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FW: Alternatives to the DMCA (please post to lib license)

-----Original Message-----
Rick Anderson asked about alternatives to the DMCA.  One suggestion is to
revise the law so that "intent" is paramount when a copyright holder
claims infringement.  This means that in general, people are assumed
innocent until proven guilty, and it is pretty much the way the copyright
law has been applied until the last couple of years. Section 1201 assumes
that if you circumvent technology you are a criminal even if you are
exercising fair use.  As the law stands now, you cannot exercise fair use
(of a digital resource protected by DRM, encryption, whatever) without
first committing a crime (with incredible criminal penalties - up to
$500,000 and up to 5 years in jail, for a first offense, double it for
second offense).

Reverse engineering? For computer scientists, this is their bread and
butter.  They strive to create a better mousetrap. The reason? Not to be a
pirate but to advance research (that can ultimately be used by copyright
holders to their benefit).

New legislation?  Look to Representative Boucher.  He plans to introduce a
bill revising the DMCA to reaffirm fair use and allow consumers to play
their lawfully acquired CDs on their computers and in their cars.

I completely understand the argument of copyright holders - they want
perfect control. But I also know that that is not purpose of the copyright

Carrie Russell, Copyright Specialist
American Library Association
Office for Information Technology Policy
1301 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW  Suite 403
Washington, DC 20004-1701