ReCreate Recap: March 5, 2021

Re:Create Letter To Congress. In a letter to the 117th Congress, Re:Create details its copyright priorities and calls for equitable copyright policy for every sector of society. The letter also emphasizes the effectiveness of the DMCA in support of online creativity and economic growth. “Attempts to increase the protections provided by U.S. copyright law may serve an important purpose, but in doing so we must remain mindful that a heavy-handed approach will only stifle free speech, creativity and the economy writ large. The U.S. government should seek the appropriate balance in copyright law to unlock the innovative and creative spirit of all people to their fullest potential,” wrote the coalition of libraries, creators, advocates, and consumers.

Opinion: To Protect Free Speech, Protect The DMCA.In an op-ed for the Washington Examiner, Wayne Brough warns about Sen. Tillis’ proposed copyright proposal to undo the DMCA that is “quietly moving forward in Congress with little public attention.” He explains how Tillis’ proposal to move to notice and staydown would amount to “permanent censorship.” Brough urges the Senate to rethink supporting Hollywood’s ideas: “If the DMCA is further changed in its favor, the content industry would be given even greater powers over the internet at the expense of internet users and independent content creators.”

RIAA 2020 Report Shows Boom Year For Music-Streaming Subscriptions. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) announced the fifth year of music industry growth, growing 9.2% in 2020 to $12.2 billion. Rolling Stone noted that paid music-streaming subscriptions saw its biggest growth with 15 million new subscriptions from services like Spotify and Apple Music.

Column: Copyright Has Important Role To Play In Preserving Discontinued Dr. Seuss Books. The announcement that the estate of Theodore Giesel, Dr. Seuss, will stop publishing several books has shone a light on the important role copyright law can play in “preserving access to even vexing art” writes Washington Post columnist Sonny Bunch. He argues that the public domain can be a home for works an artist no longer wants to profit from. “When an artist or an artist’s estate decides that they are no longer comfortable profiting off certain works, they should transfer their copyrights to the public domain or make them under Creative Commons’ copyright waiver,” wrote Bunch. “Such a decision saves an artist or the artist’s estate from the morally troubling proposition of profiting from work deemed racist (or sexist or homophobic) while also preempting suggestions that the art is being memory-holed to appease reactionary progressives.”

Opinion: CASE Act Is Problematic For Copyright Owners And Small Businesses. In an op-ed for IP Watchdog, IP lawyer William Honaker writes that the CASE Act “creates a new efficient vehicle for copyright trolls to prey on your clients.” Specifically, he cautions that now copyright trolls can get a quick judgment with little expense. “If their letter and negotiations don’t produce a result, instead of giving up, they can get a decision from the CCB; it’s quick, inexpensive and enforceable. The CCB will still have discretion as to the amount, but the costs (and therefore the risk) to get the decision will be minimal.”