Republican Standing Committee’s Disappearing Copyright Brief Too “Awesome” for Publication

Last Friday, the Republican Standing Committee (“RSC”) published a report by twenty-four year old staffer Derek Khanna, a former Mitt Romney aide and graduate of Georgetown Law School, entitled: “Three Myths about Copyright Law and Where to Start to Fix it.”  In less than twenty four hours, the report disappeared from the internet.

The RSC claims that the report was removed because it had been published without adequate review. But Techdirt and others, smelling scandal, speculate that the report was nefariously removed because it was so “surprisingly awesome” that entertainment industry lobbyists came down like a hammer on the GOP superstructure.

Here’s the report.  In essence, it makes the following suggestions:

  • Lower the rates for statutory copyright infringement;
  • Expand fair use;
  • Punish false takedown notices on the internet;
  • Limit copyright terms.

The report has some good ideas and some not-so-good ideas, but nothing earth-shattering and nothing that has not been suggested before.  One has to wonder how much attention the report would have received had it not been the subject of an alleged minor scandal.  Or perhaps the real surprise is that this report came from the right and not from the left?  At any rate, thanks to the internet, nothing ever truly disappears, and you can judge for yourself.


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