FTC Town Hall to Address Digital Rights Management Technologies - Event Takes Place Wednesday, March 25, 2009, in Seattle #539814-00747

Submission Number:
539814-00747
Commenter:
John Mitchell
Organization:
Interaction Law
State:
DC
Initiative Name:
FTC Town Hall to Address Digital Rights Management Technologies - Event Takes Place Wednesday, March 25, 2009, in Seattle

I hereby respectfully submit the attached article, DRM: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, by John T. Mitchell, for the FTC's consideration with respect to the above-referenced DRM Town Hall. The paper was presented at Colleges, Code and Copyright: The Impact of Digital Networks and Technological Controls on Copyright and the Dissemination of Information in Higher Education (Conference Proceedings, June 10-11, 2004, Adelphi, Maryland), sponsored by the Center for Intellectual Property and Copyright, University of Maryland University College. It was published in ACRL Publications in Librarianship, no. 57, ch. 8. The paper examines DRM from the standpoint of the intersection of copyright and competition law and policy. The following is the abstract: Digital rights management (or DRM) technology is neither good nor evil, yet its uses can range from laudable to criminal. DRM can be used for lawful purposes, such as to protect copyrights from infringement and to encourage wider dissemination of works. Some positive uses can cause unintended injury that may be minimized by regulation. Other uses may serve no lawful purpose, but instead enforce unlawful agreements in restraint of trade or evade statutory limits upon the copyright. Using established analog case law, this paper offers a roadmap for discerning among uses of DRM that should be encouraged as good, uses that may be bad but tolerable if properly managed, and uses that are so ugly they should be prohibited and punished. Please note that although I represent clients who distribute non-infringing copies of the copyrighted works of others, the views and opinions in the attached article are my own, and not to be attributed to my clients. Thank you. [Electronic submission through the indicated website appears to be inaccessible.] Sincerely, John T. Mitchell ____________ John T. Mitchell Interaction Law