K Street Lobbyist and Former P2P United Director Adam Eisgrau.
As we suspected, the nomination of Dr. Carla Hayden for Librarian of Congress looks troubling for writers,songwriters and other creators. If you were not aware the Copyright Office is part of the Library of Congress, and thus the Librarian of Congress could have deep influence over copyright policy in the US. Thus it deeply troubles us that we see the former executive director of the piracy alliance, P2P-United, endorse the nominee for Librarian of Congress.
The experience of musicians over the last 17 years is that copyright exceptions like the DMCA “safe harbor” have been abused by companies like Google/YouTube to generate billions of dollars in income while often paying musicians nothing. At the same time the DMCA safe harbor is creating an internet-wide market failure that has made it impossible for musicians to obtain a fair market value for their songs and recordings in the digital realm.
To be clear we do not know Dr. Hayden’s views on copyright, but we hope she does not heed Esgrua’s call to further “balance” copyright towards the exemptions and exceptions. The companies that benefit from the exceptions are already some of the biggest companies on earth. The Library of Congress needs a Librarian that understands that the books that fill the shelves are produced by copyright incentives not exceptions.
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