Washington DC
16 February 2017
Reporter: Barney Dixon

Congress seeks to ‘modernise’ Copyright Office


Members of US Congress have reintroduced bipartisan legislation for modernising the Copyright Office and housing it under the legislative branch of government.

Tom Marino and Judy Chu reintroduced the Copyright Office for the Digital Economy (CODE) Act on 8 February, with Marino stating that the Copyright Office has “fallen well behind the fast-moving pace of America’s creators and the industries they work in”.

The improvements housed in the act would include ongoing technology studies to ensure the office remains current with technology, the establishment of an advisory board and technical provisions to ensure a seamless transition away from the Library of Congress.

Marino said the CODE Act will ensure the Copyright Office has “the autonomy to move quickly and adapt to changes in technology so the public has the ability to enjoy and benefit from creative works.”

“The CODE Act is well thought-out, reasonable and provides a long-term solution to the Copyright Office’s ailments.”

Chu said the Copyright Office must be brought “into the modern age”.

“This bill makes operational improvements and provides administrative control to the Copyright Office, which would make the office more efficient and responsive to all interested parties.”

She added: “I look forward to continuing my work with colleagues and stakeholders on the improvements needed to ensure that our country has a Copyright Office that reflects the 21st century.”

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