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Archived updates for Friday, August 06, 2004

U.S. Copyright Office Proposes Rules on Unpublished Audio Transmission Reocording

The U.S. Copyright Office is proposing to amend its regulations to permit the Library of Congress to record unpublished radio and other audio and audiovisual transmission programs. The Copyright Office regulations already provide for the Library of Congress to obtain copies of unpublished television transmission programs, either by recording fixations or by demanding copies in the form of a transfer, loan, or sale at cost. The revised regulation makes similar provisions for audio transmission programs and includes transmission programs made available by radio broadcasts and by digital communications networks such as the Internet. Comments are due on September 7.

The largest library in the world, the Library of Congress comprises more than 127 million items acquired by purchase, gift, exchange, and copies of works submitted to the Copyright Office for registration or mandatory deposit. Late in deliberations on the bill that became the 1976 Copyright Act, concern arose about whether mandatory deposit of only published works would be sufficient for the Library's collections, given that owners of publicly disseminated broadcasts were not obligated to deposit their works in the Library of Congress. This issues was addressed by giving the Library authority to record unpublished transmission programs in all cases where the copyright owner had made or authorized a fixation of the program. The Copyright Office was also given demand authority to obtain fixations of these programs by transfer, loan, or sale at cost.
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