Saturday, August 22, 2009

Additional DMCA Rulemaking Questions Received

I have, along with other DMCA rulemaking-hearing participants, received a second question set from the U.S. Copyright Office. The questions are premised by: "For purposes of the question below, please assume that the Register has decided to recommend an exemption to the prohibition for proposed classes 4A through 4H, 11A and 11B, or some portion thereof, relating to motion pictures on CSS-protected DVDs" and ask:

“From your unique perspectives, is there a limitation, either in terms of duration or percentage (or both), which could be incorporated into the definition of an exempted class of works?”

Specifically, the copyright office suggests the following language could possibly be used in the context of finished products (remixes) for crafting the new exemption:

“… the portions of any single work used shall be, collectively, no greater than x minutes in duration and represent no greater than y percent of the duration of that work….”

The questions also acknowledge how creating a quantity limitation might be objectionable to some, but since this is not a redrafting of section 107, but is instead an administrative rulemaking proceeding, they are asking for suggestions from hearing participants nonetheless. They state:

“Again, we recognize that for purposes of fair use, what may be a reasonable duration in one case will not necessarily be a reasonable duration in another case, we are not proposing to codify the fair use doctrine in this rulemaking proceeding. However, this is a regulatory proceeding and for the purposes of promulgating a regulation governing exemptions from the prohibition on circumvention, we are inclined to believe that more specific limitations are advisable so that, at least for purposes of predicting liability under section 1201(a)(1), users will find sufficient guidance in the regulatory text.”

The questions were emailed to hearing participants Friday August 21, 2009 at 5:38 pm, EST. Responses are due September 8, 2009 by 5 pm.

Friday, August 14, 2009

EFF's von Lohmann provides analysis on DMCA-DVD jukebox cases

Fred von Lohmann of EFF has provided a thoughtful analysis of the two recent DVD - DMCA-related cases that have been decided this week.

"Just one day after Judge Patel's ruling against RealDVD, a California appeals court has ruled against Kaleidescape, reversing the lower court and sending that case back for a fresh determination of whether Kaleidescape violated the terms of the DVD-CCA license."

RealNetwork loses ruling in DMCA related case

"The decision represents a major victory for the film studios, which had accused Real of violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and breach of contract in a lawsuit filed last fall."

Friday, August 7, 2009

White House's Acting Cybersecurity Czar Resigns

From the Wall Street Journal: "The resignation highlights the difficulty the White House has had following through on its cybersecurity effort. President Barack Obama first outlined his cybersecurity plans in a high-profile speech May 29, announcing his intention to create a top White House cybersecurity post -- a position he has yet to fill."

The whole story: