'Orphan Works' Copyright Law Dies Quiet Death... or does it?
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    'Orphan Works' Copyright Law Dies Quiet Death... or does it?

    An update on the Orphan Works came from Wired yesterday

    Lost in the House of Representatives' push to pass $700 billion bailout legislation is the so-called Shawn Bentley Orphan Works Act of 2008. Late Friday, the Senate passed the measure and sent it to the House, where it landed dead on arrival. [...] Lobbyists have assured Threat Level that the House, which is mired in trying to broker an economic revival package, won't take up the measure, at least not until after the November elections.
    For reference, previous CA.org threads discussing the Orphan Works Law are:


    Last edited by Elwell; October 2nd, 2008 at 07:15 AM.
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    Well that's a positive sign... more time to contact congress people and let them know we'd like this measure to remain a dead one.

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    The dying economy saved us!

    <_<

    >_>

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    Yay! Time to celebrate! (at least for now)

    -Mike Cross


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    oh no! we're still starving artists!

    Nothing has changed!

    ........

    yay?

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    Orphan Works bill NOT Dead.

    From the National Press Photographers association :

    Orphan Works Bill Is Not Yet Dead In The House



    WASHINGTON, DC (October 1, 2008) – Today's published reports of the death of Orphan Works on Capitol Hill may be greatly exaggerated.

    Despite stories published on several news blogs and on the Web site of at least one mainstream media and journalism industry magazine's Web site, the Orphan Works bill in the House is not dead and it can't be declared dead until the legislative session ends for the year.

    At least one member of the House Committee on the Judiciary was not in favor of passing the Senate bill as of Wednesday, but there is no guarantee that his position won't change.

    The House is on the receiving end of a lot of pressure to sign the Senate bill, and despite having to deal with the financial bail-out plan and the nation's monetary crisis there's no guarantee that the House won't eventually agree to the Senate's version, the Shawn Bentley Orphan Works Act of 2008.

    Because there's still a chance – even if it is a slim chance – of the House taking action on Orphan Works, NPPA leaders are asking members to continue to contact their elected Representatives and to continue to voice their opposition to the measure.

    The Senate's version of Orphan Works passed by "hotlining" on Friday night and was voted in by "unanimous consent." Some house members don't like it because it does not have the protections that the House bill, H.R. 5889, has – and they feel those protections are important.

    Some members of the House have said that they are still committed to seeing that an Orphan Works bill eventually gets passed.

    Last week the Senate was, to use one Hill reporter's term, "hammered" with communications from library and publishing groups who were pressuring Congress to pass Orphan Works, a copyright amendment. One of the lead organizations who reportedly targeted Senators and applied as much lobbying as possible in favor of getting Orphan Works shoved through is the American Library Association.

    More than 70 organizations, including the National Press Photographers Association, along with more than 100,000 petition signers online, have been opposed to Orphan Works legislation.

    "Many of our members may not yet know how damaging Orphan Works is for photographers," NPPA president Bob Carey said.

    NPPA's leadership has called for members to contact their Representatives in the House immediately and voice their displeasure with the legislation.

    "I implore you to immediately contact your representatives in Congress and urge them to oppose this bill. Without a widespread and overwhelming grass-roots message from photographers and visual artists voicing opposition to this draconian law it will be enacted," NPPA's president wrote Monday in an open letter to NPPA members.

    "Once that happens it will eviscerate any real copyright protections for our images and those who infringe upon our livelihoods will be able to do so as the cost of doing business," Carey said.

    NPPA has also delivered letters expressing the organization's opposition to Orphan Works legislation to the leaders of the Senate and the House, and to members of each committee. The House version of Orphan Works was proposed by Representative Howard Berman (D-CA).

    Supporters of the Orphan Works Act include the American Association of Law Libraries, American Association of Museums, Association of American Universities, Association of American Publishers, the Library of Congress, College Art Association, Association of Public Television Stations, and the Computer & Communication Industry Association.

