DMCA ESSENTIAL TO THE FUTURE OF E-COMMERCE, PAT SCHROEDER TELLS INTERNATIONAL GATHERING
Washington, DC: Strong measures such as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), which help safeguard creative property rights in cyberspace, are absolutely essential to the future of electronic publishing and indeed to all electronic commerce, former Congresswoman Pat Schroeder told an international gathering in Geneva today.
Speaking at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Second International Conference on Electronic Commerce and Intellectual Property, Mrs. Schroeder, who is President and CEO of the Association of American Publishers, derided "an Internet culture which opposes the idea of ownership." "People are having sobering second thoughts about the e-economy, rethinking the Internet, and acknowledging that an effective way to protect intellectual property is needed before the Internet will reach its potential, " Mrs. Schroeder said.
She pointed out that the publishing industry supports the DMCA because hacking through encryption of copyrighted works so that people can take them without consent is "analogous to making keys to a bookstore or library and selling them to others so that they can go in after hours and help themselves."
Answering charges that the DMCA tramples on "fair use," Mrs. Schroeder pointed out that while "fair use gives one the right to lend or copy parts of a book you own,...no software can read intent, making it impossible to give people unlimited rights to copy electronically since the copy could be sent to millions." She also noted that the fact that e-books are not interoperable on different platforms is neither the fault of publishers nor the DMCA. "It is the software providers who want their readers to use their platform only and...don't want a universal standards such as the one used for producing CDs....I think all publishers would prefer the CD universal standard model, but this is a marketplace issue, not a legal or DMCA issue," she said. The full text of Mrs. Schroeder's remarks can be found by clicking here.
The Association of American Publishers is the national trade association of the U.S. book publishing industry. AAP's approximately 300 members include most of the major commercial book publishers in the United States, as well as smaller and non-profit publishers, university presses and scholarly societies. The protection of intellectual property rights in all media, the defense of free expression, and the promotion of reading and literacy, especially among the young, are among the Association's primary concerns.