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The Digital Millennium Copyright Act
The 1998 enactment of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) represents the most comprehensive reform of United States copyright law in a generation. The DMCA seeks to update U.S. copyright law for the digital age in preparation for ratification of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) treaties.
Key among the topics included in the DMCA are provisions concerning the circumvention of copyright protection systems, fair use in a digital environment, and online service provider (OSP) liability (including details on safe harbors, damages, and "notice and takedown" practices). Resources on these and other topics are included below.
"Folder-based" vs. "transmission-based" DMCA notices: As part of our investigation into the recent "spike" in DMCA notifications sent to campuses by the RIAA, EDUCAUSE has learned some details we believe will be of importance to many in the higher education community. Read Mark Luker's Statement (May12, 2008)
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- Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 (U.S. Copyright Office)
On October 28, 1998, H.R. 2281, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), was enacted into law to address copyright issues with digitally formatted intellectual property.
- Summary of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 (U.S. Copyright Office)
This December 1998 memorandum by the U.S. Copyright Office provides an overview of the law's provisions and briefly summarizes each of the five titles of the DMCA.
- 2003 Rulemaking on Exemptions from Prohibition on Circumvention of Technological Measures that Control Access to Copyrighted Works (U.S. Copyright Office)
On October 28, 2003, Librarian of Congress James Billington once again issued exceptions to the DMCA prohibition on circumventing technological locks intended to prevent access to copyrighted digital works. These exemptions will remain in effect through October 27, 2006.
- Study Required by Section 104 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (U.S. Copyright Office)
Section 104 of the DMCA directs the Register of Copyrights and the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information to prepare a report for the Congress examining the effects of the amendments made by title 1 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, ("DMCA") and the development of electronic commerce on the operation of sections 109 and 117 of title 17, United States Code, and the relationship between existing and emerging technology and the operation of such sections.
- Statement of the Librarian of Congress Relating to Section 1201 Rulemaking (U.S. Copyright Office) The Librarian of Congress released a statement on exemptions to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which greatly expands access to encrypted, copyrighted works for fair use purposes. (July 26, 2010)
DMCA Resource Pages
- EDUCAUSE: FAQ for DMCA Designated Agents at Higher Education Institutions
- ALA DMCA Resources
- ARL DMCA Resources
- EFF DMCA Resources
- Public Knowledge DMCA Resources
Other DMCA Resources
- Digital Rights Management
This list was created for the discussion on digital rights management (DRM) development in support of the building and sharing of digital resource collections.
- Unintended Consequences: Twelve Years under the DMCA (Electronic Frontier Foundation – EFF)
This white paper provides a description of some of the very real problems that have already appeared because of the DMCA.
- A Primer on Distance Learning and Intellectual Property Issues(Dow, Lohnes & Albertson)
This primer highlights copyright issues and how they pertain to distance learning.
- Highlights of New Copyright Provision Establishing Limitation of Liability for Online Service Providers (Lutzker & Lutzker LLP and the Association of Research Libraries – ARL) 2001
This memorandum explains in detail the new DMCA provisions pertaining to OSP liability, including "notice-and-takedown" requirements, "notice and put-back," and certain safe harbors contained in Title II of the DMCA.
Library Items on this Topic
EDUCAUSE Library Items for Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA)
- To Maus or Not to Maus: Technically, That Is the Question
May 6, 2013
Key Takeaways What should a Maus book owner do when he can't access the multiple copies he owns on all his various devices, including the newest, an iPad ? In …
- HathiTrust: The Collection and Its Uses
May 6, 2013
John Wilkin and Sigrid Anderson Cordell provide an overview of HathiTrust and will discuss some uses of the materials in the repository. HathiTrust is the world's largest research libr…
- The Direction of Fair Use for Education: New Law and New Possibilities
July 12, 2012
Copyright and fair use has long been a critical element of innovative technologies. On campus, we steadily create new works and use existing ones—and nearly all of them are automatically pr…
- Sharing Visual Arts Images for Educational Use: Finding a New Angle of Repose
October 19, 2007
Â© 2007 Gretchen Wagner. The text of this article is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/ )…
- An interview with Carnegie Mellon's Denise Troll Covey
April 14, 2006
In this 28 minute recording, I sit down with Denise Troll Covey , Principal Librarian for Special Projects at Carnegie Mellon University. Tune-in as she shares some thoughts about her work co…
- Report Details DMCA Misuses
January 1, 2006
A new report from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) takes aim at the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), a controversial law enacted seven years ago to protect intellectual property in …
- Copyright and Digital Media in a Post-Napster World: 2005 Update
January 1, 2005
The objective of this White Paper, initially released in August 2003 and updated in January 2005, is to provide a foundation for evaluating key questions facing the different stakeholders in the co…
- Preserving Digital Information to Support Scholarship
January 1, 2002
Lynch examines the numerous technical obstacles related to digital information and preservation and describes some efforts in the various arenas. He also discusses the legal, social, and political …