    The Illustrators Partnership reports that another major supporter of Orphan Works legislation appears to be Google. In July, 2005, Orphan Works Roundtables were held by the U.S. Copyright Office in Washington, DC, where Alexander MacGilivray of Google said, "Google strongly believes that these orphan works are both worthwhile, useful, and extremely valuable. ... We expect that our use of these orphan works will likely be in the 1 million works range."




    In November 2005, Google announced that it would donate $3 million to the U.S. Library of Congress to develop a plan to begin building a World Digital Library. "Google supports the World Digital Library because we share a common mission of making the world’s information universally accessible and useful," Google co-founder Sergey Brin said when he announced the donation.

    The U.S. Copyright Office and the Library of Congress are the "experts" for Congress on intellectual property matters.

    MarketWatch reports that Microsoft has also advocated for copyright law amendments and supported Orphan Works legislation along with Google, believing that Orphan Works legislation will liberate "an untapped wealth of information" that they should be able to publish and that the public should be able to access.

    The Orphan Works Act that passed in the Senate requires only that a company make a "reasonably diligent" search to locate a copyright owner before using their work in media – including the Internet – and places limits on how much a copyright owner can collect in compensation if their copyright has been infringed.

    The previous copyright laws protected copyright holders for decades, whether the copyright holder was aware of it or not.
    The Wired article that as posted was very misleading.... there's still a real chance that this bill can pass.

    Please contact your House representative today. Tell them not to pass the House bill. Tell them not to adopt the Senate’s.


    http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartne...ertid=11980321

    Finish the bill off!


    Illustrators Partnership Blog > http://ipaorphanworks.blogspot.com/

    Last edited by Elwell; October 2nd, 2008 at 07:14 AM.
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    A little good news I guess.

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    I was wondering what Elwell edited in the original post; I kept rereading it and I just couldn't see what was right in front of my face. Then I saw the title, and I got a good laugh. it's sad but true, as GNL pointed out.

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    FROM THE ILLUSTRATORS' PARTNERSHIP

    According to our sources
    THE HOUSE WILL TRY TO PASS THE ORPHAN WORKS BILL TODAY

    10.3.08

    If this Bill is only meant to help libraries and museums, why did they draft it behind closed doors?

    Why have the doors been opened wide for commercial infringement of the work of living authors actively licensing their work?

    Why do they want to pass it when nobody's looking?

    Why do they want to re-write copyright law without an open debate?

    Stop this effort to give content to Big Internet firms by undermining copyright law.

    Get the word out.


    · Light up Washington and home offices of your Congressman.
    · Contact the media.
    · Deny them cover. Do not let them hide.


    Tell them we will hold each of them accountable.


    THE MESSAGE for your Congressman, Key Leaders, Aides, Media

    · The "Dark Archive" - where infringers can register their paperwork in secret - will not protect our copyrights.

    · An "Open Archive" - with orphaned work exposed to to the public - would be a come-and-get-it bank for plagiarists and infringers.

    · Artists cannot monitor tens or hundreds of thousands of images every day to see if somebody somewhere has infringed their work.

    · There are more than a trillion images subject to orphaning each day.

    · If someone can't find me, that doesn't mean I've orphaned my work.

    · An unsuccessful search for a property owner should not be a license to steal.

    · Artists should not have to digitize their life's work at their own expense to comply with a law they don't want or need.

    · The high cost compliance would make compliance prohibitive.

    · The loss of exclusive rights would undermine contractual agreements with clients.

    · We cannot sell exclusive rights to clients if others can publish our work without our knowledge or consent.

    · The loss of exclusive rights would devalue our entire inventories of work.

    · Small business owners should not be forced to subsidize the business models of Big Internet firms.

    · No rational business owner should have to give access to their inventory, metadata, client contact information, etc. to outside business interests.


    Tell lawmakers to prevent passage of this bill until it can be subjected to an open, informed and transparent public examination.

    Tell them this is no way to re-write copyright law.

    Tell them it will affect millions of rights holders worldwide.

    Tell them you would support a true orphan works bill, but this is not it.

