The coming of the new year brings with it one thing that hasn't been experienced in 20 years - the mass expiration of protections on materials that have been under copyright since 1923. Speculation about the implications of this happening has been on the rise since earlier this year and has reached new volumes in the past several weeks.
In some situations, the phrase "Better late than never" is appropriate. Registering a piece of intellectual property is not one of them. While it might seem rational to be make the claim that a photograph, once taken, is a static piece of artistic expression. As such, it would seem logical to argue that any use of it without permission constitutes a violation of the photographer's work.
In one of our recent posts, we outlined the four situations under which online service providers can avoid monetary liability if some user infringes on another's copyrighted material. Among these so-called safe harbor provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) is the takedown.
Twenty years ago, the United States joined a caravan of nations entering the internet age. It did this by passing the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Depending on what role you play in the online world, this law may be the bane of your existence or a godsend for securing intellectual property rights within the World Wide Web.