Ex-Time Warner Exec To Head Copyright Office

(Image credit: N/A)

Shira Perlmutter, former VP and associate general counsel for intellectual property policy at Time Warner, has been named register of copyrights and director of the U.S. Copyright Office, succeeding Maria Strong, who has been heading up the office as acting register of copyrights since January 2020.

The Copyright Office's Licensing Division is responsible for various statutory license compensation regimes including for retransmissions of TV and radio programming by cable and satellite and "importing, manufacturing, and distributing digital audio recording devices or media."

Perlmutter was named to the post by Librarian of Congress Dr. Carla Hayden. “Shira brings to this role a deep knowledge of domestic and international copyright law and policy and a background in negotiating international intellectual property agreements," said Hayden. "She has experience working with a wide range of stakeholders and finding common ground on complex issues.”

Perlmutter, who will take over the post next month, has most recently been the chief policy officer and director for international affairs at US Patent and Trademark Office.

Her resume also includes the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in Geneva, where she was a consultant. She also consulted the Clinton Administration oin copyright issues and has taught copyright law at Catholic University. She has a BA from Harvard and a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania.

“The Motion Picture Association congratulates Shira Perlmutter on her appointment as the 14th Register of Copyrights," said MPA Chairman Charles Rivkin. "Ms. Perlmutter has spent her career advancing intellectual property rights at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the Copyright Office, the World Intellectual Property Organization, and in the private sector. She has a demonstrated commitment to supporting the rights of creators for the ultimate public good. We’re confident she will be a dedicated and effective director of the Copyright Office. We applaud Dr. Hayden on her selection and look forward to working with her and Ms. Perlmutter on protecting intellectual property, advancing copyright policy, and supporting all creators in this country.

“The Copyright Office will now have new leadership at a time when updating its operations is more important than ever," said Computer & Communications Association President Matt Schruers. "We look forward to working with Shira as she endeavors to modernize Copyright Office functions for the 21st Century.”

“The Library of Congress has made an outstanding choice,” said Andrei Iancu, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, in a statemnt. “I and the entire USPTO team congratulate Shira and wish her much success in her new and critically important role. As one of the nation’s most preeminent copyright experts, Shira is extremely well qualified to lead the Copyright Office. I look forward to working with her and continuing the USPTO’s longstanding and close collaboration with the Copyright Office.”

“The American Library Association (ALA) congratulates Shira Perlmutter on her appointment to be the Register of Copyrights,” said ALA President Julius C. Jefferson, Jr. “Ms. Perlmutter’s copyright expertise and experience working closely with the Librarian of Congress are a strong foundation on which to build a world class, efficient and comprehensive digital copyright registration and records infrastructure." 

“The National Association of Broadcasters has enjoyed a long working relationship with Shira Perlmutter and we support her appointment as Register of Copyrights," said NAB President Gordon Smith. "Her broad expertise and experience in copyright law make her well-suited to lead the Copyright Office. Local radio and television stations look forward to continuing to work with her on copyright issues affecting the broadcast industry.”

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.