The DMCA in Depth

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act:

(1) Limits copyright infringement liability for Internet Service Providers (ISPís) for the mere transmission of information as a conduit or transient host, provided no knowledge or financial gain is present,

(2) Establishes guidelines for the removal by ISPís of material from the Internet that appears to be an infringement upon the knowledge by the ISP,

(3) Limits liability against institutions when faculty members use educational facilities in order to publish materials electronically,

(4) Makes criminal the circumvention of anti-piracy devices, also known as "little black boxes",

(5) Outlaws code-cracking devices but not ones being employed for research, testing, law enforcement activities and related legal means,

(6) States that the fair use doctrine remains a viable defense in copyright infringement matters, but does not go into much detail,

(7) Updates the library exemption for facilities to take advantage of digital technology while engaging in activities similar to those for non-digital methodologies,

(8) Directs The Register of Copyright to consult with educators, copyright owners and libraries, and to submit recommendations for the promotion of distance education through digital means, and

(9) Implements two treaties regarding the respecting of copyright laws internationally. See, e.g., http://thomas.loc.gov as well as http://www.dfc.org/issues/graphic/2281/2281.html

© Robert Diotalevi, Esq. 2000