not rule on whether each of the uses by GSU were fair uses or not, but instead found fault with the district court’s methodology, which used bright-line rules and an arithmetic approach (i.e., if three of the four factors favor fair use, then the use is fair). Assuming that litigation goes forward rather than the case being settled, the district court will need to revisit its fair use analysis, but could potentially again find that GSU’s uses were fair use for most of the works at issue.
For a more detailed analysis of the October 17 ruling, see “In Georgia State University E-Reserves Case, Eleventh Circuit Endorses Flexible Approach to Fair Use,” on the ARL Policy Notes blog.
Greg Cram on NYPL’s use of the CodeToday, October 21, 2014, ARL released three videos on the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries, a clear and easy-to-use statement of reasonable approaches to fair use of copyrighted material, developed by and for librarians who support academic inquiry and higher education. With generous support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the new videos capture how the Code has assisted many communities by providing helpful guidance about the scope of best practice when fair use comes into play.
American University law professors Peter Jaszi and Brandon Butler discuss the development and roll-out of the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries. (16 minutes)
American University professors Peter Jaszi and Patricia Aufderheide discuss the development of the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries. (11 minutes)
In this four-minute video, Greg Cram of the New York Public Library discusses NYPL's application of the principles of fair use.
View/download the full infographic Today, October 10, 2014, ARL released a new infographic that tells the story of how libraries are champions for academic freedom and balanced copyright policies. The infographic explains the threat of unbalanced copyright to academic freedoms, including the freedom to research, to teach and learn, and to publish.
This infographic by ARL illustrates the benefits of a balanced copyright system and the roles research libraries play in maintaining the balance of Copyright & IP.
image © Mario LapidOn July 23, 2014, the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA)—the American Library Association (ALA), Association of Research Libraries (ARL), and Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL)—filed a statement (PDF) with the US House of Representatives Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet for the subcommittee’s July 24 hearing on copyright remedies. The LCA statement focuses on problems with statutory damages. The statement notes that the existing safe harbor requiring a court to remit statutory damages when a library, archive, educational institution, or public broadcasting entity believed and had reasonable grounds to believe that its use of material constituted fair use applies only to the reproduction right. The statement recommends an update to reflect the digital era so that this safe harbor applies to any type of use, including uses implicating performance, display, distribution, or derivative work rights.
image © Wally GobetzOn July 15, 2014, the US House of Representatives Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet continued its copyright review with a Hearing on Moral Rights, Termination Rights, Resale Royalty, and Copyright Term. The Library Copyright Alliance (LCA)—the American Library Association (ALA), Association of Research Libraries (ARL), and Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL)—filed a statement addressing copyright term (PDF), noting the negative effects that lengthy copyright terms have on the public domain.
Google BooksOn July 8, 2014, the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA)—the American Library Association (ALA), Association of Research Libraries (ARL), and Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL)—filed an amici brief (PDF) in the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Authors Guild v. Google in favor of Google’s transformative use in creating Google Book Search (GBS). The Southern District of New York previously ruled in favor of Google, finding that GBS provided significant public benefits and constituted fair use.
image © Thomas HawkJonathan Band, policybandwidth and legal counsel to the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA), released on July 7, 2014, an analysis of the recent Authors Guild v. HathiTrust decision, “What Does the HathiTrust Decision Mean for Libraries?” (PDF). As Band notes, “The decision has implications for libraries that go far beyond the specific facts of the case. This paper offers some preliminary thoughts on what these implications may be.” The paper reviews several issues including mass digitization and storage, access to works, suggestions concerning other forms of access, and associational standing. Band concludes:
image © ed_needs_a_bicycleOn July 9, 2014, ARL joined 34 other organizations in sending a letter to ministers of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiating parties, expressing opposition to the copyright term of life plus 70 years proposed by the United States. These organizations—representing libraries, archives, authors, educators, students, digital rights advocacy groups, and technological innovators—note that this extended copyright term threatens the public domain. The letter states:
On June 10, 2014, the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the lower court decision in Authors Guild v. HathiTrust in favor of HathiTrust Digital Library.
