Circumventing Rights Controls: The Token Crack in the Fair Use Window Left Open by Congress in Section 1201 May be Open Wider than Expected - Technically Speaking
Chicago-Kent Journal of Intellectual Property, Vol. 8, p. 297
13 Pages Posted: 11 Jun 2009 Last revised: 16 Jun 2009
Date Written: May 8, 2009
This Article discusses why Congress prohibited the circumvention of access controls in section 1201 of the U.S. Copyright Act, but did not prohibit the circumvention of rights controls. This Article shows that the lack of a prohibition against rights control circumvention may have been a token attempt by Congress to allow fair use of copyrighted works to which users had lawful access. In other words, if one has legal access to a work, one can circumvent the rights control measures on that work without violating section 1201. One can then make fair use of the work. In addition, the prevailing thought on section 1201 is that only the person who has legal access to a work may circumvent rights control measures on that work. This Article will discuss some ways that individuals who cannot circumvent rights controls may still be able to obtain rights circumvention technology from those who can, without either violating section 1201.
Keywords: Section 1201, copyright, rights circumvention
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