Libraries Work to Scan Public Domain Books

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Right now, books published in the U.S. before 1924 are in the public domain. This means they are publicly owned and everyone can use and copy them. But there’s a loophole in copyright law which gives up to 75% of books published between 1923 and 1964 secret public domain status. It’s hard to figure out which ones they are, so a group of libraries, archivists, and volunteers are finding these public domain books, scanning them, and uploading them to the internet.

Richardson notes that much of that heavy lifting is being done by volunteers at organizations like Project Gutenberg, a nonprofit effort to digitize and archive cultural works. These volunteers are tasked with locating a copy of the book in question, scanning it, proofing it, then putting out HTML and plain-text editions.

You Could be Fined up to $15,000 For Sharing Memes

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The Senate is moving a bill forward that could impose fines of up to US$15,000 for people who share memes.

The Senate Judiciary Committee last week approved the “Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2019,” which “creates a voluntary small claims board within the Copyright Office that will provide copyright owners with an alternative to the expensive process of bringing copyright claims, including infringement and misrepresentation …. in federal court,” according to the Copyright Alliance.

“This new board, called the Copyright Claims Board (CCB), would allow recovery in each case of up to $30,000 in damages total, with a cap of $15,000 in statutory damages per work infringed,” according to the alliance, an advocacy group for the copyright industry.

Game Foul: Ford Dealership Steals Firewatch Art

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Firewatch and Ford ad comparison

No matter how hard our kindergarten teachers tried, some people never really wrapped their heads around the idea that stealing is bad. Take, for instance, the Quirk Ford dealership in Massachusetts and the Firewatch artwork it stole for a promotional event.