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Archived updates for Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Judiciary Committee Leaders Issue Statement on the Digital Media Consumers’ Rights Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. - House Judiciary Committee Chairman F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr. (R-Wis.), Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.), and Judiciary Courts, the Internet, and Intellectual Property Subcommittee Chairman Lamar S. Smith (R-Tex.) issued the following statement regarding H.R. 107, the Digital Media Consumers’ Rights Act.

“We strongly oppose the substance of H.R. 107. This legislation would eviscerate a key provision of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA), which is successfully protecting copyrighted works and providing consumers access to more digital content than ever before. In fact, a DVD player is now as common a household item as the VCR was 15 years ago precisely because of the DMCA. H.R. 107 would undo a law that is working and destroy the careful balance in copyright law between consumers’ rights and intellectual property rights.

“Furthermore, our strong objections to the substance of H.R. 107 are matched by our objections to what appears to be a bold jurisdictional power grab. The Judiciary Committee has - and has long had - exclusive jurisdiction over copyright law. Rest assured, we will wholeheartedly oppose this move in a bipartisan fashion, as we would expect Energy and Commerce Committee leaders to do if we attempted to write energy legislation.�

More information on H.R. 107 "To amend the Federal Trade Commission Act to provide that the advertising or sale of a mislabeled copy-protected music disc is an unfair method of competition and an unfair and deceptive act or practice, and for other purposes" is available here.
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