On July 8, 2014, the Library Copyright Association filed an amicus brief for Authors Guild v. Google, Inc. in the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
image © Thomas HawkThe Library Copyright Alliance is extremely pleased with today’s decision by the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Authors Guild v. HathiTrust, finding in favor of fair use. The Library Copyright Alliance filed an amicus brief (PDF) in the case, supporting HathiTrust’s position and the lower court’s finding of fair use.
NYPL, photo by Carol M. HighsmithToday, June 2, 2014, Greg Cram, associate director of copyright and information policy at the New York Public Library (NYPL), testified on the importance of the first sale doctrine to libraries at “First Sale under Title 17,” a field hearing held by the US House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet. The Library Copyright Alliance—which consists of the American Library Association, the Association of Research Libraries, and the Association of College and Research Libraries—endorsed Cram’s public support for the first sale doctrine.
Orphans’ Home, Atchison, Kansas, 1911, image © Thiophene GuyOn Friday, May 16, 2014, the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA) submitted additional comments on orphan works and mass digitization (PDF) in response to the US Copyright Office’s notice of inquiry. These comments address the discussions from the March 10–11, 2014, public meeting, noting the complete lack of consensus on these issues, the concerns regarding extended collective licensing solutions, and the appropriateness of best practices developed by user communities. Transcripts of the first day (PDF) and the second day (PDF) of the public meeting are available on the Copyright Office website.
Carla Myers, image courtesy CU Colorado SpringsOn May 13, 2014, the American Library Association (ALA) awarded Carla Myers the 2014 Robert L. Oakley Memorial Scholarship. The Library Copyright Alliance—which consists of ALA, the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), and the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL)—established the Robert L. Oakley Memorial Scholarship to support research and advanced study for librarians in their early-to-mid-careers who are interested and active in intellectual property, public policy, copyright, and their impacts on libraries.
Orphans’ Home, Atchison, Kansas, 1911, image © Thiophene GuyOn March 10–11, 2014, the US Copyright Office convened roundtables on orphan works and mass digitization. Several participants attacked fair use and libraries, misstated the purpose of the copyright system in the United States, or inaccurately portrayed the activities of HathiTrust. An ARL Policy Notes blog post examines some of these misconceptions, or myths, cited at the roundtables and responds to these inaccuracies. An earlier ARL Policy Notes blog post recaps the roundtable discussions, which covered best practices, fair use, licensing solutions, and the issue of whether orphan works and mass digitization need to be treated separately.
image © CoyauOn Friday, April 11, 2014, the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), along with the American Library Association, Association of College and Research Libraries, and other organizations, joined an amicus brief authored by the Electronic Frontier Foundation in Garcia v. Google. The brief urges the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to reconsider its decision in this copyright case in which a 2-1 panel ruled in favor of Cindy Lee Garcia, one of the actors in the film Innocence of Muslims. Garcia claimed a copyright interest in her performance after being tricked into appearing in a five-second clip of the film and subsequently sought takedown of the film from YouTube, which is owned by Google.
In April 2014, the Association of Research Libraries signed on to the Garcia v. Google amicus brief. In the brief, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) urges a federal appeals court to reconsider its decision to order Google to take down a controversial video while a copyright lawsuit is pending as the decision sets a dangerous precedent that could have disastrous consequences for free speech.
April 11, 2014 EFF Press Release
James G. Neal, Vice President for Information Services and University Librarian for Columbia University in the City of New York, testified at the April 2, 2014 Hearing on Preservation and Reuse of Copyrighted Works for the Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet. This is his supplemental testimony, which expands upon some issues that came up in the hearing.