    Tell them to to consider the amendments presented by the Illustrators' Partnership, Artists Rights Society and Advertising Photographers of America

    Phone, fax, email these Congresspeople immediately

    DELAHUNT Phone: (202) 225-3111 Fax (202) 225-5658
    Phone: (617) 770-3700 Fax: (617) 770-2984

    CONYERS Phone: (202) 225-5126 Fax: (202) 225-0072
    Phone: (313) 961-5670 Fax: (313) 226-2085

    NADLER Phone: (202) 225-5635 Fax: (202) 225-6923
    Phone: (212) 367-7350 Fax: (212) 367-7356

    BERMAN Phone: (202) 225-4695 Fax: (202) 225-3196
    Phone: (818) 994-7200 Fax: (818) 994-1050

    PELOSI AmericanVoices@mail.house.gov
    Phone: (202) 225-4965 Fax: (202) 225-8259
    Phone: (415) 556-4862 Fax: (415) 861-1670

    HOYER steny.hoyer@mail.house.gov
    Phone: (202) 225-4131 Fax: (202) 225-4300
    Phone: (301) 474-0119 Fax: (301) 474-4697


    YOUR REPRESENTATIVE
    To find Washington and District Office phone, fax and web forms for your Representative
    http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartne...dbq/officials/
    and enter your zip code

    YOUR LOCAL MEDIA
    To find the contacts for your Local Media go to
    http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartnership/dbq/media/
    and enter your zip code


    - Brad Holland and Cynthia Turner, for the Board of the Illustrators' Partnership

    Please post or forward this message immediately to any interested party.

    __________________________________________________ _____________


    For news and information:
    Illustrators' Partnership Orphan Works Blog: http://ipaorphanworks.blogspot.com/

    Over 75 organizations oppose this bill, representing over half a million creators.

    U.S. Creators and the image-making public can email Congress through the Capwiz site: http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartnership/home/ 2 minutes is all it takes to tell the U.S. Congress to uphold copyright protection for the world's artists.

    INTERNATIONAL ARTISTS please fax these 4 U.S. State Agencies and appeal to your home representatives for intervention. http://www.illustratorspartnership.o...archterm=00267

    CALL CONGRESS: 1-800-828-0498. Tell the U.S. Capitol Switchboard Operator "I would like to leave a message for Congressperson __________ that I oppose the Orphan Works Act." The switchboard operator will patch you through to the lawmaker's office and often take a message which also gets passed on to the lawmaker. Once you're put through tell your Representative the message again.

    If you received our mail as a forwarded message, and wish to be added to our mailing list, email us at: illustratorspartnership@cnymail.com Place "Add Name" in the subject line, and provide your name and the email address you want used in the message area. Illustrators, photographers, fine artists, songwriters, musicians, and countless licensing firms all believe this bill will harm their small businesses.

    STOP THE U.S. ORPHAN WORKS ACT NOW.

    "No matter where you go, there you are."
    <Buckaroo Banzai>
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    i hope this bill dies , i'm too lazy to mark my stuff and besides my style speaks for itself , every brush stoke is a signature of me , to hell with rippers.

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    Orphan Works: A Public Knowledge Postmortem
    10.9.08

    "Orphan works relief was vigorously opposed by visual artists... And while we have thought some of their concerns misguided, they did a fine job of organizing and getting their voices heard."


    That was the rueful conclusion Monday from the President of Public Knowledge. She was conducting a postmortem on her blog to explain why their last minute efforts to pass the Orphan Works Act failed last week.

    Public Knowledge is one of the key special interest groups driving orphan works legislation. And while interested parties around the country were being told all week that the bill was dead, she now confirms that there was a secret last minute push to pass it:


    "[W]ith the country's financial crisis raging [she writes] and Congress in the middle of deliberations over a bill to rescue our financial institutions, there was still an opportunity to get a bill done. But how? The best option was to get either House Courts, Internet and Intellectual Property Subcommittee Chairman Berman or House Judiciary Committee Chairman Conyers to take the Senate bill that passed and put it on the 'suspension calendar,' which is the place largely non-controversial legislation gets put so that it will get passed quickly. There can be no amendments to bills placed on the suspension calendar, but it needs a 2/3 majority to pass (italics added).



