AAUP Signs On to Comments on Copyright Act

By Nancy Long

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act prohibits the circumvention of protective measures that control access to digitally copyrighted work. However, faculty members and students must often circumvent these protective measures in order to engage in teaching, research, and criticism. The AAUP recently signed on to public comments that seek to allow faculty members to access and use copyrighted audiovisual materials more easily.

The first comment provided evidence to support renewing and expanding a 2012 exemption applicable to excerpts from certain audiovisual works. The exemption allows students, faculty, or research assistants to circumvent protective measures for the purposes of scholarly criticism or comment. The second comment provided substantial evidence to support adoption of an expanded exemption for multimedia e-books, which would permit authors to circumvent certain protective measures on digitally transmitted video in order to make fair use of motion-picture content in multimedia e-books.

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