Late on Friday November 16th, the Republican Study Committee, which is the caucus for the House Republicans, released a document debunking various myths about copyright law and suggesting key reforms. By Saturday it was taken down after, according to Tech Dirt, Hollywood and the recording industry got wind of it and hit the phones.

It’s worth reading to better understand the position of those who want serious reform. Certainly, since the creation of the internet and all these devices for storing and viewing copyrighted work, some reform is in order. The battle to come is over the amount of protection the creator receives vs the public’s ability to use the work. It’s a fine line and in my opinion too much shift in the public direction will have serious consequences for content creators.


Full Tech Dirt story is here.

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  1. If this serious reform is so necessary to U.S. copyright law as to allow “every 16-year old with a computer and “Virtual DJ” software” the chance “to remix various songs and compete based upon [other peoples] talent,” why not apply the same logic to every other industry that creates something. Lets see a 14 year limited law of protected ownership on the materials used to build a house or the completed structure, for instance. After that, all bets are off, and Mr Khanna’s neighbors could then help themselves and strip off the cladding, the down-pipe and roof tiles on his family home to make use of them in their own property’s mash-up. That would certainly open up the property market to a great deal of “innovation.”

  2. So, what business is pushing this? Cable companies? Who is behind the curtain?

  3. It’s possible for people to save themselves a lot of time and headaches by consulting what good ‘ole Marshal McLuhan says about the differences between mediums. Basically, there’s no possible way that print era copyright protection can ever work in the electronic age.

    Mechanical mediums, like print, are linear and sequential mediums dominated by left-brain reason. Copyright protections are lawful and logical so they work perfectly well when combined with mechanical mediums.

    However, electronic mediums are non-linear and non-sequential mediums that have no beginning and end. They are dominated by right-brain intuition. Unfortunately, right brain mediums are incompatible with copyright protections designed for left-brain industrial era mediums like print. This means that it is totally futile to expect true print era copyright protection in the electronic era. Basically, people need to just give up and understand the anything created in an electronic medium is ultimately open-source and cannot be protected from piracy.

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