Re:Create Recap- November 1, 2018

Copyright Office Releases Section 1201 Exemptions. The Copyright Office unveiled new DMCA Section 1201 exemptions on October 26, allowing Americans greater freedom to do things like fix smartphones and repair car software. TechCrunch’s Devin Coldewey posted a helpful backgrounder on Section 1201 and a list of the new exemptions. He wrote that copyright law is “slowly changing as the government acknowledges the need (and arguably right) to repair our own devices.” Kyle Wiens of iFixit explained that it’s a boost to the aftermarket economy now that it’s legal to fix smartphones. However, many advocates cautioned that the Copyright Office still needs to do more. The Verge wrote that the Copyright Office did not grant exemptions for video game repairs; likewise only “motorized land vehicles” can be repaired, not boats or planes.

Re:Create Welcomes Innovation Defense Foundation As 16th Member. In welcoming the Innovation Defense Foundation as Re:Create’s newest member, Executive Director Joshua Lamel commented that the wide spectrum of political ideologies represented “demonstrates the importance of a working copyright system to a broad base of stakeholders representing creators, consumers, librarians, researchers and more.” In the announcement, Innovation Defense Foundation President Wayne Brough stated, “Unfortunately, overly-broad interpretation and enforcement of these rights leads to monopoly rents, to the detriment of innovation and the free-market. Society needs a balanced copyright approach to reward innovators and creators while still benefiting consumers.”

Federal Judge Doubles Down On Copyright Troll Accusation. On October 19, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote refused to redact an earlier ruling that labeled New York Attorney Richard Liebowitz, who has settled hundreds of infringement lawsuits, a “known copyright troll.” According to a report by Law360, Judge Cote wrote in her refusal to alter the earlier ruling, “As evidenced by the astonishing volume of filings coupled with an astonishing rate of voluntary dismissals and quick settlements in Mr. Liebowitz’s cases in this district, it is undisputable that Mr. Liebowitz is a copyright troll.” Liebowitz has already filed more than 200 cases in the Southern District this year.

Trick Or Treat: A Pumpkin Influencer On Instagram. Maggie Michalczyk left her full-time job last year to focus on her blog and 26,400 Instagram followers — all of whom follow her Instagram account dedicated to pumpkins. In addition to her blog and social media, Michalczyk told Vox in an interview that she earns an income through partnering with brands like IHOP and Whole Foods to feature their pumpkin products. “If a company has a pumpkin product that’s coming out, I think they want to work with me because they know my audience is just as excited about that pumpkin product and they know it’s the right people to speak to,” she said.

Copyright On The Campaign Trail. With Election Day just around the corner, it is important to remember how much candidates and voters rely on fair us by taking a look at Re:Create’s Copyright on the Campaign Trail infographic we released in 2016.