Remedies for Copyright Small Claims

- - copyright

If you’re taking some time off this week and next you might consider this interesting copyright development that Josh Blumental pointed me to:

The Copyright Office has been asked by Congress to study the obstacles facing small copyright claims disputes, as well as possible alternatives. Specifically, the Office is to undertake a study to: (1) assess the extent to which authors and other copyright owners are effectively prevented from seeking relief from infringements due to constraints in the current system; and (2) furnish specific recommendations, as appropriate, for changes in administrative, regulatory and statutory authority that will improve the adjudication of small copyright claims and thereby enable all copyright owners to more fully realize the promise of exclusive rights enshrined in our Constitution.

The want to know “how copyright owners have handled small copyright claims” and look into obstacles and possible alternatives to the current process. That’s because, not all copyright holders have the resources to bring a federal lawsuit if there is infringement (more here).

There is a Submission Form that closes on January 16, 2012.

There Are 6 Comments On This Article.

  1. As a side note, I have effectively sued corporations (small claims venue) for using my images outside of the licensing period as a violation of our contract agreement. For those working in California, the small claims limit will increase in 2012 to $10K.

  2. Well winning a claim and collecting the claim are two different beasts. Both are major pains in the ass when they are small. I was fortunate to work with Carolyn Wright http://www.photoattorney.com/ who made the process far easier then I thought possible.

    We collected half of the settlement but decided to cease pursuing the second half after about two years.

    Message to rappers and their labels – If you can’t pay your photographers sell your gold.

  3. I have found small European companies using my images on their websites without my permission and they ignore my requests to take my work down. Is there any recourse outside the U.S.? I don’t think it’s worth it to hire a lawyer unless it’s a larger company.

  4. This is very timely and good information. Registering copyrights is the one aspect of photography paperwork that I consistently have procrastinated on in the past. I just finished my deposit for 2010 and 2011. Thanks for posting this.