Copyright Office Should Call For Further DMCA Rebalancing

June 5, 2020Article

Greenberg Glusker IP litigation attorneys, Doug Mirell and Josh Geller, discuss the U.S. Copyright Office's report on the current state of Section 512 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act issued on May 21, 2020, in their article, "Copyright Office Should Call For Further DMCA Rebalancing," published by Law360 on June 5, 2020.


Five years in the making, the Copyright Office's long-awaited report evaluates how Section 512's so-called safe harbor provisions have operated and concludes that "the original intended balance" between copyright holders and the platforms that host their content "has been tilted askew."

First enacted in 1998, DMCA Section 512 attempted to strike a balance between the interests of copyright holders in protecting their works and the interests of online service providers, or OSPs in operating their platforms without fear of crippling liability for third-party infringing content. Section 512's most familiar provision is its ubiquitous notice and takedown system: OSPs may enjoy limited liability for third-party copyright infringement by implementing a system in which rights holders can submit a notice of infringing content and the OSP must promptly remove the offending work.

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