US Copyright Office Still Out Of Touch; Supports PROTECT IP/E-PARASITE & Felony Streaming Bills
from the whatever-the-entertainment-industry-wants dept
The US Copyright Office, for years, has remained totally out of touch with the mess that copyright has become, often acting as the entertainment industry’s voice within the government. There was some hope that when longtime boss Marybeth Peters finally left, that the Copyright Office would bring in some new blood who might actually recognize how hindering and damaging copyright law is today, and seek to actually help bring copyright law into the modern era. So much for that plan. New boss Maria Pallante has released a new report detailing the “priorities” of the Copyright Office… and its the entertainment industry’s two favorite bills: PROTECT IP/E-PARASITE and the felony streaming bill. The full report (pdf) also supports the RIAA bailout bill/performance rights act, also known as the extra tax on radio stations, forcing them to pay to advertise music. While there are a few nods towards things like orphan works, it seems like the Copyright Office is about more of the same failed policies… just ratcheted up further.
In other words, the US Copyright Office remains totally out of touch with what’s happening in the world and online these days, and how both of these bills will have massive unintended consequences; criminalizing perfectly reasonable behavior, putting massive burdens on job-creating entrepreneurs and startups, limiting investment into innovation, and fundamentally breaking important parts of the internet. But if it gets a few more dollars into some legacy Hollywood studio’s pockets… well, the US Copyright Office is all for that. Sad. The US Copyright Office should be and could be a leader in fixing a broken copyright system. Instead, it appears to want to double down on the failed policies of the past, believing that greater enforcement and harsher punishments for actions done by millions is the answer. Scary stuff, but not surprising.