James Neal testifying at House copyright hearingJames G. Neal, Columbia University’s university librarian and vice president for information services, served as the voice of libraries to the US House of Representatives Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet on Wednesday, April 2, 2014, when the subcommittee held a hearing on preserving and reusing copyrighted work. The hearing, “Preservation and Reuse of Copyrighted Works,” explored a variety of copyright issues, including orphan works, mass digitization, and specific provisions of the Copyright Act that concern preservation by libraries and archives.
James G. NealOn Wednesday, April 2, 2014, the US House Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet continued its copyright review. This hearing focused on “Preservation and Reuse of Copyrighted Works” with six panelists: Gregory Lukow (chief, Packard Campus for Audio Visual Conservation, Library of Congress), Richard Rudick (co-chair, Section 108 Study Group), James G. Neal (vice president for information services and university librarian, Columbia University), Jan Constantine (general counsel, the Authors Guild), Michael C. Donaldson (partner, Donaldson + Callif, LLP, on behalf of Film Independent and International Documentary Association), and Jeffry Sedlik (president and chief executive officer, PLUS Coalition). Written testimony from each witness is available on the House Judiciary Committee website.
James Neal’s statement (PDF), endorsed by the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA), provides that the “overarching point is that the existing statutory framework, which combines the specific library exceptions in Section 108 with the flexible fair use right, works well for libraries, and does not require amendment.” In reaching this point, the written statement goes through four issues: (1) the importance of library preservation, (2) how the library exceptions under Section 108 supplement rather than supplant fair use, (3) the diminished need for orphan works legislation, and (4) perspective on the HathiTrust case.
James G. Neal, Vice President for Information Services and University Librarian for Columbia University in the City of New York, testified at the April 2, 2014 Hearing on Preservation and Reuse of Copyrighted Works for the Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet. This is his written testimony.
image © Rock CohenOn March 3, 2014, the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA) submitted a response (PDF) to the European Union (EU) consultation on the review of copyright rules. The EU website provided a list of 80 questions for stakeholders to answer; the LCA response focuses on those questions most relevant to the library community. The categories of questions to which LCA responded cover digital transmissions, term of protection, limitations and exceptions, preservation and archiving, e-lending, mass digitization, teaching, research, and access for persons with disabilities.
Yesterday, January 28, 2014, the US House of Representatives Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet held another hearing on copyright review. This hearing focused on the scope of fair use and included five witnesses: Peter Jaszi (professor, American University), June Besek (professor, Columbia University), Naomi Novik (author and co-founder, Organization for Transformative Works), David Lowery (singer/songwriter and lecturer, University of Georgia), and Kurt Wimmer (general counsel, Newspaper Association of America). In advance of the hearing, the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA) submitted a written statement (PDF) discussing how libraries rely on fair use in order to serve their users and meet their mission, how the federal government relies on fair use for photocopying and in the patent examination process, and how rights holders rely on fair use in developing new works. The LCA statement concludes that no changes are needed to the fair use doctrine.
This week, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is hosting Copyright Week, with each day devoted to a different issue. Copyright Week will last six days, ending on Saturday, January 18, 2014, the two-year anniversary of the Internet blackouts protesting the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the PROTECT IP Act (PIPA). ARL and 16 other organizations are participating in Copyright Week. Throughout the week, the participants will discuss key principles that should guide copyright policy.
remix of image by Patrick HoeslyOn January 8, 2014, the Library Copyright Alliance submitted additional comments (PDF) on the US Department of Commerce “green paper,” Copyright Policy, Creativity, and Innovation in the Digital Economy (PDF), following a public meeting held by the Commerce Department in December. The post-meeting comments focus on four issues: the recent fair use court decision in the case Bouchat v. Baltimore Ravens, digital preservation, remixes, and collective rights organizations.
On January 8, 2014, the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA), of which ARL is a member, provided these additional comments on a number of issues raised in the recent US Department of Commerce “green paper” on Copyright Policy, Creativity, and Innovation in the Digital Economy. These comments focus on four issues: the recent fair use court decision in the case Bouchat v. Baltimore Ravens, digital preservation, remixes, and collective rights organizations.