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One Step Forward, Two Steps Back: IPEC’s Three-Year Plan

January 18, 2017 Copyright Reform , Copyright Week , DMCA , IPEC

IPEC nods toward balanced copyright but endorses unbalanced enforcement agenda.

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Nintendo Mario Maker: Stealing a Fan-Made Market

January 21, 2016 Copyright , Copyright Reform , Copyright Week , Notice and Takedown , Video Games

When I was in elementary school, I noticed that students always lost their pencils so I began decorating personalized ones and handing them out. It took up so much time that I decided to sell them. My profits bought me an extra cookie at lunch and a trip to the principal’s office. The school closed down my shop. I was devastated, but what was a seven-year-old going to do against a school principal? The next year, I came across a table labeled “School Shop.” It was selling pencils. I stared at it, confused and heartbroken as to why the school would bar me from my idea, take it, and then profit off of it.

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Celebrating Copyright Week with a Theatrical Copyright Revue

January 20, 2016 Copyright , Copyright Reform , Copyright Week , Music Copyright , Music Licensing

Happy Copyright Week! To celebrate, I’m looking back on all the exciting copyright cases that have occurred since last year’s Copyright Week, with courts and the music industry alike tackling everything from uncredited sampling to fair use dancing babies. I’ve rounded up some of the highlights of the year’s upheaval, and took the liberty of suggesting a few edits to reflect the changing times. (And yes, that does mean I’ll be reviewing landmark music copyright cases via lyrical skits.)

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Cosplay Goes to the Supreme Court

January 19, 2016 Copyright , Copyright Reform , Copyright Week , Fashion Copyright , Litigation

Yes, you read that right: the Supreme Court of the United States may get to decide the legal status of all those Jedi robes you’ve got squirreled away. The Supreme Court is considering a case that will set the standard for when clothing and costume designs can be covered by copyright—and when people who mimic them (such as costumers) can be sued for potentially enormous damages.

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Let’s Make It Easier to Expand the Public Domain

January 23, 2015 Copyright Reform , Copyright Week , Public Domain

An open secret among free culture fans is that it can be surprisingly hard to dedicate something to the public domain. Here’s a simple idea for copyright reform: Why not fix that?

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