Posts by Laura Moy:
Public Knowledge & Consumers Petition Copyright Office for Right to Unlock Access to Their Own StuffNovember 3, 2014
It’s Copyright Week! From today through Saturday, a number of groups around the Web will be exchanging ideas, information, and actions about how to fix copyright law for the better. Each day will be devoted to a different aspect of copyright law. For more on Copyright Week, see here.
Today’s focus is on building and defending a robust public domain. Copyright limits free speech. That’s why it’s important for policymakers to keep it limited, and to leave as much in the public domain as possible.
The Internet is the cornerstone of free speech in the modern age. I can say just about anything I want on this blog without fear that the police will arrest me or even try to discourage me. Right now, the only reason I’m even thinking about how the government might try to shut me up is because I’m writing a blog post about it.
We asked, you delivered. Yesterday we passed 100,000 signature mark on a White House petition to reform a sorely outdated privacy law.
Last week we blogged about a White House petition to reform the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (“ECPA”). We were trying to get to 100,000 signatures, because the White House will issue an official response to every petition that gets at least 100,000 signatures in under 30 days. We asked you to take a moment of your time to sign the petition.
Today we urged the Federal Communications Commission to clarify and enforce a provision the Communications Act designed to protect phone customers’ privacy.
Do you ever think about how much your phone service provider knows about you—where you go, how long you stay there, and whom you talk to and for how long? Do you think your provider should be able to sell or share that information with anyone, for any reason? No?
Today, Public Knowledge joins a nationwide day of action calling for reform of the Electronic Communications Act (“ECPA”). Please sign a White House petition to improve legal protections of our communications.
Have you ever wondered what, if anything, protects the content of your emails from prying government eyes? Well, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (“ECPA”) is supposed to do that. But there’s a big problem with ECPA: it was written in the 1980s and has never been updated. As we all know, there have been some major changes to the way we communicate in the last 25 years. Those changes, in combination with an outdated law, have created some troubling deficits in privacy protection.
We should give pre-1972 sound recordings federal copyright protection that preempts state law. In the process, let’s take a fresh look at our current copyright system and address some of the biggest problems.
In an op-ed published in USA Today on Monday, U.S. House Representative John Conyers of Michigan, the ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, argued that federal copyright protection should be extended to pre-1972 sound recordings, which at present only receive copyright protection under state law. Extending federal copyright to pre-1972 sound recordings makes a lot of sense, but not for the exact reasons Conyers articulates.