Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Moral Rights in the USA - "Frankly, My Dear, I Don''t Give a Damn" v. "Tomorrow Is Another Day"

Mira Rajan - after a long blogging silence – has re-emerged on the 1709 Blog and is once again tilting at a windmill, this time at the issue of moral rights in the USA – or more particularly the lack thereof.

What she does not seem to realize is that:

  • Frankly, for better or worse, virtually nobody with any influence in the USA would seem to actually “give a damn” about moral rights for anyone other than for visual artists. RIP Ted Kennedy.  See "Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn…
  • The USA cleverly and cynically exempted itself in the TRIPs agreement from repercussions  under international law for its failure to provide moral rights. The world let the USA get away with this
  • The Berne Treaty provides no recourse for failure to provide redress for non-existent moral rights regimes
  •  Maria Pallante, the recently appointed US Register of Copyrights, in her recent speeches and testimony to Congress said not an iota about moral rights.
  • We can expect no more attention from the US Congress on moral rights than we can expect their devotion to combatting global warming, repeal of the second amendment regarding gun control, Canadian style Medicare, or a unanimous affirmation of the principle behind Roe v. Wade.
  • Moral rights reform in the USA is, for better or worse, probably a lost cause in our time. Mira’s research skills might be better devoted to something in the realm of art of the possible.
  • Even in countries such as Canada where moral rights has been given a high legislative profile, there are less than a handful of meaningful judicial decisions in the last 80+ plus years that moral rights have existed in Canadian legislation…
  • When it comes to moral rights in the USA, it would seem that “tomorrow is another day”

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