Re-Create Coalition Formed to Promote 'Balanced' Copyright

Fair use fans have formed a new coalition, Re-Create, to advocate for "balanced" copyright laws, which means ones that do not "encroach" on creativity and speech by being overly protective of those copyrights.

Coalition members include the Consumer Electronics Association, the Computer & Communications Industry Association and the American Library Association.

Other members of the group include the Association of Research Libraries, Center for Democracy & Technology, Electronic Frontier Foundation, Media Democracy Fund, New America's Open Technology Institute, Public Knowledge and the R Street Institute.

"We and the other members of the Re-Create coalition want to make sure that our laws account for these realities of today's connected environment, and help bring a pre-VCR regime into a post-Meerkat world," said Sherwin Siy, VP of legal affairs at Public Knowledge.

The copyright regime issue could heat up in Congress this session.

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) have introduced a bill that would expand the exemptions for the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) prohibitions on technological protection measures (TCMs).

DMCA bars circumvention of protection for digital content to prevent it from being stolen and copied, but the legislators, backed by fair use fans, argue the law is outdated and the prohibitions impede research, journalism, the repair and maintenance of personal devices and freedom of expression.

They also argue the "protections" can impede the creation of accessible versions of e-books for the blind.

Wyden also this month introduced the 'The Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015' to make sure that intellectual property rights are protected in trade agreements.

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.