Congress to Consider Copyright This Week

By Renee Dopplick, ACM Director of Public Policy
July 22, 2013

Two U.S. House of Representatives committees will consider copyright issues at three hearings this week.


Markup of H.R. 1123: The Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act
House Judiciary Committee
Wednesday, July 24, 2013, 10 a.m. ET
Rayburn House Office Building – Room 2141

The full Committee will consider and markup H.R. 1123, the “Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act.” The bill would repeal the DMCA exemption decision of 2012, replace it with the prior exemption, and call upon the Librarian of Congress to consult and determine whether to include other categories of wireless devices beyond telephone handsets, e.g. tablets. Committee Chairman Goodlatte has offered an amendment that would add clarifications for the unlocking at the discretion of the purchaser and require a GAO study and report on the issues. See my previous blog post for highlights from the Committee’s hearing in June on H.R. 1123.


Hearing on “Innovation in America: The Role of Copyrights”
House Judiciary Committee – Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet
Thursday, July 25, 2013, 9:30 a.m. ET
Rayburn House Office Building – Room 2141
A live webcast will be available.

This hearing is part of the ongoing exploration by the Committee into potential copyright reforms. For additional background, see the May 16th hearing on the Copyright Principles Project (CPP), a project first convened in 2006 by Professor Pamela Samuelson at Berkeley Law School to discuss the diverse perspectives on copyright issues and the need for comprehensive reform to respond to technological advances, new business models, and innovative and emergent uses of copyrighted works.


Hearing on “The U.S.-E.U. Free Trade Agreement: Tipping Over the Regulatory Barriers”
House Committee on Energy and Commerce – Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade
Wednesday, July 24, 2013, 9:45 a.m. ET
Rayburn House Office Building – Room 2123
A live webcast will be available.

This hearing will focus on the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) agreement between the United States and the European Union. The background memo mentions intellectual property rights. Scheduled witnesses include Dean C. Garfield, the President and CEO of the Information Technology Industry Council, and Jean Halloran, on behalf of Consumers Union and the Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue.