Thursday, May 08, 2008

Orphan Works Update

A House panel unanimously approved the orphan works bill yesterday. Daryl Lang of Photo District News looks at the split among photo associations that the legislation has "exposed" (pun intended, I assume).

Lang also addresses some of the misinformation about the bill that's been floating around:

"One point of disagreement concerns whether the bill would require artists to register their work with commercial databases to get copyright protection .... Holland has used this point to argue against the bill in several articles. The APA used similar language in a five-page position paper published Tuesday: 'All works, professional or personal, published or unpublished, will have to be registered with as-yet-to-be-created private, commercial registries.' No such requirement appears in either bill currently before Congress, and Perlman and PACA attorney Nancy Wolff say the statement is untrue. Both versions of the amendment mandate the creation of private databases of copyrighted works to facilitate the search for rights owners, but registration would not be mandatory for all creative works."