orphan works law

more orphan works

New York Times op-ed piece by  Lawrence Lessig, a law professor at Stanford:
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/20/opinion/20lessig.html?_r=2&oref=slogin&oref=slogin

From the sounds of this, I wasn’t far off in my understanding of the problem :p … as Lessig puts it:

“The solution before Congress, however, is both unfair and unwise. The bill would excuse copyright infringers from significant damages if they can prove that they made a “diligent effort” to find the copyright owner. A “diligent effort” is defined as one that is “reasonable and appropriate,” as determined by a set of “best practices” maintained by the government.

But precisely what must be done by either the “infringer” or the copyright owner seeking to avoid infringement is not specified upfront. The bill instead would have us rely on a class of copyright experts who would advise or be employed by libraries. These experts would encourage copyright infringement by assuring that the costs of infringement are not too great. The bill makes no distinction between old and new works, or between foreign and domestic works. All work, whether old or new, whether created in America or Ukraine, is governed by the same slippery standard.”

Orphan Works Law

Still reading about this, but it seems like something to worry about.

Its a bill in congress that seeks to change copyright law which will require all work we have ever done and ever do to be registered (for a fee), otherwise you would lose your copyright, and anyone could use it without paying you a cent.

Current law assumes passive copyright.

To learn more:

http://mag.awn.com/index.php?ltype=Columns&article_no=3605&page=3

and a brad holland interview:

http://www.sellyourtvconceptnow.com/orphan.html