    "On Saturday, September 27," she continues, she and others "were on the phone imploring the members to move the bill...":


    "The negotiations went on for hours and hours on Thursday into Friday, but in the end, PK, working with the user community (libraries, documentary filmmakers, educational institutions and the College Art Association) could not agree with [sic] on language with the House staff. Late Friday afternoon, the House voted in favor of a bailout bill and everybody went home. Time had run out." http://www.publicknowledge.org/node/1783



    Public Knowledge has a "Six Point Program" to undo existing copyright law. "Orphan Works Reform" is Number 5. http://www.publicknowledge.org/node/1245 And while they're "disappointed" they weren't able to pass the bill this session, she advises supporters to "focus on what positive things came out of the process, so [they] can move forward quickly next year."


    PK says artists have learned their lesson

    In her opinion, one of the "positive things" to "come out of the process" is that:


    "[V]isual artists, graphic designers and textile manufacturers who opposed orphan works relief now understand that they must change their business models." (Italics added.)



    Artists "must change their business models"? Is that a sound we hear from inside the Trojan Horse?

    Whatever happened to the claim that this bill was only a minor tweak to copyright law - to let libraries and museums digitize their collections of old work - or let families duplicate photos of grandma?

    That was the argument lawmakers heard last spring, when the bill was rolled out suddenly, scripted for quick and easy passage. But now that the anti-copyright lobby has had to fight for it, they've dropped their guard. Now it's time to openly lecture artists that the world is changing and we'd better get used to registering our work with privately owned "databases" -- at least if we want to ensure that our works won't become orphaned.

    But of course that was the agenda all along.


    PK says not all artists are misguided

    PK's President wants Congress to know that not all artists are "misguided" - only those that oppose the bill. Currently, 80 professional groups do.

    By contrast, she cites the Graphic Artists Guild as an example of artists who have learned their lesson. She praises GAG as "enlightened," because GAG supported the House version of the bill. She quotes a recent letter from GAG's President in which he admonished artists to "get real about this Orphan Works scare":

    "I don't think Orphan Works is going to have a dramatic influence on how we do business [he wrote], but I hope it has awakened us all to the importance of tending to business issues. If we as a community invested a fraction of the energy we've expended on an apocalyptic vision of Orphan Works into protecting our own creations, protesting unfair contracting practices or writing letters to low-paying publishers, we'd be in a far better market position than we are today. The fact is that we give away more in the every day practice of our businesses than the government could ever take from us."


    We replied to the GAG letter weeks ago, when it was first circulated to artists. We obviously disagree. Indeed, we'd point out that what the community of artists is doing by opposing this bill is "protecting our own creations":


    The Orphan works bill would have a dramatic affect on business, because it would let people infringe our work without our knowledge, consent or payment.
    Most people who succeed in our field do "treat art as a business."

    People who are bad at business can't be used as proof that successful people must change their business models.
    You can't justify exposing an artists' property to theft by telling him he didn't write enough "letters to low-paying publishers."
    What artists do or don't "give away" on their own doesn't justify government's taking anything from them.
    It's counter-intuitive to tell small business owners we should accept a bill that's bad for business to prove that we've "awakened to the importance of tending to business."
    If we don't fight to keep the work we create, that would be the ultimate failure to tend to business.

    A full response to the entire GAG letter is here: http://ipaorphanworks.blogspot.com/2...ourselves.html

    The Orphan Works Act was based on a premise and a conclusion:


    The premise is that the public is being harmed because it doesn't have enough contact information to locate copyright owners.
    The conclusion is that artists must change their business models.
    What's lacking is any evidence in between.

    The Orphan Works Act was based on recommendations by the Copyright Office. But the Copyright Office studied the specific subject of orphaned work. They did not study the business models of artists who are alive, working and managing their copyrights. That means there can be no meaningful conclusions drawn from their study to dictate that such artists must change their business models.

    From the beginning, artists have said we'd support a true orphan works bill. We've submitted precise amendments that would make one out of this bill. http://ipaorphanworks.blogspot.com/2...mendments.html Our amendments have never been considered.

    Instead, as PK's President noted in her postmortem, their last minute strategy for passing the bill would have "put it on the 'suspension calendar.'" And "[t]here can be no amendments to bills placed on the suspension calendar..."

    The anti-copyright lobby is well funded. They have powerful backers. They've warned us they'll be back next year.

    We should take them at their word.

    - Brad Holland and Cynthia Turner, for the Board of the Illustrators' Partnership

    __________________________________________________ ____________


    Over 80 organizations oppose this bill, representing over half a million creators.

    U.S. Creators and the image-making public can email Congress through the Capwiz site: http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartnership/home/ 2 minutes is all it takes to tell the U.S. Congress to uphold copyright protection for the world's artists.

    INTERNATIONAL ARTISTS please fax these 4 U.S. State Agencies and appeal to your home representatives for intervention. http://www.illustratorspartnership.o...archterm=00267

    CALL CONGRESS: 1-800-828-0498. Tell the U.S. Capitol Switchboard Operator "I would like to leave a message for Congressperson __________ that I oppose the Orphan Works Act." The switchboard operator will patch you through to the lawmaker's office and often take a message which also gets passed on to the lawmaker. Once you're put through tell your Representative the message again.

    If you received our mail as a forwarded message, and wish to be added to our mailing list, email us at: illustratorspartnership@cnymail.com Place "Add Name" in the subject line, and provide your name and the email address you want used in the message area. Illustrators, photographers, fine artists, songwriters, musicians, and countless licensing firms all believe this bill will harm their small businesses.


    Please post or forward this message to any interested party.

    STOP THE U.S. ORPHAN WORKS ACT NOW.

    "No matter where you go, there you are."
    <Buckaroo Banzai>
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    If this bill passes, I will be taking down every picture I’ve ever posted and sticking them up with a huge ugly copyright notice across it and I expect every artist to do the same as well as educate any newcomers. The US does not have the right to impose this on the rest of the world. Artists are not naturally business people and to force them to think thus is to kill off creativity.

    Trying to sneak it in by the back door smacks of desperation or low down, underhanded, shenanigans.

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    Orphan works and comic book death
    October 3rd, 2008
    Author Jeff Trexler
    The House of Representatives has adjourned–for now–and unless the Clerk was asleep at the keyboard the so-called orphan works bill did not pass.

    That means the bill is dead and gone, right?

    Not really.

    If we’ve learned anything from reading comics, nothing is dead unless we see a corpse–and even then, chances are the deceased will eventually come back to life. Law is much the same way. Since there has been so much confusion about the state of the bill over the past few days, here’s a brief explanation of what happened this week and what it means for the future

    http://blog.newsarama.com/2008/10/03...ic-book-death/

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    IPA creates Orphan Works Blog

    The Illustrator's Partnership has established a new blog for information and updates on the Orphan Works Bill.
    Keep up to date with this extremely important issue via the direct link on the right hand side of this page.
    More than 80 Illustrator's Associations world wide, including Illustrator's Australia have joined forces with the IPA as they fight to save our copyrights.

    http://ipaorphanworks.blogspot.com

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    We always should ask in a crime...



    "Who benefits?"


    Both Google and Microsoft have advocated for reform of the current system for orphaned works, which automatically grants protections to their authors for decades, whether the authors realize it or not.



    In comments sent to the U.S. Copyright Office in 2005, as legislation was brewing, Google General Counsel David Drummond wrote that orphaned works often "exist in a sort of purgatory," and "represent an untapped wealth of information that can and should be made accessible to the public."



    Drummond wrote that greater clarity on the status of orphaned works could provide comfort to companies such as Google, "that they can publish a work without fear of liability."



    http://www.marketwatch.com/news/stor...%7D&dist=msr_2

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