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Monday, May 12, 2008

Rescuing Orphan Works

FROM THE ILLUSTRATORS’ PARTNERSHIP

Some backers of the controversial Orphan Works bill say they’re launching a campaign to “Rescue Orphan Works.”

From whom?

We’re not the ones interested in infringing other people’s copyrights.
We’re only interested in protecting our own.
If the “Rescue Orphan Works” folks really want to use only true orphaned work, they’d join us in asking that this bill be drafted accordingly.
From our written statement submitted to the Senate April 30, 2008 http://www.illustratorspartnership.org/ow_docs

We believe the orphan works problem can be and should be solved with carefully crafted, specific limited exemptions.


• An exemption could be tailored to solve family photo restoration and reproduction issues.

• Usage for genealogy research is probably already covered by fair use, but could rate an exemption if deemed necessary.

• Limited exemptions could be designed for documentary filmmakers.

• Libraries and archives already have generous exemptions for their missions. However, if they believe they need expanded access to work whose authors are hard to find, we’d suggest that Congress adopt a variant of the Orphan Works clearance system in use in Canada.


Canada has created a statutory licensing scheme that allows licenses for the use of published works to be issued by the Copyright Board of Canada on behalf of unlocatable copyright owners.

The license is issued by the Canadian Copyright Board. Decisions are made on a case-by- case basis through application to the Board. If the Board is satisfied by the applicant’s efforts of e-mails, phone calls, written correspondence, approaches to copyright collectives, Internet searches, etc., then it may issue a non-exclusive license which is valid only in Canada, subject to any terms and conditions it sees fit.
http://www.library.yale.edu/~llicense/ListArchives/0507/msg00096.html


A system such as this would serve potential users of orphaned work by allowing them to clear rights in an orderly, verified way. Therefore we respectfully ask that the Senate conduct further hearings to resolve the specific problem of providing public access to true orphaned works. Our objections to S.2913 – which incorporates the proposals made by the Copyright Office – is that its effects cannot be limited to old or abandoned copyrights.


There’s no need to “rescue orphan works” from artists.
And you don’t save orphans by making new ones!


Help solve the real orphan works problem: Don't Let Congress Orphan Your Work

2 minutes is all it takes to write Congress and protect your copyright: http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartnership/home/

Please forward this message to every artist you know.

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