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Category Archives: Copyright

The Seizure of Jewish Intellectual Property Ahead of World War II

Library of Congress – Copyright Creativity at Work: “The following is a guest post by Marilyn Creswell, information resources assistant at the University of Michigan Law School. She served as Librarian-in-Residence at the U.S. Copyright Office from July 2020 to April 2021. [h/t Mary Whisner]

As the United States enters the Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust, we remember the many hardships Jewish people have overcome. In this blog we specifically explore the lesser-known area of intellectual property (IP) leading up to and during World War II. Beginning in 1933, the Nazi German state began pressuring Jewish business owners to sell their businesses far below market value. By 1938, a majority of Jewish-owned businesses were already sold or out of business when this process, called Aryanization, became compulsory after Kristallnacht.1 As part of the seizure of businesses and personal property, the ability of Jewish people to benefit from their intellectual property was also severely restricted. A 1939 executive order required all Jewish men to add “Israel” as a second name and women to add “Sara.”2 This made it easier for Nazi officials to deny intellectual property registrations and renewals to Jewish applicants, cutting them off from the IP system.3 While the loss of IP rights pales in comparison to the horrific death tolls during World War II, its loss is another indignity the Jewish people suffered and source of wealth extracted at the hands of the Nazis…”

Maryland Gives Up on Its Library E-book Law

Publishers Weekly: “Maryland’s library e-book law is effectively dead. In a court filing this week, Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh said the state would present no new evidence in a legal challenge filed by the Association of American Publishers, allowing the court’s recently issued preliminary injunction blocking the law to stand, and paving the… Continue Reading

CC publishes policy paper titled Towards Better Sharing of Cultural Heritage

Creative Commons: “Over the past few months, members of the Creative Commons (CC) Copyright Platform along with CC friends from around the world have worked together to develop a policy paper addressing the key high-level policy issues affecting access and sharing of cultural heritage, notably by galleries, libraries, archives and museums (GLAMs). In this blog… Continue Reading

The Fourth Amendment Limits of Internet Content Preservation

“Every year, hundreds of thousands of Internet accounts are copied and set aside by Internet providers on behalf of federal and state law enforcement. This process, known as preservation, ordinarily occurs without particularized suspicion. Any government agent can request preservation of any account at any time. Federal law requires the provider to set aside a… Continue Reading

Publishing Giants Are Fighting Libraries on E-Books

Sludge: “The Association of American Publishers filed suit to block a new Maryland law that aims to increase public libraries’ access to e-books, with support from a powerful copyright lobbying group…Libraries and schools worldwide have been increasingly lending out e-books and audiobooks, even before the coronavirus pandemic took hold. Over 500 million copies of digital… Continue Reading

U.S. Senators Introduce SMART Copyright Act to Combat Piracy

TorrentFreak: “U.S. Senators Thom Tillis and Patrick Leahy have introduced the SMART Copyright Act of 2022. The bill requires online hosting services to implement standard technical protection measures, designated by the Copyright Office. Rightsholders see the proposal as a great step forward to protect creators, while opponents classify it as a filtering tool that will… Continue Reading

Artvee

About Artvee: “In the last few years, several major museums and libraries have instituted an open access policy by designating most or all of the public domain art in their collections with a creative commons license making them available for use for any purpose with no restrictions attached. We sort through and aggregate the best… Continue Reading

Connecticut Introduces Library E-book Bill

Publishers Weekly: “Connecticut has become the latest state to introduce a library e-book bill, introducing bill 131 in its February session. The Connecticut bill is similar to efforts in other states now underway, in that it would require publishers who offer an e-book to consumers in the state to also offer to license the works… Continue Reading

Court Blocks Maryland’s Library E-book Law

Publishers Weekly: “In a rebuke to Maryland state legislators, a federal judge has granted the Association of American Publishers’ motion for a preliminary injunction, blocking Maryland officials from enforcing the state’s new library e-book law. “It is clear the Maryland Act likely stands as an obstacle to the accomplishment of the purposes and objectives of… Continue Reading

Academic Journal Claims it Fingerprints PDFs for ‘Ransomware,’ Not Surveillance

Vice: “One of the world’s largest publishers of academic papers said it adds a unique fingerprint to every PDF users download in an attempt to prevent ransomware, not to prevent piracy.  Elsevier defended the practice after an independent researcher discovered the existence of the unique fingerprints and shared their findings on Twitter last week.  “The… Continue Reading

Why Your Library Should Be All-In with Controlled Digital Lending

Medium – “…There are very specific industry guidelines that have been created about what percentage or how many chapters of a book can be placed on electronic reserve, and for how long, or how many times we’re allowed to order something through interlibrary loan before voluntarily paying a publisher extra. All those kinds of self-policing… Continue Reading

How University Libraries Can Protect Data and Scientific Freedom

The Wire Science: “Data tracking has long been a lucrative business model for many corporations. The fact that it also takes place in science is not so well-known, however. But here too, dangers are lurking for data protection and the freedom of science and research. And libraries also have a role to play, as stakeholders… Continue Reading