Re:Create Statement Ahead of House Floor Vote of The CASE Act

WASHINGTON—Ahead of Tuesday’s floor vote on the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement (CASE) Act of 2019, the Re:Create Coalition issued the following statement from Executive Director Joshua Lamel:

“The CASE Act will expose ordinary Americans to tens of thousands of dollars in damages for things most of us do everyday. We strongly urge Congress to reject the CASE Act as currently written.

“Everything about how this bill has moved forward in Congress is a foreshadowing of how reckless it will be for Americans. Only one hearing was held at the end of last Congress, and public interest opposition witnesses were not invited. There have been no opportunities for the numerous and varied groups to voice their significant concerns. Instead, a small but powerful lobby has managed to bully its way to a floor vote.

“If passed by Congress, Americans will similarly have no opportunity to raise their concerns. Families, nonprofits, small businesses and more will be coerced into settlements or unwittingly wake up with $30,000 in statutory damages — all because they posted a picture or a meme to social media and lack the knowledge of complex copyright law needed to defend themselves.

“The CASE Act will not only be disastrous for Americans’ wallets, but the bill is pretty clearly unconstitutional. Its failure to grant the right to a trial by jury fails 50 years of Supreme Court jurisprudence making it clear that copyright, and the award of statutory damages in copyright, have their basis in the common law. Thus a right to trial by jury in an Article III court as opposed to an Article I court is required.

“It’s crucial that Congress go back to the drawing board and address easy fixes to protect Americans from being exploited by copyright trolls.”


Click here for more on why Re:Create members and others are opposed to the CASE Act.

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