Copyright or Copywrong?

In case you haven’t heard, there’s legislation moving through Congress that could have serious negative consequences for artists. It’s called the Orphan Works Act, and if passed it would radically change copyright law and seriously water down the legal protections artists currently enjoy.

My friend and fellow blogger Tom Richmond did a terrific job explaining the dangers of the Orphan Works Act when it first came before Congress in 2006. It’s back again, and at the risk of sounding like Chicken Little let me say that if you make a living as an artist you need to educate yourself about this serious issue.

The Illustrator’s Partnership is a group of artists and illustrators dedicated to fighting the Orphan Works Act. I strongly urge you to visit their website. You might also want to listen to a recent audio interview with award-winning illustrator Brad Holland as he explains what’s going on and why the Orphan Work Act is serious.

(EDIT: Tom Richmond has just written a post clearing up six “myths” about the Orphan Works Act. Worth reading!)

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3 thoughts on “Copyright or Copywrong?

  1. Don’t mean to sound like a ‘devils advocate’ here, but how else can google protect the individual-say a 60 year-old black welfare mom’s child, from copyright infringment just for using a image on his Myspace? They’re probably sites that would sue you for just seeing their image! Also, this frees up all the Disney artwork that they won’t allow schools to display as a refrence!

  2. This is really dark stuff. What happened to people being honest, and not obviously coping someones work and effort.. Sigh…its troubling stuff to hear in this profession…

  3. copyrights were never intended to last as long as they do now. The result is that most writings get locked away in paper prisons because know one knows who holds the copyright. I support this bill.

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