Press Release Copyright Reform

Public Knowledge Opposes Copyright Bill Creating Unaccountable “Small-Claims” Court

May 1, 2019 ,

Today, Representatives Doug Collins (R-GA) and Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) introduced the “Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2019” (CASE Act) to establish a new Copyright Claim Board within the United States Copyright Office. Public Knowledge opposes the bill as written due to grave concerns with its contents.

The following can be attributed to Meredith Rose, Policy Counsel at Public Knowledge:

“We acknowledge the very real problems faced by many artists trying to enforce their copyrights online, and are hopeful that collaboration among all stakeholders can create a meaningful solution. However, the current CASE Act is not it.

“The Act further entrenches an already-toxic culture of secrecy within major entertainment industries; undermines recent Supreme Court precedent on the importance of copyright registration; and creates a body that can grant un-appealable, enormous judgments that stretch the definitions of ‘small claims,’ while empowering the Copyright Office to further increase those judgment amounts in the future. This system, as drafted, is both flatly untenable, and unlikely to solve the problems it claims to address.

“We look forward to working with Rep. Collins and Rep. Jeffries to try and remedy these and other concerns with the bill, and to devise a solution that provides meaningful relief for artists without worsening existing problems in copyright law.”

You may view our recent blog post, “The CASE Act: Small Claims, Big Risks,” for more information.