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First off today, John Eggerton at Multichannel News reports that the Register of Copyrights Selection and Acountability Act of 2017 has been introduced to the House of Representatives and with it comes a push to remove the US Copyright Office from the Library of Congress and make the Register of Copyrights a direct pick by the President (with Senate confirmation).
Currently, the Register of Copyrights is appointed by the Librarian of Congress and has no term limits. However, they operate solely at the discretion of the Librarian of Congress and can be released at any time. This happened recently with Register Maria Pallante who was abruptly released after a new Librarian of Congress was appointed.
The move has been generally applauded by rightsholders, who see the move as necessary to begin modernizing the office and improve its clout. However, others are concerned that the move could politicize the office and feel that Congress already has enough control with its appointment of the Librarian of Congress.
Next up today, Richard Morgan at Page Six reports that Kanye West has settled a lawsuit filed by a Hungarian songwriter named Gabor Presser, who accused West of using a sample his music without permission in West’s 2013 single New Slaves.
According to Presser, West sampled 85 seconds of his song Gyöngyhajú Lány and did not provide proper compensation or receive permission. The two sides attempted negotiation but the two sides remained far apart, prompting Presser to sue for copyright infringement.
Now that lawsuit has been resolved though the details of the settlement were not disclosed. The move comes as West prepared to be deposed in the case, meaning its likely that West hurried the settlement along to avoid having to testify. Both sides said that the lawsuit was settled amicably.
Finally today, Andy at Torrentfreak writes that a person attempted to blackmail 20th Century Fox and Dreamworks over a leaked copy of The Boss Baby, a film that is slated for release on March 31.
According to the reports, the film had been copied before its release by a man living with a Serbian translator that was preparing the film’s localization for the country. After obtaining the film, he wrote Dreamworks and 20th Century Fox demanding a ransom in the form of Bitcoin.
20th Century Fox paid the ransom but they, along with local police and local distributors, were able to trace the origin of the request and Momcilo Đinović was arrested. He now faces up to 10 years in prison for his actions.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.