Today in Copyright History: 6/27

On June 27, 2005, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, Inc. v. Grokster that providers of software designed to enable file sharing of copyrighted works may be held liable for copyright infringement that takes place using that software.  Reposted from the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

Today in Copyright History: 6/26

On June 26, 1992, copyright renewal registration became optional.  Works copyrighted between January 1, 1964, and December 31, 1977, are automatically renewed even if registration is not made.  Reposted from the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

Today in Copyright History: 6/21

On June 21, 1788, the U.S. Constitution was ratified.  Article I, Section 8, Clause 8 (the Copyright Clause) gives Congress the power to “Promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.”  This language serves as the constitutional foundation of U.S. copyright law, and gave rise to the first federal copyright act, the Copyright Act of 1790, two years later.  Reposted from the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

 Howard Chandler Christy [Public domain], via  Wikimedia Commons .

Howard Chandler Christy [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.

Today in Copyright History: 6/17

11 score and 5 years ago, on June 17, 1790, John Churchman’s Magnetic Atlas or Variation Chart was the first chart registered under the newly-enacted Copyright Act of 1790, which authorized federal copyright protection for “any map, chart, book or books already printed within these United States” for up to 28 years.  Churchman’s chart took its place in U.S. copyright history alongside The Philadelphia Spelling Book, the first book (and first work of any kind) registered under the Act (see an earlier post on this subject here).  Reposted from the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

 
 Public domain, via the Library of Congress ( http://lcweb2.loc.gov/service/rbc/rbc0001/2006/2006frank31395//0068r.jpg ).
 

Today in Copyright History: 6/9

225 years ago, on June 9, 1790, The Philadelphia Spelling Book by John Barry was registered in the U.S. District Court of Pennsylvania as the first copyright entry under the newly-enacted Copyright Act of 1790.  The statutory term of protection was 14 years, with a renewal period of another 14 years.  Reposted from the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

 Public domain, via Library of Congress ( http://www.loc.gov/item/99172032/ ).

Public domain, via Library of Congress (http://www.loc.gov/item/99172032/).

Today in Copyright History: 6/1

On June 1, 2011, Maria A. Pallante was appointed the twelfth and current Register of Copyrights.  Prior to her appointment as Register, Pallante held senior positions in the Copyright Office, including as acting Register, and at the Guggenheim Museum in New York.  Reposted from the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

 By Library of Congress, a U.S. Government agency [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons ( http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Maria_Pallante.jpg ).

By Library of Congress, a U.S. Government agency [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons (http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Maria_Pallante.jpg).