Copyright Law – Introduction: Readings, Syllabus, and Assignments

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SYLLABUS AND ASSIGNMENTS

Lecture 2: LexisNexis; 1976 Copyright Act
Review the LexisNexis Handout (click here)

Lecture 3: Copyright Applied to Music, Computers; Napster; Peer-to-Peer File Sharing

Go to LexisNexis, “Legal Research,” then “Federal Code,” and finally “Guided Search.” Search for “17 uscs” in “Cite.” This will pull up the entire Copyright Act. Read the following sections of the statute. (If the section seems to go on and on, just read the first few subsections. You may find it helpful to look back at the definitions in section 101.)

* 106 (Core Rights)
* 106A (Limited Moral Rights)
* 107 (Fair Use)
* 109 (First Sale)
* 110 (Exempt Performances)
* 115 Only Read Subsections (a) and (b) (Musical “Covers”)
* 117 (Computer Programs)
* 302 (Duration of Copyright)
* 401 (Copyright Notice)
* 411 (Registration)
* 504 (Damages for Infringement)
* 506 (Criminal Violations, including LaMacchia Law)

For each of these twelve sections, write a little summary (between one and three sentences) to yourself explaining the gist of the section. For example:

* Section 115. This section allows musicians to record and distribute “covers” of songs without having to get permission, as long as another recording of the song has already been legitimately distributed. For example, when Madonna released her version of “American Pie” in 2000, she didn’t need Don McLean’s permission. She just had to pay him about 8 cents (a government-set price) per copy sold.

READINGS

LECTURE # TOPICS READINGS
1 Introduction; Basics of Legal Research; Legal Citations N/A
2 LexisNexis; 1976 Copyright Act Here’s a LexisNexis handout you may find helpful (click here).Please read these cases to discuss in class:- Feist Publications, Inc. v. Rural Telephone Service Co., 499 U.S. 340 (1991) (click here).- Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc., 510 U.S. 569 (1994) (click here).- On Command Video Corp. v. Columbia Pictures Industries, 777 F. Supp. 787 (N.D. Cal. 1991) (click here).

Sony Corp. of America v. Universal City Studios, Inc., 464 U.S. 417 (1984) (click here).

(Remember, just type the middle part of the citation (e.g., “499 U.S. 340”) into the “Get a Case” citation field in Lexis-Nexis to call up the opinion.)

3 Copyright Applied to Music, Computers; Napster; Peer-to-Peer File Sharing Go to LexisNexis (click here), “Legal Research,” then “Federal Code,” and finally “Guided Search.”Search for “17 uscs” in “Cite.” This will pull up the entire Copyright Act (click here). Alternately, you can use the U. S. Copyright Office’s (click here) file: (PDF – 3 MB (click here)).Read the following sections of the statute. (If the section seems to go on and on, just read the first few subsections. You may find it helpful to look back at the definitions in section 101.)- 106 (Core Rights)- 106A (Limited Moral Rights)

– 107 (Fair Use)

– 109 (First Sale)

– 110 (Exempt Performances)

– 115 Only Read Subsections (a) and (b) (Musical “Covers”)

– 117 (Computer Programs)

– 302 (Duration of Copyright)

– 401 (Copyright Notice)

– 411 (Registration)

– 504 (Damages for Infringement)

– 506 (Criminal Violations, including LaMacchia Law)

4 Software Licensing; DVDs and Encryption Read 17 U.S.C. 512 (click here). (Remember: Use “17 uscs sec 512”.)Read Recording Industry Ass’n of America v. Diamond Multimedia Systems, Inc. (click here), 180 F.3d 1072 (9th Cir. 1999).Read Universal City Studios, Inc. v. Corley (click here), 273 F.3d 429 (2d Cir. 2001).Read Chamberlain Group, Inc. v. Skylink Technologies, Inc. (click here), 381 F.3d 1178 (Fed. Cir. 2004).Read Jonathan Zittrain’s essay (click here), “The Copyright Cage,” in legalaffairs magazine.