Goodlatte Announces Agenda for 115th Congress — That agenda includes advancing the House Judiciary Committee\’s ongoing review of copyright law. Goodlatte says, “At the end of 2016, we issued our first bipartisan proposal to ensure the Copyright Office keeps pace in the digital age. Among the reforms contained in our first proposal are granting the Copyright Office autonomy and requiring it to maintain an up-to-date digital, searchable database of all copyrighted works. This proposal is the first of what we intend to be numerous policy proposals to reform aspects of our copyright laws.”

Creating a USCO Capable of Succeeding in a Changing World [PDF] — The Judiciary Committee policy proposal mentioned above also refers to the creation of a small claims process. In its comments to the Committee, an ad hoc coalition of visual artists—who are essentially shut out from enforcing their rights in federal court due to litigation costs—thoroughly cover the many details of the small claims process that would need to be addressed to make it a reality.

Police Seize Domains of Fifty ‘Pirate’ Newspaper and Magazine Sites — One tends to think of movies and music when one thinks of piracy, but any creative work that can exist in digital form is likely being distributed illegally online. TorrentFreak reports on a recent operation by Italian authorities that successfully shuttered a large scale pirate operation illegally distributing “‘vast quantities’ of material originally published by major newspapers and periodicals including Cosmopolitan, Fashion Magazine, and Vanity Fair.”

IP Scholars Explain Why We Shouldn’t Use SurveyMonkey to Select Our Next Register of Copyrights — “Rather than crowd sourcing the job description, the Librarian should review the Copyright Act and consider candidates that would be best qualified to fulfill the explicit and established standards of 701(b). By handing this over to anyone willing to fill out a SurveyMonkey form, the Library of Congress is politicizing a process that shouldn’t be politicized. The letter warns that ‘[w]hile it is often laudable to seek public input on important issues of policy, an online survey seeking input on job competencies from any internet user is an inefficient and inappropriate approach for developing selection criteria for this important role, particularly where such minimal background is provided to survey-takers and where there appears to be no mechanism to encourage constructive comments.'”‘