Copyright isn’t right

Image: ‘meteora monastery, greece
meteora monastery, greece

Here’s another example of how copyright law just isn’t logical. In the article, US Library of Congress: copyright is destroying historic audio, the author refers to a 181-page in-depth study, which concludes

that apart from technical difficulties, US copyright law makes it virtually impossible for anyone to perform any form of audio preservation.

Not good, not good at all. Isn’t it time copyright laws were reviewed and made relevant to today’s world?  No wonder, according to the same article, it’s not only “pirates” and “freeloaders” who “rail against copyright laws”.

So let’s get off our high horses and stop thinking that we’re just doing the right thing when we follow the letter of the law and frown upon those who don’t.

“Were copyright law followed to the letter, little audio preservation would be undertaken. Were the law strictly enforced, it would brand virtually all audio preservation as illegal,” the study concludes.

And were you aware that

Sound recording preservation institutions are having problems finding the necessary funding for their expensive work because they are not allowed to grant access to the material they’re trying to preserve. Access has become such an important demand that organisations unable to provide such access will simply not even bother to preserve the audio in the first place. In addition, private collectors are unwilling to hand over their collections to institutions out of fear that their collections will not be made available to the public. As one participant in the study said, “The preservation of music is meaningless if this music is not accessible.

When laws are not only overly restrictive but illogical, people tend not to take them seriously. Here’s a good point:

In the perception of the public, copyright law has a reputation for being overly restrictive,” the study notes, “This perception fosters a dismissive attitude toward the law in communities that can hardly be characterized as rogue elements of society.

I think it’s time I bit the bullet and informed myself of Australian vs US copyright law and find out how these laws apply to us in Australia. Any good resource recommendations are welcome.

What do you think about copyright laws?

A link to a previous post about copyright here.

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