Posts in DMCA
Since we began in 2007, the Organization for Transformative Works’ core mission has included working to promote fan-friendly copyright law. For years, we’ve submitted testimony and comments to governments, filed briefs in court, and helped mobilize fans to have their voices heard by lawmakers around the world. Recently, one of our big legal advocacy projects has been testifying and submitting comments to the U.S. Senate about the way U.S. Copyright works online under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Today, U.S. Senator Thom Tillis has released proposed legislation that would be bad for the AO3 and bad for fans. OTW Legal will fight for fans… Read more
Welcome to This Week in Fandom, the OTW’s roundup of things which are happening! Before we start: Vanity Fair‘s Infinity War photo shoot and article. Tag yourself, I’m Hawkeye. There’s been an interesting happening the mashup music fandom recently. According to a TorrentFreak article, the Canada-based website Sowndhaus had its domain delisted by its registrar following a DMCA-based complaint of copyright infringement made by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI).
Do you use screencaps or video clips in your fanfiction? If so, the OTW needs your help! The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) makes it illegal to rip from DVDs, Blu-Ray discs, and many other encrypted technologies. The OTW has won a legal exemption that makes it legal to rip DVDs, Blu-Rays, and digital downloads to make fair uses for the purpose of noncommercial remix videos, like fanvids. But the DMCA still blocks fans’ ability to make fair uses of video in other contexts, such as fanfiction. Although fair use law would often allow fans to incorporate video clips or stills into their fanfiction (making… Read more
September got off to a pretty spiffy start for us here at the OTW with an article from Inverse that talked about why people make fanworks and what the OTW does in fandom. (While the OTW gives many interviews, most resulting publications don’t actually talk about our mission, so this was exciting for us.) “Very often, fans come into [creating] fanwork because they’re not finding what they’re looking for, either from the show itself or from existing fan works,” the article says, adding that “what many creators have in common is the desire to shape their preferred narratives.” The article focuses on LGBTQ+ elements as… Read more
It’s Fair Use Week! On Monday, we invited you to ask us anything about fair use and fair dealing law as it applies to fandom, and said we’d answer your questions at the end of the week. True to our promise, here are the answers to your (paraphrased) questions! With the caveat that this post should not be taken as legal advice–anyone seeking legal advice about specific situations is welcome to contact us, and we can help you find representation–let’s dive into the questions and answers!