Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The FAIR USE Act -- More On the Copyright Wars

The Freedom and Innovation Revitalizing U.S. Entrepreneurship Act of 2007, H.R. 1201, is being sponsored by Congressman Rick Boucher (D-VA), Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), and Congressman John Doolittle (R-CA). The Bill states that it is being proposed "to amend title 17, United States Code, to promote innovation, to encourage the introduction of new technology, to enhance library preservation efforts, and to protect the fair use rights of consumers, and for other purposes." The Bill seeks to do this by making permanent six exemptions to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act that would otherwise expire and have to be re-approved every three years.

The six exemptions allow a person to circumvent technological protections on digital media works for the purpose of:
  • Compiling digital media works for educational use;
  • Editing out commercial or objectionable material in a digital media work;
  • Transmitting a work over a home or personal network (but one still can't upload it to the Internet or redistribute it);
  • Accessing a portion of a work that is in the public domain from a compilation that is primarily of works in the public domain;
  • Accessing a portion of a work for the purpose of criticism, comment, news reporting, scholarship, or research;
  • Allowing a library or archive to accesses a work to preserve it or replace a damaged, deteriorating, lost, or stolen copy.
You can read the full text of the FAIR USE Act here.

If you would like to petition a Member of Congress to support this Act, visit ALA's Legislative Action Center.

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