Re:Create Recap – Week of July 20

Library Of Congress Could Help Lead Digital Revolution. Alan Inouye, who leads technology policy for the American Library Association, penned a column for Roll Call, “Who Should Be the Next Librarian of Congress? Wrong Question!” on July 20. In the column, he writes about how the attention surrounding who will replace the current librarian of Congress is misguided. Inouye raises broader issues that must be considered during this time of policy change by posing the questions, “What are the necessary roles of federal government institutions such as the Library of Congress in the digital revolution? How can such institutions best promote innovation and creativity, and not get in the way of it?”

Copyright Exemptions Needed To Improve Vehicle Security. Automakers are rolling out more Internet and software capabilities but these advancements leave consumers vulnerable if necessary copyright exemptions are not approved. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has filed an exemption to Section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act that would specifically protect security and safety research on vehicle software from DMCA liability. While automakers argue they have the legal right to shut down security research, the recent work by researchers show how a Jeep could be remotely controlled over the Internet may change this copyright debate. Read more about the need for this security exemption on EFF’s blog, “Jeep Hack Shows Why the DMCA Must Get Out of the Way of Vehicle Security Research.”

District Court Copyright Decision Could Bring Competition To Video Marketplace. A July 16 blog by Re:Create member Public Knowledge highlights a recent District Court decision that found that “FilmOn, an online video service, is entitled to a compulsory copyright license.” Public Knowledge has advocated for regulatory parity for online video services and Senior Staff Attorney John Bergmayer applauded the decision saying, “If upheld, this decision could help bring more competition to the video marketplace. Similar services shouldn’t be subject to totally different rules depending on whether they’re offered over coaxial cable, fiber, satellite transmissions, or online.”

Obstacles To Worldwide Copyright Reform. Ars Technica UK takes on the publishers and the European Union’s role as the “main obstacle to worldwide copyright reform.” In a July 15 article, EU blocks global copyright reform that would allow wider access to knowledge, Glyn Moody follows reports on the World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO) Standing Committee on Copyright & Related Rights (SCCR) meeting earlier this month. The EU was not willing to consider proposals on how “new copyright limitations and exceptions could be introduced to allow libraries and archives to increase access to knowledge without harming commercial exploitation.”

Copyright Blurs Lines Of Artist Inspiration. On July 14, U.S. Judge Kronstadt reduced the $7.4 million award that a jury granted to Marvin Gaye’s family in March to $5.3 million, citing the award as “excessive.” It is important to follow this and related lawsuits because, as highlighted in the July 17 post, “Judge says Gaye family can’t get infringing song “Blurred Lines” banned” by Ars Technica’s Megan Geuss, “The lawsuit has been closely watched because at its center is the question: when does being influenced by an artist turn into copyright infringement?”