Post

Another Kirtsaeng Question: Why Have the Distribution Right?

November 8, 2012 First Sale , Kirtsaeng

In the wake of the Kirtsaeng oral argument, I wanted to look at a strange thing about how the first sale doctrine works in our copyright laws. The first sale doctrine makes it legal for you to sell, lend, or give away copies of copyrighted works that you own.

Read More
Post

What the Election Means for the Internet

November 7, 2012 Kirtsaeng , Network Neutrality , Open Internet , Orphan Works , SOPA

After nearly two years of debates, never-ending commercials, donation solicitations and ever-present polling, Election Day is over and the results are in.  As many had predicted, the balance of government has not changed significantly.  Democrats will retain the Presidency and control of the Senate, and Republicans will continue to control the House, albeit by a slightly smaller margin than before.

Read More
Post

Impressions from Today’s Oral Argument in Kirtsaeng

October 29, 2012 First Sale , Kirtsaeng

I was able to attend oral arguments this morning at the Supreme Court, which included Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. For some background on the case, see the resources linked at this blog post.

There were three separate theories of section 109’s interpretation in the Court today: Kirtsaeng’s, made by Josh Rosenkranz; Wiley’s, made by Ted Olson, and the U.S. Government’s made by Deputy Solicitor General Malcolm Stewart. Kirtsaeng’s position is that “lawfully made under this title” means “made lawfully,” and that to judge what “lawfully” means, we look to the standards of title 17.

Read More
Post

First Sale at the Supreme Court: Kirtsaeng

First Sale , Kirtsaeng

Today, the Supreme Court will be hearing arguments in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., a case that could decide whether or not you fully own your own books, CDs, DVDs, and all your other things that contain copyrighted works—particularly if they were made outside the US.

Recordings of the oral arguments should be posted later in the week. In the meantime, if you’re looking for some background on the case, see Jodie’s post here, or read on below.

Read More
Post

Public Knowledge Urges Supreme Court to Preserve First Sale

July 9, 2012 First Sale , Kirtsaeng

Today, Public Knowledge filed a public interest amicus brief in the Supreme Court case of Kirtsaeng v. Wiley & Sons, Inc., a dispute that has the potential to drastically alter users’ property rights in their own copies of books, movies, music, software—in fact, any copyrighted material. The case began with a Thai student studying in the United States who realized that international editions of textbooks cost significantly less than the U.S. editions. He then imported international editions and resold them. Wiley & Sons sued under the theory that these sales violated their exclusive distribution rights.

Read More