Re:Create Recap: The Case Against The CASE Act

**Special Edition: The Case Against The CASE Act**

CASE Act Would Only Create New Problems For Americans. As the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2019 moves its way through the legislative process with a Senate Judiciary Committee markup scheduled for tomorrow, July 11, a Case Against the Case Act blog post by Re:Create lists the most serious concerns with the flawed legislation.

The CASE Act Would Set Terrible Precedent. As part of a blog series on the problems with the CASE Act, Joshua Lamel and Sasha Moss wrote: “By establishing a judicial function within the legislative branch, not the judicial, the proposed legislation raises serious constitutional issues with having a court within the legislative branch that doesn’t even have a right of appeal.”

A Windfall To Attorneys And Bad Idea For The Rest Of Us. Citing examples of “enterprising” attorneys who have exploited excessive statutory damages and new technologies to build trolling business models, another Re:Create blog post details how much consumers and artists stand to lose if the CASE Act is signed into law. “The only beneficiaries will be large media companies, which have yet again fooled small creators and Members of Congress into believing this piece of legislation will benefit the little guy, when it actually will only fill their own inflated pocketbooks,” wrote Joshua Lamel and Sasha Moss.

Authors Alliance Says CASE Act May Be Unconstitutional. In an analysis of the CASE Act, Kerry Maeve Sheehan with the Authors Alliance finds serious flaws with the bill leading her to conclude, “If Congress is serious about fixing Copyright’s small claims problem, it needs to do better than the CASE Act.”  While she recognizes the well-intentioned goals of the bill to help reduce barriers to copyright enforcement, Sheehan’s analysis lists several problem areas, including the fact that it may even be unconstitutional to force copyright infringement claims into an administrative forum, as Authors Alliance founder and law professor Pamela Samuelson has pointed out.

CASE Act Will Encourage Copyright Trolling. TechDirt’s Mike Masnick asks the question: “Why is Congress moving forward with its plan to encourage copyright trolling?” The CASE Act would create a small claims court for copyright, but Masnick pointed out how the bill would make copyright trolling an even bigger problem than it already is. Copyright trolls currently already claim infringement “in hopes of extracting settlement fees.” Masnick explained how the CASE Act will make this even easier and more commonplace.

Public Knowledge: CASE Act Isn’t The Right Solution For Artists. Public Knowledge raised concerns with the re-introduction of the CASE Act to start a copyright small claims board at the U.S. Copyright Office. Their opposition centers on language in the bill that “further entrenches an already-toxic culture of secrecy within major entertainment industries…and creates a body that can grant un-appealable, enormous judgments that stretch the definitions of ‘small claims.’” Public Knowledge called for collaboration amongst stakeholders to better help small artists enforce their copyrights online. In a previous blog post, Meredith Rose concluded that the bill would make the Copyright Office the default venue for infringement claims and would “establish an opaque, unaccountable legislation mill that will likely get bogged down by copyright trolls and questionable claimants looking for a payout.”