Monday, April 14, 2008

Orphan Works legislation

Through some friendly sources I have just been turned on to a story that is certainly worth the lengthy read. Mind Your Business: You Will Lose All The Rights to Your Own Art, certainly caught my attention. As an Artist how could it have not?!!!

I worry about what I put out there knowing it can and or will eventually be taken. Having been a victim its sad to know that with all the art out there a large portion of it if only self proclaimed to be copyright and yet it has not been legally registered as such is not and will not be a legal infringement if used in any way by another then the creator with or without permission.

Not sure if this is true or legal. Imagine of all the artists in the USA and all the art, the copyright office would have to be bigger than the IRS to keep track of it all. Why is it also that on the internet there are sites claiming that with the addition of just 1 of their banners on your site they are registering all content on your site and that you post to your site?

Its a few pages long, but the guy took the time to write it, I agree it is really worth the time it will take to read it. Animation World Magazine

1 comment:

Cre8 said...

Apparently this bill was introduced in 2006 and has been put off a few times
but the big money backers are trying to get it pushed through now.

I found the info very
disturbing. In one sense, I'm very much into limiting copyrights and how they're used, particularly when you're talking length of time, but this Orphan Works Bill they're discussing would be a serious blow to individual

The bill would basically require artists to register each of their individule works with a single privately-owned registry that gets set up for each registry requiring a fee for registration. If you don't register? Then your work is considered "orphaned" and available for anyone to use legally.

Top that off with the fact that 1. the current technology
being used to search these registry databases has a failure rate of 1% which means that it's a game of Russian roulette each time someone searches that your image might not be found, making it orphaned to that particular search;
and 2. a "cease and desist" letter won't cut it anymore; if someone searches for your image/sculpture, etc., doesn't find it in a registry and goes ahead
and uses it, suing them is at your own risk because they can claim that they made a "reasonable" effort to find the image and couldn't, therefore making
it orphaned and fair game.

This doesn't just apply to artwork, by the way-personal family photos shared
on any photo-sharing site are also subject to this. A newspaper could see a photo on Flickr of your family vacation, decide it likes it and use it without permission from you.