Everyone is handing in their reports before the holidays. This week, the Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator published its 2017-2019 Joint Strategic Plan on Intellectual Property Enforcement, while the US Copyright Office released a report on Software-Enabled Consumer Products.
Congressional panel calls for independent Copyright Office — Last week, the House Judiciary Committee released a policy proposal that would give the Copyright Office the autonomy over IT, staff, and budget that it needs in order to bring the Office into the 21st century. The Washington Post’s Peggy McGlone looks at the proposal in more detail, including reactions from constituents.
Public Knowledge’s Lonely Echo Chamber of Copyright Advocacy — Geoffrey Manne and Neil Turkewitz write, “Public Knowledge’s implication that it is a better defender of the ‘public’ interest than those who actually serve in the public sector is a subterfuge, masking its real objective of transforming the nature of copyright law in its own, benighted image. A questionable means to a noble end, PK might argue. Not in our book. This story always turns out badly.”
Breaking Down the Fairness for American Small Creators Act — Last week, we also saw the introduction of HR 6496, the Fairness for American Small Creators Act. Jonathan Bailey takes a deep dive into the bill, which would set up a voluntary copyright claims process as an easier and less costly alternative to federal litigation.
Hollywood Studios Win Injunction Against Streamer VidAngel — A federal judge rejected all of the opportunistic arguments against VidAngel, finding the service not a clever workaround of copyright law, but rather an unlicensed video-on-demand service. VidAngel has vowed to take the case all the way up to the Supreme Court.
Fair Use… The Final Frontier? — Finally, next week, the Central District Court of California will hear arguments on motions for summary judgment in Paramount v Axanar, a case involving an allegedly unauthorized spin-off of Star Trek. Paramount argues that the film at issue is little more than an infringing derivative work of the many Star Trek television episodes and films, while Axanar argues either that their film does not share substantial similarities with any of Paramount’s works or that any infringement is excused by fair use. By Grabthar’s Hammer, expect many clumsy Star Trek references when the hearing is reported.