Re:Create Recap – March 8, 2018

And The Oscar Goes To…Fair Use For Its Role In Free Speech Protections. In a Medium post published on the heels of the 90th Academy Awards, Re:Create Executive Director Joshua Lamel spotlighted the “inherent tension” between Hollywood’s love for free speech as part of the creative process and its use of copyright law to limit free expression in support of the industry’s own interests. Lamel wrote, “With the right balance, copyright is an incentive for creativity in our society. It allows the work of an artist to inspire the work of others without denying the artist the rewards of his imagination and labor. But copyright law, with its lengthy term that extends seventy years after the death of the copyright holder, the severity of the penalties imposed for infringement and the ease with which injunctive relief can be secured, can create an imbalance between an artist’s copyright and the constitutional guarantees afforded us all.”

Your Policy Guide For SXSW Next Week. Important policy debates will once again be on the agenda next week at the annual SXSW gathering of technology enthusiasts, experts and policy wonks. For a look at the can’t-miss policy discussions taking place, check out R Street’s guide which includes a panel on internet safe harbors featuring Engine’s Rachel Wolbers.

The Power Of Star Trek Fans. Citing the copyright legal history surrounding CBS/Paramount Pictures and Star Trek‘s cult following, Newsweek‘s Andrew Whalen argued that open access could save the sci-fi genre that is so expensive to produce. Whalen pointed out that long copyright terms give CBS and Paramount too much power over the creative rights of fans. Creative Commons CEO Ryan Merkley made the case that “simpler, or free, legal structures are key” and can open possibilities for fans and production houses. Merkley emphasized that there’s more to intellectual property than just financial value: “You can create stronger and more vibrant communities by inviting other people to build on top of that original property…not by selling access. You get that by inviting collaboration. That’s what sparks passion.”

Meet Sarah: Telling New Stories Through Fan Fiction. After binge-watching the TV show Supernatural on Netflix, Sarah Loch discovered fanfiction as an opportunity to consume more of her favorite content, characters and storylines. Then after exploring some fanfic stories and not being able to find the right type of material she wanted to read, she began writing her own. “I’m lucky to write primarily for fandoms where the rights holders either openly encourage fanworks or at the least understand that fandom helps grow their bottom line,” Loch told the Re:Create Coalition in the latest profile. “Restrictions on allowable content that can be posted online would most likely be the death knell of my fanfiction writing and my original fiction work.”

Recapping Fair Use Week 2018. The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) reviewed the successes of Fair Use Week 2018, which saw 153 organizations participating. Organizations and individuals hailed from around the globe — including Australia, Canada, Colombia and Greece — to contribute infographics, webinars, videos and blog posts on the importance of the fair use doctrine.

Reading Gabriel Garcia Marquez Online. In a rare move for most literary figures, the University of Texas announced this week that much of Latin American author Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s collection has been digitized and made available for free. The New York Times noted that “to make so much material from a writer whose work is still under copyright freely available online is unusual.” The online archive includes original manuscripts, correspondence, photographs scrapbooks and more — a treasure trove for fans and scholars.