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.
This is a copyright infringement case brought against various officials of the University System of Georgia, including officials of Georgia State University. Plaintiffs are three publishing houses who claim that Defendants are responsible for infringement of their copyrighted works. They complain of Georgia State's practice of allowing professors and other instructors to utilize electronic systems to reproduce and distribute excerpts from copyrighted works for academic use by Georgia State students, without paying copyright fees to them. Plaintiffs seek injunctive and declaratory relief.
On July 28, 2010, SkyRiver Technology Solutions joined with Innovative Interfaces to file suit in San Francisco federal court against OCLC Online Computer Library Center (OCLC) alleging numerous anticompetitive business practices and antitrust violations. SkyRiver, a bibliographic services company, and Innovative Interfaces, a library automation company, claim that OCLC is "unlawfully monopolizing the bibliographic data, cataloguing service and interlibrary lending markets and is attempting to monopolize the market for integrated library systems by anticompetitive and exclusionary agreements, policies and practices." (p. 1) The outcome of the lawsuit could have significant impact on the library software and technology services industry by opening up OCLC's services, such as WorldCat, to use by commercial competitors. ARL members have asked for a review of the current state of the suit.
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.
The American Library Association, the Association of Research Libraries, and the Association of College and Research Libraries (the Library Associations) submit these comments to address developments relating to the proposed Settlement that have arisen since the Library Associations filed their initial comments with this Court on May 4, 2009. In particular, these comments discuss the amendment Google and the University of Michigan (Michigan) entered into on May 20, 2009 that expanded the 2004 agreement that allowed Google to scan books in the Michigan library for inclusion in Google's search database.
The ALA and ARL thank the Library of Congress (LOC) for proposing to amend its regulations governing mandatory deposit of electronic works published in the United States and available only online under 37 CFR § 202.19(c)(5). ALA and ARL recognize that significant technological advances have been made and as such, believe this initiative to preserve and provide access to journal literature is extremely important, especially in light of the increasing number of journals being published only online.
Library association comments on the proposed settlement.
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.
Sitting en banc, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit on June 30, 2008, decided Greenberg v. National Geographic Society, finding that the CD-ROM set, "The Complete National Geographic" (CNG), was a privileged revision of a collective work under 17 U.S.C. § 201(c) and not a "new collective work" in violation of Mr. Greenberg's copyrights. This case is in line with the Second Circuit's decision in Faulkner v. National Geographic Enters., further clarified the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in New York Times Co. v. Tasini, and importantly, upheld the "long embraced doctrine of media neutrality" that the "transfer of a work between media does not alter the character of that work for copyright purposes."
Two photographers claimed that the inclusion of their photographs in the National Geographic Society's (NGS) CD-ROM version of the NGS magazine violated their copyrights and that the NGS was not exempt under Section 201(c) of the Copyright Act.
This case presents the question of whether Section 201(c) of the Copyright Act accords a magazine publisher a privilege to produce a digital compilation that contains exact images of its past magazine issues.
Comments arguing that a broadcast flag rule adopted by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) could effectively limit the public's access to information, and impair its ability to use content in new and innovative ways.
Letter from library associations in support of the the request for investigation and complaint for injunctive relief filed by the Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA) in the matter of Consumer Fair Use and Related Rights.
Joint Comments Submitted on Behalf of American Library Association, Association of Research Libraries, Center for Democracy & Technology, Champaign-Urbana Community Wireless Network, Electronic Frontier Foundation, Media Access Project, The Rutherford Institute, and the Voice On The Net (Von) Coalition.
Brief Amici Curiae of ALA and ARL.
The U. S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ("DC Circuit") erroneously held that Congress' grant of twenty additional years of copyright protection as set forth in the Copyright Term Extension Act (CTEA) 2 is constitutional.
Brief of Amici Curiae American Civil Liberties Union, American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California, American Library Association, Association of Research Libraries, American Association of Law Libraries, Medical Library Association, Special Libraries Association, Internet Archive, and Project Gutenberg in Support of Defendants-Appellees and Urging Affirmance of The District Court's Grant of Partial Summary Judgment.
Brief of the American Civil Liberties Union, the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California, the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation of San Diego and Imperial Counties, the American Library Association, the Association of Research Libraries, the American Association of Law Libraries, the Medical Library Association, the Law Library Association, the Internet Archive, and Project Gutenberg as amici curiae in support of respondents.
Comments submitted in response to the US Copyright Office's Notice of Inquiry (NOI) dated October 15, 2002, on whether noninfringing uses of certain classes of works are likely to be adversely affected by section 1201(a)(1) of the Copyright Act, which prohibits the circumvention of measures that effectively control access to copyrighted works. These comments were submitted on behalf of five major library associations--American Association of Law Libraries (AALL), American Library Association (ALA), Association of Research Libraries (ARL), Medical Library Association (MLA), and Special Libraries Association (SLA).
This Request for a Stay seeks both a stay of the Commission's First Report & Order pending the release by the Commission of the subsequent orders anticipated by that first Order, and a stay of the First Report & Order pending review of that Order by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
Comments from higher education associations.
This case arises out of events related to the nation's transition from analog to digital television service ("DTV").
Reply brief concerning the Federal Communications Commission broadcast flag mandate.
Amicus brief in support of Sierra Club and Judicial Watch, Inc.
Joint statement of industry and public interest.
Comments from higher education associations.